Wow! Did I ever get hit with a “wind-knocker” curveball, you know, the kind that knocks the wind right out of you. I went through the preliminary steps of breathing and absorbing the reality, assessing my strengths, etc. Now, it’s tough decision-making time. How does one make those hard challenging decisions when recovering from a “wind-knocker”? Good question… I’m happy to share as soon as I know. I’ve never really thought too much about making those tough decisions until recently. I have an immune disease which they tell me is rare, but not as uncommon as one might think; how’s that for an oxymoron? Medical science has come a long way but my choices feel like I’m “choosing between the devil and the deep blue sea”, a little like our political choices for president this year; but I digress.
I had a dear friend many years ago diagnosed with cancer; came out of the blue… A “wind-knocker”! Her prognosis was grim and chemotherapy the only treatment. Being a nurse she knew the fight before her. She and I prayed for healing. My friend never gave up hope. Of course she had her down days when everything overwhelmed but they were few and far between. We prayed, cried and laughed together up till her very last breath. Believe me we did a whole lot more laughing than we did crying.
Tough decisions needed to be made in her life the year she was diagnosed. I don’t recall her agonizing over one of them. I wish I possessed her confidence in making difficult decisions. Her world didn’t spin, she possessed an abnormal peace. Of course, I recognize that kind of peace only comes from a deep abiding relationship with the Lord. It was my friend’s relationship with Jesus that gave her confidence in making those tough decisions. For her to live was to walk with Jesus; to die was to be with Jesus. She used to tell me, “You know Sandra, I’m God’s most spoiled child”. She never doubted for a moment that God was on her side, that God loved to bless her, and wanted only the best for her. She possessed complete assurance God would be waiting for her with open, loving arms when she crossed over into eternity.
If I’ve learned anything in my lifetime it’s that walking with the Lord requires faith. The Bible talks about mustard seed size faith being able to move mountains; both literally and spiritually. Boy, do I need a mountain moved. Perhaps, for the 1st time, I’m beginning to understand the root of the mustard seed. The passage of Scripture often quoted is Matthew 17:20, “Jesus replied [to his Disciples]. ‘Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, “move from here to there and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” My focus on this passage was always about the failure of possessing to little faith. But there’s more to be understood. Another passage much less quoted is Matthew 13:31-32, “… The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field; and this is smaller than all other seeds, but when it is full-grown, it is larger than the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches”. Faith is the fruit of abiding in Jesus, and like all fruit it takes time to come to maturity. In Matthew chapter 17 the Disciples were upset because they couldn’t cast out a demon. Their faith was in their own skill. They were trying to muster up the ability in their own strength and power, not relying on the One who would grow their faith. We each have a tiny mustard seed planted within. A tiny mustard seed when planted in a garden being nutured to maturity will grow to be a tall tree like plant, big enough to give the birds of the air a place to rest.
My mustard seed size faith is being nurtured watered and fed with each challenging circumstance. Times like these are where ones faith and beliefs meet ones fear. More to come.
Until next time,