Monday’s Macarism

Macarism: noun, an ascription of blessedness; a blessing

I had the most unbelievable experience Sunday.

Due to a lot of reasons, we decided to visit a different church for Easter this year. Normally, I tend to prefer smaller churches that are either independent or Baptist or Independent Baptist. The church we visited was charismatic. (I have nothing against charismatic churches; I’m just not real familiar with them.)

As most everyone that knows me knows, I suffer from horrible bouts of depression. Sunday, for whatever reason, things seemed to have just worn me down. I was tired, tired of hurting all the time, tired of trying to fight my way through the daily grind, just tired, plain and simple. Of course, on the heels of that was depression.

I can always tell when I’m in the early stages of depression because everything, and I do mean E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.N.G, aggravates me to distraction and I start nit-picking at everything and everybody.

So, as we’re driving to church, I mention that I am feeling depressed, but I’m not sure why or what is going on, I just know the symptoms I was experiencing. I didn’t really feel like going and had to fight with myself just to get up, get ready and go. Plus, the pain was really wearing me down.

We get to the church and there are at least 500 people there. Mercy! In addition, today is communion Sunday. As I’m sitting in my chair contemplating my mood, confessing my sins and thinking, I am also telling God I just want to give up. I am tired and tired of being tired. I don’t want to be depressed. I don’t want to be driving myself and my family crazy.  Isn’t there any relief, anywhere?

This Sunday was also First Fruits Sunday. As everyone on our row of chairs gets up to give their offering, a gentleman sits down next to me. “Ma’am, do you need some money for your offering?” he asked. I explained that I hadn’t brought any cash but that was ok. He reaches in his wallet and pulls out some money and as he gives it to me he says, “This is for you a blessing today.” Well, I started bawling and handed it to my husband. The man then reaches into his wallet, hands me some more money, and says, “Ma’am, this is for YOUR offering, for YOUR blessing.”  Well, I started blubbering like a baby. I couldn’t even say thank you or fill out the envelope.

I walk up to place my envelope in the offering basket, and another gentleman gently touches my arm and asks if he can pray for me. When I nod yes, he wraps his arms around me and starts praying. FOR ME. He prays for my health, my life and my blessing. I totally lose it again!

I go back to my chair and sit down and the service continues to the end. I stand to shake hands with the kind man that gave me the money and to tell him thank you. He reaches over to shake my hand and as our hands touch, I feel more money. “I. . .I. ..Oh, sir, you don’t have to do this,” I stammer. “Ma’am,” he said, “this one is for you, YOUR BLESSING.” Then, before I could say or do anything, he left. I couldn’t quit crying.

As I write this tears are rolling down my cheeks. He didn’t know or hear my heart’s cry this morning, but GOD DID! God did, and He met me there, in the middle of an auditorium so full of people I felt like panicking. In an auditorium so full of people, you felt lost. In an auditorium so full of people, God showed Himself to one hungry, hurting soul, ME.

I can’t even begin to describe the feeling. It was one of quiet, slow, oozing peace and warmth, and love, and gratitude.

I’m going to start a Blessings Box, this is the first thing to go in it, too.

I think I have found a new church!

Oh, it was also Selfie Sunday. I decided no one needed to see my Rudolph red nose, thankfully, for everyone’s sake, I had left my phone at home!

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Michele’s Memoir

I finished reading Undone: A Story of Making Peace With an Unexpected Life by Michele Cushatt a few days ago. I cannot even begin to tell you the impact this book had on me. Maybe you can guess some based on my departure from the norm on book reviews.

I would give this book 100 stars were that possible.

Michele writes with a raw openness rarely seen in books. Her memoir is not sugar coated; in fact, at times it is downright gritty. This grittiness and openness allow her to reach out to the reader and make a profound impact.

Her story resonates with truth and fear, hope and disillusionment, faith and doubt, turmoil and peace.

We, the reader, are able to follow Michele through her journeys of marriage and divorce, single life as a parent, remarriage, adoptive parenting and cancer. An unrelenting, recurring and mind-numbing story of cancer, yet, through it all, you feel her drawing closer to God and learning to lean on Him more each day.

Michele’s story is not all sadness and gloom, though; there are many, many instances where her humor and wit shine radiantly through her story.

You will laugh, cry and reread the book many times because one reading only skims the tip of the iceberg. You will want to digest her little gems of wisdom and truth scattered throughout Undone.

I know the Lord brought this book to my attention because I needed to hear the truths within.

The blurb on the back includes this line: “The secret to peace is finding eyes to see.”  Michele has found the eyes; I pray that I will, too.

Undone goes on sale March 10th and if you pre-order the book, you will receive a beautiful downloadable print made especially for the book’s release.

I received this book free from Zondervan for being a member of Michele’s launch team.

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