Saturday, March 28, 2020

It's Only a Season

Rainy, cold spring days appear to be on a repeat cycle here in my neck of the woods.  In some ways, the weather seems to reflect the bleak mood of our restricted nation as well as the world these days.  The Corona virus affects the way society does life, but there are good things hidden in bad times. 

I’m sharing my thoughts at Cheryl’s today.  I hope you will visit me there at Homespun Devotions!  She is collecting stories about coping during this time of social distancing.  You might even want to share yours!

Stay Safe.

Sunday, March 15, 2020

When God Turned My Story Upside Down

It must be the season of Purim because God turned my story upside down just like He did for Esther in the Old Testament.  Esther, the beautiful Jewish queen, stood in the gap for her people when the mean bad guy, Haman, tried to annihilate the Jewish people by building tall gallows with which to hang them.  But God intervened!  He turned the story upside down when Haman ended up on those gallows.  I like feel-good stories where justice prevails.

Here’s What Happened to Me

I knew it was a test when the eye drops were delayed.  My husband’s second eye surgery date arrived and he needed a prescription for steroid eye drops to take for ten days.  A few days before his surgery, he asked his primary VA doctor if they were ordered and was told they are on the way.  We decided to pray, trust God and commit this delay to him.  We vowed to help each other stay stress free, but what if they don’t arrive in time? 

The eye drops are expensive.  We guessed our co-pay amount at $40.  The eye doctor explained these drops prevent the eye from swelling.

Tom’s surgery went very well, but the eye drops never arrived.  The eye doctor gave us a sample.

Tom made me proud.  He calmly called the VA several times triumphing through their automated system and finally connected to a human who listened.  The VA gave us instructions and it all sounded so easy, but it turned icky.  We felt like we were in a maze driving to the pharmacy and then back to the doctor who sent us back to the pharmacy.  Finally, the authorization arrived and to our dismay, we learned the pharmacy was out of stock for those drops.  

After all that rigmarole, we sat in the parking lot and wondered what to do.  We started to complain feeling veterans once again get the shaft in our country when Illegal’s can climb the fence to get in with hands out for free benefits.  We instantly knew the stinking thinking won’t help.  So we  prayed instead.    We felt peaceful leaving it all in God’s capable hands. 

There’s Nothing Like Shopping to Lift One’s Spirits

We decided to stay in town and shop.   On the way back home, we stopped at the pharmacy one more time to ask when they expected a shipment of the drops.  I will never forget the smile on Tom’s face when they handed him a prescription of the eye drops, but in generic form.  Our co-pay came to only $8.  Relief!

I said: “This is a test of our faith!”  I think we passed it, too.

2020, the Year of New Vision

That’s how God turned our story upside down.   I wondered if the year 2020 would teach us how to see things more clearly.  This I know:  that which is sent to us for fear and panic can turn around for good when we get God involved.  Oh, to trust Him in all things!

Sunday, March 8, 2020

I Like Fences

Our neighbor’s dog sneaks up to my back deck now and then after I feed our outdoor cat, Bonita.  She runs off and the lurking dog enters.  I learned to dish out only a few scoopfuls of 9 Lives Pate to avoid leftovers on her plate.  Before this, I  served her a full can, but she ate fast and left, tempting Renee’s dog to finish the remaining morsels.  I can’t blame the dog; we have open borders on our property.

I spent hours at the Wildlife World Zoo in Litchfield Park, AZ, a few weeks ago with my animal-loving granddaughter.  We bought tickets to ride the skyline because she loved looking up at the cages moving through the sky!  From our cage in the sky, we viewed the fences which separated the animals and framed the perimeter of the park.  Good thing; I don’t want to brush elbows with some of the long-horns.

Boundaries are safe and restrict us from danger.

Even God sets boundaries in Scripture

Moses responded to the Lord, “The people cannot come up Mount Sinai, since you warned us: Put a boundary around the mountain and consecrate it.” 24 And the Lord replied to him, “Go down and come back with Aaron. But the priests and the people must not break through to come up to the Lord, or he will break out in anger against them.” 25. So Moses went down to the people and told them. Exodus 19:23-25

Even God set boundaries. I ask myself, “Why?” Turns out, He had a new way of living for His people. I continued reading about the rituals and a covenant established between God and His people which prepares them to live a cleaner, healthier, safer lifestyle. I’m taken aback with all the rules to make people holy and presentable. The commentaries I read concerning this passage teach me His people are His special treasure. God shows them how to live stating that He is a holy God and wants a holy people.

God wanted His children to be holy back then but He does today as well. He gives New Testament Believers instruction too in 1 Peter 2:9.   Knowing I’m God’s special treasure brings a big smile.

What’s the Plan?

Boundaries make things clear. Spring is almost here leading up to Resurrection Sunday. Jesus provides a way to draw close to the Father with His one-time miraculous sacrifice. Many celebrate Lent, a time of decrease. Many take inventory and prepare their hearts with deep repentance.  Are we ready?

Cheers for good living, from one special treasure to another!