Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Unexpected Card Expiration

I got behind in my regular trips to the library the other day, (I know -  shocking in and of itself) and when I went online to renew my now overdue books (not so shocking at all) the website told me my card had expired. Due to the fact that formerly I had my card for 13 years without having to renew, I was shocked.

Thankfully, the helpful resource person who picked up when I called told me that your card comes up for renewal every three years now. She renewed my card over the phone.

I am now breathing freely, and as a courtesy, she took off the fines that had accrued, making the Stanislaus Library once again, on my top list of places to go!

Monday, September 24, 2012

I've Gone t' Preachin'!

Those of you who read here regularly know that I am a believer. While I do post about my faith every now and then I  choose a broad range of topics to suit what I hope is a diverse audience. One of my goals is to put out ideas that will help us all to think a little deeper about this thing we call life. I am aware that not all of my readers share my political views either, and I welcome friendly discussion on any topic on which you politely disagree.

But today I absolutely must share the spiritual insight that came to me this past weekend, a couple of days that I devoted (along with my mother and sister and several hundred other women) to hear what God might want to say to us. Thanks to our speakers, and in particular, Linda Sommerville from William Jessup University,  for sharing such valuable insight!

Allow me to relate it to you exactly as it dawned on my consciousness for the first time, hidden away in two stories I had heard before. The first was from my all-time favorite author CS Lewis in his book for children (wink, wink) The Horse and His Boy. The second was an ancient story of Jesus walking on water during a great storm. I invoke a bloggers license to paraphrase both for effect.

The boy walked along the dark road, unable to ride the horse beside him, further beset by the thoughts of every dark thing that had ever happened in his life. Already a bit spooked by the darkness of night, he felt the hair raise on his skin as he heard a low breathing sound. It continued and grew louder and found that it had a voice as well. "Who are you?" he finally found the courage to ask. "Are you a giant?" The breathing  continued and grew louder and he found that it had a voice as well. "Not the kind you're thinking of." The was the reply. Then the voice, the voice of the mighty Aslan himself, said a strange thing. "During all the turmoil and trouble in the your life I was the one responsible." Indeed, Aslan was a giant of sorts, and although good, he was not in any sense tame or safe.

While the disciples found themselves on the Sea of Galilee enduring the mother of all storms, Jesus himself had stayed behind on the shore, and now came to them, walking on the water. For a few terrifying moments, they thought he was a ghost, summoning them to certain death. "Don't be afraid." He said to them as he got closer. "I AM." Not only His presence, but His identity was needed to calm their wildest fears. The Eternally Existent One who was responsible for the weather, and everything else, was coming to their rescue.

God, the Almighty Maker of all things is truly the Master the Universe, not to mention the Master of every storm. He is bigger than, beyond, and yet responsible in some unfathomable way for all the evil in the world. Even Satan had to have His permission to rebel. Now, this raises all sorts of sticky and icky questions, at least for me. But it also is the key thought behind the deep peace that I have, now that I understand in a new way that the deliverer in the middle of the Storm is also the Master of the storm.  We can trust Him - not to do everything that we want - but to do us ultimate good. We cannot know what He knows, as neither the boy nor the disciples could understand in the middle of their fears what in the world was going on and why. I don't either. But I can trust the Master. And so can you.