Moving Out, Moving On, Moving Up Part 3


Today God showed up again.

He always does exactly when I need him to.

The morning started beautifully in worship, prayer, and reading the Bible. We received a response to an inquiry on a rental place with the same words we’ve heard over and over.

“I already have numerous applications on that one, but I have another one available in two or three months. When do you need to move in?”

“Yesterday. LOL” I texted back.

But, no worries. God knows. This is no surprise to him. Carry on.

We worked on hours of compliance requirements for our business. Prayed some more, and then went to go get a box of my books out of storage since someone wanted to purchase my new series.

No problem I thought.

I was wrong. Big problem.

Simply being at the storage unit, seeing the mess of our remaining belongings, and searching for the elusive box triggered those frantic days of moving three and a half months ago. The uncertainty and exhaustion, the sorrow, grief and confusion. It all came rushing back.

I paced the hall while Brendan replaced the things he’d moved to search for my books. And then I remembered that the last time I was at the storage unit, that overwhelming day of despair, was also the day God did a miracle. He healed my broken foot.

It happened like this:

Brendan and I had the final load to put into the unit. The clock was ticking and time running out. The truck needed to be returned in five minutes, and we still had the largest piece of furniture to unload. Our bed frame is a solid wood, canopy bed with four-inch square posts attached to a substantial headboard. Our very strong son and Brendan could just manage it, but our son was at school so that left Brendan and me alone to navigate this extremely heavy piece.

I’ve mentioned my limitations. Something like rheumatoid arthritis has rendered the joints in my hands and wrists barely moveable – I can’t even drive – so lifting and maneuvering the bed with Brendan seemed impossible.

Somehow, we managed to figure out a way to position it on our dolly. It was a great plan.

Except for the fact that we didn’t realize the space it would rest on the dolly had precisely the same opening as the post. We slid it over, dropped it in place and it slipped through all the way to the ground.

On top of my foot.

Excruciating barely describes the pain that shot through my leg. I screamed. Brendan probably swore – I’m pretty sure I did. I knew my foot was broken. Fumbling to get it off my foot first, and then out of the way, we both cried.

But we had no options except to push forward and get the thing moved.

Gritting my teeth and praying for help, we muscled it into an open space. We watched a massive lump develop on my foot, but I told Brendan to go take the truck back. I would continue to move things the best I could.

He left reluctantly. I limped, dragging my broken foot as I loaded the cart to take things up to the second floor. Trip after trip, I cried and prayed, stating that Jesus is my healer and I would not let this injury be the final word of a terrible day.

That same incredible, Jesus-example friend I mentioned in a previous post, picked Brendan up from the truck rental place and brought him back to storage to get me. Our son arrived to help Brendan.

I decided not to go to ER, even though our friend insisted I probably should. I had faith that God was healing it.

“Let’s just wait and ice my foot,” I said to my friend.

Within an hour, the swelling receded, and I could move my toes again. Soon after that, I could put weight on it. A purple bruise spread across my foot, but faded quickly to yellow over the next few days.

I realize that without an x-ray, there’s no medical proof that my foot was broken and healed. But the evidence based on the weight of the bed, the pain and immobility, and the way the bruise spread and dissipated so quickly, indicated a miracle to us.

Today, I needed that reminder at our storage unit.

And as if that wasn’t enough, when we went to pick up our mail afterwards, we opened a letter from our previous mortgage company to find a check. A refund. Really?

God paid our house off, gave us money, and now was sending us another unexpected check?

Tonight, as I write this, I’m freshly reminded of the goodness of God. Even in the telling, there is a refreshing revelation that he has our back. He sees our pain. God knows exactly what we need when we need it.

I might think I need a home, but what I really need is that sweet grace of Jesus.

To be continued…

May Flowers?


 
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The old rhyme says April showers brings May flowers. Here in Florida we had a few rain showers in April and even though our temperatures remain constant for most of the year, and seasons (other than for snowbirds) aren’t exactly delineated, spring is definitely in the air.
 
Nearly every day while walking near our house, I get to watch a mommy duck with her twelve babies scurrying after her in the water as she keeps a watchful eye out–I’m sure for alligators! This morning I watched another mother bird feeding her baby.
 
No wonder Mother’s Day falls in May.
 
With Mother’s Day, six birthdays and our anniversary, May is the month with the most celebrations in it for our family. So I thought I’d give my readers an extra reason to celebrate.
 
Starting this Wednesday. My new release, A Deadly Silence, will be free in e-book form starting WED May 13th through the weekend. Then, to celebrate our anniversary (May 22), on WED May 20 The Miracle of Us: Confessions of an Online Dater e-book goes on sale through that weekend.
 
WOW! Two weeks of reading for free. Don’t miss it! Come celebrate with us.
 

What’s Your Perspective?


Last week I slipped out for a morning walk as the sun crept up into the morning sky.Sunrise in Aptos

Birds called, lizards skittered across the sidewalk and a couple squirrels chased each other up and around a tree. A few blocks into my outing, the bright pink blossoms of an oleander bush brought a smile. I longed to pick a few and take them home, but didn’t want to spoil the view for someone else. Then I noticed a dozen or so scattered on the ground. I felt okay about carting one of those beauties home with me.

But when I bent to take hold of it, I was disappointed.

Small, brownish spots marred the petals. Naturally. The flowers had fallen from the bush because they were dying. But from afar, I hadn’t noticed. They looked as unspoiled as the ones still blooming.

God had a picture in the petals for me.

In our new home, the paint marks of a darker hue mar the surface of most of our walls where the previous tenants tried to touch up nail holes. For some strange reason, the paint that is supposed to match, doesn’t. I had been so disappointed with the messed up walls that I had been focusing on it for days. What could I do? How could we match the paint? Should we repaint or ask the owner to?

In that narrow focus, I was losing sight of the our home being a gift from God.

Like viewing bacteria under a microscope, I saw things hugely disporpotionate to their actual size. It changed my perspective and created an attitude of discontent and worry instead of thanksgiving. Before my scrutinizing, my home was a beautiful blessing from the Lord. Just like the blossoms dropped on the sidewalk.

And there was more.

I contemplated these things as I continued my walk and entered the nature trail. The wide sidewalk was cool and shady, a respite from the growing heat. But I also began to feel nervous in this new setting. Trees emerged from the dark, swampy ground on each side of the path and hung over the top like a canopy. Thoughts of alligators began to plague me. What if they were lurking within grabbing reach of my hesitant steps? Fear crept into my heart where none resided before.

On the left!

A cheerful voice called out from behind me.

An older couple smiled and waved as they rode by me on bikes. I smiled as the fear melted a bit inside me. Within a few steps, another biker rounded a bend in front of me, calling out

Good morning! Beautiful day, isn’t it?

Yes. Yes it was. Especially with a change in my perspective.

I hadn’t seen or heard the approaching neighbors because they were outside my scope of vision. Once again, I couldn’t see the bigger picture because of the narrow focus of my situation.

God reminded me that morning that if I look too intently at my circumstances, I can miss the beauty in what he has for me, or what he is doing. I lose sight of him and his goodness, his provison and his love. Which is exactly what had been happening as I contemplated our dwindling finances, my husband’s lack of job, our belongings damaged by the movers, and of course, the paint spots on my walls.

Our pastor said something similar this weekend.

If all we see is short range, then the long range will always look fuzzy.

His words reminded me of my morning walk.

I don’t want to miss the clarity of the Lord’s perspective and trusting that the big picture is a good one from where he sits. I don’t want to let my narrow view draw me into fear or discontent or thinking that the beauty and goodness of what’s he’s done for me has been lost or ruined by the markings of life.

So, what’s your perspective?