This week has been a challenge to say the least. One of those weeks that reminds me of poor Wilbur the pig in Charlottes web, who is fearful of his future, but has dear sweet Charlotte who believes in Him and cheers him on ultimately saving his life. It has been one of those weeks that I wasn’t sure how radiant I was going to be. This is a very rare occasion for me.
After taking a dramatic fall out of a high top chair in the middle of Cheddars restaurant last week, I learned that I had rib and chest contusions, bruises, and possibly a crack. Not realizing the pain that was headed my way, I took the news graciously and was relieved that the injury was not any more damaging than a few bumps and bruises.
This week, relief only came when I would lie down , completely still on my side. Any other position , standing, or sitting caused excruciating pain. Agitated, bored, sleepy, and unable to cook, clean, read or work, I finally cried out to God in my forced time of stillness. I didn’t understand why this had to happen. I was excited to go have lunch with my sister and her kids who spontaneously popped into town. I forfeited the “me” plans I had made that day to be able to spend some quality time with her. Now this?
Day 1 and 2: In bed, sleepy, agitated, upset, and cannot move. I listened to my own mind laughing at me and the enemy just teasing and tormenting me. I cried, moaned, whined, and was not pleasant to be around.
STILL on my side and can’t sit up or stand.
Psalm 34:4-5 seemed to be screaming my name on this silent, rainy day in my bed.
” I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me. He freed me from all my fears. Those who look to Him for help will be radiant with joy.”
I prayed to the Lord to please take this pain away and heal me!!!!!
Instead, He sent me a “ Charlotte” this morning. My first friend of the day who cheered me on… she literally wrote my name on her hand to pray over me all day, she reminded me of God’s presence and the precious treasures of God that we are teaching about in our “Redeemed “ class at Fairhaven. She reminded me of my own radiance and that God always gives me my story. My insides were leaping with joy and this encouragement was a pure gift from God. The healing was beginning in my heart…not in my ribs. “ God’s Presence” The first words from my Charlotte was placed in the web of my woes.
He sent me another “Charlotte” this afternoon . My dear friend who I loaned a book to. She emphasized my notes that I had underlined, texted it to me, and Texted the words which said, “ When it comes to God, believing is seeing.” YES IT IS!
I needed this reminder as I endured the pain and shifted my focus from the pain to my Lord. I returned to my forced Be still position and prayed to my Father who I do believe loves me. I spent time in His presence and was given an unusually quiet afternoon listening to the rain, the birds, and His voice. The second word in my web was “ BELIEVE”. Really really believe! So, I did.
As the day went on, I found myself in the sweetest of fellowship with my ABBA,Father. It was focused on who He is, how much he loves me, and that He truly has things He wants me to keep learning. I was starting to feel the familiar blush of radiance that happens when I spend time with Him. Just time , no agenda, no requests, just sweet time.
Last night, in one of the most painful moments, I told my husband that I wish I had a plate of warm, home made chocolate chip cookies. He chuckled and said maybe another day. Late this afternoon , out of the blue, one of my 76 residents, another “Charlotte” stopped my husband because she had something for him to give to me. What is most bizarre about this is that she did not know I was injured or of my recent request for cookies. When my husband handed me the plate, I felt the warmth of God’s heart. I smelled the aroma of His personal touch of love, and I tasted that HE is so so good. This Charlotte had a plate of warm , homemade chocolate chip cookies that she wanted to share with me for no real reason at all. A sweet kiss from the King! My husband and I were in awe of the faithfulness of God’s love. My evening words “ God’s love”.
My pain, yes it is still there, but so is my story and I hear the words of the morning Charlotte in my heart cheering me on to write about it. I hear BELIEVING is SEEiNG…. so I slowly sit up , hoping I can manage the pain, and start to BELIEVE….I started writing this blog hoping that someone out there needs to hear and know how much God loves you. He wants to bless you with people who genuinely love and care for you, with kisses from the King in the zillion ways that ONLY HE can do.
Just like Charlotte did for Wilbur.
Just like my friends did for me.
Just like God does through others.
Just like God, who gave His precious Son so that we can live Radiant with Joy every day, no matter how much pain, heartache and sorrow come our way….simply by intentionally being in His presence. I’m thankful for the forced “Be Still” time today. I know some healing in my heart took place. I learned how simple things with love are so encouraging to others, and I experienced how Beliving IS seeing!!
Wilbur the pig was fearful of facing his death, thankfully I know that my Redeemer lives and therefore I will never ever fear death.
The final word that I know for sure shines over me is “ FORGIVEN”.
Radiant with Joy,
* Artwork by my brother, Sean O. Hill