Monday, July 21, 2014

Practicing Grace

It's been a tough few weeks around here, folks. Big decisions being made. Career changes. Yet another 1800 mile cross country move. We are stressed, tired, overwhelmed, and sometimes thinking we might have a touch of the crazy. (Ok...maybe more than a touch.) Packing has commenced and, once again, we are living in the disorganization of preparing for relocation.

Emotions are all over the map. One minute thoughts are exciting and rosy--eager for the adventure of the unknown. The next minute brings panic and something akin to, "What the hell are we doing? Have we gone completely bonkers?" (Why yes, yes we have. But that's ok.) Unsurprisingly, we've experienced anger, hurt, fear, nervousness, worry, but every day is better than the day before as we grow used to, and embrace, the coming changes.

From the moment this craziness began, we made a pact. After 21 years of marriage, we know that stress can breed ugliness--words spoken that aren't really meant, fights that would never have happened otherwise, irritation over things that would normally be overlooked. So we made a pact to have grace for each other. Lots and lots of grace. Guess what? It's worked. Grace works. In those moments when an argument is imminent over some dumb thing, we've worked hard to stop and remember that this is stress talking. A long hug and a deep breath help remedy the ugliness, bringing a calm. Yes, I am proud of us. Life is hard enough. No need to worsen the trials with harsh or unloving words that accomplish nothing beyond hurt. Joy, peace, and laughter, even in the midst of stress. It's all about giving grace. To practice grace every single day, in every relationship and in every situation, is a goal worthy of our very best effort.

Love you, JP.  Here's to a relationship full of grace, love, laughter, and a touch of the crazy!

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