some minor stressing

I keep trying to think of things to blog about that aren’t about ME. Nothing is coming to mind. That’s some sad commentary right there.

In just a minute I’m heading up to my bedroom to pray for a bit. Then, Lord willing, I’m getting up early to run and pray some more. I’m feeling lost and a little frantic at the moment. Saturday is looming in front of me, and some other things have popped up in the meantime.

Let me share the cheesecake pastors story before I forget. I got an e-mail right before I left for NC from the guy in charge of the Driven conference I’m speaking at Saturday morning. He wondered if I’d be interested in speaking on a Coffee Talk panel Saturday at 10pm on the topic of giving up the American dream to pursue the heart of God (or something like that). Talked to Gabe, he said sure, I said sure. Then I got another e-mail–“Having a planning meeting for the panel at the Cheesecake Factory on Monday at 11:30 a.m. Can you join us?” Talked to Gabe, he said sure, I said sure.

Got home at 8:30 Sunday evening, all our stuff from the weekend all over the place, woke up exhausted on Monday, stuff still all over the place (huh). Gabe trying to work, girls a little hyper, stuff all over the place. 11:30 coming quickly, we’re all having issues with each other, I’m crying, I don’t know how to get to the Cheesecake Factory (and where will I park? I can’t go!). Try to find the guy’s # to tell him I’m having a family crisis and to carry on without me.

God (and Gabe) nudges me out the door. I consider driving to Texas. Or New Jersey or something.

I get to the CF, realize I have no idea who I’m meeting or what they look like. “May I help you?” I just want to cry. Look around, are they already seated? Who knows? I DON’T KNOW WHAT THEY LOOK LIKE! Sit down for 10 minutes. Finally the guy on the bench beside mine says, “You wouldn’t happen to be Marla, would you?” Ha. I about said no.

The other guy shows up. Bath and Body Works chemist-turned-pastor. The other one is an investment banker-turned-pastor. Our meeting is amazing. We talk about what it’s like to trade worldly riches to serve Christ. What it’s like to say it’s worth it but still secretly long for some of the stuff everyone else has. We talk about struggling to pay bills, about the thrill of seeing people come to Christ, the incredible poverty and need around the globe, the irony of discussing all of this in a fairly-high-end (at least to me anyway) restaurant. We shared our stories, I got their wives’ names to give them books (they’re both young moms), I told them I’d been in tears an hour earlier. I left feeling very encouraged (and knowing just why the devil tried so hard to keep me from being there).

I’m excited to see what God is going to do at Driven. It’s a 3-day conference for young adults. I’m doing an hour-long session on Unsolved Mysteries: The Case of the Opposite Sex. I need help. See, I don’t know who will be there. It’s a break-out session (there are 4-6 others going on at the same time). Could be 4 people, could be 25. Could be guys, could be girls. Could be 19-year-olds, could be married with kiddos. Eek! I need to spend some serious time in prayer to figure out what to say without knowing who I’m talking to. Praise the Lord that HE KNOWS.

So, I’m stressed about that. Then I found out tonight that Gabe’s aunt, uncle and cousin are coming Thursday night (I thought Friday night) and staying through Sunday (for his cousin’s softball tourney in Lancaster).

I also found out that I won a marketing scholarship for Expectant Prayers. But it’s complicated, and I don’t have the time to give them all the info they want right now. (more on that later)

And I really, really wanted to blog more about She Speaks. You don’t have to be a speaker or writer to go! You just have to want to serve Christ! There’s a writer’s track, a speaker’s track, and a women’s ministry track. Even if you’d just like to lead a Bible study in your home someday, you qualify! (more on that later)

I’m gonna go talk to God, ask Him to help me get my mind off myself and focused on Him. Ask Him for a calm heart, direction, wisdom, Spirit-filled words to share with whatever precious young people He brings my way on Saturday.

THANK YOU, KIMBERLY, for offering to watch my girls Saturday morning, and with such late notice. (Gabe is speaking at PodCamp Ohio that day.)

Livi is still itchy, Nina is still feverish off and on, but everyone’s asleep for now, so I’m going to take advantage of it.

If you have any great ideas of things you’d like to hear at a session about the differences between men and women and how we can view them in a healthy way and utilize those differences to make a difference for Christ, PLEASE SHARE! (oh, please, please share!)

That’s it for now. Coming soon: a post that doesn’t make me sick of myself. Love you guys!

19 thoughts on “some minor stressing

  1. Nixter77

    WOW God is good, glad it all ended up swimmingly my gorgeous one.

    Unsolved Mysteries: The Case of the Opposite Sex. – I wanna come and hear this.

    You know SP and I were on a panel on the weekend for a newly married course our friends did at our old church. Maybe we could come on tour to the US, what with our extensive 2 years of marriage experience? whatda ya say?

  2. tonialynn59

    Wow you’ve gotten some great comments here.  I just wanted to say I looked at the website and it looks so cool and I am praying for you.   so neat the opportunities you are getting and how God is using you!  I can’t wait to hear about She Speaks when you have the chance.

  3. MlleBaroque

    @gsowell – My church did a Bible Study on that book. It was good (albeit not based on a whole lot of Scripture) and helped us women remember what made our men tick.

    Marla, I’m probably going to email you later.  Hubby and I had a long conversation about sex last night and I’m stumped.  I’m going to flip through ITAHTA again and see if you discussed this particular problem, but I think there may have been only a mention of it.  So I figured I’d pick your brain. I do want to say this though: the world has totally messed sex up and given men and women unrealistic expectations of it.  I never thought it would be a big problem, because we know TV sex is fake.  But it creeps in there and next thing you know you’re staying up until all hours of the night discussing it.  Bah.  I think more marriage conferences should place an emphasis on that because it’s too often left at, “just ignore what the world says” when it’s so much more complicated than that.

  4. terriwright

    We’re doing a marriage thing at church with DVDs from some guy named Emmanuel something. ANYWAY….Women require love, men require respect. Two different things. Men have to validate their love for their wives, and women must focus on showing respect for their husbands. Differences between boys and girls.

  5. kellycohan

    Something that’s been coming up when I’ve talked to my (young married) girlfriends lately is the difference between relationships we wives have with our friends, and relationships husbands have with their friends. And how those friend-relationships play into a marriage. For example, Brit is protective of aspects of our marriage, so I don’t discuss those with my gfs, even though I want to and ordinarily would, out of respect for him. In return, I ask that he talk about me respectfully around his coworkers (he’s in construction – lots of the guys refer to their “old lady,” “ball and chain,” etc.). I think he would anyway, but he’s more cognizant because we’ve discussed it.

    Does that make sense? Don’t know if it’s fodder for Saturday’s talk, but just something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately! I know God will be faithful and give you the words to say – how many times have you told that story on this blog?! It’s amazing!

  6. M3mine

    Marla, just prayed for you, the girls’ and will pray for Gabe too. After 33 years of marriage, I think I’m not a lot of help on your topic, but prayed that God would give you a clear idea of what He wants you to say. 

  7. adamslady

    first thing that comes to my mind is 1 tim 5:1-2, about how we are to respect others in purity.  “Do not rebuke an older man harshly, but exhort him as if he were your father. Treat younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity.”  the point isn’t necessarily “the opposite sex,” but it always helped me whenever i tried to figure out a relationship with someone else, opposite sex or not.  🙂 

    sorry to hear things are a little stressful; exciting to see and hear what God is doing, though!  thanks for hanging in there!

  8. gsowell

    One thing I have learned is that for my particular guy and myself is that the way we think through stuff is entirely different. I read an article once based on this book, and suddenly everything was clear! That was a big secret to unlock about my husband…he compartmentalizes things. His mind is not racing with concerns about what to make for lunch while he’s driving home from somewhere because he doesn’t think about cooking and driving at the same time. He isn’t panicked by a meeting at work when he’s doing chores at home because he doesn’t think about them at the same time. My mind, however, reels with all my different hats and roles.

    And then there’s the whole metabolism issue. We decide (together) that we’d like to drop a few pounds. So we make a meal plan with lower calories. I follow it to the letter for a week. Lose 1 lb. He follows it when he feels like it. Except for that one day when he was invited out to lunch and had pie. He loses 18 lbs., and all his pants fit perfectly. So he resumes his normal eating, oblivious to the fact that I have a year of this struggle ahead of me to get to the same spot. Ugh.

  9. schmett73

    Marla, I personally come here to find out MORE about you and would be heartbroken if you stopped talking about yourself.  After all, the blog owner reserves the right to talk about herself at length if she so wishes.  So there. 🙂

    That stinkin’ loser devil.  I just want to spit in his eye for muddying yet another God-glorifying experience for you.  He works that way in my life, too; my husband and I always get in the worst fights before we commit to doing anything remotely ministry related. Thankfully, you and I both know that he never gets his way.  Keep plugging away, and know you’ve got prayers all around you. 

    Others have been worlds more eloquent than I have, so just know I’m praying myself silly for you.  Love and blessings!


  10. shannahhogue

    How can we pray for you if you don’t blog about yourself? (just prayed, btw)

    Besides…blogs are really more about trying to think through our journeys than just talking about ourselves (most of the time), so even though it requires a lot of “I”, we all learn from each other’s experiences. I’m glad you share…

  11. filledeparis

    I’ll be trying to thinking of ideas…until then I am praying for you, and for Driven! How funny, I was invited to share at this very conference(clearly the commute is an issue). Glad you get the opportunity (I wish that i could go listen)!

  12. Anonymous

    Singing praises to Him alone!  I’m so loving hearing what He’s doing in your life girl!  I’m so stinkin’ excited for you… I can’t stand it.  Are you up?  It’s like… what 11:30pm?  If I could talk to you now… I would.  GGRRrrr.  I’m so gonna talk to you tomorrow, somehow! 

    Follow my crazy head here… Christ, church.  Husband, wife.  Men, woman.  Love, submit.  The two learning to communicate and work together as one… is Life IN Christ, and the call on our lives as Christians!

    Reading, praying, and digging in with the Holy Spirit into His word like an anxious bride waiting on her Beloved, reading His love letter, YET AGAIN… is just…  PASSION! 

    And because we are blessed to be silly girls with whimsical romantic dreams… WE GET THAT analogy!  And then after the daydreams, you’re left walking around like, now what?  This place kinda sucks, and needs alot of work.  And then it clicks.  You’re so in love… you realize what’s what’s important to Him, is all that matters to you now too! 

    And you’re left saying, BRING THE RAIN, to Your glory alone!  And by our EXAMPLE, others… just may see that too.  And by the pull and instruction of the Holy Spirit alone… maybe they’ll get it and follow Christ as well.

    “In Christ” isn’t a nice religious phrase to use for our own piety.  It’s a citzenship. 

    Yeahhh… I’m just going to email you.  Too much to comment… what’s new? 

    God is so…   AMAZING. 

  13. ladymiss3739

    ^^Ditto what Jess said!  On Jess’s defense, though, I’ll point out the positives of emotions: it makes you a great nurturer, a wonderful sympathetic ear, a person who sees and feels the needs of others/attuned to others needs, offers the other half to good decision making (not just facts)! 

    I’d also throw in there sex (good thing you already wrote a book on it)! and communication.  Guys communicate way differently (and sometimes not at all)! than girls do.  Each has their benefit (very similar to what Jess already said about emotions).  Ugh…sorry, but my brain is falling apart on me here.  I’ll leave the communication part where it’s at..if you need me to expound more, leave me a comment and I’ll add to it tomorrow when I wake up beautiful, refreshed, and with minty fresh breath. 

  14. faithchick

    i’m on my way to bed.  but, i didn’t wanna leave you hangin’   the first thing that comes to mind is that i’m an emotional train wreck most of the time.  matt isn’t very much.  i get bugged sometimes that he doesn’t spaz about anything.  because that makes me look bad–to always be the spaz, ya know.  but, his (not really) lack of emotion—or emotional sharing or whatever–is replaced by this amazing wisdom.  seriously.  he’s way wise beyond his years, and he uses that wisdom, steadiness, and logic to talk me through some pretty irrational thought processes.  that’s a big difference.  my emotions are almost never logical (not saying their bad, just saying they get in the way of my logic sometimes.)

    anyway…that’s what came to mind first…off to bed.

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