John 10:10

The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. John 10:10

This verse has been ringing true this week. My mom & I have been in Galveston this week to visit my sister and her kids. My aunt and uncle live in League City so we celebrated Thanksgiving there with our larger family. We have had some of the sweetest family moments and biggest laughs despite a stomach virus taking out more than half our family at different times throughout the week. My mom got hit the first half, and me, my uncle, and counsins got hit the last part that knocked us all out from my mom’s surprise party Saturday. And those are just a few of the cases

This morning, today, my sweet Mommas birthday, we took the dogs for one last walk on the beach before heading home to Houston. The sky was absolutely spectacular. A sunrise that was astounding and such a sweet gift for our Creator. Suddenly, we’re joined on the beach by two dogs not on leashes. I’m holding both of mine on their leashes when a fight breaks out between Idgie (my little dog) and one of them. We start yelling and pulling them back and when that’s not working, I’m on the ground prying the jaw of the one dog off the neck of mine. I finally yell the name “Jesus!” and the dog lets go and mine takes off running for our rental house. I run after her realizing my hand is covered in blood.

By the grace of God, Idgie is fine. I have a few puncture wounds on my hand BUT GOD is so good. We checked Idgie out and then headed to the ER to get my hand treated. If you ever need medical assistance in Galveston, go to 24/7 ER at 42nd and Seawall. The staff was amazing! They cleaned me up, patched me up, but before we left, they came in with a cake singing “Happy Birthday” to my Mom!

While there, we got the devastating news and call to prayer for a sweet young family who’s 1-year old passed away (please pray). We stared praying for the family immediately, heartbroken by the news. One of the nurses seemed weighed down by something, asking her if she needed prayer, she shared that her 20-year old niece is in hospice (please pray for her and her family). She hugged us multiple times before we left.

After I got out of the ER, we took Idgie to Campeche Cove Animal Hospital where they checked her out, gave her some herbs, a Chiropractic adjustment (who knew they did that for dogs?) and some antibiotics just in case.

Back at the house processing the last three hours, and the week, I’m overwhelmed by the goodness of God in the midst of it all. His ways are higher than our ways and His thoughts higher than ours.

I’ll never be able to fully explain the broken fallen world, God’s sovereignty, and the effect of free will in situations. But I know He’s good. He’s been so good and so kind this week. He protects us and perfects us in the midst of trials. He loves us so much and His love always triumphs.

With these sweet families grieving the tragedies surrounding their children (the one year old and the 20-year old), I see God’s love and kindness in the prayer chain for the one taking immediate action and God’s kindness to the nurse to allow us to pray for her in that moment of heaviness. People can choose to look at the darkness of the world, become overwhelmed, and question where is God? Or we can choose to see Him in every moment because He is near and able to be seen. God is more heartbroken then we are at what darkness unfolds on this earth, and free will is the reason evil is prevalent, but God has positioned us for such a time as this to do something about it in each moment, to be the light.

He turns everything for good. Had my hand not been punctured, I couldn’t have prayed for that nurse. While the enemy meant to destroy, God used it for good by working through the situation to bring light to the nurse.

The stomach virus made the sweet time with family that much sweeter by reminding us not to take health or time with loved ones for granted.

We always have a choice- choose good and life or choose evil and death. The enemy wants us to focus on evil and death, but when we choose to look for God in the moment, we are rewarded by seeing Him.

I’m reminded today more than ever, that God has given the earth to us (Psalm 115) and that it’s up to us to bring about heaven on earth, as Jesus taught us to pray, by keeping our eyes fixed squarely on our Heavenly Father. When we do, the world gets brighter and His power and purposes prevail. When we give up, and stop looking at Him, darkness overtakes us and we become discouraged. I share all this with the hope that it causes you to look for Him in the midst of whatever situation you’re in- job stress, relationship tension, grief, loneliness, because the promise is we will always find Him. He is near to the broken hearted and draws near to all who draw near to Him.

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