This past week Floyd has been mostly quiet and alert and I am so pleased that he has gained weight. Wednesday, however, brought lots of unexpected events. Floyd needed to be rushed to another hospital for surgery. There was something wrong with his feeding tube. They had to operate to clear it up and replace it. Even though it was a long and intense day, I'm grateful for the blessing of the Lord’s comfort and strength in the midst of it.
"The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in Him." Nahum 1:7
Something special also happened this past week. I pray all the time for the Lord to comfort Floyd, give him grace and courage, and surround him with angels to keep him company. I pray he'll see the angels. While I was with Floyd and praying these things I had my eyes closed. Floyd was very focused on my face. As I was praying for angels to be with him - and for him to see them.....I opened my eyes and Floyd was looking up at the ceiling and smiling. He stayed that way until I finished praying, and then he looked at me again with a smile. I have no way to know for sure, but I hope he was seeing angels!!
"For He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways." Psalm 91:11
At the end of our front deck, we have a very large glass window. It enables us to look down the valley from where we live - even seeing the mountains on the other side of the far bay on clear days. It's also a wonderful protection from the strong summer winds (the "southeasters") that can almost blow you away. We love that it allows us to sit outside, and enjoy the balmy evenings even when the wind is blowing strongly. The big, clear glass is almost like an invisible shield.
It reminds me of an experience when I was young. When I was on an outreach one time, we were going to a village that had wild dogs. We were praying for protection from the dogs as we walked to the village. I prayed for God's "invisible wall of protection." He answered that prayer! The dogs came right up to us, turned, and ran into the woods, never harming us. Thank you Lord! The chief of the village gave his heart to the Lord, and asked us to tell his whole village about Jesus. Many gave their hearts to Him.
The poor birds don't always realize our big glass window is there! Some of them fly into it, and then lie dazed for a while. The other day I looked at one of the dazed birds as it tried to figure out what had happened. I had a revelation that I can be like that poor bird! I can be happily flying along, not see the obstacles, and then hit a "wall" that I didn't even realize was there.
Oh how I need God's discernment, perspective, and ability to see the walls the enemy has put up for me to hit and become dazed. I don't think I've ever had a season in my life where I've cried out to the Lord so much to help me "see" my way through what's happening in our lives. I've asked Him to protect me from flying into invisible walls.
He's been incredibly faithful! I've had a few "dazed" moments - a few times when I've wondered what hit me. :) But the Lord has guided me day by day, moment by moment through this journey with so many twists and turns. How incredibly faithful He's been.
"Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, 'This is the way; walk in it.' " Isaiah 30:21
"For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, 'Do not fear; I will help you.' " Isaiah 41:13
The Lord sees all the invisible walls. He knows every obstacle in my path. I'm trusting in the Lord's continued protection on this journey. I know He'll hold my hand, light my path, go before me, and whisper in my ear which way to go. What a wonderful Guide He is!
I've been listening to another of Floyd's sermons. This one is on "How to Know God's Will." I love hearing his messages. It's nice to hear his voice. He usually says something affirming about me - so it's a sweet encouragement to my heart.
Floyd talks in the message about "inquiring of the Lord." 2 Samuel 5:19 David frequently inquired of the Lord. I did a search and found at least 9 instances of this. Shall I fight the Philistines? Shall I talk to Saul? Shall I pursue this troop? He had regular conversations asking God what to do. David's desire to hear from God, allowing God to direct his path and his decisions must have been one of the reasons God called David "a man after His own heart." Acts 13:22 He said of David, "he will do everything I want him to do." Those are powerful compliments!
I talk to the Lord about my decisions all through my day. There's hardly a day that goes by that I don't have to make decisions about Floyd's care. I'm often at a loss as to what to do. I ask God about everything - I "inquire of the Lord." And I love that He responds. He guides me. Floyd said in his message that God loves to speak intimately and personally to each one of us about the things in our lives. He said when we hear the word of the Lord on things we ask Him about, it releases faith and vision into our hearts for what we're asking.
I'm not saying I don't make mistakes - I'm sure I do! But I certainly make less of them by "inquiring of the Lord." And it takes such a weight off my shoulders that I don't have to make decisions on my own limited wisdom.
I miss talking to Floyd about the decisions I'm making. I'm so grateful I can talk to the Lord. I couldn't make it without His help and guidance.
"If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault." James 1:5
"Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go." Psalm 143:8
"I will praise the Lord, who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me. I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With Him at my right hand, I will not be shaken." Psalm 16:7,8
"Since you are my rock and fortress, for the sake of your name lead and guide me." Psalm 31:3
I'm so grateful for the Lord's counsel, guidance, and instruction. I couldn't make it without that. He has been my adviser, my friend, and my husband. I praise Him with all my heart.
We have a sign in our home, above the kitchen sink where I see it all the time. It's rather rustic looking - like it may have been around for generations. It's taken from Joshua 24:15. "As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord." The sign has only been with us for about 15 years, but the proclamation is very much part of our family for many generations.
We have a family heritage from those who have faithfully served the Lord. I've mentioned my mother before, Memaw. She was a Godly lady, who loved Jesus, and knew how to pray! I'm in ministry and missions today because of her prayers.
Floyd's parents, Floyd Sr. and Enetha, were pastors for over 60 years. They were prayer warriors too. Floyd says he would get up in the mornings, and hear his dad crying out to the Lord for people in the churches he pastored.
Floyd's paternal grandmother lived into her 90s. She wrote poems and hymns up until she went to meet Jesus - and she knew how to pray too. She prayed for her children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, great, great grandchildren - she said her prayers would carry on into the future even if she wasn't there. She knew God would be faithful to answer them.
Our families weren't wealthy. They didn't have riches to leave us when they passed away, but they gave us the most important thing we can give our family - a Godly heritage. Floyd and I have been able to walk into our spiritual heritage, in no small part, because of the lives that have been lived and the prayers that have been prayed before us. We have chosen for "our house" to serve the Lord, but the pathway was paved ahead of us. We've served Him all our lives, and He's been so faithful to us.
I had a fresh sense this week that what is happening in our lives on this journey is part of our serving Him. God is using this season for His honor and glory in ways that we can't see, and don't completely understand - but It's not a wasted season. In His own special, unique way He'll make this a fruitful season. Because we have chosen to serve Him, He uses every season as part of that service.
I don't know if we'll truly understand this side of heaven what God is "up to" in this season, but I continue to feel that He is working in ways that we can't see or understand. For certain all the prayers that are being prayed are having a spiritual impact!
And I think that part of our heritage is being lived out in ways known only to Him. I want "our house" to continue to serve Him all our days!
"Your statutes are my heritage forever; they are the joy of my heart." Psalm 119:111
"Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup; you make my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance." Psalm 16:5,6
"For you, God have heard my vows; you have given me the heritage of those who fear your name." Psalm 61:5
"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us." Hebrews 12:1
Some days my body is weary, but my heart is "running" as hard as I can to persevere on this "race" He has allowed us to walk on. I'm grateful for His sufficient grace that enables me to keep running. How faithful He is!