Read: 1 Corinthians 12:4-7

Years ago Dave and I were involved in a group of young married couples at our church. One evening the group decided to visit the older folks from church and sing with them. Now, I am not a song leader. I can sing, but I don’t lead singing. But for whatever reason, the gentleman who usually led the songs asked me to do it.

I said yes. After all, maybe I am a song leader and I just don’t know it yet. How exciting! I have always wanted to be a singer. So, we begin. The first house went all right, but I was jiggly on the inside. The second house went all right, but my insides were getting more jumbly and I was having trouble thinking. By the fourth house, I could no longer remember the beginning notes of the hymns, the words were a blur on the page and I froze. I quietly turned to the gentleman who had invited me to lead and asked him to take over.

You see, I am not put together to lead singing. I love to sing, but leading is a completely different ballgame. I’m glad to know that about myself, but finding it out was a scary event.

How about you? What have you tried only to realize it wasn’t your thing? What would you like to try?

My decision to see a kinesiologist came after some friends observed me getting off a bar height chair at a restaurant to go to the ladies room. When I returned to the table, they asked me what in the world was wrong. I explained my right leg was giving me trouble, specifically my hip, and sitting for any length of time caused pain.

Read: 1 Corinthians 12:12-13

I have been seeing a kinesiologist for a little over a month. In simplest terms, his job is to observe how my body moves to identify problem areas. For instance, he identifies when one muscle is not doing it’s share and leaving the work to a different muscle not as well suited for the task. Then he teaches my muscles to each do their part.

We will get into that more tomorrow, but my question this Monday morning is this: are you fulfilling your God-given role? Are you tempted to think that since you are a foot rather than a hand, you aren’t important?

Just as our physical bodies are made up of many parts, so is the body of Christ. We don’t all play the same role or have the same abilities. We are all needed in the body!

Get ready to step up and step out! Here we go!!

Today is an opportunity to step out of the chaos of work and life to be refreshed and renewed. How will you sit at Jesus’ feet today to learn from him?

Listen…

There’s no better place than the feet of Jesus!

For everything there is a season,
a time for every activity under heaven.
A time to be born and a time to die.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-2

Today those who knew and loved Lena will gather together to celebrate her life! I thought it fitting to honor her by dedicating this post to her.

Three years ago I stopped in at her home to check on her. Her significant other, Don, was in the hospital and worried about her. They lived close to me, so I asked if it was okay to check in on her. Of course, Don was thrilled to have another set of eyes looking in.

From the first moment I saw her, I was captivated. She invited me into her home and we talked for a long time that first day. Her joy and compassion oozed out of every pore. It didn’t seem like there was a resentful bone in her body. My husband and I were dealing with some pretty hard things at the time and Lena was a fresh, cool drink of water. I left that day wondering how soon I could go back without being a nuisance.

Over the next three years our friendship grew and soon it was Dave and I going to visit Don and Lena. And then we shared dinners together and long evenings on the porch or around the table. Eventually, as Lena’s condition worsened, I would sit by her bed and watch HGTV with her while Dave visited with Don.

I will miss Lena. Her unconditional love and acceptance was a gift to me. She never expected anything of me other than to be myself. Her space was big enough for everyone and whatever you brought with you. She just wiggled over and made room.

I will miss Lena. Her resilient spirit amazed me. Her life was filled with joy, laughter, hardship and tragedy but she lived it all without becoming bitter or hardened. She rolled with the punches and came out shining like gold.

I will miss Lena. The mischievous twinkle in her eye when she told stories of long ago was unmistakable. She laughed easily, loved deeply and forgave quickly.

I went to Lena’s that day to make sure she was all right and I walked away with the greatest gift a person can receive – a true friend. I am the one who benefited from that walk up the road. And I’m so glad I took it.

Today we will celebrate Lena’s life but I will celebrate God’s goodness to me. Oh what a joy it has been to know this woman and experience a bit of Jesus on earth through her.

Read: Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

This passage keeps coming to mind this week. As we hurry through life, it’s so easy to forget that there is enough time. We have all we need. There is a time for everything under the sun – knowing when it’s time to move on and when it’s time to stay is the key to success.

May God grant you wisdom today to know “the time” of life you are experiencing.

We have all the time we need. What happens when we have enough time for others? What happens when others have enough time for us?

Recently my daughter, Emily, shared with me what it meant to her for someone to share with her all the time she needed. My daughter is in full nesting mode. If you aren’t familiar with nesting, it is when a pregnant woman approaches her due date and she gathers all the necessary staples to prepare for the birth of her child. Emily wanted to stock up at a local warehouse store but wasn’t able to go with her husband. It turned out she needed to go alone with her two-year-old in tow. Her one full cart turned into two carts after it was boxed and ready for the car. And then she tells me…

The part I had been dreading – loading the car. Did I mention I had a lot of stuff? I took a deep breath and started to load. The first box was heavy; then I bent down to start pulling items from the bottom of the cart. I won’t get into the details, but I was very uncomfortable. As I stood up, a lady was walking past and asked, “would you mind if I helped you?” I paused, considering whether or not I really needed the help, and then said, “yea, that would be great.”

She handed items to me, helping me play life size tetris to get everything loaded safely. She took the first empty cart to the stall – I glanced up and watched her and noticed she had come with someone else. She came back and continued to help me load my car, insisting she do the lifting. Filled with more gratitude than I knew how to express, I said “thank you so much, you most certainly did not have to do this.” 

She promptly responded, “I have all the time we need – my dad is retired so we are just out and about this morning.” 

She waited till the final item was loaded and then took my second cart to the cart stall.

She was an angel to me today – entirely a stranger, stepping in to lend a hand to a young expectant mother. Her genuine offer of time made me feel valued, seen, and treasured. Her act of kindness reminded me that my heavenly father values and sees and treasures me too; and knows the ins and outs of my every need. 

Do you have time to help someone today? You might just be someone’s angel!

Listen: Just Be by Kim Walker Smith

Before you click out of this post thinking, “I don’t have time to listen to a song right now!” let me tell you, it will take less than five minutes of your time. Will you choose to be concerned about the details or sitting at the feet of Jesus?

Remember: we have all the time we need!

How often in a day do you say “Hurry up!” That phrase pops into my head way more than I care to admit.

I am most likely to say, “Come on! Hurry up!” when I am driving. No one drives quite as well as I do…said everyone! So it seems I am in a hurry when I drive. Is that because I left late or because I can’t enjoy the present moment of being in the car? Hmmm.

Katlyn, my youngest daughter, and I flew to Florida on Friday for the weekend. I love her like everything, but she moves at a sloth’s pace. She is fastidious about keeping her possessions with her and organized. That takes more time than you might imagine. She double checks when she leaves the car or house or restaurant or wherever we are to be certain doors are locked, windows are up, possessions are claimed. Time consuming! I want to say, “Hurry!”

She doesn’t seem to be in a particular rush when we are walking somewhere, like from the car to the beach. She strolls. From the beach to the car – she strolls. I want to say, “Hurry!”

Her get-ready routine is painstakingly slow. Hair drying and styling, make-up application, choosing an outfit – all in slow gear. I want to say, “Hurry!”

On Saturday we made a stop at a fabric/sewing shop that I frequent in Florida. As luck would have it, I found some things to buy. We planned how much time we could spend at the shop but unbeknownst to Katlyn, there was plenty of cushion in our schedule. As the agreed upon departure time crept closer, she got a bit antsy. She wanted to say, “Hurry!”

But Donna, the sales clerk, was in no hurry. She was thorough and helpful. You know, the kind who stops to meet your gaze when you ask a question. She didn’t appear to value the efficiency of multi-tasking. I know this about her and deeply appreciate Donna as a person, so I wasn’t flustered by it. Katlyn was. We needed to hurry Donna along. (I do offer a pat on the back to Katlyn at this point because she willingly slowed herself down to appreciate Donna’s thorough approach to cashiering.)

So for the last three days, I have bit my tongue. I may have said, “Hurry!” once or twice, but for the most part I told myself to take a breath. I slowed my steps. I sat down, I waited, I rested.

It seems I want others to drive at my pace, walk at my pace, live at my pace. And when I am hurried, others need to be hurried as well. When I am strolling, others may also stroll.

As I lay in bed today, in that state of semi-consciousness between deep sleep and awake, I experienced a sense of urgency. I felt more than heard the words “hurry, hurry, hurry!” It took me a few minutes of listening to understand who needed to hurry.

My body, mind and soul seemed to be crying out to God to hurry. Hurry and answer my prayers for my children, for my friends, for me. WHY IS THIS TAKING SO LONG??? Can’t you hurry? Can’t they hurry? Do you delight in making me wait? Do you enjoy the stroll?

I heard these words as I lay there,

But you must not forget this one thing, dear friends: A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day. The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. He is being patient for your sake…

2 Peter 3:8-9

So I am challenged to slow down and enjoy and trust. Trust that God has it all in his hands. Enjoy the present moment because it only comes by once. Slow down so I can experience all of the day. Has anyone ever said, “I wish I had hurried more?”

Are you in a hurry? How can you slow down today to better enjoy this present moment? Even the most painful moments of life can be savored for what they teach us.

Today my friend, Lena, passed from this life into the next. In this painful moment, I want to savor what she taught me. I reflect on her kindness and resilience. I celebrate her life. So even in sadness, I enjoy this moment of remembering.

We have all the time we need. What can this moment teach you?

Until next time…

May the Lord bless you and protect you.

May the Lord smile on you and be gracious to you.

May the Lord show you his favor and give you his peace.

Numbers 6:24-26

Last week we focused on being learners. I emphasized that there is no pressure to know it all right now because there are just lots of things we just haven’t learned yet.

Another mantra that goes hand in hand with “we are all just learning here” is “We have all the time we need!”

There is a song by Alabama that says it so well! We are in such a hurry to get everywhere and get everything done we have no time to enjoy the process, the present moment.

This week, I invite you to slow down. Step out of the chaos of the hurry and take a breath. Enjoy the moment because it will only come by once.

Read: Luke 10:38-42

What choice are you making today? Worry over the details or sitting at the feet of Jesus?