I XOXO’d My Pastor!

You know that moment when you push “send” or “post” and it is too late to take it back? That happened to me one innocent morning. It is my habit to get up and spend time with the Lord in my living room on my big comfy couch. By my side is my cell phone and as I read scripture and pray names will come to me and I will pray that particular scripture for them or text them with encouraging words.

That fateful morning I was texting with my niece. She and I had exchanged a few texts and I went on reading my bible. As I read in the Psalms a passage jumped off of the page to me and I knew I had to pray for my pastor right then. I prayed that scripture over him. Fortunately we are also friends so I do have his cell number. Now this a guy who never really texts and will tell you he does not like it. He asked me one day “now what are your expectations of me if you text me? Am I to text you back immediately or at all?” So, you get the point.

Well, I started writing the text and my niece’s text broke in so I read it and was going to respond when I got distracted by my coffee maker being ready. The smell of fresh coffee drew me from my texting like the dog in the movie UP when he is talking and then says “squirrel” as he is easily distracted by the little varmint. Leaving my phone and cozy spot I went to fetch(pun intended)the beckoning coffee. When I got back to my seat I picked up my phone and finished the text to my niece (or so I thought) ending it with an XOXO (hugs and kisses). OH MY GOSH I realized too late that I sent the text to my pastor! I laughed really hard and thought “now what?” A follow up text was sent immediately apologizing for the mix up explaining that the text was meant for my niece.

I went in to the bedroom to confess my sin to my husband and tell him that we would probably not be going to that church any more! He laughed and said “I will be expecting a phone call from him later asking why I can’t keep my wife under control.” We both knew he would get a laugh out of it. Later I called his wife and apologized to her. She said “yeah, he came in to me and asked me what xoxo meant and I said “who is xoxoing you?” He said “Terrie” then she got a good laugh at my expense as he read the followup text to her. Whew, we don’t have to leave the church after all, the deacons will not call a special meeting, my name is still on the books but believe me I will be making sure I check my recipient before I press “send”.

Coconut Yogurt and a Warm Tortilla

As I walked in to the market by my house my nose was immediately filled with the aroma of fresh tortillas and I made my way post haste to the counter to be handed a nice, hot tortilla from the friendly senora behind the counter. I had stopped by to get some fresh tortillas, avocado, milk and other items to go with my attempt at Mexican cooking for Father’s Day. I love that little market and that is it locally owned and run by people who live in my neighborhood.

After paying for my goodies I left the checkout counter. My purse was ringing! It was my daughter calling wanting me to talk to my grandson about yogurt. My daughter adopted her precious son when he was 4 years old. He came to live with her as a foster child at age 2. I remember the first day I saw him. When I laid eyes on him my heart immediately knit to his. “Who is this?” I asked her. “This is Tyler. He is scared. Mom, he is a drug baby and has been eating out of trash cans plus his mom regularly locked him and his sister in closets while men came in and out of her home.” Poor little guy I prayed for him as I got closer to him. I introduced myself to him. He looked at me with his big blue eyes and his pink little thumb in his mouth. Sitting down on the couch I reached over to stroke his hair. He recoiled and turned away. Speaking softly to him I said “Hi Tyler, it’s OK”. Ever so slowly he moved closer until he was right next to my knee. As he lay his head on my knee I finally stroked that soft blonde hair and knew right then that this would be a lovely, long relationship.

My daughter took several children in to her home over the years. It was hard not to get attached to them but they all eventually were re-united with their mothers or went to be with family. That is the goal of the foster family system. It is hard when you are so attached and I quite admit that I secretly wished that Tyler would stay with her. She and I did everything we could to help Tyler’s birth mother going as far as taking her to a family Easter gathering and introducing her to all of our large extended family who welcomed her with open arms. Just thinking about that day makes my heart beat faster because at that very time I disliked her intently for the way she had treated this precious little angel. How could she lock him in a closet and make him eat out of trash cans? For weeks he had been hiding food under his mattress at my daughter’s home. She found the food when she moved the beds around in the room. Reassurance was what he needed from her because he was not going to ever miss a meal if she had anything to do with it.

Things did not work out for Tyler’s mom and she left the state and relinquished all parental rights. The case worker came to my daughter and asked if she was interested in adopting him. She said yes so fast you could probably feel the air whiz past your face. She called me and we rejoiced together taking this petition to the Lord as we prayed that if it was God’s will that every door would fling open and fling they did!

Now I am on the phone with my daughter and my 11 year old grandson. He has ADHD from the foolishness of his mother and her drug addiction. This little guy is really suffering inside. He cannot control his actions as hard as he tries. Before he was given the medication he said to me “I prayed to Jesus to help me my head is all fuzzy my brain hurts.” Tyler asked his mom to put him on medication because he was tired.

Putting him on medication was a hard decision for her and her husband. We all prayed about it desperately seeking God’s wisdom as to how to handle this situation knowing Tyler was fearfully and wonderfully made in his mother’s womb. God knew his unformed substance long before he was even a thought. He was protected in that womb, God knowing that he would be given to a wonderful woman with a huge heart for him and for children in general. As we spoke of what flavors of yogurt to get to help him swallow his pill I said “oh wait, wait, wait I see a penny in the floor of the store….wait no there are two, oh hello there are three!” There were three pennies in the floor right in front of me. How gracious our God is to allow his pennies to fall from heaven to remind me to trust in Him. Just the day before she had called me so upset and desperate I was going to get on the next plane to Portland to be with her. That night I spent in prayer for her and Tyler every chance I got. The Lord kept reminding me that He was there, in control and for me to trust Him with Tyler and the sanity of my daughter whom I love dearly.

As I walked out of the store I put the pennies in my pocket and patted them securely. We finished the call deciding on coconut yogurt. It is his favorite flavor and mine. “I love you Nana” came from his sweet mouth to my ear. Trusting God is serious business. Getting in the car to go home I smelled the tortillas and checked again for the pennies in my pocket. Three pennies and a warm tortilla. That’s just good good good.