Do you ever feel like you are so close to where you need to be but are in a situation that is not ideal? So did Jacob in Genesis…
Watch and be encouraged!
Where are you at that you didn’t plan to be? How has God shown His presence to you there?
Clickety clack, clickety clack – that’s usually the sound of the shopping cart I select every time I shop. Don’t know why I always get that one cart that wobbles and clicks with every rotation of the bumpy wheels. It is a very irritating and distracting noise and people look at you funny when you continue to utilize the thing rather than selecting another. If there’s a crowd behind you waiting for a cart, you tend to seize the first one and get on with your foray into the wonderful world of Wal-Mart. Generally, I try each cart until I find a nice, quiet one, wipe off the handles with the anti-bacterial sheets provided and begin my adventure.
A few days ago I found myself at the usual “get a quiet cart” frame of mind as I entered the hallowed halls of Wal-Mart. Barring the cart line was a small number of residents from the local group home – I love those people and make it a point to speak to them. One gentleman pulled out a cart for me and smiled, “I will pull out your cart – here lady I got your cart for you!” I smiled and thanked him and began my journey. Not only did the cart sound clickety clack so that people stared – it made a clickety, CLANG, clack clack. Loudest cart I ever did hear in my life – it should have been retired. And – not only that – it was rolling crooked at a slight angle. About ten feet away from the generous, kind little gentleman, I decided to return the cart and get another. However, an afterthought came through loud and clear!
“No. keep the cart. If the man sees you he will be hurt that you returned it.”
I argued with myself and said to me, “Well, surely he will understand.”
I replied to me, “No he won’t. Keep this cart. He will consider it a rebuke. Keep the cart.” I kept the cart.
clickety, CLANG, clack clack
With every amused stare from the general public, I stood up straight and tall, held my head high and smiled sweetly knowing a sweet little guy from the group home felt good about giving his shopping cart away. I also sensed a little nudge of ENcouragement from the Lord that gave enough courage to endure the remainder of my loud, clickety, CLANG, clack, clack, sidewinder cart adventure. Jesus probably had a little laugh about this one.
Last Summer, I had a hysterectomy. When I went in for my 6 week check up, I was feeling rather discouraged. I wasn’t sleeping very well and my anxiety was through the roof. I was sure that this was due to my recovery, but quickly my OB/GYN gave me a word of encouragement that he said was from God.
He stopped me as I was
talking er… complaining… and asked how things were going in my spiritual life. He saw me pray while in labor before, but in general, he and I had never discussed spirituality or anything related. I had no idea he was even a Christian!
I. Was. In. Complete. Shock. Who goes to the gynecologist and expects spiritual counseling?
My response, “Everything’s great!” The Doctor just looked at me. He’d known me too long to know if I was confident in what I was saying or not. He had seen me through 2 full term pregnancies, a miscarriage, and many other ordeals. He knew that I just gave a quick generic answer instead of a truthful one.
Imagine what was going through my head and heart at this point: I started crying. As he gave me the word that God had just for me, I realized that I hadn’t been listening to my Savior. The Lord had to use my doctor, someone I would have never considered, to get my attention. Shame came over me, but I felt so thankful that He cared enough to use a completely strange way to snap my focus back to where it should have been.
As my doctor took my hand and started to pray with me, I felt a peace come over me. I knew that God had used this man to give me a message, and felt the Holy Spirit confirm it in my heart.
Driving home from my appointment that day was rather interesting. I laughed and cried. The laughter was from the awkward moment right after our discussion that my doctor started naming girly body parts as he asked as I was healing and then did an exam. I thought back to what was going on in my mind at that time, “Is this really happening? Am I really experiencing a spiritual awakening while naked from the waist down and talking about my va-jay-jay with my gyno?” (Admit it, you’d laugh too. In fact, you’re probably laughing now.) God has a sense of humor, obviously. But the tears were from pure joy. I had indeed felt the love that God has for me that day. All I had to do was learn to put my trust FULLY in Him instead of worrying about what was going on around me. The Lord would take care of it all, and my worry was unnecessary. My feelings were those of refreshment and relief.
Has God ever reached out to you in an unconventional way to get your attention? I’d love to hear about it!