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Monday, September 1, 2014

Oily Labor

I'm a bad blogger. But not long after my last post, I got a full time job as assistant to a school librarian so I took it! I was also still taking grad school classes for my MLIS at that time. Finally I slowed down enough this summer to enjoy my friends and family and didn't take any classes. Turns out I quite like it that way so I'm still not taking any classes. I have my full-time job and I'm thankful, but balancing wife/mom/friend/employee is tricky when you work 40hrs/week outside the home, right ladies? I shouldn't complain though, because all I ever wanted was to have a job I'm good at that didn't interfere with me being a FT mom, and I have that! Of course, if I can be THE librarian at a school someday, my pay will more than double. But it could also double my stress and add many extra hours to my work week. Life is full of dilemmas. Which road should I navigate? I have more degrees and certificates than necessary for my assistant job and haven't had a paycheck this small since I worked for 15 hours a week. But after battling breast cancer and spine issues, I have an abiding appreciation for life in the low-stress lane. I am plagued by the question of how my husband and I will ever get back to saving and have a secure retirement though. We're already well into middle age! I can't consider that question without remembering the "gift" of cancer. It tried to teach me that nothing is more important than today. And there are certain things, a lot of things, outside of my control. My health feels like one of them sometimes.

Which brings me to last night, when a beautiful lady was one of several people who prayed for me after I explained how my back pain's been a huge thorn in my side lately and how discouraged (dare I say depressed?) I've felt about it. In the midst of that, without any discussion of my career/paycheck concerns, she described seeing my feet as having fragrant oil on them, leaving oily footprints as I walked through my work assisting in the library. BOOM! I just got encouraged - I'm making/leaving a mark despite my worry that I should do more, or be more, or make more - and it's a good mark (because the oil smells good)! I got encouraged about other stuff I hadn't mentioned either. It floored me, and blessed me. It left me void of anxiety and full of trust, that if my footprints are needed elsewhere, I'll know. Right now, I'm where I should be and I can trust that all will be well even if that changes. I don't have to worry so much about the future because I'm busy leaving oily footprints right now. I bet you are too. I bet there are oily footprints all over the place!

Our pastor preached an especially good sermon yesterday about eternal life. In it, he took a quote by Oliver Wendell Holmes and turned it on it's head! I guess it's the heart of this lil' blog post because you can take this to the bank... sort of like a paycheck. Well, it won't pay for the groceries but - dang it's good. He said,
The only way to be of any earthly good is to be heavenly minded.
So keep your eyes lifted up, remembering to stop and smell the oily footprints along the way.
Happy Labor Day!

Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs without fear of the future. Proverbs 31:25