Remember when life was simple and all ya had to worry about was raw chicken? I grew up hearing my Daddy say, “I’ve eaten so many eggs in my lifetime, I could kiss an old pullet in the tail and not bat an eye”!
That would’ve been in the 60’s. By the time I was keeping house, I’d seen the talk shows….. and what my Daddy didn’t know…. I soon began to build a philosophy of life on — RAW CHICKEN WILL KILL YOU!
But that was before Coronavirus. I now have bigger issues.
I realized I had a problem when I went out to run a couple of errands today. Post Office, Sam’s, Fresh Market…. those were my stops. I really haven’t been out much since this escalated to pandemic proportions. At home, I’ve been fine. Felt safe. So I *thought*, I’d breeze right through…. getting out into the world. I was wrong.
1st stop — the United States Post Office. I was only going to check my box…. so I went in the back door, and being an Enneagram 1, I even took a baby wipe with me, to open the door. I can follow rules and guidelines with the best of ‘em…. even EXCEEDING that minimum requirement! Got my mail, made a point to *not breathe* if anybody passed me, and then I hurried back to the safety of my vehicle. Shew! That was close! But as I sat there flipping through my mail, I realized “I gotta go back in”!!! There was a package too big for the box! Bummer. And it was some checks I’d ordered so it wasn’t like I could just *wait* ….. until the *fog of death* lifted. (My friend Ashley uses *asterisks* in her writing. I asked her what they meant — she said they were for emphasis. I find them entertaining and have enjoyed sprinkling them around myself — hope they aren’t an annoyance or distraction!!) But I digress…..
I decided I should move my car from the back to the front of the Post Office, so that I would encounter *less people*, going straight in, up to the counter, and back out quickly. It didn’t happen that way. And I soon found I couldn’t hold my breath that long. But I was 2nd in line…. it seemed hopeful. But there were 3 *add on* people… you know the kind — they’ve already been through the line, they got an *instruction* and were sent to the side to complete some task, and then told not to get back in the line, but come on back up. I hate that (unless that person is me). Well needless to say, in what became my 20 minute session of breathing that potentially tainted air, my mind was racing. The woman behind me had on a mask. Those masks just FREAK ME OUT! I don’t know whether I’m suppose to be afraid of HER…. or she’s afraid of me! But either way, we CERTAINLY did NOT discuss it. By the time I got outta there, I bet there were 25 people or more in that section, waiting in that line. But I got out (and I hope the masked lady did as well).
Next stop…. Sam’s. The plan was — Carl would meet me there. He loves Sam’s. Well I got there first. I was horrified at the traffic and the buggies and the mounds upon mounds of toilet paper being wheeled out. I’d been hearing about the rush on toilet paper and was uncertain about that. What’s the deal anyway? I, personally, am in pretty good shape on that one. I bought a boatload of the stuff a month or so ago when it was on sale; but unbeknownst to me at the time,…. there CAN be a HUGE swing in quality, where toilet paper is concerned. Even Carl (who works out on the job site every day) has complained….. actually the whole family was in on those complaints, all in agreement over my sorry toilet paper. Carl summed it up this way…. “even the port-a-johns have better toilet paper than this stuff”! Well, let’s just see who’s making fun of me now! Ever hear the saying “it’s better than nothing!”
But back to Sam’s…. I could find nowhere to park, and all the mass quantity of people were freaking me out. I heard what the governor said about limiting your exposure to groups of 10! This felt like 10 million! I called Carl…. ABANDON PLAN! ABANDON PLAN!— no Sam’s run today! I’m going to a regular grocery store! He was in agreement (having been married to me 47 years now… he knows me). But he did suggest “did we want to go grab lunch”, being as he was already there circling the parking lot, as well. “Good grief NO… have you lost your mind! Sweet and Salty Bars are gonna have to be our new normal! Forget eating out!” You see, I had just heard moments earlier on the radio that the NC Governor had issued a mandate for all of North Carolina that at 5:00 today, ALL restaurants must CLOSE! Only take-out and drive-thru type situations are allowed. Oh good grief… we gotta get home!! But… if I was going to be doing a lot of cooking, I must get to the grocery store first. So off I went to Fresh Market — to stock up on their cheap Tuesday chicken and ground beef. Always on sale — every Tuesday. Well thankfully they weren’t quite as crowded…. but they were out of chicken. But that was probably a good thing. I was in no shape to handle a chicken today.
Next stop….. Food City. In my frazzled state of mind, I actually drove right past the store and had to backtrack. Let me just say…. Food City was CRAZY. They were out of everything. The more I searched for *my stuff*, the more I realized — this must be the end of the world. Matter-of-fact, me and the cashier had that exact conversation as she was checking me out. Her words of comfort were…. “it’s been this way for a week now — and if it is the end of the world, we’re not gonna need this food anyway.” Hmmm…… and that’s when I told her, “well, you’re right. We won’t. And actually, I’m going to the Marriage Supper of the Lamb — and I don’t have to bring a thing!” She agreed.
I was thinking about a Psalm I’d been reading the past couple of days…. Psalm 83. In it Asaph calls out to God — at least he knew WHERE to turn when enemies rise up against him. He cried out to God: v.1 “O God, do not keep silence; do not hold Your peace or be still O God!” And then he went on to tell about the enemy that was making an uproar, conspiring — but Asaph knew what it really came down to was this: it was a battle against God Himself. The forces of evil — and the force of God! And therein the battle rages. All unrest that we see, does it come down to this, as well? The forces of darkness against God’s forces of Light? Satan hates God and he hates His plans. Throughout history…. he’s always tried to usurp God’s plans. He wanted the Jews destroyed because he wanted to stop the Messiah from coming. Jesus came anyway! And he wanted to destroy Him after He did come — but he has no power apart from what God allows — and He only allows what He allows, as it fits into His plans and accomplishes His purposes.
So we can know, always, that God’s got this. He was in full control in Asaph’s day (as He allowed and even sent other nations to attack — wanting His people to turn in repentance and cry out to Him) And He’s in control in 2020…. still using what and whom He chooses.
Good and Evil
Light and Darkness
God always more powerful than Satan
The battle rages — but God has already won the victory. All who came against Israel were really coming against God. And all who come against us today in 2020… it’s still a battle directed against God.
It’s Your world, Lord and Your war. Help me to rest and trust! And help me, like Asaph in v.9-13, to remember Your faithfulness… Your past deeds! I also do well to remember Your past faithfulness. One of my favorite attributes of Yours, Lord, is that …. YOU ARE FAITHFUL! It makes me feel safe and secure to know that You have a plan — You always have had — You ever shall have; and You’re always faithful and sure in your plans.
Isaiah 25:1 O Lord, You are my God; I will exalt You; I will praise Your name, for You have done wonderful things, plans formed of old, faithful and sure.
You don’t operate as I do — freaked out one minute and then “try this” the next…. wavering between angst and trying to get control. You are solid and sure. You are faithful. You are never surprised or caught off guard — You have plans formed of old. You’re not freaked out by chicken or Coronavirus or (as Asaph said in v.12) anybody that would think they could take possession for themselves of Your pastures. So I don’t have to have answers — I only have to have YOU! And I don’t have to be afraid…. v.18 You alone, whose name is the Lord, are the Most High over all the earth.
Revelation 19:6-9 Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out, “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and exult and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure” — for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints. And the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage super of the Lamb.” And he said to me, “These are the true words of God.”