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Center Reflections

God Must Have a Sense of Humor (Debbie Heisley-Cato)

I am serious about my work ethic.  I think that subconsciously I believe that “you get what you deserve.” On my best days I know that none of us get what we deserve.  Our God is a God of grace who loves us without limit and gives to us far beyond anything that we could earn or deserve.  And all that we can do is accept the gift with thanks and joy.  Sometimes when I get too focused on what I can do for God, God has a way of bringing me back to the gift of grace and making me laugh at myself.  Two experiences that I have had lately prove to me that our God is a God of joy and laughter with a definite sense of humor. 

I arrived at a 4-day silent retreat exhausted, and yet determined to take full advantage of these retreat days.  I had brought my Bible and my journal and was prepared to “pray hard and work on my spiritual life.”   

After my morning devotions on the first day, I wandered into the little library at St. Raphaela Retreat Center and picked up a book of thoughts and prayers compiled by June Cotner called Bless the Day.  I turned to a random page and read these lines from an unknown author.   

“This is God! 

I will be handling all your problems today. 

I will not need your help – so have a great day.” 

God has a way of coming right to the point, right to the heart of things.  And I just had to laugh. 

The other habit I have that really speaks of a lack of trust in God is the habit of worrying.  This past Spring I was in need of a different car.  Because I have a commitment to be as green as my budget will allow, I was looking for a hybrid.  I didn’t pray for it, but I just mentioned once that I had always wanted a red car.  In my search, the right car showed up on the internet, it was at a local dealer. And guess what, it was not only a hybrid and in my price range, but it was red.  Now this is an important detail, so stay with me. 

A few months later I determined that I was being led to retire June 30, 2020.  However, having lived in a parsonage all of our adult life, my husband and I did not own a house.  For 5 months we looked with the help of a realtor, and nothing in our price range fit our needs.  It was almost a year before I would retire, but I found myself worrying that we would not find the kind of house that would serve us as we grew older.   

One day, after several months of looking and worrying, during my morning devotion time, God very clearly said, “You got your car and what color was it?  Don’t you trust me yet?”  And again, I had to laugh at myself.  Well, it should not surprise you to know that we closed at the beginning of November on what we think is a nearly perfect house for us in our retirement.  

Lately when the worry starts to overwhelm me, God has quietly reminded me, “Red car, perfect house – trust me!”  And again, I just have to smile. 

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