Go Ahead and Take It Personal
Hi. I'm Jennifer and I'm an awfulizer.
If I have a stomach ache I assume its cancer and start thinking about who I want to speak at my funeral. If one of my kids complains they have a leg ache I think they have muscular dystrophy and I start planning my life around the Jerry Lewis telethon over Labor Day weekend. When I was pregnant with Samuel, but didn't know it yet, and was throwing up all the time and feeling terrible in the mornings I thought I had become diabetic.
I'm an awfulizer.
So a few nights ago when I read a friend's status update about getting lasik surgery I went to bed wondering if I should get lasik surgery. Of course I came to the conclusion that I should not get lasik surgery because most definitely something would go wrong and I would be blind and Jeff would have to be my full time caretaker and would hate being my full time caretaker and leave me for Ali, the new Bachelorette and I would be a blind old maid whose children are in love with fairy tale characters.
But then my little awfulizer, over-anxious brain began to think about all the possibilities out there that I could lose my contacts or have my glasses broken. Or worse: BOTH! And even though I'm not an end-of-the-world-go-buy-a-bunker-and-100-pounds-of-rice type of girl I began to imagine being in the End Times and on the brink of having my face melted off because I'm a Christ follower and not being able to see because I had lost my contacts or my glasses had broken. And trust me, there is just nothing worse than being as blind as me and not having my contacts or glasses. It is one of the things that get me the most anxious and worked up at any given time.
For example, when going in to surgery a few weeks ago I was neurotic about telling the nurses to have my glasses near by or to put them on me so I could see as I came to in recovery because without them I would never be able to orient. On many occasions I have told Jeff that if I am ever incapacitated and can't speak or move it his sole job to make sure I have my glasses.
Yep, I told you a was a little neurotic.
So...here I am in bed a few nights ago literally breaking in to a sweat thinking about not being able to see should Armageddon befall me. How would I care for my kids? How would I distinguish safety. On and on I went until I finally sat up, turned on the light and said to myself, "You are a lunatic. Go to sleep."
The next morning I got up and made myself a cup of coffee and sat down in my favorite, overstuffed red chair to spend some time with Jesus and read in His Word. I was reading through Isaiah and enjoying the quietness of the house and words before me. I was about to finish up when I flipped back through a couple chapters and randomly started reading in chapter 35. I sat astonished and in awe as I read these words,
Say to those with fearful hearts, "Be strong, do not fear. Your God will come, He will come with vengeance, with divine retribution He will come to save you. Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped". Isaiah 35: 4-5
The Creator of the Universe, the One who was in charge of making sure the sun rose that very morning was meeting me in my living room and letting me know He saw me and was bigger than my fears. He will come to save you. I don't need to fear not being able to see should the end of the world be upon me; the One who has already won the victory will come for me and open my blind eyes.
God could have very easily left me a note that morning that said, "Try leaving crazy in the bottle and perhaps you should bump your meds up to 60mg". I don't think He would have, but He could have. But instead, He sends me this little love note in the form of some random passage written a gajillion years ago by a smelly old prophet to let me know He loves me, He will not abandon me and He sees me. He is El Roi.
When I told my friend Cary the story later that day her voice cracked with tears as she said, "Oh, He is so personal". I hadn't thought of it like that and I absolutely loved that--yes, He is so personal and spoke to my heart and mind exactly in the way that I needed that very morning.
I went ahead and took it personal.