Tuesday, January 23, 2007

C.O.P.S. TPD Style

I am learning patience....aren't we all. I stopped praying for patience when God gave me my last two boys...I got the idea that it was a learning process and not a miraculous happening. So, this morning I am drinking my coffee, snuggled in bed with my cat purring at my side when the phone rings. Not a good omen. Phones that ring after 10pm or before 8am are almost always emergency related. Trying to keep the adrenalin from ramping into high, I answer it. It's Derek, with car trouble, not nearby but almost to school...in North Tulsa (dun-dun-duh!!!). I push the cat away (he gave me a dirty look), jump into my Supermom suit (ok..it's jeans and a sweatshirt), grab another cup of the Elixir of the Gods for Super Strength (coffee) and head to my Super Sports Car (my Vibe...hey, it's close!). Fighting all the evil fiends (rush hour traffic) I speed to the scene (barely going the speed limit...note the ice story in previous blogs). He had a flat and no way to change the tire! (This may require backup!) I call for a tow truck. The driver is unfortunately extremely busy with other dire circumstances and will require us to wait 1 1/2 hours. I decide to take Derek to school (he can always use more learnin') and return to the scene of the uhhh (crime?) situation where I learn my next lesson in patience for 1 hour and 45 minutes. The tow truck dispatched to our scene is late (of course! it's a lesson in patience...the old learning process!) and it leaves with the crippled truck just in time for me to go get Derek from school. This is where the Tulsa Police Department gets involved. I pick up Derek, head back to the highway on Peoria at 36th North when two police cars block us from turning onto 36th! We then look in front of us to see a speeding van with one tire running just on the rim and 19 (that's nineteen!) police cars chasing it! The two police cars that blocked 36th street join the chase down Peoria at high speed! I am breathless! We just witnessed a high speed chase with 21 police cars! What a reward for learning my lesson in patience! (The rest of the day was spent paying for the tow and repair of the truck to the tune of $300...but all in a days work for Supermom, eh?)
Note: This story is true. Just watch the news tonight. The tow truck will not be featured but the chase will be.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Take Your Medicine! Now!

Our family, like many others, have "challenges" that have dominated our lives and invaded our space over and over again. The "challenges" I am speaking of are not the common everyday annoyances like traffic jams, ice storms, computer glitches or even lack of electricity for over a week...these are the life threatening kind: Cystic Fibrosis, Clef lip and palate, allergic anaphylactic shock, stroke, blindness... Needless to say my adrenalin can go from zero to 1000 in less than 3 seconds...just the amount of time to hear, "Mom, it's serious...". Our family has found a great response to crisis: total and utterly hysterical laughter...yes you read right...laughter! The family members that are closest to the trouble are the ones that have learned to laugh the quickest and the hardest! Over and over again I am asked if that is alright, usually by the person laughing. My answer is a resounding and unashamed YES! We have found more humor in the hospital than the average person finds in a comic routine! (Kaleb, age 6, will give stickers to the nurses that can draw blood from his little arms on the first try...try imagining that without crying and laughing at the same time!) Others look at us like we are crazy but the ones I like best are the ones who join in!

We are not promised a perfect life with no problems just because we believe in Christ, but we are promised to be made perfect in Him. Being made perfect is not done without suffering...Christ suffered for us on the Cross more than we could ever imagine! "Jesus...for the joy set before Him endured the cross"...So that we could joyfully take up our own cross. Too many times I have focused on the cross I have carried and not on the Savior that had already endured it. Interestingly enough, if you carry a cross it must be behind you, on your back where you cannot see it or focus on it so you must focus on something in front of you...Christ chose to focus on joy. So when the going gets tough, and we question our hysterical laughter in the middle of it, just remember it is Biblical to laugh at trouble...("A cheerful heart is good medicine..."Prov. 17:22). Now, I think I will go find my medicine.

PS: You may honestly say now: "I love my new meds!" PSS: While I was finishing this, my hubby sent these, what a coincidence!

Some of the best HEADLINES FROM THE YEAR 2006
1. Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Expert Says
(No, really?)
2. Police Begin Campaign to Run Down Jaywalkers
(Now that's taking things a bit far, don't you think?)
3. Is There A Ring of Debris Around Uranus?
4. Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over
(What a guy!)
5. Miners Refuse to Work After Death
6. Juvenile Court to Try Shooting Defendant
(See if that works better than a fair trial!)
7. War Dims Hope for Peace
(I can see where it might have that effect.)
8. If Strike Isn't Settled Quickly, It May Last Awhile
(You think?!)
9. Cold Wave Linked to Temperatures
(Who would have thought?)
10. Red Tape Holds Up New Bridges
(You mean there's something stronger than Duct Tape?)
12. Man Struck By Lightning: Faces Battery Charge
(He probably IS the battery charge.)
13. New Study of Obesity Looks for Larger Test Group
(Guess the test group didn't weigh enough.)
14. Astronaut Takes Blame for Gas in Spacecraft
15. Typhoon Rips Through Cemetery; Hundreds Dead
- Did I read that headline right?! -

It may be a little tongue-in-cheek for a more serious blog...but I will laugh at it anyway!!!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

The Men in My Family!

Everyone around here knows about the weather...it's been the highlight of every news story for the past week..."Breaking Weather Report"....ok...time to tell the weather guys that after a week it is no longer "Breaking" news...we KNOW it's cold and icy! with more to come. I know some areas are in serious trouble, though, and my folks are in the middle of it. Their power went out on Saturday and they have been challenged by all the cold, ice and lack of just about everything! They were fortunate enough to get the last generator at their local hardware store and with it up and running they can at least power a small heater and the TV. Last night they were sitting in the cold when my dad gets up to check on the generator. "There's still one plug left on the generator and I think I know what to power with it," he told my mom while he headed outside. He came in chuckling to himself. "What in blazes are you up to?" Mom asked. (Sorry...she really talks like that, too.) "Well, I turned on the outside vapor light out in the field behind the house," Dad told her, laughing again. "Now all our neighbors will think we have our electricity back on and THEY don't!!!" I pray that winter doesn't last too long, for my parents sake...

And back on the home front...we have another 'man child' (his daddy's term!) added to the Clan! Zachary Wyatt showed up yesterday at 3:46pm weighing in at a whopping 7 pounds 8 ounces and is 20 1/2 inches tall with good looks to boot! Pictures tell the story: http://community.webshots.com/user/tammybowers He is doing great and will probably be home this afternoon, just in time for his first snowstorm *sigh*. We take the good with the not so good and praise God for an 'uneventful' birth. He is perfect in every way and mom, dad and big brother (along with the rest of the multitude of relatives) welcome him with warmth of love if not the warmth of weather!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Say Uncle? Never!

Do you remember as a kid "playing Uncle"? I didn't like to play but having an older brother, many time I was included against my will. He would grab my arm, thumb or toe and twist or squeeze and tell me to say Uncle and he would stop. Now the smart thing to do would have been to say Uncle and accept the "defeat" with whatever grace I could have mustered up, but not me...I had a big dollop of stubbornness from both parents and would hold my breath until I would have tears streaming down my face, but say Uncle? Never! I would have a sore arm for days with bruises the exact size of my brother's fingers but I didn't say Uncle so I "won". Was it the smart thing to do? I would have to say no. My relationship with my brother to this day is one that is marred with pain. Not just games anymore, real life scars that the abuse of alcohol and drug leave...twisted and bruised relationships, trust and lives. When I was younger I knew every hiding place in our house, yard and neighborhood that I would immediately run to if I saw him coming and as an adult I guess I have done the same thing...caller ID is a good thing to have if you want to hide.

With my New Year's resolution came the biggest brother of all 'bad'....Satan. He gave me every opportunity to give in to TSOO possible. (If you haven't read my previous blog on The Spirit of Offense (TSOO), now would be a good time to get filled in.) Being in the resolution mode I took them all with a grain of salt the first week and laughed at all of the holds Satan tried! I felt very strong and thought more of my resolution as a game of Uncle than the serious change that God was putting on my life...after all, that first week seemed easy! Now that the second week has passed I am thinking that saying Uncle might be the easiest thing to do...after all, I have a lot on my plate right now and I don't have time to deal with my attitude...so I feel myself hiding whenever I see Satan (or is it God?) putting an opportunity in front of me to feel offended. Instead of dealing with my own feelings and attitudes, I stuff the situation down. Instead of praying for people and blessing them, I turn away to TV or the computer to take away the problem and forget the offense for the moment. Instead of making the encouraging call to the person that has offended me, I talk about them to someone that is sympathetic to Me. So I guess in all sorts of ways I have said Uncle to Satan...something I wouldn't have done for my own brother I did to the biggest liar, cheater, and the one that hates me most...and I gave in.

Thank goodness we have a God and a Big Brother that allows us a win-win life! In repentance I am not 'giving up', I am getting help from my Big Brother Jesus to take the arm-twisting fingers of Satan off of my life and to let me hide in Him while He does the fighting for me. I just acknowledge that I am the little sister that really can't make it alone. All I have to do is remain in the family, praise, encourage and lift up everyone else on this earth to show them my Big Brother can and does fight for them too! To let them know (or remind them) that they too have this family available to them and they can develop a relationship in his love that defeats all the pain and suffering that Satan has thrown at them. And in doing that I remind myself of why I should never take offense...because Satan is the enemy, not other people who are fighting this fight just like me. So once again, I am standing up and facing TSOO and declaring with tears of repentance on my face and my Brother at my side, "Say Uncle? Never!"

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

...And the Spirit Came Upon Me

We have finally completed the Holidays! Yesterday we celebrated our traditional "New Year Christmas Day" and it was an exercise in excess once again! God has blessed us every one! In the aftermath I sat down to consider the new year and new beginnings. Last year I devoted to lowering my sarcasm level. I tended to do the Bell Curve over and over again with reminding myself to be less sarcastic and more encouraging but I think over all my encouragement level has gone up and my sarcasm has decreased (even though I have almost bit my tongue in two several times). For those of you who feel I still need some work in this area please feel free to comment...I really will continue in my endeavor.

Now for something new...ever notice that with the Spirit of Christmas comes another spirit? One that sneaks in the back door with that uncle or aunt (sister or brother, mom or dad) that kinda kicks the jolly right out of the holiday? I have named that spirit The Spirit of Offense (TSOO for short) and my resolution this year is to totally starve him to death! I will give him no food to feed on out of my mouth or actions, in fact I will slip him a bit of poisonous laughter now and then! And then totally ignore him as he writhes in anguish! When he tries to jab me with my own rights, I will lay them down on the floor where they are completely useless (unless I try to pick them up and then remind myself that TSOO is in control of them, HAH!) When he comes at me through words spoken in anger or thoughtlessness, I will leaven a bit of love into the conversation and make some bread of life out of it then not allow TSOO to have a bite of it! I will keep sweetness, kindness and gentleness at hand in a spray bottle to freshen the air a bit after I have kick him out of the house and then sic my big dog on him...my dogs' name is Prayer, and he is one tough dog! I have seen him wrestle The Spirit of Offense over and over again and never get tired of running him off! I then will protect my life with the best security system available...the Spirit of God's Word: J.E.S.U.S. Inc. (They are a company with three divisions...you get the idea :) All I have to do is enter the special code of praise and TSOO can never come back! That is unless I invite him....guess I need to go pet my dog for awhile if I am tempted to do something as silly as that. I will see how my new year's resolution holds up...it's a tough one this year, but a good one, don't you think?