Saturday, September 21, 2013
When You Don't Have a Rottweiler....
Sometimes you have to walk.
This morning it was simply too beautiful not to go outside. However, in the 'hood, you need certain accouterments to take with you. Rottweilers are good... However, since we have rat terriers and mixed (not to say goofy) labs, I don't walk the dogs. The rat terriers prefer to be carried and the labs prefer to pull me rather than vice-versa.
So I took a cane. Partly for defense, partly for support in case, as my granny used to say, my knee started "acting up". (Definition of "Senior Citizen" - when your joints act independently of your mind and receive more attention than you, as a person, do.)
And I took my memory verses with me. Once, when a young wannabe kid - pants sagging, attitude showing - met me on the sidewalk, I felt uneasy, prayed, and then to my surprise (and his) I started talking to him about my verses. I ended up, rather like a school marm, asking him somewhat sternly if he read the Bible. I still have trouble believing I did that and can only say that fear causes you to do some strange things. Stranger still was his response. His bravado disappeared in an instant, his face fell, and he started calling me Ma'am. (At one point, I swear he was on the verge of calling me mamma...) Before we parted, he was sheepishly promising me that he would read the Bible. Ha! Ever since then, when Phil can't walk with me, I try to remember... to take my memory verses...
Only some mornings I suffer, not from arthritis but from what I fondly call Teflon brain. When nothing seems to stick in the old grey cells. And this morning was one of those. Yes, I did remember to take my verses and as I walked down the street I knew what to do with them (I'm not that bad... yet...). However, try as I might, I could not get one new phrase, let alone a whole verse, to stick in my brain. Worse yet, the ones I had previous memorized weren't sticking too well either. As in one minute I'm quoting I Peter and the next I'm quoting Ephesians... Bit of a leap there....
So I just started mindlessly flipping through my memory cards, which I compiled years ago, noting that 3/4ths of Psalm 37 was no longer among the others. Wonder when those cards fell out??? And where???
And then I came to some cards that weren't verses. Instead they were notes I'd taken from a book by Charles Stanley, When the Enemy Strikes: the Key to Winning Your Spiritual Battles. I remembered taking notes out of this book in 2005, when a friend was terminally ill. I photocopied the notes onto index cards and made a copy for her and for me. Over the years, however, I have only occasionally looked at them.
Today was one of those days when I focused on reading the notes - since everything else seemed to be pretty much a lost cause - and the first thing I saw was a morning prayer by Dr. Stanley.
So I prayerfully read:
Lord, by faith here's what I'm doing right now to prepare myself for the coming day. I'm putting on the belt of truth. I ask You to make it very clear to me what I am to accept into my life and what I am to reject. Help me to see clearly the motives of others as they deal with me and converse with me. Let me walk in Your truth, making decisions and choices according to Your plans and purposes for my life.
Truth. That word swept into my mind like a beautiful autumn breeze. I realized I had been bombarded by various "truths" and "half-truths" lately. (It's called the news...) And that on this stunningly clear morning, my greatest need was to be anchored in the truth, instead of being blown about by every thing I see on the internet or hear from my contemporaries.
Fresh as an autumn breeze in the sweet autumn of my life.
I really don't want to leave home without it.