Over the last couple of days we have had a little bit of rain and a good amount of wind. Nothing really strong mind you, but enough to remove most of the leaves off the trees on our property. So as I stepped out onto the porch this morning, I found myself entranced by the golden glow that met my eyes as I enjoyed the sight of the fall colored leaves gracing the landscape, and at the same time experienced a sense of discouragement!
You see, while I inherited the family’s love of working in the garden, I have never quite grown fond of raking leaves! In fact… it is one of the chores that I have always tended to despise. Even with all the years I ran my own yard and garden care side business, I never had a property that had major accumulations of leaves on the lawn! But now… Well… now… our new home in the country is blessed with a multitude of beautiful mature trees that add a special charm to the landscape, but also beg the need to rake leaves in the fall!
So, over the past few days I began to pray, first of all, for a different attitude concerning the leaf situation and then for wisdom on the best way to handle the job. My original idea was to get a catcher for our riding mower like the previous owner had. But when I went online I was disheartened by their escalating prices, their bulkiness and the fact that I couldn’t seem to find a somewhat decently priced one that was designed to fit our mower.
Then late yesterday afternoon I was reminded of a particular job I had picked up in high school many years past. (I was even earning income mowing lawns back then!) The Vice-Principal sent me over to the large, fancy home of someone who had called the school wanting to hire a student to… you guessed it… rake leaves! When I stepped into their backyard my heart skipped a beat as I looked over the size and scope of the yard! It seemed huge, was landscaped with a large proliferation of tall maple trees, and the grass was covered in leaves.
But then I got a second breath when the owner directed me to his lawn sweeper that I could use to sweep up the leaves! It was definitely a “Thank you God” moment! So with that memory in mind I went online and looked up lawn sweepers. And after a time of research, I found the perfect model that easily attaches to and is pulled by our lawn tractor (and is a lot cheaper than a catcher)… and this morning I ordered it! Yippee!
I know that this may not seemed like a big deal to some of you, but to me it is Nirvana! I knew that if I could control the urge to be anxious and trust the Lord, that He would have an answer for me!
Yesterday I came across Romans 8:12 in the Message Bible and was enthused by the way it put this verse. It says: “So, don’t you see that you don’t owe this old do-it-yourself life one red cent?” This paraphrase caught my attention and as I meditated on it for a while I had the thought: “On whose actions are your daily activities and/or responsibilities dependent on? Yours or Christ’s.”
Then it dawned on me that those folks who had caused us some frustration and pain in the early days of our current journey of my wife’s health tended to level their complaints and “advice” for me based on the need for ME to act in a certain way. Their conversations were based on what they thought I did wrong and/or what I needed to do differently in order to make things right. There seemed to be no thought of trusting in God or the truth of His Word.
As far as Piper and I were, are and will continue to be concerned… Our situation is totally dependent on Him and all we are doing is seeking to obey Him each step of the way! Let’s face it folks… to be healed of Alzheimer’s is way beyond the natural limitations of man and medicine! But you know… THAT’S WHAT MAKES IT SO EXCITING to Piper and I!!!
When we received that very first report of what the brain scans were showing back in 2007, we KNEW that this one was beyond us and immediately put it in His hands! I guess that is one reason that all the intellectualism that was fed to us by some really confused and upset me!
After these thoughts came to light, I suddenly realized that it should have been no surprise to me that I so miserably failed in their eyes, for I can never match the expectations of things that only God can accomplish in His power and might! So you see, while I give my best effort to meeting the immediate needs and care of my wife and will make any sacrifice necessary to care for her in her time of need, I don’t owe this do-it-yourself world one thing… like I said the other day… I have no obligation to handle my wife’s situation according to the fruitless ways of the world.
We are in a battle today that we can only approach… and win… with our faith and corresponding actions that are based solely on Him and His Word of truth! I plan on us finishing this race that we have been running together for the last 46 plus years. I don’t believe for one moment that He wants us to quit before we get to the finish line! After all, “God’s spirit beckons us, for there are things to do and places to go! For this resurrection life we received from God is not a timid grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God (each day) with a childlike ‘What’s next Papa?’” (Romans 8:14-15 MSG)
How exciting is that? Have a great rest of the week, and as you do, keep asking yourself… “Am I expecting to live an Adventurously Expectant life through my personal walk of faith in God and His Word today?”