Psalm 91 meets Highway 95 Mile Marker 91

 1 He who dwells in the ashelter of the MostHigh
Will abide in the bshadow of the Almighty.
I noticed the scene of our accident was between mile marker 90 and 92.  I didn’t see the marker for mile 91, but the accident had to have taken place near that very spot.  Which made me think of one of my favorite passages, and again, I’m in awe.
  2 I will say to the Lord, “My arefuge and my bfortress,
My God, in whom I ctrust!”
Jesus is LORD!
  3 For it is He who delivers you from the asnare of the trapper
And from the deadly bpestilence.
  4 He will acover you with His pinions,
And bunder His wings you may seek refuge;
His cfaithfulness is a dshield and bulwark.
I looked up the following words, to make sure I understood what this verse was saying: 

pin·ion

–noun

1. the distal or terminal segment of the wing of a bird consisting of the carpus, metacarpus, and phalanges.
2. the wing of a bird.
3. a feather.
4. the flight feathers collectively.

bul·wark

[bool-werk, -wawrk, buhl]

–noun

1. a wall of earth or other material built for defense; rampart.
2. any protection against external danger, injury, or annoyance: The new dam was a bulwark against future floods.
3. any person or thing giving strong support or encouragement in time of need, danger, or doubt: Religion was his bulwark.
4. Usually, bulwarks. Nautical . a solid wall enclosing the perimeter of a weather or main deck for the protection of persons or objects on deck.
Looking at the wreckage of our car, I cannot but KNOW that I was in the shadow of the Almighty, and that His hand was protecting us, defending us.
  5 You awill not be afraid of the bterror by night,
Or of the carrow that flies by day;
  6 Of the apestilence that 1stalks in darkness,
Or of the bdestruction that lays waste at noon.
  7 A thousand may fall at your side
And ten thousand at your right hand,
But ait shall not approach you.
  8 You will only look on with your eyes
And asee the recompense of the wicked.
  9 1For you have made the Lord, amy refuge,
Even the Most High, byour dwelling place.
  10 aNo evil will befall you,
Nor will any plague come near your 1tent.
We are grateful, and thankful for life.  Many people are killed or seriously injured in accidents of this nature, we walked away without any injuries, not even a cut from the piles of broken glass left in our seats.  It didn’t come near us.
  11 For He will give aHis angels charge concerning you,
To guard you in all your ways.
  12 They will abear you up in their hands,
That you do not strike your foot against a stone.
I have a mental picture of our angel lifting the car up, so that the elk hit in the lower corner of the windshield, instead of up in the mid-section.  I watched that windshield bow in, it was like something out of the movies, almost unreal, yet true, and frightening.
  13 You will atread upon the lion and cobra,
The young lion and the 1serpent you will trample down.
  14aBecause he has loved Me, therefore I will deliver him;
I will bset him securely on high, because he has cknown My name.
  15 “He will acall upon Me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in 1trouble;
I will rescue him and bhonor him.
“Jesus, Lord, help us!”  And He heard me, was with us, rescued us.  My Deliverer!
  16 “With 1a along life I will satisfy him
And 2blet him see My salvation.”
Thank you, Lord.  Thank you for sparing our lives that night.  Thank you for your sacrifice that spared our souls from judgment.  Thank you, Jesus.  Amen.

3-points

That’s how many points the elk had on his rack.  It’s also how many points the Lord drove home to me Friday night.

We were driving to visit our daughter down in Southern Idaho, and to bring her two sisters back with us after having spent their spring break with her.  I had shared with Kevin the devotion that I had chosen to bring that morning to the residents at the long term care facility where I work.  It was taken from Isaiah 51:15-16.  For I am the LORD your God, who stirs up the sea and its waves roar (the LORD of hosts is His name).
 16“I have put My words in your mouth and have covered you with the shadow of My hand.  I focused on God being in control of the storms in our lives, and stirring things up for the purpose of drawing us near himself, and the confidence we can have in a loving God who hides us in the shadow of his hand.  We can trust Him.  Then, as I often do on car trips, I leaned my head back, closed my eyes, and dozed off.

I was awakened when I heard my husband exclaim “whoa!”, opened my eyes in time to see something large and white in front of the car, followed by complete darkness, a loud “bang”, and smoke in my eyes, all in a matter of a split second, it seemed.  I remember crying out, “Jesus, Lord Jesus, help us”, then realizing our car had come to a stop.  Both of us asking one another “are you alright?”, then stumbling out of the car.

A couple traveling the opposite direction stopped and assisted us to call 911.  They witnessed the whole incident, an elk had run out in front of our car, and Kevin was unable to stop by the time he saw him.  The car is a mess, airbags caught much of the broken windshield. I don’t know how we walked away from it.  The man happened to be a Physician’s Assistant, and checked us over before the ambulance arrived.  His girlfriend was a vet student, and took off to check on the elk.  He was about 50 yards behind us, had rolled into the ditch on the side.  So hard was he hit, that one side of his rack was about five feet away from him, completely snapped off.

A tow truck was called, and lest we forget the main point the Lord was making this night, our wrecker wore it on his cap “Jesus is Lord”.  Almost like God’s signature, right there on the spot.

In retrospect, I read through the entire chapter of Isaiah 51, so I could get it in context.  The three points God drove home to me thorugh this storm, were all found in the verses that I read out loud that very morning to encourage our residents.

1.  I am the Lord your God (the main point, Jesus is Lord!)
2.  I’m the One controlling your storms, I like to stir things up to make you remember Me.
3.  I have you safe and protected in the shadow of my hand.

And like a P.S. I can’t escape the one little phrase that I didn’t touch on in my devotion, but that haunts my thoughts when all is quiet and my mind replays the events of Friday, March 18.  “I will put my words in your mouth”.  I’m amazed.  And humbled.  In awe.  And very thankful.

No Guarantee

Since my friend, Kathy posted a question on the message board we frequent, I’ve been thinking alot about advance directives, wills, and preparations for when life here is complete.  On one hand, it sounds morbid, and everything in me fights against completing it, as if being prepared could hasten the day.  On the other hand, the plain truth is, our bodies are not made to last forever here on earth, and all our days are numbered.  We are not guaranteed tomorrow.  This truth was brought home specifically this morning.

A call from our son alerted us to the news that his father-in-law had passed unexpectedly, and requested our help.  Having lost my own Daddy, the heartache and the void that was left after his passing is still very real to me.  I went to offer sympathy, empathy, and whatever help was needed.  As an outsider, I watched the family grieve, process their loss, and try to make sense of it all, while attempting to put things in order.  Do we plan a funeral?  Is that what he would have wanted?  What about an obituary?  Where are the important papers kept?  Who else do we need to notify?   A sense of urgency began to arise in my own spirit to have these questions answered for my own family.  I work in Social Services at a long term care facility, so I am familiar with advance directives.  It wouldn’t take much to get them written down and signed, I will focus on that this week.  Putting important papers in a safe place is a good idea, but someone needs to know WHERE those things are kept. I also plan to write down some of my wishes regarding a memorial service, burial, and last words to my kids.  My mom wrote all of her children a letter, we received it after her passing.  It is one of my treasures.  It was such a comfort to me during times I was missing her, and somehow made her seem not quite so far away.  I plan to do this for my kids and husband as well. 

But more than having it all written down, I want to make sure they know my heart; that my body might one day be gone from this earth, but that my love for them will continue, and that I will watch them, and cheer them on, and continue to pray for them through eternity.  I want them to know that they are the most important asset I have or will ever have, because they are the one thing that I can take with me from this earth, and that I know I will see them again one day. 

The Borrowers

Several items in my home have come up mysteriously missing.  Cannot find them.  Anywhere.

Three weeks ago, I completely reorganized the cabinet that houses my pots and pans.  I stacked them all up, nesting them inside one another from largest first, to smallest inside.  I counted them.  I shined them.  I admired how neat and tidy they all looked there.  A few days later, the largest one could not be found anywhere.  This is the pot I use for EVERYTHING.  It’s the perfect size for a double batch of spaghetti sauce, mashed potatoes, or a big pot of my magic chicken soup that I make when kids get the crud.  It’s gone.  I would not give this pot away, and I still have the lid, so I know I didn’t TAKE it somewhere, though to be sure, my husband instructed me to call my adult children, just in case I had a memory lapse.  They laughed.  Of course they didn’t have it, and wished me luck finding it.  I looked in every single room in this house, in corners, in bedrooms, under bathroom vanities (desperation setting in), even in the garage.  Nada. Even St. Anthony’s intercession hasn’t helped.  It’s been MIA for two weeks now, I have NO IDEA where this stupid pot is.

Yesterday, makeup was missing out of my bathroom…things that my daughters don’t use, and did not have in their bathroom…again, nowhere to be found.  My youngest daughter quipped that maybe we had some “Borrowers” living in our walls, and all our missing things are in the same place.  I love the way she thinks.  As a gradeschool kid, I loved the story of “The Littles”, a family of little people with tails that lived inside the walls of  “the Bigs”, and used the tin can elevator, and assorted items from the home of  the Big’s family for their many adventures.  I wonder how they managed to lift that heavy pot, and where they are keeping it, and what in the world they needed my makeup for? 

The Littles

New things…springing forth

I’m back to the world of blogging.  I started blogging in 2005 as a way to process my grief while caring for my terminally ill parents.  I wish I’d have backed up my work, we had a server problem, and I lost everything.  There were poems, things my kids said, memories of my last days with my Momma…all gone.

Up until this time, I had been blessed to be a stay at home mom, I homeschooled my kids (which came in very handy while travelling six hours every other week to care for my parents), and took care of my home.  After Mom passed away, I went back to work, for a variety of reasons, we felt the Lord leading this way.  I did the only thing I felt I knew, walked next door to the Assisted living facility and applied for a job.  I felt with the experience I had just been through with my own parents, I was qualified to help care for someone else’s.  It worked, I can’t believe I’ve been doing this stuff for five years.

In 2009, my husband’s mom passed away.  She had been sick for awhile, and on his trips back to see her, he contracted irreversible homesickness.  He found that he qualified for citizenship through government reform of citizenship law in Canada.  We began praying and talking about moving back.  We started looking into what it would take to immigrate myself and our two youngest girls to Canada.  We’re in the process of filing paperwork, looking for a job, and purging through a household of 23 years’ worth of accumulation, paring down to only keep what we need and/or love.

The title of my blog came from a ladies retreat I attended in 2003, where I received a word I believed to be from the Lord.  It was the verse from my blog banner, and I truly believed that He was telling me not to dwell on the past, because He was ready to do a new thing in my life.  Little did I know that the “new thing” would include burying my parents, putting my kids in school, church hopping, teenage rebellion, family counseling, planning two weddings in four months, becoming Catholic, becoming a Grammy, and making plans to move to another country.  I truly have come to understand in a very real, very personal way the following lyrics:

Welcome to my journey.  Walk with me.