Friday, December 24, 2010

"T'is the Season"

She's the only one left at home. The pretty teen with whom I'm snuggling, happens to be my daughter..."the baby".... "Zoe" (aka Shemaiah). I remember when our house seemed too small. I had recently remarried, and on the weekends when 2 of my husband's 3 kids, along with a grandbaby, along with my 3 kids, all hung out together at our house-- Whew!-- "privacy" was a foreign concept! Even during the regular weekdays, since my teen son always traveled with an "entourage," it seemed like we were always bumping into each other, begging for folks to hurry up in the bathroom, and always, ALWAYS, eating!(Which means, I was always cooking-- although my husband can throw down pretty good!)
But then, I blinked, and they were gone.
That's what it feels like. Of our 6 children, five are ages 20 - 31 --all grown and living on their own. One's in China(!!) So now it's me, Zoe and my husband, Willie. Until recently.
About 3 weeks ago, I was complaining to the Lord about our (perpetual?) struggling financial situation. I just didn't see how the mortgage and all the bills were going to get paid and leave enough money for Christmas. The numbers just didn't add up. That was a Sunday that I sat with my calculator, the checkbook, and a box of tissues. Then came Monday..... and God answered my prayer:
I was driving home from work and my pastor's wife called me. Apparently a family that we both knew, that had been facing extremely serious financial difficulties was now homeless. The mom, with 6 of her 8 children, were at a homeless shelter, which happened to be very close to where I was when my pastor's wife called me. I didn't take time to think it all through, but I found myself making a beeline for that homeless shelter. When I saw the youngest children in the window (ages 3 and 5), they started waving and smiling -- so ecstatic to see me. I felt my eyes welling up with tears. Next thing I knew, I was checking 4 of the children out of the shelter under my care, and driving them to my house. The mom was so relieved, I'm sure she cried and slept for a good long time after watching us drive away.

I blinked again... and my house was full of children.
For a week, the 6 - 8 of us bumped into each other, begged for bathroom privileges and always, ALWAYS, ate! And somehow, there was enough. The mom went shopping and chipped in what she could.I called upon my 25 years of "kitchen magic" (the ability to stretch a meal to endless portions!)And God provided. GOD PROVIDES. That's what He does when we forego our math for HIS.

Our "new family" left after a week, and I'm actually not quite sure where they are right now. But it's Christmas Eve and I'm looking under our Christmas tree, and I see no lack. I definitely don't see extravagance, but I surely don't see lack either. I don't confess understanding all that has transpired over these last 2 weeks, but when God steps into our human realm, as He did 2010 years ago, we humans are the last to truly understand it all. I do understand one thing: God answered my prayer, but according to HIS rules, not mine. He did the same thing when His Jewish children wanted a King, and he's done the same again and again throughout history. Will we ever really "get" that His Ways are NOT our ways; His Thoughts are truly higher than our thoughts. After all, from the very beginning, it was God's Reason that master-planned this miraculous Season!

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