September 19, 2010

A Dangerous Place

A few weeks ago I posted a series of blogs about the "land in-between".  That gap between where we came out from to where we are going.  The desert place between Egypt and the Promised Land.
This is a place of danger as well:
Deuteronomy 25:17,18 (New International Version)

Remember what the Amalekites did to you along the way when you came out of Egypt. When you were weary and worn out, they met you on your journey and cut off all who were lagging behind; they had no fear of God.
All of us are on a journey with God.  My journey may look quite different than yours and yours from mine.  However, there is one striking similarity.  We have an ENEMY of our soul. 

Satan is cunning as he watches and waits for those moments when we are weary and worn.  When all defences are down he brings an onslaught attempting to disrupt and to see us defeated in our journey.

One of his key strategies is to "cut us off" from others.  He attempts to remove us from those who can help us  - other believers.  How easy it is to isolate ourselves at this point.

Also, there is a responsibility for the body of believers to be aware and alert to this strategy as well and to guard those that are weary and worn. 

To guard with prayer, encouragement and practical support.

Yet, if we don't share our difficulties with one another, how can others help?

I faced this situation this week.  So overwhelmed, weary and worn.  Let me share some of this with you.
My father has just been diagnosed with lung cancer and 7 days ago he called early Sunday morning to say that mom was in extreme pain and needed to be taken to the hospital.  She is still there and waiting to be assessed by a surgeon this week.  Her spine is being compressed and it is affecting her walking and may deteriorate affecting her bladder and bowel.
Then on Tuesday received a call that my 99 year old father-in-law fell and was being transported by ambulance to the emergency room.  I quickly called my husband and met him there.  He had shattered his hip and if emergency surgery was not done he would die an excruciating death.  However, the surgeon and anesthesiologist expected him to die on the operating table due to underlying conditions and his advanced age.  The intensity of emotions you can imagine.  Then by 5 p.m. we were told that he had survived and had just been moved into a room.  We are calling him Methusalah! But there are some health challenges as he now has pneumonia and very low blood pressure.

Thursday night my father called and was not doing well and this meant another journey to the emergency.  I quickly emailed a few friends.  Dear Christy called back and asked if I would like her to sit with me at the hospital.  You know, it is not easy for me to be vulnerable and part of me was wanting to say "no, I will be okay."  But I wasn't okay and she knew that more than I was able to realize.  Beginning to sob, I said I would appreciate that.  My husband dropped me off and came home to be with our son who was also wondering what was happening to his grandparents. 

Saturday there was a simulcast at another church that I attended (Beth Moore) and near the end they had a time of ministry on the simulcast.  I thought I was "doing fine" until another friend, Lena, approached and held me as I sobbed on her shoulder.  Even as I write this I find myself "cringing" a bit because I know I must have sobbed a bit loudly as the lady in the pew in front handed me a bunch of kleenex.  Then afterwards someone from the far end of the pew came over to hug me.

Why did I "cringe"?  I don't find it easy to be vulnerable.  I don't find it easy to be open with my deepest emotions. 

You may wonder "why then are you posting it here?"  I am surrendering to that which I feel God has asked me to do; to share some of the harder pieces of my life more publicly. 

I need the ministry that the body of Christ offers and I encourage you to reach out to others as well.

Galations 6:2 exhorts us to bear one anothers burdens.  But how can we bear them unless we share them.

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