Hi MOATs … My post last night not only didn’t make it to you today, but also got lost in the process (boo-hoo!). So here’s something I wrote for another blog. Those of you who know me well just might have heard this story before. So feel free to beep me (something my friend’s family does when a story is being repeated over, and over, and over…) and tune in tomorrow.
Thanks for walking the road with me!!
A few years ago, I was sitting in the park close to our house, watching a couple of my kids play.
“Hi Kay”, said a voice from behind me.
It was my friend Barbara. She was with her daughter, walking the park after what I would soon learn was a very long week, a very long month. Her daughter, born eighteen years earlier, was severely handicapped and had spent last month battling intestinal issues – not a small problem considering she had never gained control of her bodily functions. (Imagine changing your eighteen-year-old’s diapers and dealing with meteoric diaper rash.) She struggled to walk, had only a handful of words in her vocabulary, and required around the clock assistance. My friend was exhausted – physically, mentally and spiritually.
Heart aching for my friend, my thoughts jumped to the huge pot of spaghetti sauce simmering on my stove. Instantly, I knew that I needed to take her family dinner. But I hesitated. I didn’t want to bother them, assume they needed a meal. I wrestled with what I should do. Then decided that maybe tomorrow would be better.
Tomorrow came and went, as did the day after that and the day after that. Though the spaghetti sauce beckoned to me each time I opened the refrigerator. I ignored it. As the days passed, I decided that our little chat in the park was sufficient encouragement. I transferred the sauce from the frig to the freezer.
Fast forward six months. I’m sitting at our church’s women’s retreat. Who is the speaker? My friend Barbara. The room was hanging on her every word. She’s funny, wise, full of great stories and helpful advice. As I sat, letting her remarks float in and out of my head, I was struck by one of the stories she started to tell about God’s attention to detail and provision, even in small yet incredibly significant ways. She began to talk about a period of suffering with her daughter. (I knew exactly to what she is referring.) In the midst of her heart-ache, loneliness, resentfulness, and just being worn out – she opened her front door. On the stoop… a piping hot chicken pot. With the dinner was a note, “Just thinking of you during this tough time.” She was floored. It was exactly what she had needed – even prayed for … that the Lord would in some way reassure her that He was taking care of them.
As everyone else oohed and aahed at the wonderful answer to prayer, I sat there sick to my stomach. That chicken pot pie was my spaghetti!
I had been tapped, but was unavailable. I had procrastinated on being obedient … even to the point of justifying my inability to act. I couldn’t believe it, and laughed to myself. What a sweet reminder for me to follow through on what seems like a small thing. You never know how God might use your hands to take care of someone’s needs.