My friend, Shelley Hendrix invited me to guest post on her blog during her blog party week. Here is the story I shared. You can visit her blog here:
The Hope That Changes Everything:
Mile markers are interspersed along this journey of life. Some I walk through with ease, others require mega doses of endurance. Endurance was required the year my husband’s business began to find its end. The bills andneeds of our family of seven were always before us. Would we make it out alive? Everything in my being longed to see a glimpse of God’s presence there in our midst. Would He come, I wondered?
I hadn’t thought about that honey baked turkey in years, yet suddenly, out of nowhere there it was. The memory of a meal we had received at the birth of our 4th child was immediately so fresh in my mind. I could almost taste it causing the longing to permeate my being. Maybe if I looked hard I could find a way in our over stretched budget to make it work.
I’m a very practical, frugal person. Moments like that are out of character for me. I live well under the constraints of a budget. Yet on that day all practicality went out the door. The lure of desire caused the calculator in my brain to start up. Surely there was a loophole with twenty-five dollars hidden amidst the bills. No matter how much I moved things around, at the end of the day I couldn’t justify my longing. I spoke of it to no one, I just let it go.
A couple of days later a friend invited me to lunch. Five children ages 10 and under along with my husband’s failing business was taking it’s toll on me. How fast could I say yes? A date was set. She showed up with her teenagers and home made cookie dough. Hers would entertain mine while we dashed away for a quiet retreat. As we sat over lunch she allowed my heart to reveal it’s weariness. She understood. They had had their own season of endurance.
Time passes too quickly in those getaway moments. Before you knew it we were headed back to our realities. In a passing comment she mentioned that she had left dinner in the refrigerator. We hugged our goodbyes as she gathered up her teens.
Life settled back in as I went to the refrigerator to see what dinner would be. As I opened the door, there it sat. You know what it was don’t you….a honey baked turkey.
I had no words, only tears. There was only One who knew of my longing. I had never asked for it. I had only wished. Lavish love unlike any I had experienced before spoke volumes to the aching places of my soul. I savored every bite, knowing that the One who loves me more than life itself was present, attentive, knowing all.
We’re in another season these days. Five months of unemployment stare us in the face. Hope comes in the most amazing ways sometimes pouring into us, reviving our souls to continue on in the path that tries the soul. In the here and now I have the mile markers of my past which remind me. He truly is the hope that changes everything.