25 April, 2013

God Whispers: A Right Now Word

Yesterday I had a very long and exhausting day. I had one of those days where I got absolutely nothing accomplished that I had intended to do because of phone calls and people needing me. I'm not complaining at all... just life as it is. I have to admit that emotionally, I've been on edge and drained. Since last November, I've had friends dropping like flies. In 6 months time there have been 15 of my friends die, all but two of them younger than me. Two more of my friends have been diagnosed with cancer and both given months to live. We are praying and believing God for miracles for both of them, but the point is, all this death and disease around me has kind of rattled me a bit. No, I'm not fearing death... I'm just stunned to watch so many leave this earth too young and others clinging to life.  Anyway, that just kind of sets the stage for my day yesterday. My phone rang yesterday morning and on the other end is a person who has been a friend since we were about 14 years old was on the other end and she told me that she was diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer and given just weeks to live. We had a good cry together and then prayed and made plans to try to see each other soon. Just a little while after getting off the phone another friend called me and asked if we could meet up. We made plans for later in the day. Just a few minutes later, another friend called wanting to know if we could maybe have coffee. I knew something was wrong by the tenor of his voice. I can't and won't go into his information, as it is too personal, but suffice it to say that most of the day was spent with him as he just poured his heart out to me. Every time I thought there could not be more, he would tell me something else that he was walking through. My friend was at the end of his rope and honestly just did not have the strength to hold on. He was broken and weeping and needed not only his friend but a pastor. I chucked everything else that needed to be done for the day to give my day to him. That included the study for my Bible Study at church last night.  As the day wore on, we bounced from one coffee house to another, then to a restaurant, then to a parking lot where we sat and talked and as the day wore on, I had spent more than 5 hours with my friend before he left. After being gone only 20 minutes or so, he phoned again wanting to know if we could meet in a couple of hours. I had church last night and I was getting ready to tell him that I could not meet when I realized that this man needed me more than everyone else did at that moment, and I made the decision to cancel church. 

When all this was over, and I was home settled on the couch, guilt came washing over me because I'd canceled church. I mean, I just beat myself up and I was feeling like such a failure that I did not even feel like I could pray. I went to bed last night feeling lower than a snake's belly and questioning my decision. I tossed and turned and could not sleep, and I turned the light on, grabbed my iPad and opened Facebook. The very first thing I saw was the status of a friend who had posted, "What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off?"  I just began to weep as I read it as I thanked God for his right now Word.  The thief comes... why? To "steal, kill and destroy." I was allowing him to rip off the peace of God, to steal the knowledge that I had done exactly what God had asked me to do and to cause me to question, not only myself but my walk with God. That's what the enemy of our souls does, but God has a "right now Word" for us if we will only hear. He wants to speak into our situation specifically and give us what we need to make it through another day. Thank you, Lord, for your right now Word!

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