Thursday afternoon I was rearended on the Baltimore beltway in rush hour traffic. I was stopped when the lady behind merged over into my lane--much too closely. She barely bumped me, but it was enough to rattle me. Cars and trucks zoomed past with the two of us in the middle lane. That was scary, so I called 911 just to get a cop out there .
A state trooper showed up and held back traffic with his lights and sirens. He asked the lady and me to pull clear over to the left shoulder. I looked at my van and couldn't see any new scratches or dents, so I agreed to let her go. It's how I would've wanted her to treat me if the circumstances had been reversed. It could have been so much worse.
This morning I left the house at 8:30 for a much-antipicated ladies' event at a wooded retreat area close to home. A mini spiritual retreat with about 70 Christian sisters, a few of whom I already knew from my Bible study.
I felt good from the inside out as I closed the front door behind me. Hair was cooperating, make-up was set, outfit was comfy. In my hands I carried a Bible and journal, and my keys. Over my shoulder, my good camera, because I wanted to document the beauty of the setting today.
Sunshine, blue skies, a cool breeze, birds singing. All was lovely until..
I rolled my ankle going down from my front steps.
Splat! Fell flat into my freshly-mulched front garden. A flash of blackness filled my eyes as I collapsed in pain. All my stuff landed with a thud.
For a few seconds I lay there, stunned. Then I started to cry a little.
My ankle was throbbing , my knees were scraped, my pride hurt (had my neighbors seen me fall?) and I was covered head to toe in dirt and mulch. I knew I'd have to go back in and change tops, at least. Not wanting to be late, I limped as fast as I could, changed, whimpered to Paul to please start praying for me (and I was thinking he hadn't been or else this wouldn't have happened).
I got in the car and said, "Satan, you are not going to defeat me! You have discouraged me. You are trying hard. First the little accident on the beltway and now this. I see what you're up to. You don't want me to hear from God, to draw close to him, to get fellowship, to be strengthened. You want to keep me bumped, bruised, shaken up. But listen here! The harder you try to upset me, the more I'm gonna run to God!"
Then I texted my friend Bonnie to tell her I'd be there a few minutes late and briefly explained my little injury. She texted back, "God love ya. But you shouldn't have told me you had a mouth full of mulch. That made me laugh."
As I drove, I also thought of something that made me laugh: I took God literally when He said He wanted me get on my face before Him.
I also knew that I would have Christian sisters ready to minister the healing grace of God once I got there.
Sure enough, Therese greeted me and brought me an ice pack.
Someone I didn't know had ibuprofen.
Kim, my Bible study leader, is a nurse and asked if I needed a walker or crutches! Oh, goodness, no. I'm hurt but not THAT hurt.
Gwen remembered that I had weak knees to start with and did I think that contributed to my fall? I said it could have. I had been yardwork for four hours with Paul yesterday and was still sore from head to toe from that.
And one other lady exericsed her gift. She loves--absolutely LOVES--to cook. She catered lunch for the women--fruit salad, kale salad, chicken salad, ham salad, Tuscan vegetable soup, strawberry iced tea, and a variety of cupcakes. AND she came up to me and said she knows my future daughter-in-law and said what an amazing young woman she is. It does something to my heart every time I hear confirmation of what a gift she will be to my son.
The Lord ministered through many testimonies of women speaking today. Healing to my withered soul was taking place while my ankle responded to ice and ibuprofen. Satan fled at the name of Jesus. God's Word flooded that retreat room with peace, hope, light, encouragement, conviction, and healing.
I'm doing a lot better.