Saints Among Us on the Thirteenth of February

Despite the overall mild weather, this winter's had some rough patches, as all seasons do, and I don't need to list them for it to be so.  The day before Valentine's Day, though, too many things piled up all at once. We awoke to sub-zero temperatures and a dead furnace (again); then, after having just picked our van up from the mechanics a few days prior, John called me from work because the car's brakes were acting up.  To top it off, that afternoon the mailman delivered Aidan's emergency room bill of over $2,000, which, when added to the other medical bills from this winter, just made me want to bury my head in the covers and fall asleep until spring.

In these small troubles, God's people moved.  Dude fixed our cracked sink pipes while he was visiting, Mom O. made an unexpected pit stop-- and you know what you did, sneaky lady!--, we got a financial grant from private hospital donars to cover substantial amounts of our medical bills, and on that bitterly cold, wild, windy day before Valentine's Day, a family friend drove 45 minutes to our house for the third time in as many weeks to work on our furnace.

Over the course of a month, he and a friend who'd never met us before spent hours in the basement, puzzling over our finicky boiler.  They freely gave their knowledge, tools, and time to our family, and since they deal with boilers in their profession, we received professional expertise.  They wouldn't accept payment, so we received that help for nothing but a few loaves of bread, maple syrup, and a handful of heart-shaped cookies.

In the earliest hours of Valentine's Day, as the wind howled around the corners of our house and the temperatures dropped to nearly 20 below, even without the wind chill, I was awake and thinking of the water running through the kitchen pipes, the people who donate money for those with rotten insurance, of the steady roar of our basement boiler, and of the stunted shape of Valentine's Day in our culture.  Yes, heart-shaped cookies and lollipops are a good bit of fluff and fun, but the selfless love of others is a nourishing root.

So I bear witness and give thanks.


Rebecca said...

I think often of how the Lord uses others as extensions of His love. People love because God loves, people know a need to be met because the Lord helps them to see it and meet it. The Lord uses others as the means to bless your socks off. I've thought often about this ever since reading The Autobiography of George Mueller a few years ago. It is incredible, the outpouring of Himself through others. Important, too, to have eyes to see it as it is.

So happy for you.

You are loved.

Abigail said...

Amen to that. Since I posted this, we've had to take the van to the shop (again) and the car to the shop (again), and our boiler conked out (again). Guess who showed up (again) for several hours to convince it to work for us? Yup. SO thankful.

Renata AtSunnyside said...

This post is just beautiful Abigail! Thank you for sharing and reminding us that God works through people to provide for us - even in the little things!

Sorry I haven't visited for a while. We had a doozy of a foster placement ( and it wasn't in a good way). It got to the point where we were counting down until a certain child left. Right on the heels of that one, we got a permanent placement of two little ones who are adapting to our family well so far!

I've been thinking of you and hoping you and Bub are doing well!

Abigail said...

So glad that things are calming a bit for you! I can't imagine having a doozy like that in the middle of harvest. You've got so much on your plate, it's impressive that you're even picking vegetables!