I’m pretty sure they don’t have chicken nuggets in the Congo.

 

83232447.jpg

Ok, here’s the deal.

I never have done Lent.

There. I said it.

I have, perhaps, said I was going to do Lent… you know, chocolate. Or Coke. That kind of thing.

But then… I would go home and open a Coke and eat some ring dings and my brain just kinda went, “La lala la la laaaaa, Jesus loves me it’s all good,” and carried on.

I just have a really, really hard time with discomfort, y’all.

Discomfort is so… uncomfortable.

So, some of you may know that this Lenten season my pastor’s wife totally suckered me into teaching a class on fasting. I don’t like her anymore. She is manipulative and our friendship is done. DONE, I tell you.

No, not really, but still. She has a newborn, and I think I was cooing at her (the baby, not Kate) when she asked me to co-teach, and honestly, I woulda said yes to anything at that moment because babies are all sparkly so basically SHE USED HER BABY TO GET ME TO DO THIS.

I’m eating like the Congolese for 40 days. Lord help us all.

The Congolese do not have:

  • chicken nuggets (that’s a kid thing, but more on that later)
  • butter.
  • La Croix
  • Strawberry jam
  • and the worst – hazlenut creamer

They also do not have clean water and readily available medicine and soft mattresses and schools on every corner and, oh my goodness. The Congolese are so far away from my heavily coffee-creamered life, I tell you.

Every morning, as I drink my black coffee (which they do have, thank you, Jesus from whom all blessings and caffeine flow), I am reminded of this. Also, as I eat rice and beans for lunch. And, as I eat rice and beans and a banana for dinner.

The book that we’re using for the class is Chris Seay’s A Place at the Table.

IMG_6492.JPG.jpeg

Notice, there’s a cup of coffee in the background. WITH NO CREAMER.

Ok, so either this Seay guy is nuttier than a fruitcake (which they also don’t have in the Congo, go figure), or he is onto something here.

Because here is what I am learning, on day eleven of my fast:

  1. Comfort is an idol. It’s actually just as big and hairy and hulkie as food or alcohol or shopping or any of those other, more see-able ones.
  2. I thought I could not do this because I gave up alcohol, so how DARE anyone ask me to do MORE – I did my Lent. I do it all the time. I don’t drink anymore, Ok? So I’m good down here!
  3. I’m not good down here. The weeks and months prior to this had been a tangled time of leaning on a bunch of things for comfort and they were taking over.
  4. Rice and beans are not that bad.

Sometimes I like to think that my life is this giant checklist, and that once I get one big God task done, He checks it off, gives me a star sticker and we’re done. I like star stickers. I live for them. Uh-oh. That might be another idol. If there’s anything I’m addicted to, it’s the great big Star Chart of You’re Awesome. This whole fast has taught me that as well.

Seriously. This fast has taught me about fifty majillion things. I will be sharing them with you once in a while, as well as my newfound and very deep love for bananas.

Bananas, y’all. Did you know? They are soooooooo good. I never really KNEW. I used to think they were just a vehicle for ice cream and hot fudge but when you’re really hungry? They are all yellow and delightful.

And don’t even get me started on the avocado. Praise you, Jesus.

Ok, so I’m going to say here, on day eleven, that Chris Seay is not nutty (also not a lot of those in the Congo. Especially hazlenuts. Of course.) And my friend Kate is not evil (she’s a pastor’s wife, so evil is not a part of her genetic make-up.) And that I will continue to be smushed up, and stretched out, and pulled and pushed in all sorts of ways because God doesnt really do star charts. “We’re not done here,” God tells me. “But I love you like crazy, so if you really want a star chart just grab a banana and go out at night and look up. Boom. Biggest one you’ll ever get.”

God is a bit of a smart aleck sometimes, isn’t he?

 

 

 

 

 

 

S = Snark Attack!

tiger_shark_2012_by_feeves-d5b9lyhSo… last Sunday my women’s Sunday school class wanted me to make a Pact with them.  I love Pacts.  They keep it real.  And they add a degree of suspense to my day that otherwise would be, you know, laundry and Connect Four.  Pacts are all Survivor-y and Hunger Games-ish.  I like to dial-up my inner Katniss.  So I was all, I’m IN!  The odds are ever in my favor!  And I look so CUTE in a side hair braid anyhow!Katniss-Everdeen-the-hunger-games-fan-club-30601998-530-725

But. I digress.

Here’s the Pact:  We would not say anything negative TO or ABOUT our husbands for an entire week.

I’m already trying to test the fine print on this one.

It’s just…  he’s cute.  And as far as easy prey goes?  He’s a baby turtle buffet.  I love, LOVE teasing the man.  Just adore it.  It is the wind beneath my wings, the Snark attack.  It gives me such great joy.  I KNOW Jesus would understand.  I mean, really, He SAYS we are to choose joy, right? That’s in the bible somewhere*.  Right?  And Snark is my love language.

Sigh. Perhaps I have gone on enough about levels of Snark of which I am capable.   It makes me sound… callous and uncaring.

Nah, I got more.

photo (2)

In this picture my husband is clearly indicating his love and devotion and patience. And, that he might qualify as a hipster.

I was thinking about how we operate, we Snarkalots.  We circle in.  We do a lot of side eye-ing.  We wait for it…  and then, BAM!  We find fresh meat.

Generally speaking, Snark attacks work best in packs.  (A pack of Snarks is called a Snack, by the way.)   Snarking alone?  Possible, but not as…  satisfying.

For those of you gentle souls who are on the baby turtle side of life, the following is a helpful tool for keeping the Snarks at bay.  With Snarks, sometimes the best bet is simply:  Don’t go in the water.  Stay away.

The hubs is really good at this.  He simply smiles, and wanders off whenever the Snark fin appears.  He then settles down on his beach (couch) with lots of sports, ESPN, and some chips, and in all his affable detachment he just doesn’t even let me BITE.  Maddening.  But smart.  Snark repellant.

Momsie’s Dictionary of Snark Terminology:

There’s a Snark in the water:  The ominous Snark music is cued, and one should start heading for dry ground.

Bull snark:  The snark is recognized as being very very full of poop. Note:  This does not deter the Snark.  Of course.

Snarknado:  When other Snarks join in, and it’s a frenzy of Snarkism.     It’s more fun this way.  See also:  Marital Discord.

Snark Tank:  An attempt at Snark that just… fails.  As in, hits bottom.  Sinks.  Goes belly up.  Note:  This does not deter the Snark.  Of course.  A Snark’s gotta keep moving.

Snark Week:  Generally this week is fueled and fed by crazy hormones.  It is best not to speak of this week.  It’s too graphic.

Great White Snark:  Snark’s first appearance at the pool.  Other snark mommies show up. It’s paleness all around.  See also:  Pool Snark.

Pool Snark: a special breed of Snark that wears the “Mom suit,”  lots of SPF 50, and downtime.  Snark usually increases exponentially at the pool due to heat and glare. It’s easier to Snark behind gigantic, dark sunglasses.

Killer snark:  You know when you really are SPOT on with some snark and it just is sooooo perfect?  The zinger?  The APEX of snark?  Note:  Can have harmful side effects on marital relations.  See Jumping the Snark.  and Marital Discord.  Again.

Basking snark:  Summer Snark is finding her tan.  Also: A Killer Snark just surfaced and Snark Momsie is basking in the glow.

Jumping the Snark:  Snarking has gone too far.  The end is near.  Your relationship with your husband (main Snark recipient) has decided to cancel your show.

CLAWS:  70’s blockbuster about a snark with a particularly evil set of claws.  And yes, I know we’re mixing metaphors here but stay with me.CBM001_i_can_has_cheezburger_magnet_madison_park_group_funny_lol_sarcasm_sarkasm_just_another_service_i_offer_cat_kitteh__57961.1336510338.1200.1200

And finally…

“We’re gonna need a bigger gloat”:  The Snark has become so full of herself that she uses movie quotes to savor the moment.  See Basking Snark.  And also:  Marital Counseling .

 

After all this, there is really only one final term that any good Snark needs to know:

Remorsa:  Uh, this one kinda speaks for itself.

38250-004-EA9EA4DA

Sorry sorry sorry… I love youuuuuuuuu.

*The Momsie Bible maybe…  the Newly Organized and Paraphrased Edition ( or  the NOPE ) is my go-to bible for highly doctored, often massively inaccurate mutations of verses so I can prove a point or make my life easier.

Oh my friends.  Try to tame your inner Snark.  Or your husband will eventually start acting like this guy:

Jaws-2

Cranky.

Of course, I have to leave you with this:

You’re welcome.