Archive for the ‘Holy Spirit’ Category

My last blog, from March 28, 2009, was here. In that poem, I think I was expressing that I had regained some piece of mind and pulled my life back together. What’s changed in three years?

I got engaged.

Got married.

We bought a house together.

Fixed up the house to move in. (It was a foreclosure)

Had a baby two weeks after moving in. (Well, the wife did. (A boy.))

Graduated from school with a degree in Automotive Technology and Applied Sciences.

Got a new (part-time) job as a mechanic. (Still working at the manufacturing company full-time).

(I would have continued on livejournal, but alas, I couldn’t access my old account.)

It’s been almost five years since I was saved, and became a new creature filled with the Holy Spirit. I have gone from being a depressed and hedonistic atheist with no prospects, back in my hometown living with my parents, unemployed, to being a college graduate, father, husband, homeowner, and a man working in the trade he trained for over a period of three years. It’s very difficult for me to understand the changes that have gone on in my own life. Sometimes I feel life is going so fast that I’m just a passenger in a vehicle driven by someone else.  I’m 38 years old as of this writing, with a six-month-old baby. I’ll be 55 when he’s 18. This is daunting to me, but at the same time, before I was saved I never imagined I’d have the strength or energy to be the person I am today.

I wouldn’t have this strength and energy if it wasn’t for its divine source, God’s grace.

I am not sure why I abandoned blogging three years ago. It might have been because it was then that I started at the community college to get a degree. Just that act of working on something to advance my future seemed to fill a personal need. At first I thought I’d complete training in computers, but two courses into it, I realized the material wasn’t very interesting to me. I have never had an overwhelming interest in vehicles, but when I saw the garages at the school (the school calls the garages ‘labs,’ since they’re an educational setting), I realized that I didn’t even know how to really change oil in a car. For some reason that made me feel particularly inadequate and helpless. When I went to the admin office to sign up for my next computer class, I met an old friend from my high school days (some 18 years prior!). He was now a professor in the auto class. I asked him if I could take an auto class, just to learn the basics. The only way I could do that was to go ahead and sign up for the automotive degree course. I figured, what the heck. Once I got through the basic course, I realized that I liked working with my hands. What was also of interest to me was that not only did cars make sense, but I found out (over the course of the following year at the school) that I gained an intuitive understanding of how all kinds of things work, from plumbing to electrical work. Up here in the middle of New Hampshire, I reckoned, there would always be a need for mechanics. Most of the other degrees offered at the college would require me, if I got one, to commute south to hold a job. Here, my first mechanic job is five miles from my house. (The school was three miles)

Oh, we paid for the schooling out-of-pocket. Did I mention that part – the part about my wife, C, being a financial genius? Yep – we paid our wedding costs, my schooling, some tax debt, downpayment for the house, all out-of-pocket, cash over the barrel. Not my work – her budget, and my willingness to follow it. You see, I can’t set a budget to save my life, but I don’t find following one too hard.

Oh yeah, we had a baby. But I’m wandering. I’m not sure where to start talking after being silent for three years. Maybe I can say we’re happy? We don’t have much money, but I work outside the house, C does some piece work (updating an Ebay store) and now she’s doing remote teaching via the web for a college class. The rest of the time, she takes care of the baby boy and is a homemaker. Yes, she has a master’s degree in education, and is a homemaker now, and loving it. Can I describe how important it is for a family to have one person dedicated to the homeforce and one to the workforce? It’s almost impossible to imagine raising this baby with a proxy, and us both coming home too tired to shop, clean, cook, eat, let alone do any of those things properly. Both of our cars are about ten years old, but we have two cars, and I can do all the work on them in the driveway. We have a little piece of this world. We have each other and we support one another in our roles. We have our baby and our family, our family in Christ, a peaceable home, and we have the grace of God that surpasses all earthly pleasures. We have the mountains and lakes all around us, and often the opportunity to enjoy them. We have our garden and our plot on my mother’s farm – all the weeding you can handle! We have cookouts. Cake. Birthday parties. We have Netflix, popcorn (popped the old fashion way, with far too many calories on the stove top) and beer on Friday nights (sometimes too much, the clinking of beer bottles in the recycling is like the bell of shame). We have bedtime and prayer time, and all our meals shared together (I drive home for lunch, only two minutes each way). Our house is still being put back together – I need to repaint this beast this summer, in between jobs. We have swimming in the lake with the baby boy. We have family time at my mum’s once a week in the evening, and family time at her mum’s on Sunday afternoon, after church.

We have happiness.

Sometimes this happiness seems too unreal. I feel like I have to check things, to make sure I didn’t miss anything that can mess it up. She feels the same way.

We also have a million things to do, besides raise the baby, plan for the next baby… Did I mention that health insurance is the worst nightmare of our marriage? Affording it, that is. We have an addition to the house that was not properly built; I have to figure out a way to reinforce the floor, and put in a vapor barrier over the dirt in the crawlspace, and put in new subfloor and flooring. We have to redo the bathroom. There is sometimes a foul odor in the bathroom from an undetectable source. We have rooms that need to be repainted. I have to repair the wood floor on the first floor, and sand and poly the one on the second floor. We have to figure out a vehicle solution for the future addition to our household, since I alone am too big for the Corolla, and the Taurus is too unreliable for my wife’s grocery getter…

Something tells me the next three years will go as fast as the last three.


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