Life's mercies and fair flowers...


Once a week, I visit my eighty-year-old friend.

I walk her dog, help her get a shower,and put clean linens on her bed.

We talk and pray.

And we laugh - a lot - mostly at ourselves.

Sometimes I take her into town for appointments.

Two weeks ago, I forgot about her appointments and drove our truck to her house. Even with a step stool and a running board, it's no easy task for either of us to get her up into my 4-Runner. But with the step stool in the back of the 4-Runner and no running board on the truck, the task proved impossible.

We tried and tried. But she is not strong enough to pull herself up and I am not strong enough to lift her.

My friend held onto her walker, and we stood in the driveway and laughed at ourselves and our predicament.

It was no coincidence that a woman visiting the neighbor next door had watched our struggle from a distance.  She borrowed a step stool from the neighbor she was visiting and helped me get my friend up and into the truck.

As we drove into town, we rejoiced at God's providential care and grace - for seeing and meeting our need before we could even ask.

As I look back on the three years that I've helped my older friend through her disabilities (as well as the season I cared for my mother), God has clearly been preparing me for the specific challenges I face today.

After my diagnosis, I did not think I should write about my struggles with RA here on Pollywog Creek, but the things the Lord has been teaching, correcting, loving, scolding, and encouraging me with I believe are for all of us - whether the challenge is climbing stairs, getting out of bed, raising children, loving difficult people or all the above.

"I must try and cultivate an eye for life's mercies...And life, while it has its ugly swamps, its vile weeds, and its sharp thorns, has always its fair flowers to charm the eye with their beauty, or to fill the air with their fragrance..." ~ Rev. John Flowers Serjeant 1878
To be continued...