God Unfroze Me, by Carol

  • July 10, 2014

For those who do may not know my story, a little over a year  ago, I had just retired from my company, when 3 weeks later my dad fell, broke his hip and had to come live with us, needing someone with him 24/7.  Two weeks later my company declared bankruptcy and our financial retirement plans changed as well.   While we have received some, it was not what we had planned.  I was devastated.  Everything  seemed  upside down. After 16 years of empty nesting, our nest was not so empty.

 

One of the hardest things about the months that followed was losing a sense  of God’s presence.   Early in January, my counselor had given me the picture of enjoying the beauty of the stars at night until clouds move in obscuring the view.  The stars are still there, but I can’t see theme.   that is  what it  felt like for so long.

 

At the same time, all over the internet, everyone was talking about choosing a word for the year.  I decided not to bother.  early in January, I was am at “my Lake” wandering around, enjoying the snow, the cold and the ice wondering what the year might hold for us.  Afraid to hope, I identified with the frozen lake.  As I drove away, I thought a about choosing a word for the year.  “Ok God. If you have a word for me, I am open to it, but make it obvious it comes from you.”   And the word “unfrozen” popped into my mind.  Sensing it was from God, I prayed:  Lord, I would like to be unfrozen, but I don’t know how.”    I was ready for this to take a long time.  In fact it was weeks before I thought of that word again.

A couple weeks later, thanks to my sister in law’s generosity, I was able to visit my brother’s family in Montana.  (Gordon, the one who died 8 years ago).   On Sunday, as usual, we worshiped at his church. And during worship, God’s presence captured me though the song, “This is amazing Grace,.”  by Phil Wickham.    With tears running down my face I worshipped while the  enemy suggested this was not a big deal – all about emotion.  But I determined. I would not robbed of this and I was able to stay present and worship.  Music is my worship language and I decided right then to start listening to it during the week.

 

In Montana, I also got a big dose of nature.   Being more tied to home, I hadn’t had much lately.  And nature is also my worship language.  So even though it was still winter, when I got home I began to go the lake close to my house. Taking time to breath in the air, noticing the beauty of the winter./

 

On another note, while visiting my brother’s family, we had talked again of how Gordon (my brother) was in a very difficult place when he died.  In over his head financially with his business, he was very discouraged and had all but given up on God really caring about him.   Having had my own doubts, I understood how he felt.  There was a lot of  grief leaving Billings that week and part of the grief was being reminded his  struggle.

 

The next weekend I took the train to St. Louis to visit dear friends. (he is the former worship leader of the church we left).    8 years ago When my brother died, realizing I had now lost all my siblings he said You can be my sister – done – he became my brother.    Ten years younger than me he often reminded me of my younger brothers.   So it was special for me to be there and worship under his leadership.    Again the enemy tried to convince me that THIS time especially, with my friend leading, it was an emotional response.  Again, I determined I would not be robbed of this worship time.

 

Remember how I left Billings so sad about how my brother had given up on God caring for him?  Well the significant thing that happened that morning is that besides being led in worship by my friend and brother is how God met me in regards to that story:

 

That morning we sang   “At the Cross.”  The words of last verse go this way:

“And when the earth fades- falls from my eyes- and you stand before me- I know You Love me.”

 

And soon I was weeping.  And I moved from that sad place of how Gordon felt the days leading up to his death to the REAL end of the story, knowing that when the earth faded from him  and fell from his eyes as he died  on the mountain that night, he stood before God and knew he was loved.   I wept with joy.   I think, how sweet is God, to give me those special moments in my brother’s church one Sunday, and then give me that experience the next  with my  “other brother”   To be able to share that with him after the service was indeed precious –  and we cried together.

 

That weekend on the way home in the café car of the train, I was energized enough to reactivate my blog –  and began posting weekly, although it had been September since I had posted anything.  One of my friends said “I am glad to see you posting again.  I know it means something has happened.”

 

It has. God unfroze me.    I had forgotten all about that prayer and the “word.” Until I was preparing for this story of wonder.   God’s presence is real.  I just didn’t expect it to happen so soon.