Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Angels watchin' over me

"For He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways..." Psalms 91:11

How can I forget? It was August 1994 and I was just finishing up the song "My Tribute" at a small church in Philadelphia. I had visited there many times to sing, but that particular weekend was a very busy one. I remember, my late husband and I rushing to get there on time for the early morning service.

After singing the song and going back to my seat, I had a sudden excruciating headache, this was followed my an immediate profusion of sweat. An usher that tried to assist me later told my husband that there were huge rivets of sweat dripping off my face. I of course don't remember this, because upon trying to make an exit from the church pew I collapsed. When I awoke I was on the floor surrounded by paramedics, my memory after that is in bits and pieces. From that point on everything was a blur as I was sent by ambulance to the first hospital where I was submitted to numerous tests; that finally through the results of a spinal tap my diagnosis was given. I had a rupture brain anuerysm. There was blood in the fluid extracted from the spinal tap, which meant a vessel had ruptured in the brain and the blood had leaked into the spinal fluid. The doctors determined that the rupture had clotted but had to be repaired immediately!

I was then sent to a second hospital in Center City Philadelphia that was better equipped to do the surgery. A fleet of doctors it seemed from every nationality surrounded my bed as they told me the effects of my condition. The news was grim, chances of death with or without the surgery, along with terrible side effects even if I did survive the surgery.

I was lucid enough to ask the nurse in NCU (Neurologial Critical Unit) for a Gideon Bible (God bless the Gideons). I asked her to turn to Psalms 91 and I read God precious promises. The verse about Angels stood out to me, because I knew that if I was to go through this surgery I needed as much protection as I could get.

There are many "miracles" that lead up to the surgery; a world renown surgeon just happened to be in the hospital and asked to do the surgery, a woman went up to my husband and recited the 91st Psalms, unbeknownst to her that I was holding onto that Word; the blood vessel remained clotted until the surgery, and more. But after they had rolled me into the pre-surgical room and the nurse stepped away for a moment, I prayed for God to send His angels to watch over me and it was in that moment that I saw four very large angels surrounding the gurney upon which I laid. Their wings extended to totally encompass me, their heads bowed, their bodies kneeling. It was a very Holy moment as I saw as if I was outside of myself looking at the picture of me being encamped around about with Gods glorious angels!

A moment later they wheeled me into surgery which lasted four hours; and it has just dawned on me, maybe I had an angel to watch and stand vigel for each hour that I was in surgery!

I could go on and on, but after 10 days in the hospital I walked out totally restored by the mercy and power of Jesus Christ. No medications, no rehabiltation, no after effects. My surgeon said go and live like it never happened! But how can I? How can I forget? How can I be the same after being shown first hand the Love and protection God has for us?

Angels watching over me...angels watching you!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Why Worry?

Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?
And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:25-34

I love watching the creatures in my backyard. Birds of all kinds manage to co exist together (with the exception of an occasional irate Blue Jay or Catbird that swoops down and tries to attack). But mostly the birds along with the squirrels live together in harmony; each of them going about their ways eating worms or berries, the squirrels gathering nuts. As I observe them they don’t seem worried about the gathering of their food; they act as if the next worm will just be there when they feel the vibration in the earth and begin to pick and pull. The Squirrels aren’t wringing their hands and pacing back and forth on the tree branches chattering “Oh dear, oh my, where am I going to find nuts this time of year!” No they just go along with their little pea-sized brains that the Lord has given them and they TRUST that the food will be there for them.

This morning I saw a bird, just sitting in the grass chillin’, every now and then it would pick it’s beak into the ground pull out a morsel eat and then just sit there looking around. Not a care in the world. I guess it was at a sort of “bird retreat”; it was taking time out from its normal routine and just sitting and soaking up the goodness of the Lord! We can take some lessons from these creatures!

There is an old saying “Worry is like a Rocking Chair, it keeps you busy, but it does not take you anywhere!” How true that saying is; however Jesus took it further and said that by worrying we cannot add one inch to our stature. In other words worry has no power; but the power that we give it.

Worrying can make you age and even make you sick. And it can also make some people not want to be around you. I mean who wants to be around someone that is always looking on the negative side of things. To be cautious is one thing, to worry is a whole other ballpark. And it takes so much of your energy! When you worry, it starts off with a thought, and if you allow it to simmer, you’ll even get a “vision” of what you’re worrying about, then the whole thing gets exaggerated and before long you’re just plain worn out!

Jesus says, your worrying is not going to change a situation anyway , take a tip from the birds and the flowers, you don’t see them worrying and guess what? Your heavenly Father loves you so much more than He loves these things that He created. How much more is He going to provide for you!

I have spent so much of my lifetime worrying about stuff, it is time to take a “chill pill” and be like that little bird I saw sitting in the grass, just sitting there basking in the God’s presence, trusting that He is my provider, Jehovah Jireh.

In the words of one of my favorite songs:

Why should I feel discouraged?
Why should the shadows come?
Why should my heart feel lonely?
And long for heaven and home?
When Jesus is my portion, a constant friend is He.
His Eye is on the sparrow and I know He’s watching me.

You KNOW the chorus!