Rethinking Necessity

peaceful-lake

Taken on Greers Ferry Lake. A place that always feels peaceful.

Early this morning as I got ready for work, I tweeted this:

Irritated at myself for flooding the bathroom floor, I mopped up the standing water with towels from the hamper and hoped that it wasn’t raining downstairs.

As I ate my oatmeal, checked Twitter, Facebook and Google Plus, and packed my bag for work, I got a phone call that made the bathroom floor irrelevant.

It was Jim. His job had been eliminated. As of … now. Just so you know, official 2013 corporatespeak for this is reduction in force (RIF). It apparently even has its own hashtag. There were about 16 other folks at Jim’s company who met with the same fate.

Nothing like a huge punch in the gut to make you wish for a minor irritation like a wet bathroom floor.

It’s tough when your perspective is adjusted. Even tougher when it happens in an instant. Whiplash.

Time to rethink the word necessary.

We love dinners out and lunch after church. But for now, dinners will be in and Sunday lunches will be hot dogs on the grill or a picnic with homemade sandwiches instead of Central’s BBQ nachos. My gray roots will be covered by me instead of my ridiculously cool and talented master colorist who gives me these highlights. More evenings in, fewer nights out. Alter the jeans I already have rather than buying new ones.

Rethink necessity during Lent? Not a new idea.

This year, I think we’ll observe Lent in a whole new way. Not by giving up chocolate or Facebook, or Muddy’s cupcakes, but by really thinking about living simply and sacrificially. I wish we were disciplined enough that we might live this way on our own, but we’re apparently not. Now that we’ve been somewhat forced into it, I think we’ll embrace the discipline and be thankful for what it teaches us.

So, for those who would ask how we are, I’d say we are good overall. Still reeling a little — shocked, anxious, a little pissed if we’re honest. But beneath it all is peace.

This peace is born not of our strength, but of our faith. Our faith in a God, the evidence of whom is as real in our lives as the problems we face — and infinitely more powerful.

We’ve been here before and God has been faithful. So, even though I wrote these words in 2006, they are still true today just like He is.

That’s the story. The fire is hot, but we’re not alone.

Pray for us, send positive thoughts, let us know of any awesome opportunities. Worry about us? Don’t even think of it.

12 thoughts on “Rethinking Necessity

  1. My best wishes to you and Jim. There’s always hope. This same thing happened to me in 1996. I hope you can look at this as a fresh opportunity. The community’s thoughts are with you!

  2. Beth,
    Sorry to hear about your day but it is those days that really make us know where our trust is. I am praying for a quick job re entry for Jim. Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us on fb, etc. because we can pray for you both. Hope you see some sunshine on this dreary day in Memphis!!!
    Pam

  3. I had so many visceral reactions to your FB post. Lost job. Shock. Fear. A little nausea. But what a marvelous response to your circumstance! My small group is reading God: As He Longs for You to See Him. I just read this on Sunday…
    “The wisdom of God means that God will always bring about the best possible thing, by the best possible means, for the most possible people, for the longest possible time.” Hold on to His promises!

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