I wrote this last night to some friends and decided to use it for my blog. I hope that's allowable!
Frankly, things are a little hectic around here and as proof of that, Phil and I have just been singing, off key, "Make the world go away!!" (I guess if we sing it off key loudly enough, the world will go away!) Phil is cracking me up right now, saying, "We'll fix up the Alfa - it'll only be the equivalent of a mere 4 months worth of car payments - and then we'll travel the world, well, maybe Arkansas. We'll be like Old Money, staying only in the finest LaQinta Inns and eating the best free Continental Breakfasts they have to offer..." :)
Sometimes it just helps to laugh!
But seriously, someday our ambassadorship will be finished (II Cor. 5:18-21) and then we'll get to go Home in style, where Kingdom rules apply. Where weeds don't grow, snakes don't crawl across your front door steps (!!!It was a speckled King snake so we're sort of keeping it...ugh!!), different cultures don't cause miscues of the funniest (or gravest kinds), no one has cancer or illness of any kind. And there is no sorrow, only joy!
In the meantime, God has a purpose for each one of us and age (or circumstances) doesn't change that (just ask Caleb or Joshua...). Sometimes God's purpose for us is dramatic, like leading a charge against the enemy when you are 85 years old... (Joshua 14:8-12.) (Personally, I'm glad our military has an age limit...)
But I think most of the time His purpose for us encompasses the mundane and the things that are often overlooked. In the Max Lucado Devotional Bible I saw an article where Max described being down and even questioning his effectiveness in ministry, if you can imagine that. He was jogging around his neighborhood when a voice suddenly called down from the Heavens, "You are doing a good job!" He looked up but it wasn't an angel - at least, he didn't think it was. That is, unless angels are painters who sit on the roofs of houses, painting the trim on dormer windows. But then it struck him that God was in that moment. That from ages past, He knew that Max would be discouraged at that very pinpoint in time and so He arranged for the painter to be where he was and Max to be where he was and then for the painter to say just the right thing to encourage Max at that very moment.
Then I heard a similar message today when I was playing the audio version of Kisses from Katie. (No. I am not tired of that book yet!!! PHil may be.. .but I'm not !:) At any rate, Katie was talking about how she often feels like she radiates the love of God during the day but she seldom feels pretty. Uganda, where she lives, has lots of red clay, dust, and heat. And she has lots of giggling, screaming kids as well as a huge ministry to run. One day she was feeling particularly unattractive and as she pulled into a gas station, the attendant said something like, "Wow! Your skin has a beautiful glow!" Katie was taken aback and said, "Actually... that's sweat!" The woman replied, "Well, you sure have some lovely sweat!" As Katie was driving away, she realized that God cares about the smallest details of our lives, even our feelings on sweaty, bad hair days. And because He cares about even inconsequential things like that, He sent a word of encouragement to her, again at the right time, through a gas station attendant.
This week, I'm hoping I can find the renewal notice to get our car tags renewed,
that I can get everybody fed and all the clothes washed,
that I can do some volunteer work, my Bible study, and Conversation Club,
that I can get the yard mowed and the floors mopped (well, that I can get David to mow the yard..:),
that I can chauffeur other family members where they need to be as we have more people than cars right now,,
that I can get a little time to do water aerobics where I will most definitely need a word of encouragement as I try to remember what it was like to be skinny and to actually be able to jump,
that I can get the dog to the vet (and that the dog will learn not to wiggle out from under the fence where there are sharp rocks - duhhhh),
that I can get the belated wedding present to my Sister Chick here
and the package that's been gathering dust the past few weeks actually in the mail to my sister over there, etc...
I'm sure you get the picture... But I hope that I can also walk in fellowship and be used by Him, if nothing else than to give someone a word of encouragement at His prompting. Even when I feel less than spiritual as I lug a 30 pound, somewhat stupid dog into a crowded vet's office or twiddle my thumbs in the revenue office because I lost the renewal notice again!
Someone has said, "Don't sweat the small stuff!" I think, for me, this week in hot, humid Arkansas, the message is, "God is in the small stuff . Look up! Then look around! And smile!"
Why? Because God is in each moment and each person you meet is there for His reason! And yes, sweaty, somewhat harassed smiles work...