Notes from Jan

Chewing on a Do-over

April 15, 2016

Interesting morning. Strangers chatting over brunch, while eggs and coffee cooled.  I liked her. After forking scrambled eggs into my mouth, she asked,”If you could have one do-over in life, what would it be?”

Usually, scrambled eggs slide down effortlessly. Her startling question kept me chewing. Stalling. While chewing, part of me thought, this is awkward talking truth to a stranger, while another wondered, where to start.  Thanks to Christ, I’m a do-over.  Done-over through forgiveness and grace, yet still me.

After an uncomfortable silence she interrupted my swallow with,”No need to answer.  I just asked, so you wouldn’t think I’m shallow.” I almost blew eggs all over her.

The question’s worth chewing on, especially if it moves one towards settling matters with God or others. When reflection leads to action: confession, prayer, forgiving or receiving forgiveness, true healing begins.  If one continues shifting life into reverse,  towards impossible junctions called “what if” or”‘if only,” real life stalls. 

When we’ve done our part with God and others,  if we’re still tormented by regret, it’s wise to seek the help of trained therapists, counsellors, spiritual directors.  Sometimes, even having done that, we need to choose to forgive ourselves,  stop chewing, stalling and swallow the eggs.  Call me exhibit A.

As people of the empty tomb, Alleluia people, we are part of a community of done-overs. No need to pretend otherwise. “Redeemed, how I love to proclaim it” says  an old hymn but mostly I live like,”relieved, I don’t have to explain it!”

So, if we meet again, I’ll suggest we eat our eggs and drink our coffee while hot, then return to  her question. Having both swallowed, no need to duck before I begin with the obvious, “How much time do you have?”

 

 

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2 Comments

  • Reply Laura F-G April 15, 2016 at 8:11 pm

    Jan, your poignant, sweet, entertaining words always point us to our Redeemer. I’m not a fan of scrambled eggs but I’m a huge fan of the words you blog as a reminder to be thankful and live every moment in His Presence. Thank you and here’s to a hot cup of coffee with you soon!

  • Reply Alice April 16, 2016 at 3:55 pm

    Jan, I enjoyed chewing on the do-over notion. It’s not one on which I’ve spent a lot of time over the decades. I’ve usually been a person facing out on life, heading into the next wave (to borrow C. S. Lewis’s metaphor); I’ve tried to learn from the past, but I don’t hunker down there. I have been “done over” by God’s grace and love, but that turns out to be ongoing – a never-ending do-over that is GOOD.

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