Random Thoughts

This isn’t the first time I’ve intentionally began this quest. It’s just the first time I’ve decided to “write out loud”  about it (that’s what I call blogging – as opposed to “writing quietly” ie. journaling).

It began in Proverbs 2. I wasn’t even planning on studying it. I just went to my favorite coffee spot to spend a few hours or so immersed in His Word (I am steadily still working through Matthew), and somehow God led me there. I wish I could remember how or even why, but I can’t. All I know is that since last Monday I have been consumed with this quest once again.

I have prayed and prayed. I’ve gone back to the Scriptures and spent concentrated time in many different passages. I’ve even talked with a few folks about it. Now 6 days since this new quest began, I am still left with more questions than answers. I am not sure what to expect, but I will share it with you as I can.

Tune your ears to wisdom… concentrate on understanding… cry out for insight… ask for understanding… search for them as you would silver…

Although many passages of Scripture talk about how wisdom is God’s gift to us, it seems as though He is telling us (is this a command?) to actively and earnestly look for it. My sense is that we need to do this first – THEN he grants us the gift. But I don’t know that for sure. And if we do tune our ears, concentrate, cry out, ask, search, seek… how do we know when the “gift” has been received? It’s not like He knocks on our door and leaves a wrapped present for us!

Is the second half of our part to take the time to wait for that wisdom from Him before acting? Hmmm… if that is true, than I’m in a world of trouble! I can’t remember a decision, personal or professional, where I truly WAITED for God’s wisdom! Not that I’m a reckless goof… but I am an “achievement addict”  who spends hours upon hours “doing.” 

Lord, help me to honestly and consistently take the time to listen quietly for Your soft voice.

Until next time.

When I first learned about the “gifts” that were given to each believer in Christ I didn’t quite get it. I understood a gift to be something tangible, something given to another with no strings attached – hence the word “gift.” Right? Wrong! These gifts were spiritual in nature and I couldn’t see or touch them. Okay, I thought. Like the gift of salvation, right? “Yes, that’s it,” I was told by longtime believing friends. So I went on about my business without really putting a whole lot more thought into it. Every once in awhile I’d hear a sermon on 1 Corinthians 12 and I would listen intently, once again trying to figure the whole thing out.

Then, a few days ago, something happened that not only helped me understand this teaching even better, but it left me overwhelmed to tears. I literally saw the gift of MERCY expressed in a magnificantly supernatural way. Let me explain…

As I was getting ready for work on Thursday October 2nd, I received a desperate call from my mom. Her and Dad had just heard from the Doctor about the results of my Dad’s medical tests the week before. He has a tumor on his kidney. Mom was really upset and the only comforting thing I could say was, “sit down and have a cup of tea – try to relax – I’ll call you back in a bit.”

I knew exactly who to call. My friend LeAnne (I call her Le for short) used to be an oncology nurse and now she is a sort of “resident nurse” for our entire church, giving out whatever advice she can and always knowing exactly the right thing to say. She took my call and explained that she was late for a meeting, then heading up to the mountains for a planned church retreat, then coming back down for a funeral of a close friend who had died suddenly only 5 days prior. My immediate thought? Wow! This is a bad time to burden her! But listen to how she responded….

She listened intently while I told her what had happened and tried to explain Dad’s prognosis the best I could. She talked it through with me and told me what she knew about kidney tumors. Then… she committed to going online once she reached the mountains (yes, during the retreat) and calling me back before lunchtime! I responded that that was too much to ask, but she wouldn’t back down from her commitment.  Her commitment alone took me back. I remember thinking in my mind how amazing it was – that she truly has the gift of mercy – I knew that I wouldn’t have ever made that kind of commitment. However, if I didn’t hear from it would be okay. My goodness, her plate was extremely full!

At around 11 am, my cell phone rang. I was in a meeting but saw that, sure enough, it was Le. I asked permission to take the call and she briefly explained the results of her research and gave me several ounces of encouragement at the same time. As I hung up the phone, tears began to flow quietly from my eyes. What a wonderful expression of Christ’s love!

I am so thankful that God has equipped the Body of Christ with supernatural gifts. And that day, and again as I relive it now, I am so thankful for my friend Le’s beautiful expression of her gift. She is my SUPERhero!

It’s getting closer to the beginning of Fall in Colorado and our mornings are starting to become brisk. I love the weather this time of year because it always seems to come right when my tolerance for the summer heat is wearing thin. Today’s weather though… “keep the armour close” weather. Just like having that umbrella handy for those late summer rainshowers. Take a look at what I mean:

3:00 am:

  • I awake with a burning in my chest that I just can’t shake. Do I get up and down a few “tums” to make my heartburn supside? Of course not. I just lie there and be miserable and fight with the dog for some extra legroom at the foot of the bed.

4:45 am:

  • Yep. Still awake. The dog growls. Rick is up and looking out the window. Teenage boys have decided to take up residence at this early hour in front of our house. They’re in and out of their vehicle doing “who knows what” but in any case, they shouldn’t be there.

5:10 am:

  • Rick calls 911.

5:18 am:

  • Police arrive. I finally take a tums. Both Rick and I sit in the dark, watching the “drama” out front through our bedroom window.

5:44 am:

  • Teenagers gone. Police gone. Back in bed and fighting again with the dog for legroom. I’m thinking I should just get dressed and go work out. Instead, I quietly fall back to sleep.

6:50 am:

  • OK. This day is officially starting. Guess I’ll get up and get ready to go on a walk with Rick and Schultz.
  • Guess not. Schultz went outside and ate weeds and then decided to come in and vomit on the newly cleaned carpet. Rick says there’s no walk for him today.

8:00 am:

  • Coffee. Deep breath. Talk with Greg. Maybe the “weather” today won’t be so bad.

9-11:00 am:

  • Business as usual… good.

11:00 am:

  • Message from staff. Even though there’s no execs in today the leader’s are feeling the “heat.” Oh yeah, it’s September. Only a couple of months before our teen conference tour. Stress is high and the warfare gets heavy. Hmmm… check my armour and pray while heading for a pastor’s lunch in the city.

1:10 pm:

  • The lunch went pretty well. Headed to the hospital. Mom has hand surgery scheduled at 2.

2:30 pm:

  • The surgeon’s late and mom is nervous. Dad’s cell rings and it’s my brother Dave. Bad news. He’s heard word that our youngest brother, Darin, has been in some sort of motorcycle accident but no one can reach him in Steamboat Springs to get more details firsthand.
  • Mom goes from nervous to worried.

3:50 pm:

  • Surgery went well. Mom’s ok.
  • Still no more about Darin.

4:30 pm:

  • Mom and Dad on their way home.
  • I decide to head home too making calls on the way.

5:00 pm:

  • Flowers and card from TJ. How sweet! They dress up the kitchen along with the roses from Rick last night. Did I mention today was my birthday?
  • Called Rick — “let’s get takeout.”

6:15 pm:

  • Dad’s talked to Darin. His hand is broken and he has staples in his elbow. His face is also pretty cutup but he’s ok. Whew! Another deep breath. Prayer – thanks for the armour Lord!

Then til now… quiet and reflective. Glad that armour was close by. (Read more about the armour.)

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