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Jesus is Here

It’s Sunday.

The Mr. and I are back from church after listening to a wonderful sermon about the temptations that come with Christmas.

One of the temptations described was busyness…the thing that often keeps us from seeing Jesus during this season.

I’ve been purposely watching for Him during my season of waiting for my ankle to heal…down time that has been difficult for me.

That’s why I have been using the hashtag #findingjoyinthejourney for all of my pictures and in my posts about my injury.

I’m not good at waiting.  I am used to rushing through life, which is probably one thing that contributed to my injury in the first place…rushing through the house.

I’ve become ever mindful of people in my life who are setting aside their own busyness to extend kindness to me.

Two instances from this weekend stand out.

The first occurred on Friday when the Mr. retrieved the mail.  Inside an envelope addressed to me was a get well card and a message from a friend…

She’s the mom of a couple of now-adult children who grew up with my own kids.  We’ve known each other for years and even attend the same church.  She’s also my Origami Owl rep.

As I read her message and looked at the plate she’d included in the card, I started crying (I’m doing a lot of that these days).

God led her to this plate…of this, I’m sure.  It’s not a “coincidence” that I’ve been using this hashtag, and she’s been reading my posts.

Jesus is here.

But God wasn’t finished showing me that He is with me constantly, which my heart knows but my mind, because of the hard stuff of each day, sometimes forgets.

Yesterday, the Mr. and I had gone out shopping.  While I waited in Dillards for him to take care of some business, I sat down and propped my leg on my scooter.

I was playing on my phone and randomly staring out when a very pretty gal walked by.  She was dressed really nicely; her knee-high boots make a clopping sound as she passed by.

She stopped just before she got out of sight, turned to me, and said, “You like my boots, don’t you?”

I was caught off guard.  I didn’t realize I’d been staring at her boots, but I had, just a few minutes prior when the Mr. and I had walked past the shoe department (my favorite), been telling the him that I couldn’t wait for the day when I could wear two shoes again.

So, her question wasn’t that far-fetched.

I’m an awkward person, not good at small talk or thinking on my feet…or in my case, on my butt in a chair.

I mumbled a response that I can’t remember, and she looked purposely at my cast and asked what I’d done.

I shared my story quickly, and she commiserated.

Then, she told me that she would pray for me.

Yes, a stranger said that.

But our conversation wasn’t over.

She then walked over to me and asked my name.

I knew she was serious about praying for me.

Then, she shared her story.

She told me that she’d had ankle reconstruction surgery twice (the second time after re-breaking hers when she wore heels and stepped off a curb, which I will NOT be doing, that’s for sure).

She empathized with some of the things I’d been dealing with physically in a way that only a person who has gone through this could.

The Mr. had finished his task by then and came up to us.

We spoke a moment or two (or three) longer before we parted ways.

My heart was lighter than when I’d entered the mall.

As we left, I began to tearfully tell the Mr. her story.  I told him that God was reminding me, through the actions of my Origami Owl friend and now this stranger, that He has not forgotten my struggle.  He is with me, despite the journey being hard.  He knows me personally, just as He knows all of His children and our individual needs.

It was also a lesson in setting aside the busyness of an agenda to notice people…to stop at God’s heeding and speak the word He puts on my lips or act in the way He prompts my heart.

I look forward to paying it forward…especially when I’m two-footed again.

I want others to know what I know…

That Jesus is here — not just during Christmas but during every season.

I want others to make a habit of #findingjoyinthejourney just as I am so they can recognize the blessings that God is pouring out even in the midst of struggles.

Jesus is here.

May this message be at the forefront of my mind now and after my ankle is healed.

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