My wife and I spent the greater part of the afternoon yesterday with our older daughter Jamie. We had a heartfelt time talking about the events of the last few weeks, reminisced about many of the fun times that we had when all the kids were home and in point of how her Mom could turn any event into a special time with lots of laughter, bonding and learning! We also looked through a digital photo album that David her husband had recently put together consisting of various pictures that they had of Piper since their early dating days.
At one point we decided that we needed a break so we bundled up Piper and stepped out back so we toss the ball for Fiver. One of our neighbors across the road from us has two little dogs that are normally out in their front yard. They have an invisible fence so the dogs are constrained to limits of their property. And even though they can’t see us through the trees on their property and ours, those dogs always start barking when they hear Fiver running around the back yard… I’m pretty sure that the loud squeaking of his various toys also draws their attention!
Well, as you can imagine, their barking usually distracts Fiver and he likes to run back and forth to peek through the picket fences on either side of our house. Yesterday had the extra caveat in that Jamie was also here and that caused him to be a bit more exuberant than normal. At one point he uncharacteristically leaped up the stairs to the deck where Piper and Jamie were standing and ran right into the house so he could look through the glass storm door in the living room. There was one problem though… the screen door wasn’t open!
So with a surprised look on his face (& Jamie’s as well), followed by a boom and a snap… all 60 pounds of Australian Shepherd/Great Pyrenees mix tore through the screen and in he went! But he didn’t get too far as he looked quite confused and shocked! Once in the dining room he immediately turned around and went back through the large hole in the screen and made a quick retreat to the back lawn!
From where I was standing outback, I thought that he had just ran into the door and stopped liked he used to do when I first installed the new door this summer. When I inquired this of Jamie she gave me the bad news. In retrospect, I guess I had an opportunity to try out a scripture that Piper and I have been praying lately…
Colossians 1:9-14 is one of Paul’s prayers that we pray quite often. We usually personalize verse nine saying: “Papa God, Piper and I ask today that you would strengthen us by your glorious might with all the power we need to patiently endure everything with joy.” (God’s Word ©) At that moment in time yesterday afternoon, I needed a touch of patience as I remembered how much time and effort it took me to get that door properly aligned and mounted when we first bought it and considered the time it would now take me to fix the screen and readjust the door!
As far as the joy part goes… Well, I have to admit that I wasn’t really upset as I couldn’t help but laugh when I saw the surprised look on the dog’s face… come to think about it… the look on our daughter’s face was pretty priceless as well! I am also sure that if she knew what had happened, that Piper would have been laughing so hard that it would have made it difficult for me to be upset at all!
I think a big part of the success of this particular verse in our lives lies in our attitude toward life. My natural inclination when I came up on the deck and looked at the broken door close-up was to be upset, but as I quickly assessed everything that is going on in our lives right now, recalled the time that I re-screened a door for a client a few years back and then measured the importance or weight of this incident compared to everything else, it didn’t take much time to simply laugh off the whole event and choose to not even worry about it! Besides it was nothing that a few strips of the white (to match the color of the door frame) duct tape that I have wouldn’t rectify until such a time as I could get some more screen for the door.
You know… when times get tough or things start moving a little too fast around you, the best attitude to have is to keep foremost in your minds that truth that God is strengthening you with all the power you need to be patient and full of joy in the midst of ANY situation! The word “might” in this verse is the Greek word “dunamis” from which we get our word dynamite. Strong’s defines it as “force, miraculous power and by implication a miracle itself.”
When I saw that definition I began to rejoice for I understood that God has the power to do anything including a miracle in order to help us stay patient and loving no matter what someone says or does to you… no matter how frightening the situation at the moment may seem to you… no matter how big that hole in your new screen door looks!
Wow! Think on that for a moment… God can and will provide a miracle for you if that what it takes! With that in mind… I think I will be less likely to be upset with others or even with myself when things go awry… wouldn’t you agree? So keep that in mind on this very important day here in the US as President Elect Donald Trump will be sworn into office as the 45th President of the United States in about a half hour.
Isn’t God good? Have a great weekend, and as you do, keep asking yourself… “Is there anything that you are expecting that can stop you from being patient and full of joy?” (If so get rid of that lie!)