Thursday, May 28, 2015

Living lavishly in the temporary

Going the Cheap Route

When we first came back almost a year ago I picked up a really cheap comforter from Ollie’s.  I mean, why spend the money on a quality comforter when it’s just for a year?  We decided not to buy any sheets as there were sheets that came with our fully furnished mission house.  

Steve’s mom gave us a set of nicer sheets however they are made for a full-sized bed and we have a queen-sized bed.  Though they were the wrong size I still used them and with some effort they did fit!  When changing the fitted sheet on the queen, that last corner becomes a wrestling match with the mattress.  Once finally wrestled into place the victory is short-lived as it unravels whilst in slumber, the corner slips off the edge of the mattress and curls over bunching said sheet into a tangle of wrinkles and frustration.  It’s exhausting.  Also the cheap comforter is made of slippery material that slides easily.  It often slipped off the bed or we awoke in the morning baffled to find the comforter had somehow slipped sideways or upside down.
Our bedding... not our bedroom.

Enough is Enough

Steve decided he'd had enough and we went to Walmart and picked out a lovely comforter set and soft sheets.  Those sheets are a crisp white and feel like a silken sheath of delight.  The comforter has the perfect weight to it as it rests gently over us in fluffy goodness.  It’s truly remarkable how the quality of bedding can make or break the sleeping experience. 

My only regret is we waited so long to get good bedding.  It got me wondering how often we make do with less than the best due to circumstances?  A comforter is a comforter, right?  So, we had a comforter and it covered the bed (as long as no one moved).  Likewise, sheets are sheets and we had those.  

So... Does this make us spoiled American’s?  Do we need pampering?  

Short Term Investing

We are living a temporary life here in York.  Being aware that our limited time is slipping by is both a blessing and a curse.  The blessings are that you really appreciate what’s before you.  It’s hard to take people and places and things for granted when you only have them for a short time.  On the flip side, the challenge is to fully engage and invest when you know you will be leaving soon.  Why invest your heart, time and money when it’s temporary? 

Last summer I had a conversation with someone who lamented her lack of deeper friendships.  I offered to be her friend and to be a bridge to others.  She gently responded that I am only here for a short time so thanks but no thanks.  She turned me down and though I was momentarily stung by the kind rejection I realized I am just as likely to pass over investing and engaging in someone if I know it will be temporary.

Risky Business

Yet when I have thrown caution to the wind and fully entered in, I have been so blown away by friendships and experiences.  To dive deep knowing it will be brief is a risk.  It hurts to say goodbye when your heart is connected.  Parting with such sweet sorrow is no joke!  

I have also been amazed at how a friendship birthed in lives overlapping just a few months can become so deep and enduring.  I think of the Traveling Chucks and our team at Bongolo and the kids at UBAC and friends in Cameroon.  Just the other day Steve and I watched a video made for Bongolo and we got to see our dear friends and teammates.  I found myself tearing up, so thankful to get to be on mission with those amazing people.  Our home church of York Alliance holds deep roots with friendships that span 15 years though our daily lives are an ocean apart for just over half of those years. 

Living Lavishly
Even though my Heavenly Father says life is so fleeting here on earth, He showers me with beauty and grace and mercy.  James 4:14 "You don't know the first thing about tomorrow. You're nothing but a wisp of fog, catching a brief bit of sun before disappearing." ~ The Message Bible  He paints the skies with splendor each dawn and dusk.  He causes flowers to bloom for a moment of fragile beauty.   He has given us taste buds to savor vanilla lattes and feet to feel the green grass spring up and cushion each foot fall.  We have been given ears to hear rain falling on tin roofs and the surf rolling against a sandy shore.  He is extravagant in His love for us.  His mercies are new each morning.  He delights in us.

Though the struggle is real to get out of bed each morning, the "fancy" bedding reminds me of God’s goodness.  I have a choice- I can live emotionally and spiritually frugal making little investment in this temporary life or I can live lavishly.  I hope to fearlessly dive deep with whomever and whatever and where ever I find myself… even if it’s just temporary.     


No comments: