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All the buzz

June 17, 2014

This year I decided that I would not be spending the time, energy, and fun tickets on attempting to grow tomatoes.  It hasn’t worked yet, and I’ve decided that I’m over it.

I am not, however, over jalapeños.

I bought one little pack of jalapeño plants.  A pack of four.  They’re just baby plants, so tiny and cute.  In two months I will wonder what I was thinking, but for now they’re just potential.  I do have a rationalization for buying a 4-pack: the past few years I’ve grown jalapeños, I’ve had some plants that have produced wimpy, fire-less peppers.  If I have four plants it increases the likelihood that at least one of them will pack some whup.

When it comes to peppers, I’m all about packin’ whup.

So tonight I went out onto the back deck to finally put those peppers into pots.  I figured it wouldn’t take more than fifteen minutes.  What I didn’t know is that I was about to get motivated to make it happen even faster.

Mosquitos.  Tiny ones.  So small that at first I didn’t even see that I was kicking up little swarms of them.  I normally don’t get too excited about a few mosquitoes.  Unlike Mr. Sparky and the Baton Rouge Sparkette, I don’t usually get bitten too much, and when I do I don’t usually have much of a reaction.  But tonight something different happened.

Mosquitoes don't want people with good taste.  They want people who taste good.

Mosquitoes don’t want people with good taste. Mosquitoes want people who taste good.

That was just one of the loads of bites I got.  It continued to swell some after the photo was taken, as did all the others.  And the itching?  Maddening.

It ihas now been about five hours since I hosted the skeeter feast.  The edges of the bites softened and the swellings have spread out into less-defined knots.  The redness is more localized and has lightened up a bit.  The itching has slowed down.

Unless, of course, I accidentally touch or brush against one of those bites.  Then the itching flares like gasoline on a fire and I’m in misery all over again.

And the thought occurs to me that our lives often carry little land mines of issues that operate just like these mosquito bites.  At one point they were acute and caused us much misery, but somehow we managed to get through it.  The pain subsided and we learned to cope with our new normal in the aftermath of the wound…until someone accidentally brushes against the scar site.

Suddenly all the old emotion flares up like gasoline on a fire, and we’re in misery all over again.  But this time there’s a good chance that we’re making someone else miserable too, because they unknowingly hit a trip wire on a buried issue and were the first person in our line of fire.

Mosquito bites, no matter how severe the reaction, don’t hold a candle to that kind of pain.

And that kind of pain requires facing one’s issues and reframing those wounds in light of God’s love and what Jesus did for us.  Re-burying it only ensures that the trip wire will be hit another day, and the gasoline will hit the fire once again.

Glad I can just take some Benedryl and hope I don’t scratch myself to sleep.



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