Friday, November 13, 2009

Who needs a phone??? Me, of course!

Well, as cell phone tactics go, we have been suckered in, again!! I think this is going to join my pet peeve list...

Our cell contract was up - we were eligible for new phones. Of course, the free ones were cheesy. So, after 2.5 hours of research (yes! the OCD in me), 1.5 hours in the store (ugh! we finally left), and 3 days later, the new phones arrived. Understand, I purposely chose phones that did NOT require a data package or internet. I don't NEED to check my email or update my FB status from a handheld.

I call to activate my phone - no problem. Spent several hours learning the features, updating contacts, etc. Then call back to activate the spouse's phone, at which point I am told these phones now carry a mandatory data package - I could have screamed. Actually, I think I did.

I went through the whole process with the customer service rep that I chose that phone b/c it didn't need it. Well, $10/month per phone is now added to the bill. We are totally trying to simplify our lifestyles - which is one of the main reasons we moved to NC. I don't need all this fancy stuff. But, now I feel like I'm stuck - want to know why? Yep, you guessed it, I like the darn phone!

Back up a few days.....we have seriously been going through our finances and looking at ways to live more simply and be more generous. We looked at our satellite tv package and knocked off about $30/month by dropping the movie channels and the sports package....they have seldom been used since the O Show has arrived! We are also dropping our mail-movie rental which is another $10/month. And, we are looking at other things as well...

So, technically, you could say that I've cut back in other areas and the phone shouldn't be that big of a deal, but I guess I'm just feeling convicted about it (and ripped off since they changed the package after I bought the thing!)

I'm not sure what to do - a wise young youth told me if I'm feeling guilty I should return it. Hmmmm....out of the mouths of babes.

I'm not sure what to do yet, I have 30 days to return it. I'm thinking of keeping it and making it my Christmas present, but not sure. On top of that , the bluetooth compatibility feature in my car is, you guessed it, NOT compatible with this phone. And, bluetooth is the best feature - it is so much safer.

The Bible tells me my treasures are stored in heaven, so is my phone becoming a treasure? Do I need to go back to the old one (which works perfectly fine!)?

Oh, the dilemmas.....

In His Grip,

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

A ripped sail, but still sailing....

Have you ever felt like the wind has been taken out of your sails? Like they have been slashed, your boat overturned and you are sinking? It happened to me today - I'm in recovery mode and happy to say, I'm recovering quickly. Allow me to briefly explain....

Several months ago someone gave a us a generous gift. A situation arose where someone else could use the gift more than us; so we paid it forward. No big I thought.

Today, the person who gave us the gift found out we didn't use it; the situation was explained, but the person just didn't get it. I literally felt the wind rip my sail down. NOT because of the act of giving, but because the person didn't get that someone else needed it more than we did.

I suppose this bothers me because for the last several weeks at church we have been listening to a series on financial peace, simplifying our lives and being more generous. And, even though this event happened several months ago AND the person who gave the gift has not had the benefit of hearing the sermons, I still almost got angry. I say almost, because I caught see, we're also studying forgiveness in our youth group.

Almost as quick as the anger rose, all the scriptures we have looked up on forgiveness began running through my mind. No, I couldn't quote them, but I know God calls me to be forgiving, just as He forgives me. I took several deep breaths, squelched the anger and composed myself.

I think disappointment is the emotion I'm feeling. I know in life people are always going to disappoint us; and, I think it is ok to have high expectations of certain behaviors, it just makes the fall harder. This is why I remind myself to put my trust and faith in God. He will never disappoint, fail or mislead me. And, He is always willing to forgive, so it is something I should learn to do as well.

The sail has been repaired and being re-hoisted as I type.