The Shepherd was meant to be a gift for my 50th birthday, but it ended up being so much more.
I found the painting while visiting a friend in our new local hospital. They have a small gallery of local artists' work. When I rounded a corner and saw it for the first time, I was mesmerized. A small flock of sheep were led down a tree-lined path by their shepherd, while a sneaky fox peeked out from behind a nearby tree.
Never leaving my memory for long, I contemplated the painting and its meaning. I even dreamt of walking down that tree-lined pathway. The price was very dear, so I knew it was not meant for me to own this beautiful work of art.
When February 2012 came, I had my usual well-woman exam and mammogram. However, the breast exam showed abnormalities, so I had to have a follow-up needle biopsy. Being diagnosed with breast cancer on my 50th birthday was a bit of a cruel joke. Honestly, I can't remember much about the rest of that day. There was definitely no party.
2 Timothy 2:15 (KJV) Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
The surgery was a success. The patient had been wheeled into the recovery room, and the last surgical team member turned off the lights as she exited the room. The suite stood in disarray, soiled linens and used instruments littered the floor and tables. The weary surgeon headed home from the hospital.
There was a tragic car accident. A young man is badly injured. He will need immediate surgery. The orderlies rush him through the doors of the operating suite, only to find that it is still dirty from the last surgery. None of the team is dressed or ready to operate. There are no clean instruments to use. The surgeon sees that nothing is ready, so he turns and exits the room. There will be no surgery today.
Unprepared. There are days when I've got it all together, and others that it all falls apart. When I pray, read and study the Bibl…
When some people find out I am a Christ-follower, they like to challenge me, paint me into a corner, spiritually speaking, to try and shake my faith. A little girl asked me why God took her brother. A rich man said he didn't need anything and an old man said his life was too dirty to clean up. I don't have all the answers, or even some of them. God does.
1. My God is big enough to overcome your god. Who you gonna serve? Money? Fame? Power? Nothing on earth is bigger than God. When all that other stuff goes away and it's just you, alone in your room at night, God is there...whispering to your heart. He loves you and wants you, even with no makeup!
2. My God is big enough to answer your unbelief. His specialty is answering the really tough questions, like "why am I here?" and "why do You let bad things happen?" Think God is something silly that weak people hang on to when they're in trouble? Try sitting in that foxhole by yourself. When the bombs of lif…