"Then..." is what follows "What if?" :)
After my Thursday post, I had to come back and give you, dear reader friends and encouragers, an update on the last two days, since my Potentially Pending Panic Attack.
Writing out my 5 what ifs, had an immediate calming effect on me. Peace settled like a soft blanket around a baby, and I physically felt myself exhale.
Why would such a simple exercise have such a profound effect?
Because all of the "what ifs" were possible! They were simply choices I could make. I was not a helpless victim of my circumstance. I had some choices to make, and dreaming of what if...helped me choose well.
On Wednesday night I knew that I had two working days left. I could have spent all 16 of those hours in my office and still not accomplished everything I wished I could do. But--I didn't tell you this--Thursday was a Staff Connection Day. I was out for 6 hours of that day in a church, celebrating with 35 wonderful staff, playing games, worshipping and praising God in song and participitating in a commissioning service for 11 of the staff.
Significantly, this was the first event I've organized with an Events Committee. I'm usually scrambling without enough time to involve others and you can't thrust things on people at the last minute. What a refreshing change it was to check in with people along the way and find people just glad to touch base, ask a question here and there, but busy doing their part. It was wonderful and I was so grateful. And the event was awesome.
Susan was praying for the day from her recovery couch at home. I chose to relax into the day and "be there" with people. I looked into every face and every pair of shining eyes with love and joy.
Afterwards I went to the office and worked as hard as I could for 2 hours then packed up everything I would need for the next day and left for home. I went to the grocery store to pick up a few things for cell group supper (the main part of which was cooking in a crock pot) and on my way home I looked at my watch. It was only 5.15. I got to the post office before it closed at 5.30 and there were some parcels I would not have been able to pick up had I been 15 minutes later.
One of the parcels (all books for cell group) was a book I'd ordered especially for Jane, to thank her for leading us in our studies of late. She was thrilled with it and surprised. We won't see each other for two more weeks since I'll be in England and she will be busy with studies. I felt in perfect synchronization with God's timing.
The other thing I didn't mention in my Thursday post was that on Friday one of my team needed me to partner with them in interviews. She told me we had interviews scheduled from 10.00 a.m. to 3.00 p.m. in Richmond Hill. There was one person, John, in a partner agency, who I really wanted to talk to before leaving and I'd asked him if we could talk at the beginning or the end of the day on Friday. He said, "Can you meet me in Barrie at 4.00?" I said, "Yes." Barrie is about an hour from Richmond Hill. No time in the office, but trusting God.
On Friday morning John emailed me to say he had been up all night with a streaming cold and congestion and suggested that we talk by phone instead at 4.00, which was fine with me.
Before leaving I phoned my hairdresser, hoping against hope that she could squeeze me in on Friday evening, Saturday or Monday. Friday evening they were closed and Monday she is off, said the girl at the front desk. "All I need is a root touch up," I said, "If Jamie tells someone else what to do, I don't mind them doing it. They are very short roots, but I don't want to take them with me to England!" They squeezed me in on Saturday at 12.45 at a time when Jamie can supervise it being done. :)
I checked to see if I could get my car in for a spring/summer tune up and snow tires taken off on Saturday (I know, it's almost midsummer!) but they were booking for Tuesday already. No worries, I have a dear husband who will be happy to take care of that for me while I'm away.
I went to Richmond Hill for the interviews. When I got there I found my coworker had scheduled two more interviews--at 3.00 and 4.00. She apologized for not calling to tell me--but God had already taken care of my Barrie meeting! I tried to call John at 4.00, hoping to squeeze our chat quickly between interviews, but he had gone down the hall for a minute and missed the call. We arranged a call on Monday--a final detail--and I didn't have to talk about something important under time pressure.
My planned evening home with Paul didn't happen because he decided to go to Men's Fellowship--yes, thrown over for Men's Fellowship--imagine! I was going to go shopping at Costco instead, but as I was driving home at 5.30 I decided that instead I would go home and eat supper and take my golden boy, Molson, out for a walk instead. After all, we only have so many walks left before Monday.
As I walked in the cool breeze of the evening, in the light of the setting sun, with one of my best friends on earth enjoying the moment with me to the fullest--I knew that I had chosen well.
Jesus had been with me every moment of the day, pointing out the stones Susan wrote about yesterday. And I didn't get wet feet, let alone turn into the crazed woman, sloshing in water that Susan described, and which she has personally witnessed me being a time or two!
Yes, I still have a few "paper details" to cover, but I am getting a vision of my own right now: Me with my hands outstretched, weighing something in each and saying "Paper, or people?"
The paper could blow away in a gust of breeze and the world wouldn't miss it too much. When the crunch is on, I have learned what counts most!