Blowin’ Off Steam


A normal, frustrating work day. People drive me crazy and do things that make me want to knock their block off.  But knocking someone’s block off is not a professional way of handing the situation.

I might feel better, but would be out of a job.  So instead I swallow it and stew and fume on the inside, while trying to keep my composure on the outside.

The problem is now that when I get home, my children–my precious, innocent, rambunctious children–have a run-in with a dad whose got a defective pressure release valve.  Something’s gonna give and it ain’t pretty picking up the pieces.

Does this scene sound familiar?

Most of the time, the ride between work and home is enough to diffuse the situation. But when it is not, I’m fortunate enough to have an early warning system that usually is able to detect and take preemptive measures before things get out of hand.

Tonight, my sweet “early warning system” suggested that we go on a walk after supper.  Crisis averted.  A walk is a magical mechanism to blow off the steam and get some exercise at the same time.  And when accompanied by a beautiful woman who will just listen to your rants without passing judgment, it is almost like a mini-date.

And when we’re done, I can breathe again and can go back to the business of being a father and a husband.


His Kind Intention

open hands Recently at work I’ve been involved in resolving a very serious customer issue involving millions of dollars of equipment.  I’ve had to go to daily status meetings  where the environment has been tense and confrontational and where I have to daily answer for how I (and others) are making progress on the issues.  Unpleasant at first, these daily meetings (beatings, I’ve called them) have become wearisome and dreaded after a few weeks. I’ve found myself defensive and guarded, trying to say as little as possible.

My quiet times have grown sparse and infrequent—the avoidance of yet another “duty” that has been placed on me—to submit to another master, face another expectation.  I’ve projected the stern, confrontational disciplinarian image on God, and I can’t face facing Him.

But doesn’t it seem that way sometimes? You find yourself in a life situation that comes out of the blue.  You get blindsided by something that you never saw coming. And you ask, “What did I do to deserve this?” “How did I get into this mess?” And you wonder how you’ll survive.

I know I’ve questioned why God has allowed certain things in my life.

This morning, I saw the words in Eph. 1:9: “…His kind intention…” The whole verse is:

He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in [Jesus]…

It reminded me of the safe loving arms that we find in our Heavenly Father.  He may allow certain things in our lives, but it is always in Love.  I may question why He allows the situation, but am reminded that no matter the circumstances, His intention toward us is kind.

Instead of conflict, there is a shelter. Instead of an adversary, there is a place of rest and hope.  I can lay down my defenses and be safe in His presence.

I don’t know how to get through it, or what the outcome will be, but I can trust that God will be with me in it, and that He loves me and intends to show His kindness to me.

5.7 miles, 25 minutes

Made it into work ok.  Cool and humid.

It has been a couple of weeks since I’ve ridden my bike, and the first time since school started, so I noticed a lot more traffic, particularly on the busier roads.  I passed several surprised kids waiting for the school bus.

I don’t mind so much if they give me a little room, but its the ones that drive so close that I can feel the wind when they whiz past.

It has been crazy at work lately, so I haven’t really had the chance to ride, but after this crazy week, I woke up this morning and felt like I needed to do something to relieve the stress.

Cubicle Sweet Cubicle

~K~ found a box of popsicle sticks that we had laying around in our basement.  Being the crafty guy that he is, when I came home for lunch, he had made me this:

Cubicle Sweet Cubicle

It is proudly hanging up in my “home” away from home.