My sweet Levi has learned many lessons at the tender age of 6. From walking to talking to ‘going potty’, to riding a bicycle, to riding a little motorcycle, to sitting quietly in class, to diving and swimming like a fish. He knows how to apologize, he has learned what it means to hurt someone’s feelings. He has learned to read and he has learned try new foods (with coaxing). He has learned to perform on a stage and he knows how to sit quietly in an adult setting (though it is very hard). And, he has learned that he is a sinner. That Jesus came to this earth to pay a price for us, so that we may live with him forever. He understands what means to sin. And, he understands forgiveness.
I say all this, to say that he has been surrounded by learning since he was born. So has every child. They will learn…whether we choose the lessons or not. As it has been said, “You can be a good inspiration or a horrible example”. But it is seen and tucked away…part of that learning process.
We (his parents and 5 grandparents and aunts and uncles) have always tried to mirror that strong sense of faith that we all understand so well. We have found our faith tested and seen it proven true and real time and again! And we wish to show to our little man just how faithful God is. We know God keeps His promises, and we want him to know that. We know that God answers prayer, and we want him to have the joy of seeing that for himself.
And while none of his family is perfect…we all try to use those ‘teachable moments’ when they arise. Lessons to be learned are so much easier if the teaching is done while the situation is close in mind and heart.
Now that he is in first grade, none of us ‘grands’ get as much time with him as we would like. But life moves along and we have developed our own routine. Every morning Levi is dropped at my house, gets dressed here, eats breakfast here, and Don or I take him to school. Then his other grandparents pick him up from school and start his homework with him. How I love getting to share a meal with him and pray with him and send him into the school building with an ‘I love you’ and ‘Have a great day’. His other grandmother gets the joy of hearing all about what went on that day and all his adventures…and spelling words.
We prepare breakfast and always call Uncle Alex on the intercom and ask him to come join us. Most times, he can’t. But sometimes we are blessed that he can. Such was what happened yesterday.
After breakfast, as Alex was going back to his room, and Levi was putting on his shoes:
ALEX…I enjoyed having breakfast with you this morning, Levi.
LEVI…I did too, Uncle Alex. I’m glad you are not hurting today!
ALEX… Well, Buddy, I am hurting today…just not as bad as usual. Today is a ‘better’ day.
LEVI…(raising his hands in the air) That’s what we have been asking God to do!
ALEX…And He did, Levi. He gave me a morning to enjoy with you. He is so good. He always hears us when we pray.
Wow! What an affirmation in a little boy’s mind that God was busy about answering his prayers!
Today was a little nerve wracking for me. My health has taken a nose dive lately and I am facing 3 operations in the coming months. It’s hard to get old and ‘wear out”! This morning I had the first of the procedures, because this was the most urgent. Without going into too many details, I have a kidney that is not doing what God put it in there to do. We’ve known that it was ‘different’ for a few years, but until today, we did not know how ‘no good’ it really is. Suffice it to say, although it may continue to reside in the place it lies…it is of no use to my body. The only thing it could do is affect my other kidney. You know, the one that ‘gets with the program’, the one that does its job mostly without complaining ( except for throwing a few stones at me through the years), the one that goes about its life following the rules. If it gets too unruly, it will be tossed out…but for now…it stays.
So today my faith was tested. I was nervous about the results we would find, as it looked on CT scan as if there was a mass on it. However, yesterday, as I was reading or flipping through Pinterest or catching up with you on FB…Bible verses kept coming before me…“Do not be afraid”….“The Lord goes ahead of you”….“He is with you wherever you go”….“I know the plans I have for you.” ” I knit you together in your mother’s womb.” All reminding me and encouraging me of what I knew was truth. But, fear can override our good sense sometimes, can’t it?
Then this morning, Don and I had prayer in the waiting room…and put our trust in Him again…asking Him to guide the doctor’s hands and give him wisdom as he performed the surgery.
As I waited in my room, a dear friend texted me and began going on about some nonsense about me wearing my ‘crown’! She made me laugh. I sent her a ‘selfie’ of me in the bed. She sent me funny emoticons! What a respite that was as I waited! I received other texts from friends who assured me they had been praying and would continue. I was confident that I was being covered in prayer!
And, when I arrived in Pre-op…there was my friend of some 30 years waiting on me. She is an anesthetist at the hospital and we have been in church together since our children were small. She took my case. She brought me warm blankets. She gently started my IV. She ran to the pharmacy and got me some nose spray so I could breath (darn allergies). She reminded me that she would be there through it all. Her kindness and gentle spirit calmed my soul.
It was God who led me to a doctor I had confidence in…it was God who put words of affirmation and truth in front of my eyes…it was God who arranged it for my friend to be by my side. Perhaps you were the one who posted a Bible verse on FB yesterday, or perhaps it was you who was remembering me in your prayers. Maybe it was you who sent me a text reminding me of your love and concern or held my hand and prayed with me. Let no one ever tell you that doing and speaking about the Lord …about His kindness and care…His love…is ever is in vain. I may not be able to thank you in person…but I know…and God knows. To those of us who are Christians, God expects us to act at all times as if we were serving Him. And, we are. We are God’s hands.
I am resting at home now…taking my pain meds…uncomfortable, but satisfied. A trying day to, to be sure. But a day when God once again proved to me that He is faithful! He works in our lives when we need Him. He works in our world…just for us…and so many times, we don’t even realize it to acknowledge it. But, friends…this I know is true: God is who He says He is. God does what He says He will do. God is always with me. God watches my every move and sends people or words or scripture, even hymns (‘Tis So Sweet To Trust In Jesus) straight to me when I need it.
He will do the same thing for you. Because as much as He loves and cares for and protects me…He loves and cares for and protects you just as much! Just keep looking. He’ll prove it to you!