Calling All Hinsons

"…that they should seek God…" Acts 17:26-27

Testimony Tuesday {Not on Tuesday Edition: Terri’s Story}

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With all this Summer Craziness we have had, I’m a little behind on Testimony Tuesday. Let’s pretend today that it’s Tuesday, but not really because Friday is tomorrow and nobody wants Friday not to be tomorrow.

Or I could solve it all and call this Testimony Thursday.

You pick.

I met Terri through a mutual friend on Facebook. I don’t even recall how it happened, but since “meeting” her I have come to love her posts and photos. Her posts are inspiring and her photos look like they are straight out of National Geographic.

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Told ya.

You should “LIKE” her page on Facebook, too: 24/7/365. That is where these photos are and she sometimes posts a devotion or thought as well. This particular story she shares today is from that page. It brought tears to my eyes as I pictured the love God has for me, too. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

~~~

I have never been able to fast. I make attempts, and within hours, I find myself making senseless, repeated trips to the refrigerator. Scouring the shelves for something! Anything! Even the one food I detest- liver- starts sounding sumptuous! I count down the hours, minutes, seconds until something can please my palate and slowly, gratifyingly slide down into my gullet. Hardly the attitude to accompany prayer and fasting. However, that all changed in April of 2012.

My husband, Bobby was transitioned from Ashland, Wisconsin, to Brookings, South Dakota. We were leaving our beloved home. The one we raised our girls in. The one his great-grandparents built. The one we thought we would be in forever. Add to this, we were also in the middle of selling my Mom’s home- the one I grew up in- the only other home I knew. Our hearts were heavy, yet we knew this was God’s will for us. In the midst of all of this, I inherited my Mother’s salt and pepper collection- 1400 pair! All of them catalogued as to giver, date given, and origin. Some sets were missing. The most important set in my mind- the very first – wooden bells…

It was a cold, rainy Saturday. We were in Brookings for a house hunting trip. We had just put an offer in on a home, contingent upon the sale of ours. Ours had been on the market for a week. We had many viewings, but no offers; I was nervous! “What if- it doesn’t sell; we don’t get the asking price; we lose the house we made an offer on; what if, what if, what if…? After a night of feeling like I was in a “Jacob vs: God” wrestling match, I woke up and announced to Bobby, “I believe I am supposed to fast about the house today.” I added, “Could we do some antiquing today? I would like to replace some of those S/P shakers. I know I’ll never replace the wooden bells, but…”

“Sure.” he replied. Bobby ate breakfast, I prayed, and soon we were on our way.

I continued in prayer, asking God to calm my heart, and to show us His will in our home situation. We desperately wanted His will in this, not ours. Then I added, “And, Lord, I know this is so insignificant, but could you help me replace some of those S/P shakers? I know I’ll never replace the wooden bells, but…”

Brookings has four antique stores. We began our day at one that has more of a flea market feel. A lot of junk in there- nothing very appealing. I walked down the steps to see what the basement held. More junk. Shelves of it. Bobby busied himself looking for silver. I meandered, not very intent on anything. Not there at least. And then I saw them. Wooden bells! Salt and Pepper shakers! I stood there with my jaw hanging! I shook my head. I must be seeing things! I looked up and said, “Lord? Really?”

Now it may sound silly to some, but at that moment, I felt the Lord’s arms wrap around me, His love for me so ridiculously obvious! I would have to be blind not to see it! If He loved me so much to give me that which I said He couldn’t- a simple little pair of S/P shakers- would He not also take care of the details of our home? Tears of gratitude, humility, disbelief – a mixture of emotions- flowed down my face. Why on earth did I think that the God who owns the cattle on a thousand hills could not hand me a measly pair of salt and pepper shakers? The very God who formed me. The God who saved me. I was refreshingly ashamed.

That was not the first time I doubted Him, and unfortunately, I cannot say it will be the last. I have to wonder if God doesn’t get a little kick out of my frailty. I like to picture Him, rubbing His chin, snickering while listening to me, saying to Himself, “Ha! Just wait until she gets to the next shelf- second one from the bottom- towards the wall…yup.. right there. BINGO!” Perhaps He called the angels over and said, “Guys! Come here! In just a second she is going to realize, once again, just Who I am, and how much I love her. There she goes! Look at that disbelief. Ahh… she gets it. Here come the tears. Score.”

God forgive me. Thank you for putting up with me and my feeble, doubting-Thomas ways. Every time I look at those wooden bells, may I be reminded in a very tangible way, of your outstanding, lavish love for one such as I.

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