Sunday, July 24, 2011

Sunday Afternoon Tea

I must say that I needed a crisis about as much as say... getting the measles or chicken pox.  However, I know God is in control and what the enemy of our soul intends for evil, our Lord works it for our good and His glory.  I can hardly wait to see how this comes out.

I also must again say that I realize the many miracles which He provided on our behalf.  To say it could have been much worse is an understatement beyond my own imagination (which is quite vivid).  But there were a few days in which I wondered if I would (as I told Linda), keep my sanity.  For not only were there so many items in my house which no longer worked but it was full of broken electronics in the middle of the rooms, placed on coffee tables, and stumbled over in unexpected places.

Thankfully, our pastor gave us a quite large gift card to a favorite restaurant which we used to bring home dinner that first week but also as an escape from the chaos surrounding us at home (I used the very last of it a few nights ago just to get away for decaf coffee).

That week gave me time to find places for the electronics to sit all nice and tidy and out of the way and to get used to a new normal.  The human spirit is amazing that way in its' ability to adapt when necessary and fortunately before we had no hot water in the house.

While I find it much better when there is a regular pattern to living and I normally require a certain consistency to my days... I found once the house was put back to the new normal (that being tidy islands of broken electronics instead of it spread out through the house)... then I could find rest while curled up with a cup of herbal tea each evening... the kind that is to help relax.

One Truth which always comes to me in times of crisis... as well as those sandpaper days of normal living... is that peace is not an emotion one longs for but Peace is a Person.  He tells us He gives us peace "not as the world gives" but that feeling of peace and calm which comes upon us in the storms of life (in this case... literally).

I learned long ago that living in a fallen world such as planet earth (or what Lewis called, "The Silent Planet") one must understand there are storms we must walk through.  Like St. Peter walking on the water, we stay safe as we keep our eyes on Him in the storm.  It is only when we look around and fix our attention on crashing waves and thunderous surf that we sink into a pit of fear and despair.

Of course, I'm not talking about a Pollyanna attitude that the sun will always be out or choosing to hide our head in the sand and hoping it all becomes better.  That is why Peace is a Person.  He not only gives us the peace but as we pray and trust Him... He is working out the circumstances which will result in peace.  It will be okay even if we look around and see scars caused by the imperfection of life.

So as I cook in a dark kitchen, I am thankful the stove and refrigerator were not taken out (or my Precious... that being the red mixer).  I am thankful the coffee pot works.  I can even be thankful it is a short trip from the stove to the sink when I pour boiling water in for doing dishes.  I am really, really thankful the air conditioner and well pump did not go out.

I choose Peace.  I choose to look for those things which bring calm in the midst of the crisis.  I choose not to fear as the storm clouds once again form on the horizon (literally... I just had to turn the light on and it is mid-day).  I choose to have patience while waiting to turn our claim in to the insurance office and more patience as we await restoration.

Faith built in the midst of the storms... hope which is strengthened as we see God's work in our life... these are what trials bring so that as we walk the day to day challenges of living in a world of imperfection we can face each day with courage and faith and peace.

He has brought us through again and will continue to hold us in the palm of His hand... until that day when we meet Him in person an all is restored to perfection.  What a day that will be!


Kristi in the Western Reserve said...

Amen! It is best to concentrate on counting ones blessings, I think. And you do that so well, Brenda.

Lisa in Texas = ) said...

Brenda~ It is such a blessing to read your blog. Your trust, faith,and hope in Jesus - it contagious! And as I read your post today- I felt the peace that you spoke of- I am so thankful that we have a heavenly Father who loves us so much and who works things out for our eternal good. Hoping things are restored soon,
Lisa :O)

Jennyr said...

Brenda..I'm just catching up and reading through your past few posts. I shared with my husband the experience you had with Victoria and we marveled in the blessings God bestows on us, often unaware. It is so wonderful to be able to recognize is his goodness in such trying circumstances. Prayers are coming your way :)

Peggy Lorenz said...

Brenda, have you heard the song "Give You Peace" by Echoing Angels? I heard it for the first time early this morning, and it was just what I needed to hear. Your Sunday Afternoon Tea confirmed it...Peace is a Person, and we are never alone!

Audrey said...

Your reminded me to be thankful. Thank you! I will pray for you today.

Christina said...

Amen! Keep your eyes on Him, and rest in His perfect peace!

Vee said...

You prove it over and again what it means to trust. I know that the Lord has a plan and I'm sure that a part of it is the lesson you have written today. Blessings to you...

Anonymous said...

Nothing that happens to us is outside HIS care...but sometimes one wonders WHERE HE is at the moment and when the rescue will arrive!! Someday either we will know those answers or it won't matter anymore...and maybe both! I am very glad HE knows the future...I do not really want to know. Day by day is enough.


Bonnie said...

Peace is a Person .. . . brilliant! I just never thought of it in exactly those words. And, yet, it is TRUTH. Peace is not a feeling, but a presence. When that Presence holds you near (and we hold near to Him), there is peace in our soul. Praying that you feel that Presence today and each day as all of your needs are met and your home is restored. He will show you mighty things during this time. How could it be otherwise?

Anonymous said...

I just got caught up with your recent posts and my heart and prayers go out to you. Your perspective is so good though, and I know that much good will result for you and many others as a result of your trials. I am/will be praying for you!

matty said...

God is gracious in His mercy! Hope all continues to go well! Sending you lots of peaceful thoughts!

Mrs.Rabe said...

I find it so fascinating at what was fried electronically and YET! God in His Goodness chose to keep the kitchen appliances, the AIR CONDITIONING, and your computers!

Hoping everything is resolved quickly and easily. What a thoughtful gift from your pastor!

Still praying!