Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Lent Day 24: Thankful for chocolate

I doubt that Jesus needed chocolate like I do. Aren't we blessed to live at a time and place where the world's delicacies and foods come to us? Chocolate informs me that all is well in my surroundings: the beauty of the complex tastes roll around my mouth. If I'm eating chocolate, I'm near a home stash (a happy place), I have found a moment for meditation (chocolate is, after all, best enjoyed in a pause), and it's not yet night (caffeine keeps me awake).

I'm grateful for many many blessings, and chocolate, though a small one, reminds me how good life is.

I defended my dissertation to my committee today and received excellent suggestions on "making it better." The seminary computer system went down this morning so we had all kinds of complications in getting started. I called them when the scheduled time for defense came and no one had contacted me. (We're having trouble, so shall we use the phone - no, we're back online, use Skype - but how? I log in - oh, it's taking too long as I get a new password - log in, figure it out - let's use WebX - yay, I can do that easier.) And finally we are connected and we begin. My heart pounds with the anxiety that only a struggle with technology can produce.

There's a 4-5 second delay during the whole defense. As the profs speak, their mouths and bodies move 4-5 seconds before I hear them speak and sometimes they have to repeart what they have said or asked. I miss their conversation to each other. Worst of all, as I'm speaking, the feedback of my previous words overlap from the committee room. It's very disconcerting and makes it hard for a "one-sense-at-a-time" person like myself to think. (I typically don't hear the music background while watching a movie; I can't write a music score if someone's talking or playing; if a piano is off by a semi-tone or more I have to disconnect my hand shapes from what I'm hearing ... )

When I'm done, I wonder what on earth I told the committee while I was listening to what I had said. Because of the echo, I couldn't use my speakerphone and record it. Holding the phone, I couldn't flip through the dissertation to find items, either. Oh bother. I know what I knew.

I call my husband, who consoles me and asks if he can take me for a wonderful supper. Well, yes! We decide if the feedback from committee is good, we'll splurge at our "Special Celebration" restaurant. If not, I'll have him bring home chow mien from the Safeway deli. (Yikes, you know which one I prefer. We go out; the dissertation is accepted with revisions.)

I hang up the phone, break an edge from a chocolate loaf cake, and indulge. I don't want the whole slice; all I need is a little taste. The dark sweetness comforts me, my blood pressure lowers, and I thank God for the encompassing prayers of friends, the pleasures of learning, and all the blessings of living in this day and age.

Read more:
*O God, you are my God, I seek you, my soul thirsts for you. Psalm 63:1

*Christ says, "Strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness,
and all these things will be given to you as well." Matthew 6:33

Jesus said: "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.” John 14:1-4   NIV

Moravian Prayer: Most holy Lord and God, to you we give all honor and praise. Help us
always to seek first your kingdom and its righteousness as instructed by
our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

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