Thursday, June 23, 2011

"What Could I Possibly Do?"

Her body lay lifeless in the right hand lane just over the top of the hill. Cars tagged from Georgia, Indiana and Alabama all swerved to miss her. Dazed and wondering what we had stumbled upon our hearts began to cry out "Lord, what do you want us to do?" Pulling over and jumping from our means of transportation we all began to scramble. Some ran to the body, some stopped traffic, Matt ran to the closest road marker and called 911. I began to spout out firm, but loving instructions for my children to remain in the car no matter what. What now? Do I run, do I fall to my knees, do I approach this life wondering if breath and heart beat still exist? What could I possibly do? Pray! That is all I knew to do. I began to quickly walk down the median praying aloud, asking the Lord to spare lives, bring peace, offer wisdom and give comfort and then my gaze was fixed. I saw her on the side of the road, shaking, crying, scared and in shock. I knew where my heart was. I ran to her and wrapped my arms around her. All I could do was hold her and pray. She was traveling from home to a neighboring town to visit some friends. A road she had traveled many times before. It was familiar, it was comfortable and it would soon change her life forever. As she topped the hill there in her lane was a figure, a person, standing in the middle of the road. She jerked the wheel as hard as she could. That sudden reflex was all she could do and yet not enough. Though the instinctive reflex is possibly what saved this person's life, it forever changed the lives of all those present. Mirror gone, car dented and neither seemed important as hearts and lives were dented deeper than surface alone. As I held this new friend and prayed aloud I trusted that God would provide the words because nothing I could say or do would bring comfort. As I prayed I felt the trembling lessen and I began to hear other voices. Oblivious to sirens and screeching tires all I heard was a chorus of prayer being offered up. As I opened my eyes I realized there were others gathered around, hands out-stretched or touching and praying, pleading, asking God to intervene. Those medically trained came and attended to the lady who was suffering in the road. She was stable, she would be fine, she was quickly transported away from the scene. Questions remained...who was she? Where had she come from? Where was she going? Rumors surfaced as each police officer had his own thought and theory. She might be the lady who was missing from the nursing home? Did she have dementia? Was she mentally disturbed? Was she on drugs? Was alcohol involved? Was it an intentional act to try and leave this world? What did they mean by (questionable) items in her purse? So many unanswered questions and so much pain that accompanied them all. And then there was the driver, who had my heart and attention from the start. She was scared, she was shaken, she was worried. Her life had just been forever changed and there was nothing she could have done to prevent it. Through the sobs I heard her heart, "If she's ok, then I will be ok." "If I know she can breathe, then I can breathe again." There was no way I could walk away and leave her in the care of 5 officers exchanging theories and stories. She needed assurance. She needed comfort. She needed a friend. When spotting an accident I have always thought "What could I possibly do?" as I continued to drive thinking I had nothing to offer. But on this day I understood. I knew what I could do. There was only one thing I could do. Stop and pray. It reminded me of a parable. On the road from Jerusalem to Jericho there laid a man who was passed by. Were they just too busy, too important? Could they not be bothered? Some walked on the far side as far away as they could, why? "If I don't see it, then it doesn't exist." So many passed us by on 231 that day. Shaking their heads in disbelief, maybe some in sorrow, but never stopping to help, never caring enough to be bothered. Something else was more important. I have been that person. But, on this day I knew I had to stop. No, I'm not the Good Samaritan, but how often do we pass by those in need wondering "what could I possibly do?" I'm not qualified. I have nothing to offer. Someone else could do more than I could. How many people had to pass before the Good Samaritan stopped? Imagine if on that day, he just couldn't be bothered. Would the man have lived? Jesus instructs us to "go and do likewise." Go and have mercy on others. Help! Minister! When we realize that it is not about us, but about HIM it will change our possibilities. I have nothing to offer, but Christ in me does. Praying and interceding on the behalf of others is the greatest gift you can give. The 2 ladies that I asked the Lord to shower His peace, His mercy and His comfort over are both alive and well. There are still unanswered questions. There are still fears that must be conquered and healing that must take place, but only through the power of prayer. Maybe it is not the next car accident or a tragic scene, but we are to be His hands of mercy. Where can we serve? Where can we give? Who can we love because he first loved us and them? I was asked to step out of my comfort zone. I wish I had run full force and though my body moved, my heart was reserved until I saw her face. Nothing I did or could have done changed the day or the event, but is my prayer, that these women felt the love of God through the touch of a stranger.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

"One Day"

"One Day" Does it really exist? Will it ever arrive? Has it already passed? Is this it? Recently Jacob asked me a question that has called me to reflect. "Mommy, is today one day?" Not sure what he was meaning, I asked. "Well, today is a day, but what do you mean by one day?" "Melissa (a sweet friend who has been living with our family while she waits on an answer from Lord about an upcoming ministry opportunity) said that one day this will not be her house anymore. Is today one day?" Understanding his heart of worry as he faced losing his favorite friend in the near future I said, "Well today is not "that" one day." "Oh mommy, I'm so happy. If today was one day I was going to be so sad." For Jacob "one day" is a day to dread. He does not want "one day" to get here in this situation. However, we are going on vacation "one day." That is the "one day" he is counting down. "Only 3 more sleeps until we go." "One Day" can be a good thing or a bad thing..."one day my prince will come." "One day Jesus will return to take us home." "One day we will get the results from these medical testings." "One Day" can stir such different emotions that you wonder if "one day" is to be dreaded or craved. I have made the claim before that some of my greatest lessons have been learned in "the wait." But what was I waiting on? "One Day." The day that answers are given be it from a friend, an employer, a family member, a doctor, a sporting event or an answer from our all knowing, loving God. I stand on the truth that the Lord teaches us so much during those times that he calls us to wait. He develops patience, perseverance and watches as we become mature and complete not lacking anything. I am however beginning to realize that "the wait" is not just an event or a space of time that occurs on occasion. All of our days and lives are spent in some form of "the wait." Personally our waits in recent months and even today have involved viles of blood, needles, x-ray machines, MRI's and doctor's offices where everybody knows our names. These can be very difficult waits that often times produce even harder answers, but we are called to learn and bask in the wait no matter what it is. We are to trust HIM. We are to take HIM at HIS word. He says He will never leave us or forsake us. He says He will not give us more than we can bare. He promises that His plan for us is good, pleasing and perfect. No matter the wait, no matter the situation, He is always the same and He is faithful. What are you waiting on today and what will you be waiting on tomorrow. We focus on the immediate waits and the answers that will make them realities, but what about the waits that could be molding and shaping us all day everyday. Waiting on the "one day" when the skies open and the whole earth is filled with His glory and He comes to call us home. Oh the waiting and preparation that could be partnered with the waiting of that day. We focus on the waits that effect us today, and yes our Savior is concerned about every detail of our lives, but don't all of these details add up and point to the purpose of our Savior's heart. As we wait and learn and wait and learn we are to be transformed and become like Him. It is all a part of our knowing Him and making Him known. Each day we wait, we wait for answers and we wait for "one day" to arrive. The waits we face about everything earthly are just preparing us for the day our wait is over. "One Day." That ONE DAY when Jesus will return and we will be made whole and complete. One Day!!!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

"Days Of Summer"

Lazy mornings, sleepy eyes, late night movies, night time ice cream runs, swimming in the dark, jumping on the trampoline in the rain, towels hanging from the deck railing, sticky floors, pool days, goggles and snorkels around every corner, fresh garden vegetables, the smell of tomato plants, homemade plum jelly, fresh blueberries for the pancakes, peach juice running down your arms, laundry, laundry and more laundry, laughter, togetherness, planning beach trips, midnight light saber fights on the trampoline, kick ball games until dark, lightning bugs in a jar, whoopie pies, flavored shaved ice, a messy house, late unplanned dinners, spontaneity, freedom from the calendar, savoring each day together, little boys hair turning blonde, tan lines on little gingerbread boys, good books and time to read them, catching frogs, killing snakes, eating blackberries from the ditch, slip n slides and sprinklers, candy bars at midnight, chocolate mustaches, no bed times, frozen fruit with seven up, beach pictures, bad haircuts, cannon balls, sunscreen, flip flops, boogie boards, boxed fans, The Beach Boys, play-dates, painted toenails, canned drinks, sunglasses, homemade ice cream, watermelon, sweat beads on your brow, humidity curling up your hair, sunflowers, scarecrows, shelling peas, shucking corn, zucchini fritters, fried green tomatoes, bike rides, bible school, new tennis shoes, birthday parties, fireworks, lemonade and memories to last a lifetime. ALL of these things are what I love about summer, but most of all I love that we get to do it all as a family. I love having my boys home with me each and every moment of the day. I miss them when they are in school. I count the days until they are all mine and I cherish these days because all too quickly they grow up, move on and make memories of their own. Cherish the times. Make the most of every moment. Live life to the fullest, counting your blessings and never taking them for-granted. "Thank you Jesus for this life you have given me."