Stay In Your Own Movie

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Drama.

Some people are magnets for it. For the rest of us, we have enough drama in our own lives that we don’t need to go looking for more. I mean honestly, if you wanted a Emmy winning Lifetime movie you could look no further than my own life and I’m sure yours too. We’d have these nail-biting scenes where we wonder if I’ll ever get back into those jeans or not,  these amazing dramatic love scenes, break-ups and tears, and love and passion, then treacherous relationship that would make most soap operas look like amateur hour, and of course those scenes that look like blooper reels. Our own movies would be blockbuster hits!

So what makes us steer our car over to the drama of others and insert ourselves into their scenes? What makes us think we can do better?

EGO

We think somehow their drama is fixable, not like ours of course, because we are professionals. We think if we just share what we know, we can make it all better. Only let’s be real, what is it that we really know?

I love how Oprah does her famous question dramatically, “What’s the one thing you know for sure?” Then her guest look like they didn’t know the question was coming and they have to think about it. Trust me, if I were interviewed by Oprah, I’d know this question is coming up so I already have an answer. Are you ready?

“The one thing I know for sure, is the longer I live, the more I don’t know anything at all.”

But I guess that’s why I probably won’t be interviewed by Oprah. So her guests answer her question with pretty much a version of, “Well, Oprah the one thing I know for sure is that there is a force within us and we will return to that force one day.” And yeah, well I believe that too. Only I call my force Jesus.

EGO- I learned from a Wayne Dyer book that EGO can be an acronym for Edging God Out. In other words, when we come into the scene in rescue mode, often times we play God and none of us is fit to fill that position. Sorry to break it to you, when we act from a place of the mind, what we know, instead of spirit, what we don’t really know but discern from God,  we Edge God Out. I can hear some of you screaming “BUT WHAT IF”. My response is, “Even if”.  Stay in your own movie. Don’t go photo bombing someone else’s scene. Smile, close the door and know that if they will access Jesus they will work out a solution. Give advice when asked but please stay in your own movie.

 

Creating Sacred Space

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Hebrews 13:4 Honor marriage, and guard the sacredness of sexual intimacy between wife and husband.

I am a firm believer in a marriage bed. I believe it is sacred space. I am not a big fan of a family bed because I believe that it erodes a small piece of intimacy between a husband and a wife. That being said, I let a little something come between my husband and I. I began to let Lulu the wonder dog, snuggle in our bed before she had to go to her crate. My husband quickly referred to her as “the space between”. I had violated my own rule!

In most homes there is a living space, a dining space, a kitchen, a bathroom, and then there are bedrooms. Can there be one space where a man and a woman find a place of romance, beauty, intimacy and oneness? You share you life with so many in those places that creating a sacred space for just two people seems like a small thing to ask.

With that said, over the next little while in my life, I’m going to spend some time redoing our sacred space. I love our bedding, but I had put our “good stuff” away because I didn’t want Lulu to mess it up. We’re taking back our sacred space! I simply allowed her to jump on the bed and lie at our feet, but she’ll adapt, and we’ll go back to that space being for the two of us.

Balancing The Overachiever 2

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If you’re just tuning in please go back and catch the first installment here.

Last year, those who have hung with me that long, saw that I really began to put balance into play. I’d slip up, but then I’d get back on track again and really try to balance it out. It felt foreign. It felt slothful. It didn’t fit. My husband smiled more, but I had an inward battle to fight, just like anyone addicted to anything. I’d wake up in the middle of the night thinking of all the things I had to do. I’d sneak downstairs with my computer and get emails written and things done before I could be discovered. There were nights, or mornings, when my husband would startle me, sneaking downstairs and standing behind me and saying, “What on earth are you doing?” It was work to kick the habit of habitually working.

Then I figured it out and I put a business plan together for balance. Sound crazy? Maybe, but if you’re an overachiever the goal you set is always in your mind and you will not only meet it, you will supersede it, because that is who you are and what you are good at. I have to tell you that at this writing I’ve met my goals! I work so hard at balancing that my husband laughs at me while enjoying me more. It can be done.

I work an average of 50 hours per week 3 out of 4.3 weeks, keep reading before you scoff. The last week I add an additional 8 hours of work. It totally works for me and I have been able to cut about 12-15 hours out of my work week. Next year my goal is cut an additional 5 hours from my week, but for now, I am really happy with the results because I take two additional days off a month now, okay let me tell the truth, I try to take two additional days off per month reducing my work hours for the month by 16 hours total. I go and visit my mother, who lives 2.5 hours away once a month. That never happened before because I was always too busy. My mother would say, “Aye, mija, you’re always working.”  I don’t feel guilty if I get a migraine or the flu and have to come home to take care of my body. I don’t try to muscle through it. I’ve decided I’m not that tough and I’m worth taking care of. I also have one day a month that I call the recharge day. Nothing gets done that day. I stay in pajamas all day. It’s heaven on earth actually. In next post we’ll break it down to brass tacks on how to rework your life plan.

Tyler Perry’s Temptation

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You would think my husband being a Pastor from Louisiana would love Tyler Perry movies but it’s not really the case, his Louisiana experience is more Duck Dynasty, give him a good gun and car chase movie and he’s in. Me, on the other hand, Latina from Central California relates completely and can’t wait until the next movie comes out.

When Temptation came out in theaters, we were in Hawaii on vacation so we saw it about a week after we came back. We went to a late showing, popcorn in hand, waiting to laugh, and cry, and hear about how Jesus works whether you’re all screwed up or on the right path. I had heard it was different, more dramatic. What a shock. What followed was a movie that wasn’t all that funny. I mean, it’s Tyler Perry, so there is humor, but not really. Instead it was thoughtful and thought provoking. The characters embedded themselves in my heart as I watched the scenes unfold, and I begin to see how temptation isn’t an all at once assault. Temptation coming out of nowhere would be too easy to say no too. Instead temptation begins by taking small steps to your undoing. It’s small things like changing who you are to conform to a pattern that doesn’t quite fit but is acceptable to your moral code. At first, it’s subtle and doesn’t seem to be too bad.

Sadly, the reviews I read weren’t that good, but you have to remember that they are from critics whose life experience doesn’t conform with the characters portrayed. The type of temptation that is portrayed is common place and possibly viewed as not much temptation at all. Yet, interestingly enough the movie was in the top 10 grossing movies at the box office for the week we attended. The review that most intrigued me was that of my husband who sat in the chair quietly the whole movie. I couldn’t tell if he liked it or not. We held hands like we always do. We ate popcorn like we always do. I was freezing like I always am. He puts his arm around me like he always does. Then as the credits began to roll he looked at me and said two words, “WOW! POW-ER-FUL”. We held hands as we left the theater and he said, “We have to show this movie to all of our married couples in church.” I answered, “I am already devising the bible study that is going with this movie, it was too deep not to delve in.” We talked about the intricacies of the movie all the way to the car.

The movie comes out on DVD in August. Doug and I will hold an evening bible study where we’ll show the movie and talk about temptation in all of its forms as portrayed in the movie. For those of you who read this blog and don’t belong to our church, I urge you to see it. For those of you who are Christians, I urge you to have some frank discussions. This is meat people!

To Save A Life

There is a movie out in theaters right now that is a really great movie to go and see with your kids. I saw it yesterday and recommend it. I took my 15 year-old stepson, and we joined some friends at the theater. We both enjoyed it very much. If you haven’t heard about it, the link to find out more is here.