Thursday, October 13, 2005

God's Grace in the Storm

Hello, Gentle Readers…

It is good to be back with you again. Thankfully, the cable installer has visited us and I am online and ready to spend some time with you again. I have missed our time together. But, apparently, God had some other plans for us. And that’s okay. We certainly learn more when our faith is tested, right?

I have learned volumes during this trying time. Only time will tell the lessons learned and how to express them to you. I’m not much for the preaching of those who give lessons they do not learn, nor follow. So, here we are at the brink of new discovery.

We left our home in Bay St. Louis, MS on August 29, 2005, knowing in our hearts we would not be able to return. It was a very sinking feeling. The truck loaned to us by a friend in the military was full of our “kids” (read furry, four-legged kind), whatever we could snap up in just an hour, and we were on the road to Mobile.

Without the love of our pastor and church, we would have stayed in our home during the storm and could have been hurt or killed. But, our wise pastor lovingly “encouraged” us to head for Alabama. He gave us shelter and food for three weeks while we tried to find financial assistance and a place to live. We had two duffle bags of clothes, personal papers, a couple of our Bibles, my guitars, and our “kids.” That was it. Our 40+ years of living zippered into two duffles.

We went back to Bay St. Louis a week after the storm to find our house had been saturated by 2 feet of raw sewage. It was pungent, to say the least. We were able to save some clothes and a few other items, but nothing of significance as all was full of mold. Mold is now climbing the walls, about 4’ high. Insurance (why do we pay them?) says it’s “flood damage” and we’re not covered. What a mess.

But God…

You know by now that with me there is always a “but God.” Our Heavenly Father has been so gracious to us. We have had people we barely know, and others we simply didn’t know but knew of us, give us amazing financial blessings. Other people gave us furniture, bedding, linens, a washer and dryer! There seems to be no end to the blessings of God! And I truly, truly believe that the blessings are there because we are gracious in receiving them. We are not owed anything, but by God’s amazing grace we are given all we need.

I could tell you stories of how blessing after blessing overwhelmed us. I could tell you of the friend who thought of our “kids” and blessed them with a Petsmart gift card. I could tell you of two friends who simply gave us a washer and dryer. I could share with you of the woman who sent us a laptop; her first and much-loved computer. Over and over the blessings keep coming. And we are humbled by the generosity of others and the compassion of our Lord.

We are now in prayer about employment. It will be necessary for me to obtain secular employment for a bit. I am looking forward to new challenges. Both my partner and I have interviews on Thursday, October 13, 2005. Please join us in prayer for wisdom and guidance in obtaining the employment God has for us. We know that God has already made a place for us. It is our task, and joy, to find what that path is.

To our friends, thank you for your prayers. Certainly, we have felt every one of them during this tragedy. Continue to remember those who are displaced and discouraged by both Katrina and Rita. There has been so much lost. And if you are able to help, please do so. Obviously, relief efforts need assistance. But remember that prayer is your greatest gift of all.

I am looking forward to sharing more of my life lessons with you. I hope you will join me again on this path of learning. God is our Teacher and we are His students.

May God richly bless you this day. May you know the fullness of His grace and the joy of His salvation.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Sweet Cindi...

I want to give you a hug. Smiles. Prayers for the Job hunt! Smiles again...