Choosing Self Control

That is the title of our new family Bible study. I bought it thinking how badly my boys needed to grasp the concept of self control being one of the fruits of the spirit. Our first memory verse was Proverbs 25:28. Like a city whose walls are broken down is a man who lacks self-control. We discussed as a family how the ancient cities built walls for protection against their enemies. Without these walls, they were unsafe. Without hesitation, the boys were able to explain the parallel to our lives -- without self control, we are without protection from our enemy, Satan.

As I sat there with open Bibles all around, I was was convicted of my own lack of self control when it came to a few things. Like my temper. Like the words I choose to use at times. Like overeating. Just because it tastes good, sounds good, or looks good.

Sigh. Once again, God moved me to choose something for the sake of my children that I needed desperately.

Fortunately for all of us, there is an amazing promise in 2 Timothy 1:7: for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.

That same power that raised Jesus from the dead is available to Griffin when he wants to kick Tucker's teeth in. It's available to Anne Claire when she wants to claim her tired legs won't permit her to throw away a paper towel. Those times Tucker would love nothing more than to toss Griffin off a roof? Yep, the power of the Holy Spirit is available to him if only he will stop and ask.

And for me? Well, instead of succumbing to a loaf of French bread with real butter, I can know that I am created for more than this. I can know that I know that I know that God has given me a spirit of power and self control.

"For this is the will of God....that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor." 1 Thessalonians 4:3,4

Heading Home


I am so glad that my career at Lafayette General is history. Over. Never to be repeated. It was, without a doubt, the strangest experience that I have ever had. And I've had a few strange work experiences in my life.

Since May of 1988, I have worked all over the U.S. -- literally. Phoenix Children's, Tampa General, All Children's in St. Pete, UNC Chapel Hill, Dayton Children's, Sacred Heart name a few. Huge Level III NICUs. I remember when our hospital was one of the trial sites for Exosurf (anyone remember that?); I worked in the olden days when we still used THAM. I remember a trial with a negative pressure box for PFC. Nitric oxide, jet vents, name it, I've done it.

Once my family started to grow, I kind of relaxed into a slower pace and became certified as a lactation consultant. Definitely different, but very rewarding. I learned that I loved to teach more than I thought. I took my passion for breastfeeding and for ministering to new moms and realized how fortunate I was that I could actually get paid -- well -- for it!

And through it all, I have gotten along with nearly everyone I've ever worked with. As I've gotten older, I've gotten too impatient to put up with drama and rumors and all that ridiculous stuff. I also have gotten vocal when I see someone doing something that is just wrong. I have always been able to stand my ground, and maybe that is because I truly always believed that if I was in the right, my manager would have my back. And they always have. Truth has always prevailed. Good has always won.

Until now.

The fact is, I gave up and quit a job I loved. I loved the clinical aspect of it. I loved the mother baby and pediatric nurses that I worked with every day. Loved the patients so stinking much. Paul didn't love his job, but he came to love the community he served. He is good at what he does and people recognized that. The kids didn't care for their school, yet they made friends and finished well. Despite the fact that we all longed for New Orleans ---the sights, the sounds, the smells, and that sense of home.....we had planned on staying right here.

But. The bottom line is that liars and bullies win here. And the managers allow it. Not just allow it -- acknowledge it. In a conversation recently, I was told "I'm sorry I didn't put a stop to all that. I should have intervened."


I was gracious. I was kind. I was immensely disappointed.

When I called my old manager and asked if I could have my old job back, we were catching up and she told me about some staffing changes she'd made. She said, "You can't lie and stay at the Touro. We don't put up with that."

Sigh. If only everyone operated that way.

Life goes one. And one day I will forgive and get over the hurt. In the meantime, however, our family is heading home. I get to go back to the best.job.ever and start IV's, go to deliveries, help moms breastfeed, minister to families, and laugh with the Touro girls until my sides hurt. My kids can go to Audubon Zoo and the aquarium and play ball at Carrollton. They can swim at the JCC. They can hang with their Newman posse and seminary crew. We can get beignets and snoballs and wander through the French Market. Eat at Dickie Brennan's. Or Jacque Imo's. Or Mother's. Or Crabby Jack's. Crazy Johnny's. Court of Two Sisters.

Life is good. It comes full circle. I remember years ago, the first time we came to New Orleans as visitors.

"Wouldn't it be cool to live here?" we said.

Yes. Yes it is cool to live here, in what can only be described as the best city on the planet.

Thank you, Jesus....we are heading home.