Archive for July 2018

An Unintended Travel Goal   Leave a comment

I don’t have a bucket list, but even if I did, I would never have decided on this travel goal.  I would never have deliberately set out to put this many miles on our mini-van.  I’m calculating…I think it ran about 9,000 miles?  We go camping every year somewhere, so that’s not unusual, just enjoyable.  However, putting three disparate pieces together, we got an amazing fact.

  1. We regularly travel to the Florida panhandle for spring break to camp in a beautiful, peaceful state park that some friends introduced us to ten years ago.
  2. We considered going to Maine last year.  We generally go west, and we thought it would be a good change of direction to see New England, and get all the way to Acadia, which I’d heard is lovely.  However, other travel trumped that as our oldest child was moving to California.  I wanted to see where he’d be living, he wanted the help moving, so we dropped the Maine plan and instead took a Penske truck and the mini-van with pop-up to northern California.  We moved our son into his apartment and then we all went camping for five days.
  3. So this year when we revisited the question of where to go on our camping trip, we still wanted to go to Maine, and although we didn’t have as much vacation time to work with as we had originally hoped, we decided to go anyway, because it was such a different place and we’d never been.

9,000 or so miles between the three trips, and here’s the thing we managed to do, which I would not necessarily recommend: We got our feet wet in the waters of the Pacific Ocean, the Atlantic Ocean, and the Gulf of Mexico within less than eleven months time!

Posted July 30, 2018 by swanatbagend in travel journal

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Fulfillment   Leave a comment

I’m restless and lonely and unhappy again.  Sure, I know by now that it has a physical backdrop, that the reason I’m feeling low is because the physical body isn’t in top shape.  Still it’s always difficult to take that knowledge and use it to separate the truth from the loneliness.  I want to know that there are friends there for me.  I don’t like feeling alone.  And often, that longing goes farther and spills into irritation because friends or family aren’t interested in spending time together, or don’t seem to know I exist.  Then I get bitter and resentful.

But why is this happening in the first place?  Why is there all this bitterness and discontent, especially when my needs in so many other areas of my life have been so beautifully met?  Why isn’t it enough that I have a loving husband, three wonderful children, meaningful work and a lovely home?

Why do I always want more and why isn’t what I have enough?  And honestly, why do I chuckle at those “other people” who are never content with their material belongings?  Why do I think I’m immune for the longing for more?

Envy is an ugly thing.  It takes a normal desire and turns it into an endless quest for a new friend who will always be what I want her to be.  I find myself angry at others because–bottom line–they are not doing what I want.  It’s insane.  I don’t want other people to treat me that way, so why do I make these demands of others?

My desire to be loved, honored and valued is a God-given one.

The problem is that I don’t look to God for those longings to be fulfilled.  I constantly turn to other people to meet that need.  That’s why it’s never filled, because looking to others it absolutely never can be filled.  The well of need is way too deep for any human being to fill.


Posted July 9, 2018 by swanatbagend in character, relationships