The Bitter and Sweet Days of Our Lives

Our days are not our own. We make our plans, but God orders them according to His will.

Today is a BIG day in my life.  More so in my oldest son’s life. Today right about now he is down on his knee proposing to a very special young lady.  The good mom that I am …. I’m stalking him on my phone app.  (You know you would be too.)

The point is… this day has been carefully planned.  The diamond researched months ago…perfect diamond chosen, setting chosen, stunning ring arrived.   Lips buttoned tight to keep the secret from friends and family.  Then last night plans changed,  103 degree day today, a hike in the sun to the top of a mountain no longer sounds like a good idea.  Rose garden at a local arboretum seems like a better choice. Plan changed.

Along with those careful plans, were the plans for my day with  the rest of the family.  Church, then home to have lunch and tidy while we wait for the excited couple to arrive.

But again, God’s big eraser rearranged my day too.  After leaving church I saw a missed call from our neighbor.  I called and texted, then received a message that showed something was horribly wrong, but it was barely understandable.  I knew 911 had been called and she was not at home waiting for the police to meet her.

I am not a story writer so I’ll cut to the important part…. she was safe.  She had arrived home from a weekend away to find her house robbed, ransacked, and water everywhere.

For me this was to be a SWEET day, for her it quickly became a BITTER day.

But we could  share the same day.

It was time to grieve with someone who was deeply grieving and scared. She doesn’t know my Lord. How can I minister to her, here right now?  I can’t get her things back for her. I can’t solve the mystery of “who did it”. But, I can stop my day, change my day, watch, listen, and comfort.

I can listen to the officer as he instructs her about who to call and why.  She is shaking and scared, though she looks like she’s listening, she won’t remember what he said.

I own a mop and I know how to use it,  soggy kitchen dry and clean, dishes washed and put away.

I can’t solve the big things, God didn’t give me that skill.  But I can clean, comfort, distract from grief, and bring a little order back to a bad situation.

My day, maybe it has changed… my week will change too. Neighbor A will need some time to process and some time to talk things out.  This is life, God rearranges it.

How can I further His kingdom today? By loving my neighbor.

Proverbs 16:9

The mind of man plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps.


(picture – Maroon Bells / Snowmass, Colorado Sept. 2016)

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