Tuesday, April 26, 2016

A Good Report


The light of the eyes rejoices the heart, and a good report makes the body healthy.

Proverbs 15:30 (NKJV)

Ever feel like the sparkle in your eye has been snuffed out? Like no matter what the angle you tilt your head, or the lighting you put yourself in, or the amount of coffee that you drink, or sleep that you get…you look in the mirror and you can see that your eyes have been through it?

Yeah, me too. For about a week in March, it was hard to believe the sparkle was there.

In the midst of ending my job, packing my parents, moving them and searching for a job…my dad had a medical mishap. He went in for what was supposed to be a routine procedure. Unfortunately, the nurse made a ‘mistake’ and the last month has been a nightmare for my parents. When they should have only been looking forward to moving into their new home, they had to worry that my Dad’s health was in jeopardy. After more doctors’ visits than anyone should have to go through in a year, let alone a month, the “c” word was used. Within a week from moving into their new home, my Dad was undergoing body scans.

I am happy to say, we have a good report. His kidney is just fine! Praise the Lord! It was the news that we all needed, especially my Dad. I could tell when he walked in the door after the appointment, with donuts from his favorite place in hand, that the good report had made his bones healthy.

But I have an even better report. I realize the sparkle never left my eye. It may have “felt” snuffed out. But praise the Lord that my feelings don’t dictate my faith. Thank the Lord I have friends who have come alongside me and reminded me that our God is a faithful and loving God and that no matter what the report is, God is still God. In the midst of chaos and a lot of not knowing, He knows my every thought and need. He sees me. He comforts me. He will bring me through it all, just as He has at other times in my life.

And that is really the lesson I’ve learned from this. What am I going to do in those times of life that the sparkle feels like it’s been snuffed? When the job doesn’t come in time? When the boy breaks my heart? When the friend disappoints? When the test result isn’t what we prayed for? Because I realize as long as I’m alive and on this Earth, those times are sure to come.

What am I going to do? I’m going to get in the presence of God. I’m going to tell him how I’m feeling and lay it down at His feet. I’m going to get with those people in life who feed my faith. People who are pursuing their God dreams. People who follow through with what they say they will do. People who are fighting the good fight, getting knocked down and then getting right back up for the next round because they know that they know that God has their back. I’ll pray with them. I’ll dream with them. I want them in my corner because they are the people who remind me of that sparkle in my eye, because it reflects from the one in theirs.

Today’s Forecast: A good report.

Silver Lining: Realizing a bad report can’t steal my sparkle.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Move It In For Victory

There’s a cheer we used to do in high school:

M – O – V – E

Move it in for victory!

It wasn’t my favorite cheer. There was always some teenage boy making some vulgar move in the stands as we chanted it. It was obviously used while we were on the offense, and very close to a touchdown.

I thought about the cheer as I finished unloading the last boxes from my most recent move. I have to say the most recent, because I’ve moved 4 times in the last 3 years. Needless to say, as I sit amongst a kajillion boxes that still need to be unpacked, I don’t quite feel like I’ve ‘moved it in for victory.’

This is not a move I would have chosen for myself. The last 3 months preparing for this move have been challenging. I’m not moving to a house I’ve purchased, or an apartment I get to decorate. In fact, I’m having to part with a lot of my “things” because of the lack of space. I'm not moving because of a new exciting job or opportunity. I’m moving my parents who are older and pretty worn out. Dealing with health concerns while trying to help them coordinate and pack has been exhausting. And now I’m living in a place that feels like it’s far from most everything I considered home for so long.

However, in those quiet times of the night, while I lay in a bed that’s been in storage for a year surrounded by newly painted walls and unfamiliar sounds (or lack thereof…it’s quiet out here in the suburbs!) I am reminded of His care for me. He prepared me for this part of the game by letting me know it was coming and letting me know when it would be happening. It’s like He stood on the sidelines of my life for the last year, and called out the plays. All I had to do was listen, execute and trust the ‘Coach,’ while not leaning on my own understanding of the game. And what makes this different from being 4th and goal during a football game is that if God’s calling the plays, I know I’ve already won.

Thankfully, God’s given us the ultimate playbook. He’s shown us through the lives of people like Abraham what happens when we are obedient to His instruction to move. Abraham was told to leave everything he knew: his country, his people, his father’s household and was promised that he would be blessed in doing so. And boy was he (and the world!) because of his obedience!

So if you find yourself in a season of life that feels like yards away from the win you’ve been waiting for, I encourage you to move if and when He says to. He’s the best coach, quarterback and tight end you’ll ever play with. If you are in alignment with His will for your life, you will be guaranteed the victory.

Today’s Forecast: Another move completed.

Silver Lining: One move closer to where I’m supposed to be.