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Friday, February 27, 2009

Distractions and Gratitude: They Go Together

I'm up early on this Saturday a.m. 5.30 to be exact. Just can't sleep anymore. It was dark outside when I first rose. I am sitting at my kitchen table looking out the window to our backyard. The tree branches are bare, patches of snow cover the ground. It is still and quiet and I love it. I'm kind of, sort of working on my sermon for tomorrow. I hate not being done by Friday but I allowed too many distractions to take precedence over writing this week. (And apparently I still am allowing that since I'm blogging and not sermonating!) But I got some wildly unexpected good news yesterday and it has made it hard to concentrate. My mom is in remission, which we didn't think was even possible and it's all a bit much to take in. So I wrote an email to all my friends announcing the good news which caused a flurry of responses and I just couldn't stay off my email long enough to actually put together two paragraphs about the Samaritan woman's encounter with Jesus. It's an appropriate text for the week however...it's about healing and second chances and drinking the water of life which is really Christ himself. I am tasting a little bit of all of that as I revel in the news of my mom's health. The news prompted me to consider a trip to California. I feel a deep need to be with my folks right now, to enjoy time with them when they are healthy and happy not just making room in my life for the crisis periods. So I was also wildly distracted by the incredibly cheap airfares that are on offer right now into Los Angeles airport. LAX is a total pain in the butt to get to from Palm Springs, but if it's my ticket to some family face time, I may have to jump on it. It's moments like these that I really wish the US wasn't so far away from Sweden. To be able to plan for a long week-end "home" without all of the drama of schedule, time, money, flights, jet leg, etc. would be so great. But I can't really complain. I have the ability, money, time, and means to actually consider going again, just a mere 6 weeks after arriving back. I think it would do me good...we'll see if we make it work logistically...work, dog, schedule, etc.
So, I woke up at 5.30 and thought, good, I'll get up and finish my sermon. I have been sitting here for a little over an hour now and while I have written a bit more on my sermon, I'm still mired in distractions. Facebook is the great timesuck and chief distractor. I love seeing a little glimpse of what's happening in the lives of people scattered far and wide. I chatted with a good friend who was up late with her newborn. I'm playing Lexulous with my father and Scrabble with my husband and a good friend...gotta see where I can make a high scoring word. I'd be better off making words that will score well with my parishoners, but I can't seem to focus. I am attention deficit child this week...but at least my reasons are good. And I know I'll finish. In fact, as soon as I finish this blog, I'll make my final points and be ready to preach the word on Sunday.
What I am noticing, now that I've been sitting at my kitchen table which looks out the window, is that it is now light outside...wow. Light before 7.00 a.m. We have officially punched through the dark season and are now entering the season of light! Another reason to rejoice in the gift of life. Another distraction on the way to finishing my sermon...but I am inspired by the blue sky that is coming into view. I'm grateful. Life is good. I'm happy to be distracted by thoughts of my mom feeling better and my dad getting a little break from being a full time care giver and that perhaps I'll get to touch the California soil sooner than I had thought and that I'm not living in the dark anymore. My sermon is all about letting Jesus reveal to us our greatest longings, our deepest needs so that he can quench those longings with the living water that only he can give.
I'm tasting it...and enjoying it. I guess I'll enjoy it even more when I'm done with my sermon. Better get to it. Sunday is coming.