Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Letting go sets you free . . .

The commercial range & suppression system come out. Sold to Pohatcong Memorial VFW Post 6701.

I've decided to call the last three weeks of this journey "The Big Purge".
At first it's stressful, there seems to be so many steps to getting rid of stuff, but then once the ball started rolling, before we knew it, a lot of things just disappeared right before our eyes!

What I wasn't prepared for were the little attachments I had to each of the items that went to a new home. These "things" had weaved their way into my mind and heart and when it came time to let them go - well - it was a little bit of a struggle. There was this question that would pop up each time the opportunity came to let the item go . . . . "What if. . . ? " You know that question, it has many forms, but basically it always whispers to us in the same way. "What if I'll need it?", "What if someone I know will need it?", "What if I can't find this item again if I end up needing it?", or the same question worded a different way . . . "Well maybe . . . " And it goes like this, "Well maybe I could get more money if I wait to sell it." , "Well maybe someone might need it and when they do, I'll have it.", "Well maybe I'm just not ready to give it up yet!"

Then if we continued to listen to these nagging questions long enough, they became toxic and start to sound like this "What will people think?", "What if it doesn't turn out?", "What if it's the wrong decision?", "What if I . . . . . fail?"

Wow, when that last question rears it's ugly head, that should make us stand up and take notice! That is the ultimate toxic question. It's the one that keeps all of us from letting go, believing in a new start, taking that step toward change . . .then the final blow, the "What if I fail?" when left unchecked turns in to "I can't". End of story, end of the road, end of the adventure. Once we submit to the "I can't" the forward motion comes to a complete stand still.

Are you willing to face the ultimate challenge ?

Hebrews 11:1 (NIV)
1Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.

Faith is like radar that sees through the fog.
~ Corrie Ten Boom, Tramp for the Lord ~

Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase.
~ Martin Luther King Jr. ~

Feed your faith and your fears will starve to death. ~ Author Unknown ~


Monday, August 10, 2009

The Challenge of Change

Hillsboro, New Mexico 2009

This week New Jersey is offering up her trademark hot and humid Dog Day's of Summer. As I prepare to move to New Mexico I will always remember the challenge I faced while making bread during New Jersey's steamy season. Measuring water temps, watching the Weather Channel, trying to get a feel for how the day would unfold and how it would affect my dough as it fermented. And trying to calculate just how much time I had to get the dough put up in to the proofing room was like a good race, setting a good pace to finish strong . . .
As my bread making in NJ comes to an end (only 7 weeks to go) I find that my mind wanders off to the desert Southwest where humidity is hard to find. The very fact that many folks use "swamp" coolers instead of refrigerated air should give you an idea of how moisture deprived the region can be. I know that this extreme environment is going to offer a whole different challenge to the art of making naturally leavened Sourdough Bread.
I marvel at how the smallest change can become a challenge and an opportunity to grow. Change in any form causes us to respond in some way, and through that response we discover some things about ourselves that we may never have known. Change makes us decide what we really believe in, what is important to us and what it is that we really need rather than what we want. I'm thinking of a line in Sheryl Crow's song Soak Up the Sun . . . "It's not having what you want - It's wanting what you've got".

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Bake by day, pack by night

Photo taken between Datil and Cruzville, NM on Hwy 12 crossing the Continental Divide in Southern New Mexico 10/2008

It's been a long time since I last moved. And I'm discovering that after being in one location for 23 years, we've accumulated a lot of "stuff"! I'm also finding an abundance of things that I've gathered from as far back as my early childhood (Fisher Price™ barn with mooing Silo, all animal intact. :)
What I am enjoying though, are the little trips down memory lane, the trips you take when you come across an item you've not seen in a long time. This past week I've been packing dishes and cooking equipment. What amazes me is that even after 26 years of marriage, I come across a baking dish or cooking utensil that was a shower/wedding gift. Then that thought makes me wonder, "Where is the person that gifted it to us? What path has their life taken?" and that question brings me right back to our current situation. If you would have told me a year ago when Tom and I were pedaling our bikes 750 miles through Southern New Mexico that in a year's time we'd be moving there - we would have both laughed! And then I think about a passage in the Old Testament of the Bible:

Isaiah 55:8 (NIV)

8 "For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,"
declares the LORD.

I saved a little clip from the Star Ledger dated April 4, 2009 with a quote from musician Carlos Santana. He quotes: "Every time I tell God MY plans, he cracks up, he starts laughing."
Each day is an adventure, be sure to go out and be a part of it, you never know where it might take you!
Thoughtfully Kath