Thursday, May 21, 2015

That's What He Said...

For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven,
And do not return there without watering the earth
And making it bear and sprout,
And furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater;
So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth;
It will not return to Me empty,
Without accomplishing what I desire,
And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.  Isaiah 55:10-11 NASB

My cat has been waking me up somewhere between 1:00 AM and 4:00 AM in the morning since January.  Since I don't get to bed until 10 or 11 at night, that leaves me only a "couple"of hours of uninterrupted sleep for a few months now.  

But, that's a story for next week.

I just needed you to be aware of my state of sleep deprivation so the following story makes more sense.  Today, I want to tell you about the surprise blessing I received this past week by committing to scripture memorization.  

I have stayed on the mailing list for our women's ministry back in WI even though we now live in NV, and a few months ago I saw a message to the women that there would be a scripture memorization challenge for the summer. I thought that would be something fun for me to do while I was off of work and home with Evie over summer break.  
I didn't realize I was supposed to start BEFORE summer, and I was dragging my feet at starting in on the memorizing.  I really had only planned on it when "I had nothing better to do."  
Something urged me to start this past week, however, and I'm glad.  

When I pulled out the program information, I found that we were to start by memorizing Psalm 1.


Oh, wait, it's only six verses.  Okay...I can handle that!  Phew!!!
One verse a day, and you keep building until the 7th day you're just reciting the full text of Psalm 1.
But I didn't realize HOW cool until I dove in and did it.
This past week has been challenging.  I've been extremely sleep deprived because, not only is my cat waking me up SO early, as usual, but I'm working at schools that require me to get showered and out the door almost before my daughter is even awake.  That means I'm coming home from work to pack her lunch, make coffee, make dinner, clean up the kitchen, etc. etc. etc. because there will be NO time to do ANYTHING in the morning.  
Then you factor in deadlines for getting paperwork to agencies for her services, bills to be paid, a house to clean, and...gosh, we need to have fun too!  
Add in my daughter's anxiety, and the fact that she's got a best friend out sick from school (which has got her all worked up each day when we get home and we have to talk through it); plus there is standardized testing at school which sets her anxiety sky high...
I think you can all tell that it's just been "one of those weeks" where you just keep putting one foot in front of the other and saying, "Summer vacation is on the way.  Summer vacation is on the way."  
Yesterday I had to send two students to the principal's office at a school...
that's the first time in 5 years.

Today I managed to drain the battery in my car 
because my new "smart key" is smarter than I am.

Are you saying to yourself:  Tammie, aren't you supposed to be telling us how God's word does not return void?  

Here's the all of this, I've been focused on God's word and I have stayed calm and emotionally stable.  (The key here is "emotionally stable"...ask anyone who knows me and they will tell you that I cry QUITE easily.)  I have maintained my cool, and even managed to share my faith and show how I can manage in certain situations with God's help.

Today, when the battery in my car was dead and I had an anxious little girl in the back seat worried about how we would EVER get home...I pulled out my note cards with Psalm 1 scrawled over them, one verse on each card.  I handed the cards to my daughter and said, 
"Here, can you help mommy with her verses?"  
And we proceeded to read and repeat my verses together, remaining calm, and looking at what WAS working for us rather than what WASN'T working for us.   

Once we were home and I was all ready to snuggle in for the night after a long day, I realized that I need to pick up medicine at the pharmacy for Evie or she wouldn't have all her blood pressure meds in the morning. 
What??????  I just want to go to bed...maybe I should just skip it and pick it up tomorrow.  It's no big deal if she misses a dose, right?
But, Psalm 1:3 ran through my head:  
He is like a tree planted by streams of water which yield its fruit in season and whose leaf never withers.  Whatever he does prospers. (I'd tell you which "version" this is from, but I don't recall and I typed it from memory~which is kind of the whole point.)
Yes...Tammie...God will provide you the strength you need to do what is good and right for your daughter.  Go, get her medicine...God will carry you through because you are relying on him.  Don't worry, you will not wither, you will not fail.

But, the story doesn't end there.  I got to the pharmacy and parked the car.  When I got out, the rainbow you see pictured above was there to greet me.  I was covered in goosebumps as God whispered to me, "Tammie, this is for you.  You are are listening to me, and you are obeying me, and I'll NEVER leave you."

Had I NOT gone to the pharmacy, I never would have seen that rainbow; 
you can't see them from our house because of how our house is positioned.  
I would have missed HIS gift to me entirely.  

Had I NOT been immersed in God's word this week with my commitment to scripture memorization, I would not have been quiet enough during these trying circumstances; during a drought of sleep, during some anxious hours, to actually HEAR what God was guiding me to do. 

God's word will not return to Him void.  If you commit to memorizing some of YOUR favorite parts of the Bible, I am certain that you shall reap the rewards just as I have. 

Pray:  Heavenly Father, thank you for the Bible.  Thank you for your Word to guide us, protect us, love us and save us.  Help me to store up those words in my heart so I can know them and hear them when I need them the most.  Amen.