I seem to be losing my edge, which is a good thing <3

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I guess the Lord is doing a work in me because yesterday I spent a grand total of 133 minutes on the phone with a variety of Xfinity tech support personnel and I never lost my temper once. 

Not even after all the automated prompts and the fact that the 133 minutes of talk time did not include the minutes spent trying to get to a human. 

I also logged 3249 steps and 19 flights of stairs running back and forth between the television in the basement and the Gateway modem in the office.

And in all this, I continued to carry on civil conversations with all three customer support people. 

The first one was located in Romania and I never could quite catch his name so I gave up.

However as we waited for the system to reboot numerous times and attempted to restart the connections to the internet, he awkwardly started some small talk with me. He said he knew it was a trivial question but how was the weather where I lived. 

I said it was really fairly pleasant, which somehow broke the ice and from halfway around the world he decided to share with me that he had been working in the hospitality industry in Hawaii before Covid hit. The pandemic had forced him to return home and he was trying to start a business so was doing extra work to help like this job to help make ends meet. 

As he poured out his story, I commiserated with him on the difficult changes we are faced during these times. The system finally did it’s thing and so he coached me through a few more attempts to get our TV connected to the internet and eventually told me I would most likely need to get a new box for it. 

He said he would make notes on the call, and I would be receiving a text in an hour asking if the issue had been resolved. I would need to reply N for no and they would direct me to the steps I would take to get the TV box replaced. 

An hour later, I received the text, made the call and got John.

Not our John of course. This John referred to himself as “John like John the Baptist”. He sounded like he lived in Atlanta and he was pretty sure he could fix the situation over the phone despite the notes that guy #1 had left on my file. 

He was not as chatty, but was nice…although a bit disenchanted with my lack of technical skills. At one point when I was trying to locate the XR number on the inside of the remote and finally found it, he couldn’t refrain from a relieved exclamation of “Thank you, Jesus!”

I said Amen and he laughed and from there we worked together as brother and sister in Christ, and seriously the only thing we had in common…. but still to no avail.

John tried repeatedly to get my remote to “par” (assuming he meant pair) with the TV but it was just not meant to be.

Finally John determined the remote was the problem and advised me to go the nearest Xfinity store and tell them I needed a new remote.

He gave me a ticket number, which I said I would need to find a pen and paper for, but since I was in the basement all I could put my hands on was a large purple crayon and a coloring page. 

But done and done and I thanked John and wished him a blessed day and he did the same to me. 

Ah well, I thought. 

A simple solution and time on Thursday to hit up the store for a new remote. 

Except now we had no internet on any device. 

I searched for it on the settings of all devices and discovered our wifi name had disappeared from the neighborhood. 

So my third call was to Stuart. 

I have no idea where Stuart hails from. 

He sounded like perhaps he was Hispanic…but who knows. 

When I told Stuart we were AWOL from the wifi list in our area, he discovered that somehow in all the pushing of buttons and running resets, our Gateway had been returned to factory settings. 

Stuart got us back up with our old wifi name and set up our old password and I was quite happy. He wanted to make sure I could connect all the devices including the printer. 

And then Stuart earned my deepest respect. One of the TV’s was having trouble connecting so he suggested unplugging the box and then plugging back in. It worked. 

He also asked me to go back to the original problem TV and see if we could get it up and running as well. 

Sure enough – by unplugging the cable box and plugging it back in …

Voila ! 

The errant TV now worked. 

He said that he has discovered often when a box and TV are not working, this simple step of unplugging and replugging the box seems to do the trick.

I proclaimed Stuart a genius.

He humbly laughed and said he wouldn’t go that far but I insisted whatever else happened today in his life, he is indeed…a genius. 

So 133 minutes, 3,249 steps, 19 flights of stairs and three phone calls later…our problem was fixed and I realized that God does transform even the likes of me…this time. 

I hope I can remember that the next time I have to call to have the paper stopped or need to ask someone about our garbage pick up…sigh…

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He really does have the whole world in His hands…honest he does <3

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Well I finished the book of Jeremiah this morning and my head is spinning with thoughts. 

In the closing chapters, God speaks through the prophet making it clear that the pagan nation of Babylon is being used as a tool in God’s hands to discipline the nation of Israel for failure to keep their hearts devoted to Yahweh. 

I am oversimplifying but they had celebrated festivals and performed the religious rituals with no real genuine worship of the God who had instructed them to observe each one as a reminder of His deliverance and care for them. 

They blended in other practices from other religions to hedge their bets for divine provision and just because everyone else was doing it. 

By finding ways to work around the laws God had put in place to ensure that wealth and property remained evenly distributed among families according to their inheritance and by using loopholes; they continued to work the land during the 7th year of rest and managed to keep property and people that should have been restored to rightful order. 

And so God called Babylon His “hammer” by which He would destroy the city of Jerusalem and thus it happened. 

The city was besieged and burned to the ground and all but the weakest citizens were taken into captivity. 

As they were led away with the smoldering city to their backs, it would seem God had allowed the “bad guys” to win. 

But Jeremiah continues with a prophecy against Babylon that he even writes down and sends along with a messenger to be tied to rock and tossed into the river that ran along the conquering people’s land. 

The prophecy tells of how God will raise up another nation, and believe me, they were not a godly nation who would destroy the Babylonian/Chaldean empires. The Medes would come and would bring an end to the nation that He had used to send His people into exile so the land of Israel could have its long-overdue rest.

It boggles my mind. 

God prophecies all of this through,Jeremiah.

We know from the book of Daniel it played out exactly as it is written. God used two pagan nations to discipline His people out of a love for them that is beyond my complete understanding.

In my Western thinking, I am focused on individual lives and the quality of that life for the span of time allowed on planet Earth. It stretches me to think of big pictures and the work of God across the span of all the times and seasons and places that cover what we can know of human history, let alone eternity. 

I don’t have answers or a real point. I am not trying to compare the story of Israel with the story of the country I was born into. I have many of my own questions and so much ignorance that I am not even sure what questions I should be asking. 

And that is why I read through this Bible every year.

Daily pushing through difficult passages, stopping to look up a new thought or question along the way – I learn more each year.

I see how small I am on the scope of time and how big God is and I begin to understand more and more how study of His Word is a form of worship. 

God bless you today in whatever you are doing. 

We can know that no matter how big and beyond our understanding our God is, He cares deeply about the smallest parts of your life and day. And no matter how crazy it seems out there in the world, He remains Sovereign over His creation and He knows what He is doing <3 

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Entering Autumn with some thoughts on God’s ideas about love <3

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Well, the only thing that has changed to make this officially the beginning of Autumn for me is my attitude. 

Today I shall remove the forsythia wreath with the two small metal chameleons that have stood guard all summer in order to discourage the birds from making a nest on our door, and up will go the wreath with colorful leaves and a couple of sunflowers. 

I am also gathering soup recipes and John gave me a good and simple one over the phone last night (yes…John…our son…is giving me recipes. Oh happy day)

I do love a good bowl of soup…and no this is not the one he gave me a recipe for…but closest thing I have in my media library to segue into the recipe.

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So here it is:

John’s Chicken Soup

Prepare 4 oz. of whole wheat pasta 

While that’s cooking 

Cube a half pound of chicken and brown in some oil and lemon/pepper seasoning (we like Trader Joe’s)

Brown two celery stalks and a carrot – all diced – in a little oil

Add all to 6 cups of good Chicken broth with salt and pepper to taste. 

He recommended making sure the veggies are nicely browned as they add a little extra crunch. 

So there you go. 

Easy peasy.

Now for a little food for the soul.

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I have been collecting some prayers and Scriptures on the notes section of my phone for the month of September and I added these thoughts today from notes I had made in one of my prayer books. 

I diagrammed it to make it easier to remember so will share a picture of that at the end.  I like to put Scriptures and thoughts into pictures as they help me to remember them, so if you are like me (God help you) maybe these will be useful.

Here are the thoughts based on the famous love passage from 1 Corinthians 13:

Loving others with God’s love means loving fully, unconditionally, mercifully, without criticism, and with no judgment.

Love is patient, kind, not envious, doesn’t show off, doesn’t think bad thoughts, doesn’t celebrate sufferings. 

Love is not prideful, rude, selfish, easily annoyed or annoying.

Love seeks the well-being of others. 

Anything else is not love. 

From my journaling of the scriptures in 1 Corinthian 13
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Help everyone of us to forsake pride, envy, rudeness, selfishness and criticism. These reveal a lack of love for others. 

Help us all to embrace praying for one another, being patient, being kind, being selfless, encouraging one another and accountability. 

From my journaling of the scriptures in 1 Corinthian 13
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None of these things is possible in my own strength so I pray for generous doses of God’s power and love poured into me so I can grow in all of these areas of godly love. 

I hope you have a blessed day and I hope you are finding ways to celebrate the new season that is upon us <3

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