This morning I awoke to one of those days - those days when everything looks like it has a gray film over it and your body feels like someone inserted several yards of cheap twine into your skeletal system and several rocks in your digestive system to boot, when you are peeved at everything that is non-ideal and constantly realize you are quite non-ideal yourself. I read in my morning devotions of the Lord coming in the dark clouds and prayed "Lord, help us to see you in shadows" and then proceeded with my day in the unstructured and jelly-like fashion in which it had begun.
The main item on today's to-do list was to file our taxes. ASAP. I had little idea of what I was getting into - I figured a few hours and completion before hubby left for school. It was a dreaded task, but I figured tax filing to be an appropriate use of a day in which I already felt like a half-drowned crab and did not hope to accomplish much else useful. So to the task!
Several hours later, with the question of where in the world Schedule C was for my self-employment taxes, and how I could file "married filing jointly" with this and that confusion, the crab was nearly drowned and slipping out of its shell.
Hubby would come and gently put a hand on my shoulder and I would flinch violently and start half crying. Hubby was tender-hearted and kind and said he was very sorry it was so hard, but he had to study his Latin and really appreciated my doing this for him. I attested to my willingness to trade my task for his.
I said I wanted something to bite. He suggested a carrot. I grimaced.
I was through almost the entire project on one tax filing site, but knew that one piece of info was not correct. I didn't know how to fix it and so couldn't consent to the final declaration that I was not committing 'perjury'. Therefore, it was necessary to go to another tax filing site and start ALLL OVER AGAIN. Whoopee. More tedious info-huntings. Oh, where was hubby's 2011 AGI? He had left for school and work - oh, and I forgot to send his apple to hold him till he finished work at 8pm...What a day. This is what it felt like to be a carnal Christian. A woman with PMS doing taxes.
And then I realized a sore negligence - How many times in this wretched process had I lifted my heart, even ever-so briefly, to Heaven and said "Lord, help me!" The Lord had promised His grace to be sufficient for every need, yet I had never asked him for it. Carnal Christian indeed. I had been acting like a crab of the mud rather than a child of the King, and sadly dishonored his Majesty by so doing. A brief break for tea and Elizabeth Prentiss had given me back my senses and brought me to this realization. I prayed, "Lord, help me, help us, with this. We need you."
A chat from hubby. He had found his AGI online. I proceeded to finish the process with a calm, cheerful heart, wondering still at my past folly. How could I have forgotten?
The throne of grace is always open. It is not just for fire, death and cancer. It is for taxes, tummyaches, and burnt toast - not to make them go away, but to help us honor the Savior in them. How many times have I dishonored the Lord in the little things? Grace is there to help me bear the fruit of love, joy and peace, and I should not let these depart from me with the potato slice that departed the cutting board to unknown regions below. I may feel like a crab, but I am not a crab. I am a child of God. It takes humility to see that I am not just a wretch, but a redeemed wretch who mustn't be wretched anymore, but boldly enjoy the benefits bestowed by a reconciled God - and ask for more of them, and use them, as if there were no end to them - because there isn't.