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Cinderella Boy

April 22nd, 2010

Tears in his Eyes, I Guess

I keep waking up full of energy, ready to attack the day.

This is not normal.

I have always hated getting up in the morning. For that matter, I have never been a big fan of going to bed. When I was in college, my friends used to bang on my door with their fists at noon, trying to get me up so I could have lunch with them at Happy Burger, over on Broadway.

Great burgers, by the way.

To get back to mornings, for most of my life, I have regarded getting up as a great evil, to be avoided at all costs. I used to get up and literally stumble around, trying to get it together. I would do stupid things like putting the cereal in the refrigerator and the milk in the cupboard. It was pretty awful.

For a long time, I’ve used coffee to reset my morning clock. I would get up and have a quart of coffee to get the wheels turning. It worked pretty well, although it tended to make me a little crabby later on. Which I sort of enjoyed. Okay, not really.

A while back, I started getting the idea that God wanted me to give up coffee. It started keeping me awake at night, which was new. I would drink coffee to get up and take antihistamine to get to sleep. I began to feel as though it was time to let the caffeine go.

This was alarming. I have nearly given up artificial sweeteners, I can’t drink sugary soda all day, fruit juice is just as sugary as soda, and tea gives me kidneystones. Without coffee, I would be lost. What would I drink? A Christian can’t swill beer all day. Not unless he’s a monk. Then it’s okay. Ha ha. Religious humor.

I gave up real coffee, switching to decaf. If there is a difference in the taste, I can’t tell. I thought I would miss the caffeine rush, but that hasn’t happened. I get up every morning and have a quart of unleaded, I enjoy it, and I don’t get crabby. No crabbier than I was to start with.

I thought I would be unable to move until noon, but that hasn’t panned out. I wake up, I spend an hour or so in prayer, and I get out of bed anxious to get stuff done and experience the day. That is just plain weird. Like a mental illness. I don’t understand it. But it’s wonderful.

I had to have coffee to go with breakfast. My breakfast is pathetic. I eat a small amount of oatmeal with salt and sugar or maple syrup. I have to have something else with it, or I would go insane. Now I eat my oatmeal and enjoy my decaf, and I don’t miss country ham and hot biscuits and gravy. All that much.

I’ll tell you something funny. When you fast regularly, no matter what you eat for breakfast, your first meal of the day will seem like a banquet. You will wake up every morning and think, “Thank GOD I don’t have to drink water all day today.” I enjoy my crappy oatmeal and fake coffee a great deal.

We have spirits that hinder us and sap our energy and waste our time and discourage us. I think mine are getting pounded these days. I feel full of optimism, and I am receiving what Christians refer to as “favor,” which means things are going well even when I’m not paying attention.

I’ll give an example. I kept thinking about buying an AR10. But they cost a lot of money. Although I knew Gunbroker was hopeless, I looked at the ads. One day a gun I liked popped up for a hundred dollars below cost. If you order one from the factory, it takes months, because Obama is the savior of the gun industry and he has increased demand beyond manufacturers’ wildest hopes. Still, I got it for very little.

Let’s see. Here is another one. I designed a Cafepress T-shirt and ordered one for myself. When it came, it seemed to have some kind of goo on the front. I called and complained. They said they would send me a new one, but they said the old one might be okay after I washed it. So I washed it, and it came out fine, and I get to keep the first one. So I have two shirts.

I already wrote the story about my ticket to the National Day of Prayer.

Now my church’s cafe is going nuts. I have been frustrated because of the lack of a beverage fountain, and since I started making cheesecake, I have been thinking about the need for stuff that will allow us to sell cold food. I went to church yesterday, and there was a beautiful new Pepsi fountain at the cafe! It was there on Sunday, but I didn’t notice. And the pastor who runs the cafe started telling me about all the new stuff they were getting, so people would be able to buy cold things like desserts! I never told him we needed that. Never mentioned it, as far as I know.

Psalm 127 says, “It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows, for so he giveth his beloved sleep.” That last bit can also be translated, “He blesses his beloved even when they sleep.” It appears to be true.

Christians consistently overrate hard work. We want to feel like we’re showing our gratitude by working hard, but in reality, it’s a form of pride. We’re supposed to be given things we do not deserve, and we are supposed to glorify God for it. Sure, we work, but it’s not supposed to be utter drudgery. After all, Jesus said his yoke was easy and his burden was light. Your main obligations are to have faith and obey, not to do the heavy lifting. After all, Moses didn’t have to part the Red Sea with a bucket.

It can be very comforting to let yourself suffer and sweat, because it makes you feel like a martyr, and deep in your heart, you may start thinking you deserve the things you get from God. But it’s pride. There is nothing righteous about it. Adam didn’t deserve the trees in the garden. The Hebrews didn’t deserve manna or the Promised Land. We don’t deserve the Holy Spirit or the many blessings we get from God. We are welfare cases. Best to accept it. The suffering that is necessary is sufficient. We don’t have to add to it. That’s what I think.

And much of the work we do for God doesn’t feel like work, so it’s wrong to glorify yourself for doing it.

By the way, the rifle arrived faster than I thought I would. I posted a Youtube of me getting it ready to use. Check it out.

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