The coats were on.
The car was loaded.
Departure time was T-3 minutes.
If we hurried we wouldn’t be late.
IF we hurried. IF…
But if we DIDN’T hurry. Then we would NOT be on time.
And Not Be On Time = Late!
I don’t like late.
And I have trained my girls to not like late.
So one sister told the other sister, “RUN and turn off the lights. Be careful- don’t trip!”
The little sister did the run part really well. But she never got to the lights to turn them off, because the “don’t trip” part.....yeah, she didn’t do that part so well.
I was rushing around the house trying to "Not Be Late" when I was brought short by The Cry. Every Mom knows THE cry. It is not the same as the, “Ouch that sort of hurts and annoys me” cry. No. THE cry immediately notifies the Mom: “Run to your child. NOW.”
As I ran out outside, I saw my child lying on the front porch clutching her wrist. And I immediately knew that I would Most Definitely Be Late. Really late. Not that I cared about being on time any more. Because when something major happens it makes you realize how minor the minor thing is that you were majoring on.
I realized ONE MORE TIME that amazing truth: My Time Is Not My Own!
So here is a rerun blog post from when I learned this lesson last year. (I have to post a rerun because it takes lots of time to fix broken appendages!) Why do I keep learning the same lesson over and over and over? Oh well. Maybe I will REALLY learn it this time!
I brought my older girls to Abilene, TX for a Speech and Debate Tournament.
I planned it all out very carefully. Where we would be, where the ones left at home would be, who would be caring for the little ones when my husband wasn't available...I always plan stuff out carefully.
After many years of juggling varied and numerous events, sports, classes, banquets, parties, etc., my logistical abilities surprise even me. Give me nine people, four drivers, and eight requirements, and I can make it happen.
However all this planning can make me feel like I am in charge, and that is rarely a good thing. It makes me feel like it is "my" time, "my" schedule, "my" plan.
So back to Abilene.
I knew I was in trouble when I woke up Wednesday morning, the scheduled morning for departure. I felt bad. Really bad. I initially wrote it off to the inundation of oak pollen that has besieged us. Our cars are covered with yellow pollen and I can only imagine what our lungs look like. So anyway, it seemed perfectly logical that the pollen was the culprit in my feeling like a old, forgotten, wet dish rag (a perfect visual for all you Moms out there). I, not to be one to be defeated by yellow dust, drug myself around, packed, and tried to get out the door.
I "managed" but I kept feeling worse and worse and worse. When I had a fever Thursday morning I knew I was in trouble. So I dropped my girls off at the Tournament and then worked on getting through my insurance hoops so I could get to a doctor. I kept praying and praying for direction about what to do and where to go, but I have to be honest, I wasn't feeling or hearing a lot of direction from the Lord. I didn't know why, but I just wasn't.
I will not bore you with the long version of this story. Let's just say that there were lots of starts and stops and unsuccessful attempts and FINALLY after many hours and several bad experiences, I finally had a diagnosis and I am now on antibiotics and feeling much better.
But, and well I am ashamed to admit it, but I really pretty much complained to the Lord. He could have helped me not get sick, or got me to the right doctor first time around, or just directed me better. I mean didn't He know I had plans and had a job to do at the tournament and I didn't want to WASTE TIME.
Ahhh......there is the real crux of the problem. I hate waste. And I hate wasting my time more that all the other wastes.
But is it ever really MY time in the first place? Or, rather, aren't I just a steward of it, just like all the other assets God allows in my life: like finances, talents, people, opportunities?
Maybe my hatred of time-wasting comes from the fact that I never feel like I have enough of it. Every time I choose to spend my time on one thing, I am choosing to not spend it on something else- or rather SOMETHINGS. Because, there is always more than one thing I need to ignore in order to do what seems the most urgent or necessary or important at the moment.
So, back to my sickness, I wanted God to tell me where to go and what to do so that it would happen quickly and efficiently and I could get back to what I needed (or thought I needed) to do. But God didn't do that. Maybe He didn't direct me because He wants me to learn this lesson, this very, very hard lesson for me.
This is the lesson: God doesn't NEED me to do anything. He just wants me to walk through what comes my way in faith and trust and reliance on Him. It is HIS time and HIS plan and HIS way that is important. Not mine.
So if He allows sickness to come, I just need to walk, or maybe sleep, through it. It is what He allowed.
It came down through His hand of grace and is for HIS purpose.
My time is not my own.
My time is His time....to use as He pleases.