Dishes In the Bath Tub

“See!  Black car, red car, white walls!  PREEEETTTTTYYYY!
Keep it that way!”

Needless to say I was and am thrilled about the remake my maintenance man did to the garage my neighbor and I share!  Strange I know; but he’d and my husband had taken the garage to a point of neatness I actually enjoy walking into!  Yeah it had taken a few years and one huge day to consolidate and remove 8 years of teen destruction and hoarding but now it was neat and tidy and I actually enjoyed getting into my car and looking around!

It was no surprise that I noticed the water stains on the freshly painted wall!  We’d had a few minor/major-ish shakers and I’d recently spoken with the property manager about it!  We were both a bit surprised that my building had suffered no damage when several of her other buildings had minor damages!  I remember leaving the office to her asking me to keep an eye out because, ‘… some issues take time to show themselves.’  I sighed as I whipped out my camera so I could actually show her the issue!  As we headed out for coffee I quietly spoke within me, “Father if there is a water leak, please have it evidence itself.”  That was a Sunday.  That night I e-mailed the picture to her and the next morning I got a call that the plumber would be over that afternoon!

We missed each other until that afternoon and plumbers don’t usually like jobs that are in the evening w/o being paid for it so we settled on the next morning!  That was most probably a great thing as my mom had called Mon. morning with an ominous warning!

There was no doom or gloom in what she said…

It had just not settled well in my spirit!  It FELT wrong; and it set me on edge as I sensed a trap somewhere!  I have no doubt that she heard from Him!  None at all, but it just felt bitter and designed to agitate!  I remember feeling my spirit pull back from her words.  I wish I could explain it better but I just can’t!  I don’t word well on some of these topics!  It was almost like 0500 hours in boot; peaceful, quiet, and serene; until the CC walks in and shouts ‘ATTENTION ON DECK!”  Gets your guard up for sure and mine certainly was for the rest of that Monday!  Like my inner man had stood up and said ‘Oh Snap!  Here it comes again! ON GUARD!’

The next morning the plumber was there early!  Since the area was now dry he decided to cut a hole in the wall to see if he could find the leak!  He didn’t so he ran upstairs and asked me to start running the water in my sink.  I had wanted to do dishes so I agreed! 😀  I knew I was in trouble when he came running up stairs and asked me to stop the water!  As he flew back downstairs to see if he could isolate the leak I though

“OMG you have GOT to be kidding me!
Why is it always me that has to have these critical fails?”

Yeah!  That’s me!  I never do anything in half measures!  Can I say I was NOT surprised when the book of Job floated through my consciousness?  When the plumber began to frantically look through my cupboards and drop “F” bombs I even kinda started to laugh deep inside me!  It really was funny!  He’d look in one and drop the bomb!  Then he’d look at me, turn red and apologize!  It was so like any other man I have ever known when they were frustrated!  Trust Abba to at least make me laugh a bit at the start of a quiz so to say!  When he told me he was done because the leak was so bad the outside of the building is stained from it my hands went up in the air as I stated; “OK I will shut down my kitchen sink!”  My whole thing was:

DISCLAIMER:

The following is as correct a recollection of the conversation my flesh, soul, and spirit had that day as I can come to! I will leave you to separate out which is which.

“Yeah it’s happening again!  What cha gonna do?”
“Imma gonna be nice cuz I have been right where he is!”
“It goes only as long as YHVH says it does.”

The next morning K. was over early!  I took him all of 5 minutes to fly out of the garage while dropping an “F” bomb!  About an hour later I called the manager to find out what was up!  When C. started talking remove walls contractor speak I knew the job had the potential to be massive and I resolved myself to staying good humored about the whole thing even though I felt like crying!!

What did tough mean ol’ me do next?

I called my mommy!  While we were talking I made the statement, ‘Well mom, I am the one who asked for it to ‘…evidence itself…’! I kinda got what I asked for!”  To which she replied, ‘YES you did’.  I love my mom!  She’s so rational at times!  Drives me nuts!  Any who she had me laughing when I told her that I was just being schooled in what to look for when we bought our place. I hung up the phone after she assured me that I had this one in the bag and I was gonna do just fine!

The next several weeks were a blur of things breaking and everything going sideways!  I even remember actually stating:

“Father what is it with all these batched attacks!?”

They were relentless!  One after another they just kept coming, even from avenues they hadn’t in a while!  From having to remind my daughter ‘I’ll show you rude.’ to telling my husband, ‘I wouldn’t say that because we both know I will bring it!’ it felt like I was in some sort of Xena style 5 on 1 sword fight!  I swear I even heard/felt my spirit chanting:

‘Perry, Thrust, Jab Jab…!
Touche!!!! ’

It was seriously insane but what cha gonna do?

I could wail and cry and overall just be a brat as is my normal inclination…

OR

I could Buckle up, NO buttercup, and put boots on the ground and get ‘er done!

I chose the latter of the two!

WHY?!?!?!

Because I gots ma big girl panties on and I am on a mission to give my beloved One all my heart in every situation and master the weak areas as He shows them to me!  I have been through this so many times in the last 16 + years that there really was a side of me; deep within; that kept saying “I got this!  I know what to do this time through!  I am gonna pass this test!”

You see that verse in Job, the one that says “Do you see my servant…?”  That really speaks to me!  There was a time when I DETESTED YHVH with all my heart!  After 16 years of Him showing me He was always there but LEGALY RESTRAINED (by many things) and getting to know who He really is the idea of giving Him bragging rights tickles my fancy!  I simply ADORE the idea of my GOOD BEHAVIOR releasing Him to brag on me!  It’s better than crack if I have to say, and I have been on the streets, so I can say that!  Frankly; dishes in the bath tub for several weeks, wasn’t doing dishes in the creek because you live under a bridge now was it?!

I was doing dishes in the tub, rinsing them in the sink, and thinking to myself when the sink let go.  I was so shocked I almost could not extrapolate the data!  I was standing there minding my own business and trying to keep a good humor about it all; which was hard because my son had grumbled that it was ‘so ghetto’ to be dumping washing pans; when my toes started getting wet!  Remember how I said I never do anything by half measures?  Yeah!  A mini wall of water, COLD water hits my toes!  I about had a heart attack!  It took me forever to figure out exactly what had happened!  Sadly, I and the cupboard were saturated before I found it!  I stood up and stated:

You have got to be kidding me!!!  Really Abba?!?!”

To say my emotions ran the gamet that night would be an understatement!  I was angry about ‘MY sink’ one moment the next I was depressed and ready to cry!  As I emailed the short video of the carnage to my manager that Monday night I had a serious conversation with My Abba about everything!

Frankly I was tired from it all!  Doing dishes in the bath tub was killing my back.  Taking them back into the kitchen was wasting my time!  Having a full trash can constantly from all the paper and plastics was killing my pocket book!

Frankly I was pissed as well!  If it were my home it would be done!  WEEKS AGO it would have been done!  I wouldn’t have to consider other tennants with bigger leaks first!  One woman to one house, not one maint man and many apartments, hear me roar!

At this point the rational, logical me pipped up!

“Yeah?!  Go ahead and you are gonna sound like that frog video you love so much!
Wonder how bad you’ll mess things up!”

Well I never do anything by half measures so logically I’d mess a lot of stuff up real bad and look like a fool doing it!  Umm No!  That is not the result I wanted in this or any other situation thankyou very much!  The consolation would be that I goofed with panash and style! Hmph!  Been down that road and the results were not pleasant!  Amussing in hindsight maybe, but not pleasant in any way, shape, or form!  I’d rather pass!  I mean after all it COULD be houston right?!?!?!?  I really had no reason to complain even though I felt like it!

As I came to this CHOICE I felt a conversation start up again on the inside:

“What cha gonna do?”
“Imma gonna be still and trust His intentions for me!”
“It goes only as long as YHVH says it does.
It is well with my soul.  Selah…”

The next morning I was up before anyone else!  WAAAAAY before the management office opened for business so I had some time to speak with Abba!

One of the habits Christians seem to have is the ability to pretend nothing is wrong and nail you if you are unsatisfied with what is happening in your world!  I’m good at pretending but NOT good enough at it to fool the Living God so it caused a controversy that eventually drove me away!

One of the strengths the Messianics had back in the day (1998-ish) was their intimate interactions with the Living God, thus giving them the ability to answer and quell those controversies, that healed the breaches the enemy had cause in the human heart!  It was during that time that I’d come to understand that EVERYTHING I thought I knew about God was baloney and not worth the garbage dumb it was built on!  While I was struggling to learn what I didn’t know about Him complaining came up in the weekly Torah portion (Parashat Beha’alotcha/ Beha’alotekha)!!

Back in the day I had a very trusted Hebrew sister who described me as the little kid that jumps into Daddy’s lap, grabs His bread, and says ‘but ABBA I don’t understand!’  She was right and there’s a reason for it!  My family is highly intelligent and very curious and I am the best at it of all because I got to grow up around my grandfather whose motto was; there are no stupid questions, only unasked questions, so ask questions!  He and grandma and mom and dad answered ALL of my questions!  I really miss those lazy days when I was young, before the world fell apart!

I was really falling in love with YHVH by this time but I was very unhappy with some things at home!  THEN complaining came up!  Now what do I do!  Well follow gr’pa’s advice and ask the question!  So I did! At that point my ‘rabbi daddy’ began to teach me the only way to safely complain was to speak with Him alone about it!  That I needed to understand that these trials were to circumcise my heart so I could be drawn closer to Him!  That He was doing these things FOR ME not TO ME because He had a plan for my good, and that I also needed to understand that the furnace would only go on as long as needed to accomplish the desired work in ME and that no matter what it would be my heart that was changed first because cleaning begins in His house first and we are called to be His dwelling place!  Can we say OY VEH?!?!?!?!?!?!

Armed with 16+ years of practice I went to Him that morning.  In honest, open gratitude I thanked Him for all He’d done during the whole thing to keep me laughing over all of it!  I told Him that for the most part it really was funny; I really could be living in Houston!  I told Him that even though I agreed with K.’s motives for waiting after watching him pull the cupboard, I just didn’t know how much more I could take because it was a pain in my pillowed parts and I was beginning to not respond well to it!  Then I asked Him to change my heart on the matter so I could be still while I waited! I confessed that I had no idea what He was doing with all of it but that it REALLY would only last until He gave the order for it to be fixed!  Then I spoke with Him about C. my manager!  I was scared because I didn’t want to be too abrupt or snarky with her because her spirit was tender after losing her husband the way she did!  I asked Him to help me be gentle and kind when I spoke with her!  I told Him that no matter what I wanted her and everyone else to see Him in everything I said and did until the problem was fixed!  Then I told Him that He was the ONLY way I was gonna be able to pull it off!  That I needed Him by my side more than ever or I was gonna goof up and fall on my A**!  I closed our chat with “Please Father, prepare my heart so I can hear You today! It goes only as long as You say it does Father and it is well with my soul.  Selah…”  Then I grabbed one more cup of coffee before I made the call at 9:30!

My heart was pounding when I dialed the phone!  I was expecting to hear that they were still discussing it, the plumber was still busy or something other than her exasperation as she exclaimed ‘He was supposed to call you yesterday!  I’ll call him now for you!’  I was on cloud 9 as I walked into my bedroom to wake my husband and get dressed!   As I was putting clothes on it hit me that it always breaks wide open when you come to the end of you!  When you come to the end of everything you know and lay it all on Him.

It’s never easy putting what we love on the altar but it is so necessary if we wish to draw closer to Him!  Most often I have found that humans love their ideas more than His truth and will fight to protect those ideas instead of fighting to stand on what He has said in spite of what the eyes tell us is so!  Peace/shalom is a CHOICE not a gift!  YES He gifts it to us but we must choose to accept it in every circumstance! When we choose to live in our own ideals of whatever situation we are in; we sound like a very tiny, very angry little frog; the enemy laughs at us before he eats us up!!

When we CHOOSE to look for Him EVERYWHERE and in EVERYTHING we allow the Lion of the tribe of Judah to do His job! It is CRITICAL if we wish to come into a relationship with Him that says lays a fair chain upon our necks and states to the adversary “TOUCH ME NOT for I belong to YHVH!”

No!  The storms in life are never pleasant but they are designed to bring us to a place of blessing as we learn to rely solely on Him. If we are wrapped up in our victim blankets we will forget to see Him in even the tiniest of things!  If we bury the tiny things under the compost of our pity parties, we will miss out on the bigger things!  Perhaps we will even miss Him altogether as we imbibe in a desire to wallow in the muck of what we think has been done to us!

The kingdom of heaven suffers violence,

BUT the violent take it (back) by force!

What force you ask?

The Force of CHOICE!  That’s right!  We have been gifted with the freedom to CHOOSE whom we will follow!  When we FREELY CHOSE Him it opens the gates of heaven and drives the enemy away as He comes roaring into our spheres!