Last Friday night, Dale Hicks and I drove down to Tampa for a fun weekend to get away from the stresses and troubles that had been plaguing us. Somewhere around Lake City, we got a whiff of barbeque and our mouths started watering for pulled pork. When we got to my dad's house, my back was causing me severe discomfort, enough to send me to bed while they drove to Plant City for the best barbeque my dad could find...and he's a connoisseur.
While they were gone, my pain escalated to ER visit levels. When they got back, Dale and I went straight to the ER and stayed there until 2:30 a.m. Neither of us got our pulled pork that night. Of course we were able to eat it the next evening after our beach day, but still. It was a disappointing start to the weekend and I don't think we ever quite got over that, little thing though it is.
Fast forward to this afternoon. My dear friend Lynn Puckett messaged me that she'd like to bring supper over for us tonight. Touched at her kindness, I gratefully accepted, relieved to have that little burden relieved. Lynn and her sweet daughter Ashtyn pulled up to my house a few minutes ago with bags of pulled pork, and sides from our favorite barbeque place in town.
As Lynn was pulling out of my driveway I emptied the bags. At the bottom of one was what Lynn called "friendship cookies." I didn't get a good look at them until that moment. I began laughing and burst into tears. A bag of Oreo cookies - my comfort food crack.
Just last night as I was going through one of my crying jags, I sobbed a little prayer: "Please, God, I just want some Oreos and milk."
At that moment, I realized that through Lynn, my prayer had been answered, and this week, Dale and I were going to share the pulled pork sandwiches we'd missed out on by being in the hospital.
If you don't look for God moving in your life, you might see this as a happy coincidence. I choose to see it as acknowledgement that my Lord is looking out for me, comforting me, reassuring me that I am losing nothing despite what my family is going through. I also see it as a reminder that small acts of kindness can be miracles in disguise.
This is why I can laugh through everything we've experienced. This is why I can find contentment and happiness while my life is apparently crumbling around me. I think this is what the Bible means when it mentions "the joy of the Lord" and "Peace that passes all understanding."