Tuesday, August 21, 2007

A Time for Wins and Losses

Hello friends,

I expected to write much earlier today, but, blessedly we are having rain in our very drought stricken part of the Appalachians. We are praying for more, and it looks like it is headed our way. Already our outside temperature has gone from 89 to 77 degrees. Yeah!

I'm writing you between storms, and I thought you'd like to know that I made it onto the treadmill yesterday, just knowing I would be able to go the entire mile. It was a struggle to go half that distance. I still have an injured knee from my swan dive in the tub, last July, but it will get stronger.

More good news. I got paid for some stories. I don't know about you, but I just love paydays. For a writer, paydays come and go. Infrequently there's a windfall, when someone just can't get enough of your stuff, and then there's the rest of the time, when you crawl along wondering if some editor knows you're still on the planet. I'm not especially aggressive, and I really try not to do this alone. Just about everything I do, I do with much prayer, along with occasional white knuckle begging.

Yesterday afternoon suddenly became very hard. It was like a desert outside, and my beloved dachshund has been crated for over a week. He injured his back, a frequent disability of dachshunds, and we have been carrying him outside to do his business in a cumbersome pink, carry-along, that looks every bit like a tiny circus wagon. If Happy Dog only knew that it is PINK, I doubt that he would forgive me. On my third trip down the stairs, with my precious cargo on board, I stepped into an oven. Happy Dog took forever to find the perfect spot, and I thought, if I die out here, everyone going by will assume I'm sun bathing. "Oh yes, there's Mrs. Lewis, sunbathing. Now, what would make her do that in this kind of weather? And what's her weenie dog doing out in the street?" Needless to say, by the time I dragged the pink, cabana back up the stairs and huffed and puffed my way over to the big crate, making sure, with my last breath, that my weenie dog was safe and sound, I died on the couch!

I still had to get on that blasted treadmill, and I wasn't happy about it. Drinking about a gallon of water, I checked my blood pressure, discovering that I was not only alive, but my blood pressure was down, and my pulse was steady. No heart palpitations, but in a gloomy mood, I turned my worship cd on loud-enough-to-wake-the dead, and I started trekking. "This is for You, God, not for me." By the time I got to the third song, something happened. The words hit me, and I began to experience the worship I'd promised over morning coffee. I struggled with the rest of the afternoon, but I knew through each stumble, that I'd connected with Someone greater than myself.

Yesterday wasn't the best day, all day, but then, if every day were my best day, how would I understand that my prayer, as W.S. Bowden says, "is weakness leaning on Omnipotence."

"By Your strength, I walk.

By Your grace, I keep going.

When I stumble, You catch me in Your arms,

And when I fall, You carry me." From "Because of You," by Jaye Lewis, 2002

So, winning and losing, yesterday was a good day. I learned that God can touch my heart, even when I feel reluctant, and faithfulness is more than solemn promises. Sometimes it's merely showing up.

With love,

Jaye Lewis

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