My mother-in-law can spin a tale that will captivate my children for hours. Although I enjoy writing, I’ve never been quick on my feet and I always fall short when my daughters ask me to “tell” them a story. I usually resort to one of my childhood favorites: The Great Big Enormous Turnip, but there are only so many times you can “tell and tell again” the same story and keep little ones interested. So when our youngest began asking me daily to tell her a story it didn’t take long before I ran out of fresh ideas.
While contemplating my delima, I remembered that when I was little I loved to here stories about my mother and grandmother’s childhood. So I began to recount stories about when I was a girl, and where better to start but from the beginning. Of course many of these stories are not ones that are etched in my memory, for I was only 2 or 3 years old. Rather they are stories that my mother shared with me from my childhood.
Stories like the day when I was two years old and decided to go on a walk with my faithful German Shepherd, Wendy. I was pulling my little red wagon behind me. Before Mom found me, I had walked a block, turned the corner & walked another 2 blocks.
About a year later I wandered off again. This time Mom found me enjoying the sunshine as I floated in a blow up canoe right in the middle of our neighbors above ground pool.
Another day Mom & I had gone to the beach. She accidentally fell asleep while I sat in the sand beside her beach chair. When she woke the tide had come in. She looked over and the water had completely covered my head. She said all she could see were my big blue eyes looking up at her as I held my breath each time a wave came.
As I recounted these stories I clearly saw God’s hand of protection upon my life.
I’m so glad He was watching over me & that still does.
The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them. Psalms 34:7
Three years ago I hit that middle age milestone, the big 4-0! When I say “hit”, I mean like a locomotive. I kicked and screamed as life catapulted me into this new era. Tomorrow I turn 43. I’d like to think I’ve learned a thing or two, or perhaps I just don’t have any fight left. But this year I am waltzing into my 43rd year with a smile on my face and a grateful heart! I am so thankful that God has given me another year to live, to love and enjoy the blessings He has bestowed upon me. Life! It’s the best birthday gift a middle age gal could ask for.
It was a race between life and death as the poisonous cloud slithered through the valley. A leak at the local water treatment plant had unleashed a ominous beast of chlorine gas into our otherwise tranquil neighborhood. I was in high school at the time and naively unaware of just how close I was to deaths door as we evacuated our home that early morning. (September 2, 1987)
Over 20 years later we had just finished eating dinner with some friends when it began to rain. In what seemed like minutes, the street outside the small cafe filled with water. We quickly said our goodbyes and headed for the truck. I have heard about “flash flooding” but had never actually witnessed it until that night. Traffic was bumper to bumper as police standing in knee deep water directed everyone to safety. I remember coming down off a bridge, the water so high that cars were floating in the access road to our right. We had no choice but to continue moving forward. Little by little we inched our way passed stranded vehicles and businesses flooded with the black water. I had been studying Psalms 18 and the next day as I read again the psalmist’s words I knew we witnessed God’s saving hand…”He sent from on high, He took me; He drew me out of many waters. He rescued me…”
As I reflect on my life there are many moments, either due to circumstances like the ones mentioned above or sadly due to poor choices on my part, that I have been in harms way. Yet God has been forever faithful to rescue me and lead me to safety. I am amazed at His loving kindness and marvel at His faithful protection.
“If the LORD had not been my help, my soul would soon have lived in the land of silence.” (Psalm 94:17)