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Friday, February 17, 2006

Isaiah 55:8-9

Yesterday was a bit of an odd day. It didn't start off very well for me, but that was simply because I got up on the wrong side of the bed. My attitude started out poorly, even though Jack always comes in, crawls on top of me and purrs like a freight train.

I've allowed a lot of things to bother me over the past couple of weeks with relationships, my job situation and uncertainty about the future. I haven't been motivated to get in the Word this week, much less to pray. Satan is warring with me this week, yet God has consistently wrapped His arms around me and attended to my soul anyway.

So yesterday morning I'm on the way to work and I'm listening to the 107.5 The River morning show with Woody and Jim. I don't often listen to the radio in the car, but after listening to my Kings of Convenience cd for something like the 15th time, and being too lazy to put another cd in, I switched on the radio. And I'm glad I did. The station played a clip from Wednesday night's American Idol, where a contestant named Mandisa Hundley confronts Simon for a nasty comment he made about her weight during the preliminary auditions.

I wish I could find the entire transcript of Mandisa's confrontation of Simon on the Internet, but I haven't been able to locate it. Basically, she told Simon he hurt her and that it made her cry, but she forgives him. She wanted him to know that Christ died upon the cross to save her from her sins and that since He showed her that grace, she could certainly extend that grace to Simon.

Upon hearing this, I burst into tears. Literally. If it's possible for one to burst into tears, I did just that. I was incredibly moved by Mandisa's extension of compassion. So often on American Idol we see the curses, the finger, the temper tantrums, the threats and hate in general when contestants are rejected or made fun. And it makes for good television. I applaud Mandisa for her kindness and I know she will be blessed for it.

The Lord knew that I would need words of encouragement yesterday. I found out a little after noon on Thursday that my Mamaw has been placed back in the hospital with the flu and pneumonia. When they got her there, they determined that her heart rate was too fast (over 100) and so they sent her to cardiac.

Some of you know the saga of health concerns with my Mamaw since Memorial Day weekend of 2005. She's 87 years old and as healthy as a horse, but can't catch a break. In May she suffered from an aortic tear in her heart and was life flighted down to Birmingham from Jackson, TN to UAB's cardiac center. After going through very risky surgery, she was in recovery and choked on a piece of food and some iced tea and fluid entered her lungs. What should have been a fairly quickly recovery process became months and months of time spent in fairly critical condition. My mom and other family members lived the majority of last summer in Birmingham. It was a very hard time on my family, especially on my mom.

Mamaw steadily improved and was transferred up to Vanderbilt for rehab. I treasure that time that she was in town because I got to see her on my lunch break everyday. I saw her more times last fall that I probably have in my entire life since Mamaw lives in Jackson. She gained strength and health after a few months at Vanderbilt and then was transferred back to Jackson where she fully recovered in the hospital there. As of Wednesday, she was living in an assisted living establishment in Jackson and I think she was finally beginning to warm up to her surroundings.

I talked to her for a little while on the phone on Valentine's Day and she sounded like her old self. The old Mamaw. She'd been given several different roses and goodies by members of her church and friends and I think her spirits were high despite not feeling very well. So it came to me as kind of a shock that she is back in the hospital. I don't really know what to do with this information aside from pray. Part of me wants to believe that the Lord doesn't take us through the fire just to hang us out to dry after we're out. It's very difficult to watch your family go through this with so much uncertainty.

As I said before though, God really does know how to remind me that my hope is in Him. Yesterday afternoon I received a letter from my two little girls I sponsor from Moldova, Angela and Ana Vieru. I was in the middle of typing an email to my family to send them photos of Angela and Ana when I checked my email and poof! I had received another email from the girls! It wasn't anything long or elaborate, but here tis:

Dear Mary Anna,
I love you very much and not just me but my sister Angela too. I am so glad you loved me and I promise you not to forget you,
Ana and Angela Vieru

Moral of the story: God cares. About the big things and about the little things. Yesterday wasn't a great day, but I'm confident in an omnipotent God who is my creator, my comforter and the ultimate navigator!

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the LORD. "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts."

Isaiah 55:8-9


Blogger emilyb said...

Wow...what a sweet note from your two little girls. It's always so wonderful to me to see how those kids bless us. We serve them, and yet we are blessed. Moral of the story...you truly cannot outgive God. The more you give (not just monetarily) the more you get. Thank you for that, Jesus.

3:11 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

that is just amazing! i'll keep your mamaw in my prayers and know that you are always a bright spot in my day.

2:13 PM


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