Thankfully, other things have gone well. We were reconnected to the 21st century without a hitch which is the first time in 3 years that has happened. I keep saying this because it's true, but it's the little things...
We're more settled than not now and it's slowly pulling together. I don't have time right now to share many pictures because they're still not downloaded and organized. However, I do have something fun to share with you.
The Country Music Awards Festival is going on in Nashville this week with lots of country artists, both old and new, in concert throughout the week at the Grand Ole Opry.
I saw earlier in the week that Scotty and Lauren (from American Idol fame) were going to be here tonight as part of the concert.
You know where this is going, don't you? Billy Ray Cyrus, Randy Travis, Roy Clark, and Mel Tillis along with others I hadn't heard of are all there tonight too. Hamp and I haven't been to Nashville yet, I like Lauren and Scotty, so when I found inexpensive seats were still available, well I had to buy two so we could go, right? So, our first outing is going to be to a country music concert which makes me laugh just to type the sentence. Me of the "I hate country music" stand in life.
Moving on to another topic in a bad grammar transition attempt, I confess I cried for the first time yesterday since arriving in town. I was mostly sad for Tiffany's friend Emmett's family because he passed away in the wee hours of the morning on Thursday. He's the one I've told you about recently that was in the drumline with Tiffany when they were at Furman. I've shared this picture before, but he's the one on the left with Tiffany at her graduation.
Emmett's finally without pain and is happy and whole in the presence of His Savior that he loves dearly. But my heart breaks for his wife Wendy and their little boy Quinn who have the hardest journey in front of them. If you want to keep up with her very honest thoughts as she processes, click here for the link to the blog they had started when he was first diagnosed with cancer. Also, if they come to mind, please pray for them.
I ran several errands yesterday for the first time and with my GPS it went well. Baltimore was much more stressful because not knowing where you're going compounded with not knowing which streets to not go down or you might die caused much anxiety and many tears. Franklin is a safe community, everything is nearby and it all connects logically; I just haven't figured out how yet. I ran into ChickFilA to grab some lunch and while waiting in line heard all these various people greeting each other and asking about each other's families and it hit me; once again, I'm a foreigner in another city. The feeling of loss that realization brought along with the knowledge of what Emmett's family is going through pushed me over the edge. I made it out of ChickFilA before the tears fell, but I was just hit anew with the reality that we will really never have a "home" again. Oh, I know, we'll make friends and have a community again and we have friends and family in lots of places now. We have the cities we were born in and raised our children in and those will ultimately always be home. But we're not there anymore. And as He usually does, God reminded me that He never promised we'd be home here. We are just foreigners in a land that He said we are merely passing through. I'm a little slow most of the time and as I tried to feel sorry for myself, I had to admit that what I long for simply doesn't exist this side of eternity. We think we have it if circumstances are kind and life is basically stable. I know because I thought that for a long time. But the more common reality is that most everybody has one or more moments in life where the foundation is ripped out from under you and what you knew as reality is no more. I'm being reminded again that living each moment as if it's our last and not getting too attached to anything here is exactly how we're supposed to be living.
So that was my lesson yesterday. I wish it was the last time I'd have to be reminded of it, but it won't be. I will still bristle at my perceived unfair lot in life, but God will faithfully remind me again that all He ever promised me was Himself.
This quote from Wednesday's entry of My Utmost For His Highest sums it up better than I can.
"Beware of harking back to what you were once when God wants you to be something you have never been."
One last thing...Tiffany is working on a project for her class in Greece that requires some pictures from her childhood. The professor didn't ask if it would be a convenient time to try and find those for the students who don't have them in their possession, so for the second time in a month (another project for another person) I am looking through every single picture we have. The good news is I'm pulling out some of my favorites so they can be scanned. I'll leave you with a couple of smiles for the day before I head downtown to the Grand Ole Opry. Stay tuned...