One of those times I felt especially alone in facing my challenges occurred yesterday. God surprised me with a reminder of His care for me.
For the whole day I had felt especially vulnerable and alone so I prayed for God to show me His care for me.
One of my errands that evening required a trip to the grocery store. As I headed down the yogurt aisle, I looked up to see a friend of mine smiling at me. He was with three young people and he came up to me and greeted me.
I sat in my crushed car, reeling from the shock of a five car accident that totaled my car. After the policemen took us to a nearby strip mall so I sat in the car waiting.
“Mom, look. Look at the flowers. Mom, these are some of your favorite flowers!” I turned around in the car seat and spotted my son, Alex, standing by a group of three, deep pink crepe myrtles.
I groaned. For a moment I thought it was rather insensitive to be telling me to look at the flowers instead of empathizing with my loss.
Today, I stopped at a fast food/small grocery in our small town. I chatted with a friend outside who highly recommended the grilled chicken salad with pineapple, blueberries and strawberries. So I ordered it and it lived up to her raving. Delicious!
The young woman who waited on me at the counter went out of her way with her thoughtfulness and consideration of me as a customer.
I make an effort to recognize good customer service so I thanked her and complimented her on her considerate ways. “Her eyes teared a little as she smiled, “Thank you for saying that to me.” A woman customer yelled at me earlier. You know sometimes it gets so hectic here and it’s difficult to keep up.”
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Harsh Words Wound ~ Kind Word Bring Healing
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The most amazing thing happened this morning!
I caught a glimpse of the sunrise outside my window so I rushed to put on my clothes so I could go out and enjoy the beauty.
I had been listening to Psalms for early morning encouragement but I decided to turn off my electronic device and simply listen to the birds chirp and savor the creative formation of the clouds.
Suddenly, I became aware that God walked beside me. Wow, I’ve never experienced that before. Though I’ve felt Him many times and sensed His presence or Him speaking to me, I had never experienced Him walking with me. So unbelievably awesome!
On this Mother’s Day, I’m thinking the amazing impact my mom had on me in shaping the direction of my life. Her example of sharing and caring for others, inspires me to this day.
One of my earliest memories is of her teaching women to read in what is now the Republic of Congo, Africa. She let me come alongside her and had me go to individual women to help them learn to read.
She wrote letters home to the USA asking people to send boxes of used clothes for the mission so the African children could have at least one outfit.
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Sharing and Caring For Others ~ A Tribute to My Mom
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“Like one who grabs a stray dog by the ears
is someone who rushes into a quarrel not their own.”
Have you ever jumped into the middle of a quarrel and later realized it wasn’t your problem to solve? In the meantime maybe someone turned around and attacked you and you got hurt.
Wisdom comes when you know what is your responsibility to fix and what is not. People need to settle their own issues with each other. If you care about the individuals involved it’s not easy to stay out of the middle but it’s wisdom that protects you.
Do you sometimes feel a little confused about a relationship or situation? Maybe you feel a little in the dark and you don’t understand what is going on with you or others.
I’m grateful for light, both in the physical and the spiritual realm. Last night our lights went out for about an hour. We lit candles, grabbed a lantern and used flashlights to get around in the dark. Then in an instant all the lights came on again.
When I feel in the dark or confused, I often pray for God to bring His light to help me understand myself, others and the situation.
Sometimes I pray from Psalm 43 (NIV 1984)
I spotted a boy sitting on the bench last week during a guest teaching assignment. I had recess duty for 5th and 6th grade so I walked over and asked him, “Are you sitting on the bench because you’re injured?”
He shuffled his feet and bowed his head, “No, I’m in trouble.”
I could see the shame he felt so I said, “Well, the important thing is that you learn from your mistake. We don’t have to be ashamed of making mistakes. We all make them and sometimes we make the same ones more than once but hopefully we eventually learn not to make those mistakes. Whatever it is you did, learn from it and do better next time.”
Something compelled me to go after the homeless man shuffling by our hotel. I hesitated because my sister had gone into the lobby and would not know.
I had worked with the homeless a few years back so they didn’t make me nervous. I learned that many of them were people who had lost their way and needed encouragement.
My sister and I were downtown Philadelphia attending a quarterly meeting of a year long program from the Publicity Summit where we learned how to approach major media with our projects and products.
When I did guest teaching this week, I had some students help each other in a 6th grade math class.
I reminded them, “Helping does not mean you do for them, you help them understand how to solve the math problem so they can do it for themselves. The person you’re helping needs to understand at this level in order to go to the next level.”
This is true of any helping situation.
We need to help people figure out and understand how to do things for themselves at whatever level they’re capable of instead of doing it for them.