Imagine, if you will, a computer system that takes on all the characteristics of an unmedicated schizophrenic. That’s what I got to deal with at work. All week. Everyday there was a new episode to deal with. Sometimes it was up. Sometimes it was down. And there were even times when I compared it to a wounded animal: alive, but not moving (i.e. I can access information, but it refuses to talk to other components). Our boss described it by saying our servers were conjoined twins. One of the twins died, hence the living hell I’ve been in. When your entire field revolves around a computer and you have to go back to pencil and paper, things get crazy, especially when it’s a 3 person job and it’s just you. And the phone calls. I love talking to upset people on the phone. Especially when I can’t do anything. “Can’t you just look it up?” they plead. “No, because when I attempt to log into my system it says I do not have any user functions.” And they still yell at me. Look, honey, I’d love to help you but I can’t see the orders you have listed. In fact, I have about 2 hours worth of work looking at me that I have to do one by one and oh, there’s another unhappy camper on the other line waiting to yell at me after you do. It’s really hard to get work done at all when you’re constantly on the phone defending yourself and the poor IT guy who’s furiously trying to figure out why the mainframe crashed for no apparent reason. YES WE ARE WORKING ON THE PROBLEM. It’s harder for me, I actually have to do all the work. You just look at pretty spreadsheets.
Like I said, I picked the wrong week to stop drinking.
My lack of R-OH is two fold: the main reason is to fast from alcohol to hear from God about our next steps in life – I want to go one way, The General wants to head in the other. And so we wait to hear from Him. I’ve never fasted before and my Bible study leader spoke of how she fasted from certain things she enjoyed when she was preparing for mission trips or waiting to hear something. Interesting concept. The other, more shallow reason, is to keep my body in shape. Alcohol is a lot of empty calories and they usually end up somewhere around my mid-section (never the boobs for some reason). It’s not that I had a problem or anything, I am the quintessential cheap date; I don’t drink large quantities nor do I use it as an escape. It’s up there with nutella. I enjoy it. A lot. A glass of wine after a hard night at work is a way to unwind and take the edge off. There is the rare occasion where Captain Morgan and I will go off dancing into the night…..but that’s another story all together.
I plan to break the month and a half fast by toasting my family on Thanksgiving, as my entire side of the family is coming to North Carolina to celebrate – Mom, Dad, my little sister, and her boyfriend. If the Lord says to keep my fast, I will.
The fast had been a piece of cake until this week — stress at work, lots of great moments with friends — and I couldn’t have a drink. I’ve been sipping green tea instead, which is awesome. It’s soothing, it has antioxidants, and I can have multiple cups of it without worrying about how I’ll feel the next morning. I’m working Cucalorus this year — the big film fest in Wilmington — which usually involves a lot of social drinking for me. Not this year. I can’t decide if I’m going to ask for water neat or a Shirley Temple.
This inconvenience that I have placed on myself goes much beyond the situational. If by giving this up – for however long – allows me to hear God more clearly it will be time well spent. A part of me wonders what if this fast is all for naught? What if nothing changes one way or the other? What if we get an answer clear as day….? One of us will have to fold. And I guess that’s where He comes in.
From Streams in the Desert, author not credited:
Child of my love, lean hard
And let Me feel the pressure of your care
I know your burden, child
I shaped it.
I balanced it in Mine Own hand
Made no proportion in its weight to your unaided strength
For even as I laid it on, I said,
“I will be near, and while she leans on Me,
This burden will be Mine, not hers.
So I will keep my child within the circling arms of my love.”
Here lay it down
Nor fear to impose it on a shoulder that upholds the government of the worlds
Yet closer come:
You are not near enough.
I would embrace your care
So I might feel My child reclining on My breast.
You love Me, I know.
So then do not doubt;
But loving Me, lean hard.