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The Art of Interruptions

-Interruptions remind us we are not in control.---Karla Akins

Okay, this is hilarious.

I had this post completely written and guess what?

It disappeared.

Then I wrote it again. And added pictures.

And the pictures disappeared.

Then when I added the pictures again and checked on it–saved it, published it, the original post showed up without pictures. (I was working in Blogger for a cross-post to Hoosier Ink. I gave up and decided to post it here in WordPress.)

hmm...I find this extremely ironic since I’m writing about interruptions. And I don’t believe in coincidences. Sometimes life gets so crazy and bizarre you just have to laugh. Just like God does when we make plans. I picture Him sitting beside me, jabbing me in the ribs with a loud “Got ya!” He probably isn’t, but that’s how I picture Him when things like this happen. (I mean no disrespect to God. He knows how much I admire His sense of humor.)

You’d think after having kids with autism and a mother-in-law with Alzheimer’s living with us, I’d be the Queen of Handling Interruptions. But I’m not. I have a hunch that God must be determined to make me an expert. Either that, or he enjoys a good laugh. You know the Yiddish saying, right? “We make plans and God laughs.” He is hee-hawing all over the universe with the way my summer has gone.

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You see, I’m a planner. I love to plan. I have several planners — one for home/church, one for my writing and one for my college classes. I begin student teaching in August, and I’ll have a teaching planner, too.  I also use Google Calendar to remind me of appointments and deadlines. I love to plan. I buy all sorts of stickers and tapes and tabs for my planner. Planning is my hobby.

A few of my planning toys. I keep them in a ziplock envelope inside my planner. I have many more in my office drawers!

And oh yeah, I haven’t even begun to tell you all about how I plan on Kanbanflow! I have 11 (!) planning boards there. Now, admittedly, many of them are for books and projects. But a lot of them aren’t.

This isn't my kanban, but you get the idea.

This isn’t my kanban, but you get the idea.

Here’s how my summer has gone so far. Keep in mind, this is the summer when I was going to knock out those 11 Kanbanflow lists and cure world hunger:

  • My dishwasher broke the same month of the twins’ graduation open house (mid-May)
  • The twins’ caregiver quit in May. We still don’t have a new caregiver and they require 24-7 supervision
  • Ordered new dishwasher
  • New dishwasher arrived and quit working after one week
  • Part for new dishwasher will not be here until August 12
  • Air conditioner is not acting right. And it’s only the hottest summer ever.
  • June 25 my computer crashes. Kaput. Zero. Zilch. Will cost too much of a percentage of a new one to fix.
  • Wait two weeks for new computer to arrive.
  • Can’t find my backup files on Carbonite
  • My wedding ring got an upgrade May 1. Sent it off to get it fixed. It’s still not back after it being returned twice looking like a bubble gum ring. (Does this mean I’ve been single all this time?)
  • My mother-in-law who has Alzheimer’s has been sick a lot this summer. This means a lot of attention, care and trips to the hospital. (Keep her in your prayers. Her name is Ellen.)
  • When I flew to Colorado for conference, why didn’t I expect my plane to be delayed and have three gate changes in Dallas?
  • My back went out July 22. I have a bad sacrum joint thing going on. Which means I can’t sit, stand or walk comfortably at all. The only medication that’s touching the pain is Ibuprofen which I’m not supposed to take because of a stomach condition. But, it’s Ibuprofen that’s allowed me to sit here in this awkward position and type this post.

These are just a few of the highlights of my summer saga entitled, “Interrupted Summer.” Not very original, I know, but it describes it very well. (Which means it’d do well on a Kindle search, but that’s another blog post for another day.)

Squirrel!

God isn't looking at the clock.He's looking at my character.--KarlaAkins.com

I believe God is bound and determined to teach me how to handle interruptions with grace. I’m obviously a slow learner. This has been a sink or swim summer. I’m treading water, but not sure I’m going anywhere.

And yet, I’m trying to embrace the interruptions as positive opportunities instead of negative experiences. They’re like when I get lost on purpose when I ride my motorcycle. I love exploring unchartered territories. Why not view interruptions in the same way?

Interruptions are actually God’s Providence. It’s Him teaching me I’m not the one in control. He is. And I can either embrace these moments or kick against them. It’s up to me how I perceive them.

In the below video I share a few more of my thoughts on the matter. If you like the video, please subscribe to my channel and hit like on the thumbs up tab! (In Youtube.)

How about you? Do you like interruptions as much as I do?

Pink Motorcycle & Bird Final (1)

Please tweet: Interruptions are God’s unexpected field trips.

The Many Adventures of Mr. Himself: In Which This One Involves Toilet Paper

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Mr. Himself (as an avatar)

With his permission, I’ve decided to dedicate a portion of my blog to Mr. Himself. He is such a funny person to live with that I can’t help writing about him. And since he doesn’t take himself seriously, he’s okay with being exposed in this way.

Mr. Himself lives at the mercy and whims of many others for various reasons. One of them is that he’s married to me. Being married to an author and scholar isn’t easy (I’m also a full-time college student at the moment). He has to do his own laundry these days, and has for a long time. I think he’s a tad bitter about that, but that’s another blog post.

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He takes care of his mother who has Alzheimer’s and lives with us, and helps me with the twins (age 20) with autism in addition to being a full-time pastor. So, as you can imagine, there are very few things he has control over.

And that’s why, I believe, he tries to control weird things.

Like toilet paper.

Bing Free Use Image

Bing Free Use Image

Currently, there are six adults living in this house. The twins have a caregiver who comes for a portion of the day, so technically we have 6.5 people in this house using toilet paper. We go through a lot of it. Like maybe a roll or two a day. I don’t know because I’m too busy to keep track. Apparently he has time to because it’s driving him bonkers.

So, a few days ago, he decided toilet paper was something he would control.

We were each assigned our own roll of toilet paper with our names on it.

And we were not to use any else’s roll.

He was going to find out who ran out first. And he was rationing it. It had to last us at least a week, or ideally, two weeks.

Right. Like that’s going to happen.

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Bing Free Use Image

There’s this funny thing about humans. We don’t like to be dominated. We don’t like to be told what to do. And we are competitive.

So instead of using my own precious roll of toilet paper, I sneak a few Kleenex in with me, or I swipe some off one of the boys’s rolls. Bad. I know. I’ve sinned over toilet paper. TOILET. PAPER.

Bing Free Use Image

Bing Free Use Image

Me: Honey, I’ve decided to feature you now and then on my blog. I’m giving you your own category. And I’m going to write about this toilet paper experiment of yours.

Mr. Himself: Why?

Me: Because you’re hilarious. I mean, you wrote our names on toilet paper. Think about it. WHO DOES THAT?

Mr. Himself (laughs with great satisfaction): It is pretty funny, isn’t it?

The experiment is failing. No one is using their own roll of toilet paper anymore. And besides, he’s gone to Michigan for a week to play his guitar and sing for a revival. There’s no way anyone is going to use their own roll with him gone.

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Bing Free Use Image

Poor Mr. Himself. Once again, there’s something in his life he can’t control.

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My very own man in black: Rev. Eddie Akins

What do you think? Is Mr. Himself normal or weird? Leave me a comment!

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Tweet this: Did you know that Karla Akins is sneaky about toilet paper?

Questions: God’s not surprised


A to Z blog hop at Patterings.

Welcome to A to Z!

We’d love to have you join the fun, either blogging your way through the alphabet with us, or simply visiting. =) We dearly love visitors.

If you’re joining in the meme, be sure to link up with us at the end of this post. Since this is a blog hop, you can grab the code for the linky down there too. Find more info about the A to Z meme here.

Today’s post is brought to you by the letter Q

 

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When I get to heaven, I have a lot of questions for God.

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Some questions are a little humorous:

What were you thinking when you made the platypus?

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Why is everything that tastes so good so bad for me?

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What was Jesus like as a little boy?

What do dogs dream about?

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When babies laugh in their sleep, are you tickling them? If not, what’s so funny to a newborn baby?

Did animals talk in the Garden of Eden?

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What kind of mood were you in when you created giraffes?

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Some questions are more serious:

Why did you make men and women so different?

a6b9Why did you let such a wonderful person die so young?

Dustin

This is my friend, Dustin. I watched him grow up. Taught him in church. He was the third Wise Man in the Christmas program when he was little along with my twin sons. He was killed two weeks ago when somehow his truck got stuck on the railroad tracks during an icy blizzard and was run over by the train. He was the sweetest, most generous, kind-hearted person. So young. Only 19.

Why did you let such a giving, generous couple die such a horrible death at the hands of a thief?

Click to read their story

Click to read their story

Why must so many children starve or be abused?

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Why didn’t you stop abortion?

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How has it made you feel to see animal cruelty?

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Most of the serious questions, as you can see, are in the “why” category. And while I do know the theological answers for them, I’m still uncomfortable with the outcomes.

This world is not my home. I long for a better place.

For this world is not our home; we are-1

I take comfort in the fact that God is not surprised by my questions. He made me and expects me to ask them. He doesn’t want his children to check their brains at the door to follow Him. I believe in this age of reason, it’s more important than ever to explore questions and seek God’s Word in finding the answers. In this way, we can help other seekers find answers.

Not all questions are negative. Here’s a question in the Bible that I’m particularly fond of:

“If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31)

What questions do you have for God? Share them with me so I can ask them, too!

i57.tinypic.com

 Tweet this: Did animals talk in the Garden of Eden?