Monday, July 12, 2010

Are you a ripper or a peeler?

At some point in our lives all of us have to determine whether we are rippers or peelers, right? When you have to remove a bandaid, do you rip it off and get it over with immediately? OR do you gently and slowly peel it off in hopes of gradually reducing the pain. I have always been a ripper. Just get it over with already. I have no mercy for wimps who can't take the pain.  My poor children have had to endure the merciless habits of a mother who rips bandaids, yanks loose teeth and refuses sympathy to malingerers. (Bless their hearts, I am sure they will need some therapy in adulthood)

This process of leaving home often feels like the slow peeling of the stickiest bandaid. Recently, I have mumbled to the Lord that I would like to just be done with packing and letting go and packing and saying good bye and more packing! Can we just go already! Yet - I know that the Lord knows much better than I what I truly need. Fortunately, He is much more merciful than I. He knows that it is in my best interest to take this process of leaving slowly and in stages.

It reminds me of transplanting a tree. An older tree (35-40 year old trees) requires great care in removal from one location to another. They have deep roots that need special care. Young trees have shallow, smaller roots. It's a quick and easy job to dig it up and transplant to a new location. A mature tree requires more equipment, more time, more attention to detail. The successful transplant of a tree with deep roots is not easily accomplished.

We just returned from a visit to Florida where we enjoyed some time with my family. We spent a day at the beach on Anna Maria Island - love the feel of sand in my toes, blue green waters and a good book. Nothing better! Parker was obsessed with celebrating the 4th of July in Florida. He knows that two of his favorite people - Big Daddy and Uncle Larry love to blow things up as much and he and Lee love it. We were crushed when a major thunderstorm was unloading at 8:00 pm. The dream was salvaged as the rain eased up enough for a drippy fireworks display around 10:00. On Tuesday, we had a beautiful day at a water park and celebrated Lee's birthday. We are blessed to have some great fun and good memories with grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. Alas, Wednesday morning came and it was time to say goodbye. The bandaid gets tugged a little more. One more offering to lay at the foot of the cross...

I am realizing that because we have such deep roots, and mature relationships that it takes time to remove ourselves from this life in the US. Our ability to thrive in a new garden will depend on the care taken in extracting our roots from the soil here. Thank you Lord for knowing what is  best! Thank you for the deep and meaningful relationships we have at home. Thank you for blessing us and keeping us through the transplant process. We love you and praise you for these growth opportunities.
For you glory alone,
Anna Kate and cousin Lauren
Olivia, Parker, Lauren & Anna Kate
FUN in the SUN!!

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