The August Smackdown

Texas in the summer is hot. People know this about Texas. Along with the Texas reputation for independence and friendliness is its summer climate. Its hot here.

So, when you’re air conditioning goes out, it’s a deal. Ours went out August 1st. It was a deal. It’s a deal that you get fixed and people pat you on the shoulder as you complain even when you know you need to trust God. 

August 2nd we went and bought ice cream among many other things at the store. Then, a man who looked like scary Santa rear ended our van with the ice cream in the trunk. It was a minor parking lot thing, but it still meant our van needed a 3 week-long repair job. It got a rear end lift at the dealer. IMG-5851

The grocery store was kind and we went home with three times the Rocky Road than we planned. Only one of us still likes Rocky Road anymore.

It’s kind of ironic or prophetic. Rocky Road. Get it?

The air conditioning and the van are pretty minor things in the scheme of life. Transactions take care of these things. They are painful but temporary. 

During this time, my mom was sick. She kept being sick and kept being sick and then sicker and sicker. Assorted antibiotics didn’t make a dent and so I drove the nice rental car our insurance gave us up to be with her. 

So, if you’re an accountant, the spring is a big time for you. If you are in college ministry, this is a big time for you. It’s like tax time in August and September. Busy. It was stressful to make the decision to pull away.

But sickness. Sickness is a different sort of trial. It takes over sometimes suddenly but sometimes slowly and then all of a sudden its a crisis that can’t be ignored. Things must stop or slow down so that proper care can be given. Sickness doesn’t check the calendar for an appropriate day or season. You don’t ask your boss ahead of time for sick leave like you do for a vacation.

It just invades and takes over.

I am so used to modern medicine that I am having a hard time figuring out how it can’t just be smacked down with a few pills. Just find the right ones and, boom, gone. We’re on the 5th kind of medicine and there was no boom.

We were all waiting for the boom.

Because I didn’t want to eat jello and cottage cheese for dinner, I went to a local restaurant to get carry out for myself. I debriefed with my husband, cried a little.

Things that felt important must take a back seat. Jobs that I planned to do myself get passed to others. Events I wanted to attend, I wasn’t at. I missed my dad. Absence of a family member in times like this brings up the grief in a fresh way.

Sickness brings life back down to the basics and that is painful to my strong desire to direct my own life. It makes me cognizant in a needful way to the order of my place in God’s creation and the impact of the evil invader. We are brilliantly made and pretty sturdy but surprisingly weak too. A microscopic thing can take over and cause horrible consequences, upending life and what we thought was important.

Sickness sorts priorities. We were sorted and its painful but freeing too. God was and is in charge of this mess down here. 

And, seriously, who but God can deal with it the way it needs to be dealt with? The show goes on without me, kind of humbling, but it does.

He gives grace too. Compassionate doctors, kind nurses, prayerful friends, understanding teammates, encouraging family. The next 5 days we spent I. The hospital were trying and the recovery is long for my mom. But, she is recovering and I’m so thankful! 

The August smack down was currently underway when I wrote this. At that point, Hurricane Harvey was forming in the Atlantic. 

Though the sufferings flow, I am assured that so does the comfort of Christ. II Corinthians 1:5






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