Thursday, February 25, 2010

Lenten Series #8: Cold (brrrr)

I have something to share with you that has been on my mind for what seems to be such a long long long time... 

I know you were may be expecting something so deep, so philosophical, or some biblical exegesis, but today I just need to let you know how cold it has been here in Iowa!

Temperatures have been below zero and yesterday the wind factor made it feel like it was -15degrees. Now, some may say “Michael, you knew this before you moved there. People warned you. I warned you!” Well… To those I say SHUTUP!! (out of love, so keep reading lol) It was extremely frigid yesterday while walking from one end of the campus to the next, my legs became numb. It was so cold, that I did not go to the dining hall for dinner yesterday. Instead, I cooked in my apartment, which I rarely do during the week because of my busy schedule. Did I mention that they are calling for more snow the middle to latter of next week!! GOD, GIVE ME STRENGTH!!!

Today after all my meetings, I had dinner in the dining hall by myself while “people watched”. I looked around, and saw the Dhall packed with students laughing, talking, eating, breaking bread together. Did not think much of it. Seemed like a normal day. But as I begun to leave, while carrying my tray, I saw a familiar face, a fellow student affairs staff person with his wife, daughter and son. I stopped and talked to them as they were gathering food. He introduced me to his family. I told them they picked the right day to come to the Dhall, because of it being “Wing Night” and they even had country pork ribs, all the fixins, and oreo mud-pie for dessert. I told them it is normally not like this so enjoy it while they can and they laughed. After I said goodnight to them, they continued smiling, and visiting the different stations. When I walked out the Dhall, I realized that I had just been visited by God, the Almighty.

Ok, so I lied, here comes the deep stuff…

See, the back story that I did not tell you is that this family just lost their entire home, EVERYTHING, due to a house fire (including the family dog). Yet every time I see the dad, he has a smile on his face, very pleasant, and I could even see that love and joy through his family. Yes, they were fortunate that the college offered them a college-owned house to rent for a few months as things get sorted out. So on these cold nights they have a place to stay. But the fact remains they lost every family memorabilia; they lost their own individual/personal belongings (although the members of the town and college, including the students, are helping to replace items). They lost it all!! Yet when I look into his eyes and even in each of their eyes tonight, I saw glimmers of hope! They have each other, which was evident as they introduced themselves to me.

Well, with all that said, It is Cold! But How dare I Complain!! God has been too good to me! I have a roof over my head, nice fluffy pillows and three free meals a day. Even though I don’t have the best of clothes and material possessions, I have what I have and the ability to purchase more. All my needs are being provided for. And yes it may be cold outside, but I don’t have to worry about being cold in my apartment because we have 24hr maintenance. These seem like little things, but after tonight, my eyes have been opened to how big they really are!

Today, I noticed that whenever anyone asked me how I was doing, I would say “Cold!” We would laugh and talk about how bad the weather is (given that I only have to walk a block or two to go to my office and meetings) Now that I think about it, if that is all that I can say, what message is being delivered about the God that I serve!

A friend who frequent my blog and my FBpage recently said something to the tune of “Michael I prayer for patience on your behalf, spring will come soon enough.” I laughed that over, but now it truly runs deep in my heart. So I pray…

God of Longsuffering, God of Patience, God of Peace,
Give unto me endurance and teach me to be thankful for the simple gifts you provide daily so that I may be a witness of your unfailing love. Through Christ, who gives us strength, Amen.

Peace, Love, and Prosperity,


River Cocytus said...

Ps. 148:

Praise the Lord from the heavens, praise Him in the highest. Praise Him, all ye His angels; praise Him, all ye His hosts. Praise Him, O sun and moon; praise Him, all ye stars and light. Praise Him, ye heavens of heavens, and thou water that art above the heavens. Let them praise the name of the Lord; for He spake, and they came to be; He commanded, and they were created. He established them for ever, yea, for ever and ever; He hath set an ordinance, and it shall not pass away. Praise the Lord from the earth, ye dragons, and all ye abysses, Fire, hail, snow, ice, blast of tempest, which perform His word...

Hang in there... the colder the winter, the more verdant the spring.

Makes me want to hibernate some years.

RevMAH said...

:) thanks man!