Thursday, April 21, 2005

False Alarm

Also of note this week:

Monday night we got a phone message on our answering machine from the director of the adoption agency. She said that she wanted to "run something by us"-- which of course meant an adoption possibility. Our hearts were pounding like crazy-- what with Snowflakes and my new job arrangement that we had just worked out, and my health.... We called her back and she said that she had been calling to ask us if we were interested in being included in the family possibilities she was showing to a Mom scheduled for c-section on Wednesday-- yeah, as in yesterday. BUT she went ahead and included us and the Mom picked someone else. Sigh. So we didn't know quite how to feel.

We are very thankful that all of these concerns are in the hands of our dear heavenly father, who is so much wiser than we are.

A Tardy Post

I have been wanting to post for a while, but never seemed to have internet access when I had the time...

Last Thursday was a decisive day for us. It was the day set for a meeting with my boss that I asked for due to all the time I've missed at work lately. I knew that by the end of the day it was a posibility that I would no longer have a job. Everyone has been very understanding at work, but a business needs its people in order to run. Brian didn't want me to quit, but I didn't know if I could go on. So we called a meeting to discuss it with my boss.

Understandably, Brian and I were both anxious for the meeting to take place, but it wasn't scheduled until 4pm, and we were thinking about it all day long.

While we were on pins and needles, a man came up to husband with a strange message. He said that he had been thinking about Brian for weeks, and in particular the night before-- he was so disturbed that he couldn't sleep. He said that he felt that God wanted him to give Brian some money. So they talked for awhile and the man said he had a certain amount of money in cash in an envelope in his truck and if was the same amount that Brian needed, he was going to give it to him. It was 1000 dollars. He gave it to Brian for no reason other than he felt that that is what God wanted him to do. What an amazing gift! He refused any thanks for himself, saying that we should thank God. What marvelous timing-- right on the very day when my job status was up in the air. It was like God was reminding us that He takes care of His people.

For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? Matt 6:25 & 26

During the meeting, my boss expressed his happiness that I had sought out the meeting and was aware of the effect of my absences. He was extremely compassionate and suggested that perhaps I could work part-time as an assistant to some of our adminstrative staff. I was exceedingly pleased by this proposition. It was completely unexpected because this will be an entirely new position here. So I now work Tuesdays through Thursdays. For now, I'm still doing reception until they find a replacement, but soon my responsibilities will change. I'm excited because I think my work will be a bit more interesting now, as well as less tiring. The Lord has been very good to us, and I'm so thankful that it turned out so well.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Amen, brother.

"'O God of hosts, turn us and show us your face, and we shall be safe' (Ps. 79:8). For wherever the human soul turns itself, other than you, it is fixed in sorrows, even if it is fixed upon beautiful things..." -- Augustine, Confessions

My Sole Comfort

The only place that I have been able to find peace in the midst of turmoil has been in meditation on God my Father and Savior. Reflecting on the ultimate reality of God ruling from His throne in heaven and on the end of all time puts this life in perspective. What other religion can offer such true hope and comfort in the midst of bodily pain and emotional agony? There is nothing trite or touchy-feely about God. His is royal and good and perfect, the most important and supreme being of all time. He deserves our worship and adoration at all times because of who He is, and He has the right to order our lives however He wishes. How foolish we are! We think we control our ends, but we don't. We can not extend life past what He wills, we think we can control how many children we have and when, we think we can do anything if we believe in ourselves enough. That is false and ridiculous. We can't even control the events of one day. Have I ever been able to "believe" myself out of a traffic jam, or a death, or a lost job? No. How foolish and arrogant we are before the face of God. We mistake His patience for ignorance.

My intent was not to write all of that, but I will leave it, because I believe it. I believed it before this all happened, but you are forced to understand God's complete power at a deeper level when you are powerless.

And yet although He is so strong and mighty, Ruler of all, He does not flaunt it over us or torture us. He is not a tyrant, but a humble and loving King who cares for His people enough to die for them! Incredible. Amazing.

I have been angry at God at various times during this illness. Yet He loves me and forgives me for this. How do I know? Because at the very moment I am yelling at Him in the name of prayer, my spirit breaks and cries for comfort and mercy like a little worn-out child and He grants it. Sweet relief for the tortured mind. Twice now, I have cried out to Him destitute of joy and strength and He has renewed me through the words of others immediately. What a precious gift and a reminder that although things are difficult, and although I do not handle them well, He is there and He loves me. He feels compassion for me. I am his daughter, His precious one, whom He disciplines for a short time (what is a lifetime when compared to eternity?) for her own good.

What I am learning through this? To love Him and His kingdom more than anything that this world has to offer. The lust of the flesh is still strong, and I still feel the pull of this earth greatly. But through this trial, He is loosening some of the ties that bind my heart has to this fleeting life. What good will nicer cars do me? They don't make me feel less dizzy, or ease the pain in my abdomen. More prestige or recognition? That would not make me a better, more complete person. That would just give me more pride to struggle with. A baby? What good is it to propagate this vain life if you have no hope for eternity? A positive mindset? Why, if not in Christ? All I have to look forward to in this life right now is physical pain, medical expenses, and treatments with a 30% success rate. Nothing heals the soul like Christ. Nothing else grants meaning to life. In Him is joy and meaning, even when physical circumstances seem grim and meaningless. Hallmark has nothing that can make you feel better, but Christ offers His stern and glorious words of comfort in Scripture.

Friday, April 08, 2005

Unsure of Life, but Certain of My Savior

We're still thinking and praying and weighing our options. We're taking some steps that I don't feel ready to talk about here. I feel very emotionally fragile these days and am clinging to my belief in an all-powerful, loving God who never makes mistakes.