It was pea soup. Murk. London Harbor, judging by the thick fog that had rolled in overnight, blurring the landscape in greys.
Soldiering through, I deposited Inspector Gadget and his waffle-fueled running legs at the high school, then pointed the van toward home. I couldn’t help, however, seeing the Rise ‘n Roll Bakery sign that sprang at me from the dense and clinging mist. Sensing the Lord’s call, I wheeled in, handpicked a solid dozen, and fought my way back through the haze.
As it often happens here, it was Little Schrock who nailed it. Upon hearing my weather report à la Al Roker, he said matter-of-factly, “The sun’s not doing its job.”
Boom. And hadn’t I said that very thing to Mr. Schrock over the years with the tiniest twist and tweak? “Your son’s not doing his job.”
Why, yes. Yes, I had. There were times when some muscle was needed, an “I mean business” voice infused with undertones of “cut that out” and “you had better” that could move things along. Sometimes, life required intervention in bass. Other times, it required doughnuts.
If the sun’s not been working and the sons aren’t always working, there are others who surely have been; namely, my guardian angels. After two close calls two days in a row (both on the road), I am left to wonder what the Almighty is saying.
The first one came on my way home from an early-morning writing session where, thankfully, baristas were busily working. The already-dimpled bumper of the BMV (Blue Mommy Van for you new readers) had only just cleared an intersection when something large and white lunged through, heading north at high speed. The driver had blown the stop sign.
As I told The Mister later, “If I had taken a second or two longer at a stop sign or slowed down the slightest bit along the way, that would’ve been it.” A direct impact on the driver’s side, and a spot would’ve opened up in my kitchen and right here, Monday edition, page three.
But it didn’t. Not that day, and not the next day, either, when I had a close brush while running. Somewhere, two tired guardians are taking a break. Which probably means I shouldn’t be leaving The Three just now.
In further brief reflection, the only thing that occurs to me is that the Lord is merely confirming this one, simple thing—that He’s not finished with me down here. For now, four young men still need a spunky, curly-headed mom. For now, Mr. Schrock still needs a live wire to keep him un-bored (read, occasionally agitated, entertained and stirred up).
Oh, yes. And to hang up his pants.
There is one other thing that comes to me as I think about what may have been, and that is this, that God really is in charge. From the biggest things to the least and the littlest, He is in control. He sees it all, never misses a thing and orders our every step. Down to the split-second timing.
This sure and certain knowledge ought to settle ever deeper into our DNA. Should be the solid rock on which we stand, the port of calm in every storm. Knowing this, really knowing it, enables us to live freely without fear. Not without responsibility and common sense, but without fear. And that is what He wants.
How often we live our days as orphans, as those who’ve been left and abandoned. In grasping and striving, we try to “make it work.” Because we don’t think He will do it. In obsessive planning and worry, we control every outcome. Because we don’t know that He’s able, or cares.
This is not what God has intended. We’ve been handcrafted, handpicked and chosen. No assembly line kids are we. Rather, we are different and colorful, unique as a snowflake, and drafted according to a plan. His plan. He’s chosen us, see, and if we choose Him, He adopts us straight into His clan.
If you are alive, then you have a purpose. There’s something you’re made to do. Do it. There’s a place that you’re made to fill. Fill it. There’s a corner that you’re made to brighten. Get busy!
Someone else could possibly do what you do, but they’re not you, so it would be different. Your flair, your twist, your spark would be gone, so embrace what you have and then share it.
In all of it, live without fear. Work without fear. Play without fear. Give and sing and build and create without fear. You can because you’re not an orphan.
It’s not up to you to make it all work, to ensure that everything happens. The truth of it is that God, He is able, and He is still on the throne. He can make it all work together for good, and He will make your paths straight. His timing is perfect right down to the second.
Rest there. Trust Him. You’re no orphan.