I was published in a world where editing, editing, editing was the rule. Blogging is different.
I have 29 unpublished, partially written blog posts and time is running out because life goes on and people are hurting. Not publishing when I know God is telling me otherwise is disobedience....
This week I saw a request for prayer by a friend on Facebook. I replied to his post to let him know I'm praying. Later in the week I was sitting in front of my easel painting when he came to mind. I've learned to take that as a signal to pray. As I prayed for my friend I felt God prompting me to put the paint brush down and do what He's called me to do - write. God used the suffering of my friend to convict me of my own disobedience.
Thank you, Ned.
I met Ned and Meg a little more than 25 years ago. They both love the Lord and have given so much to the cause of Christ and hurting people. We were co-laborers in the early years of Sav-A-Life and the local pro-life movement.
Meg is the tail on Ned's kite. Today Ned is hurting and because they are one, Meg hurts too.
Ned is as an energetic guy who enters the room like a flash of lightening. Some people fill a room when they enter. That is my friend Ned.
He's fun. A bit crazy. Somewhat unpredictable? (I dare anyone to argue this point....)
Ned's presence is obvious because we just never know what to expect when he's around.
Ned is motion personified. When he talks he does it with his whole body. His mouth moves and his arms go in opposite directions and sometimes he is a blur of rapid movements with a mouth. (That must be the key to his ability to stay trim because he is almost always talking.)
Put a guitar in his hands and he can praise the Lord or Rock N Roll... often both at the same time. There is no such thing as Ned the church member, Ned the business man, Ned the musician... there is simply ... Ned.
Ned loves the Lord.
Ned loves Meg.
Ned loves his family.
I am blessed because of Ned and Meg.
It is no secret I'm a beach bum at heart. I've always yearned to live on the water ... any water. The sound of moving water is healing for me: ocean waves, rolling river, rain... anything short of a dripping faucet is music.
I hear God speak when I'm still and the sound of moving water helps my heart to listen more easily. "His voice was like the sound of many waters; and the earth shone with His glory" (Ezekiel 43:2 NASB). I also love the wildlife that surrounds water. A friend once stood over a frog statue in my garden and prayed, "Lord Jesus, bless the plague." We had put in a koi pond because I wanted a frog choir.
Ned, I know how hard it is to wait for healing. I understand the isolation, boredom, and the frustration of being dependent on others. I've experienced the toll an extended illness takes on career and on finances. I know the feelings of guilt that I'm a burden to those I love. The title of my first published article in Decision was, I Felt Like a Church Liability.
However, my greatest pain and loss has become one of my greatest blessings.
If I could trade places with anyone on earth and have their life instead of my own, I would NOT do it. In God's economy, nothing is ever wasted... not even time when it appears we've been set aside. God is using this time to prepare you to be a blessing in new ways.
You are not waiting on physicians. You are not even waiting on your body to heal.
You are waiting on God.
He is worth the wait.
I remember thinking that if I let go of all I thought I was suppose to be doing that I would drown and perhaps others would go down with me. (Our children were ages 3 and 10 at that time.) I expressed my frustration to My Sweet Doc (Dr. E. C. Sheehan). His words have remained timeless for me and so today I pass them to you.
Ned, when your heart and mind are racing and all you can think about is what you think you should be doing, let the river remind you ... stop struggling against the current... and roll over and float.
"But there the glorious Lord will be unto us as a place of broad rivers and streams; wherein shall go no galley with oars, neither shall gallant ship pass thereby" (Isaiah 33:21).
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pictures and text copyright Janice E. Gray 2013