Our Unexpected Journey

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Floyd seems to be content and at peace this week.  During a visit with some friends this week, he smiled and cried - and listened attentively to everything they said.  They thanked him and encouraged him about his impact in their lives.  I'm sure this must have blessed him.

My recovery this week has been a bit bumpy, but I think I'm making slow, steady progress.  I’m grateful for all the prayers being lifted up for me.

I have felt a bit brain dead this week as I've battled pain, nausea, and a few other post surgery issues.  My energy level has been pretty low.  I've tried to do some reading, but have found it challenging to concentrate - although I've kept trying.

In one book I was reading there was a quote from Eric Liddell, the Olympian runner.  "Circumstances may appear to wreck our lives and God's plans, but God is not helpless among the ruins."

This quote has been going round and round in my heart and mind.  The unexpected journey we've been on has certainly changed a lot of the plans we had.  But God has been anything but helpless!  He has been all present and powerful.  He has been by my side and with our family continually.  He has been faithful.  He has met our every need.  His grace has been sufficient each day.  He has given physical strength, and emotional comfort.  He has been WITH us!  Thank you Lord.

"God's loyal love couldn't have run out, His merciful love couldn't have dried up.  They're created new every morning.  How great is your faithfulness!"  Lamentations 3:22,23

I imagine that some of you have followed, like I have, the events of the passing of Billy Graham.  I have known of his ministry all my life.  As a young girl I listened to him on the radio.  I watched some of his crusades on TV through the years, and attended one in person.  I don't know if any other one person has impacted so many people in our lifetime for the Lord.

His was a life well lived.  He was faithful to the calling on his life.  And he "finished well."  In our early years in ministry when we were in YWAM (Youth With A Mission), we heard teachings about the importance of "it's how you finish that counts."  I'll never forget those teachings.  They have stuck with me all my life.  I often pray "Lord help me to finish well for you."  As I watched Billy Graham's funeral, that was what came through loud and clear......he finished well.  And now He's with Jesus!

At the funeral, all 5 of his children spoke.  It was so moving.  Each one shared from their family life - all different perspectives, but all warm and personal.  For being such a large event, the tone of the funeral was warm, personal, and family oriented.  His son, Ned, said that his dad was FAT - faithful, available, teachable.  What an awesome tribute! 

One of the songs sung at the funeral was "Because He Lives."  I love that song - I've actually sung it in my quiet times during this long unexpected journey we're on.  "Because He lives, I can face tomorrow!  Because He lives, all fear is gone.....and I know He holds the future....life is worth the living just because He lives."  When I was a teenager, I sang with a girls trio in my church.  We sang that song.  It meant a lot to me then too.  I'm so grateful He lives!!

I have no idea what is ahead in our lives.  I long ago gave up trying to figure out what this unexpected journey is about.  I'm just trying to faithfully walk it through.  And, whatever is ahead, I pray continually that I may "finish well."  I guess that's the longing of all our hearts.

"I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me."  Acts 20:24

"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful."  2 Timothy 4:7

"I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us."  Philippians 3:14

"Better is the end of a thing than its beginning, and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit."  Ecclesiastes 7:8

"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

My prayer for each of us is that we will finish well!  Someday we'll bow before Him in heaven.  I hope He can say "well done, good and faithful servant!"