Busyness, bugs, bills, and brawling

Life around here is settling back into routine. I love routine. LOVE it. I also love a break from it. And then I love getting back into it. Last week was S’s spring break and I was reminded how three children can make life BUSY. How some of you do it with four, five, or more children is beyond me, but kudos to you!

We spent spring break around home. We went to parks a couple times, to the zoo twice, the science center once, and even had lunch at Dad’s work. We did some other activities around the apartment. We also went on a ‘photo walk’ at the Birmingham gardens, though the kids did more walking than taking photos. I’ll post more on that later. All in all it was a busy, fun week. S spent half of one day cleaning his room, which I’m sure he wouldn’t list as ‘fun’ though I was impressed how fast he cleaned it. He really wanted to get to a kids craft group they had that afternoon at the apartment complex. It was a great motivator!

The weather has been absolutely fantastic. If you’re in the north you’d be incredibly jealous. However, you need to know, the bugs are back. The big, ugly ones. EWWW. Gorgeous weather has it’s price.

Ever since J has been born we’ve had bills coming and going from our hospital stays. Some of them we haven’t even seen yet (such as the NICU bill…shudder-cold chill-shudder). Last week we received one from J’s NICU doctor and insurance company completely rejected it. We got another one a few days prior, I think for my epidural (something I regret on several levels), where insurance paid a whopping ten percent. We’ve already been paying on a few others. So the bills pile and we haven’t seen the worst of them. I need to battle it out with the insurance company, but I haven’t had the mental energy to do that. I dread it so much; I haven’t gotten far in the past, but this NICU doctor bill really should be covered in my opinion. If you think of it, I’d love your prayers for insurance to cover some of these expenses (preferably more than ten percent! though ten is better than zero percent!)

In the last two weeks there has been tons of controversy regarding Rob Bell’s new book: Love Wins. It has been stressful for me and has stirred all sorts of questions rolling around my head. The hardest thing for me has been the way people have disagreed with Rob and his book. I have read comments from people who were rude, opinionated, and convinced they have the Bible all figured out. In all honesty, it’s been an embarrassment for me to be considered ‘in the family’ with them. What if he IS a heretic? Does that give us license to slam him and the people who go to Mars Hill Bible Church? Before we label him the new antichrist shouldn’t we find out for ourselves what he is saying rather than basing our opinions on blogs about what he is saying?

To be fair, I have read a couple commentaries/posts that disagreed with grace. They are in the minority. I’ve seen a lot of people throwing verses around. Nothing quite like watching Christians duke it out. The people who are supposed to love like Jesus ripping into each other like a bar room brawl. It makes me want to scream. And fight….hmm…maybe I have a ways to go myself. 1 Corinthians 13 has been going through my head a lot regarding the whole subject. http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Corinthians+13&version=NIV

I don’t want to get into a discussion about the book, hell, etc. I’m weary of it. It’s been bogging down my brain. I received the copy of the book I ordered, though I’m not too far in. I doubt I would have ordered it if it wasn’t for all the chaos, but I want to find out for myself what is written. I’m both looking forward to reading it and dreading it. I don’t know what I’ll think when I get to the end.

I do want to say this: I LOVE Mars Hill. I miss Mars Hill. I ache with longing for Mars Hill. Every Sunday I shed a tear that I can’t be there with the people gathered. There is no place quite like it. During my years there I heard great teaching (yes, from Rob Bell, along with others.) I experienced spiritual and emotional healing. God grew my faith tremendously. I got to know some of the most amazing people on the planet. I learned about how to live out Christianity in all aspects of my life. I learned tons about social justice, something God cares a lot about. I learned about caring for God’s creation. I learned about loving people different than me. I even learned about how to love people I disagree with (though I still do that badly. What am I saying? I still have a long way to go in all those areas!) Matt is a Christian today because of God using Mars Hill. By the way, I’m also married to Matt today because of Mars Hill. I love Mars Hill. It is by far not a perfect place. But a lot of good happens there and through there.

Mars Hill may end up going down a wrong path. Lots of great churches/people have. And some were considered the wrong path at the time and now we hold what they did/believed as a tenet of our faith. I have no idea what the future will bring.

I wish those who disagree would do it with grace and with doing their homework first. I probably won’t tell you what I think of the book when I’m done with it. But I’ll loan it to you. And maybe by the time you’re done reading it I’ll be emotionally ready to discuss it. And we’ll help each other maintain an atmosphere of grace, even if we disagree.

–Wow, a light blog post turns heavy! My brain has been full and jumbled the last couple weeks between spring break, controversy, and laundry (which is never ending.) Thankfully I’ve had great weather and lots of giggles to help me keep a touch of sanity. By the way, there is nothing better than getting J to giggle. Except maybe watching K or S get him to giggle.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Mel
    Mar 24, 2011 @ 20:48:47

    Thanks Chel that was well said!! Spoken from the heart. I agree wholeheartedly with you!! 🙂


  2. Pam
    Mar 30, 2011 @ 12:11:30

    How's your fight with the insurance companies coming? I understand how much you would hate picking up the phone and getting into it. I hate doing it for even a small item or question. You have to be ready to repeat yourself a dozen times.I'm imagining that you've devoured the book, not being able to put it down. I haven't read it yet…just wondering how you're doing.Pam


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