There is a season for everything!
Mark a special blessing from God
Life is meaningless without God.....
God spoke to me through a friends little boy a few years ago and I wanted to share this story with all of you.
It was 2003 close to Thanksgiving and the Lord had placed a very strong desire in my heart to give more. I had been doing well in real estate, the market was "hot" so the transactions just kept on coming. These were the good old days - from 2001 to 2004. I talked to my husband Larry about this and we decided to adopt a family from the opportunity council. They were a non-profit organization who helped families in need with food and sometimes shelter. So we went in and they were able to match us up right away with a young mother of 2, her name was Clara and she was pregnant and expecting her third child. She was living with her boyfriend in a very run down apartment complex. We met with her, and instantly I was drawn to her and her son Mark. See Mark was paralyzed on his right side of his body. I guess when he was a baby Clara had taken Mark to the Dr. and he had given him the measles shot when he had a high fever. This caused the paralysis. Mark was about 5 years old at the time and he could not eat walk or talk. Clara had to feed him through a tube in his stomach. This was so sad to me - but he had an unbelievable smile all the time just as if there was absolutely nothing wrong with him. I loved that. Clara also had an older daughter named Christina who was a few years older than Mark and was in first grade.
During the Thanksgiving Holidays we brought them a whole turkey dinner with all the trimmings desserts and goodies. They loved that. At the time Clara's boyfriend was a house painter and so work was very scarce during the winter months. I began to get close to Clara and her family. We would talk on the phone and she would call me when she needed anything. At Christmas time we brought them gifts and goodies to eat, they were so appreciative and my heart just filled with joy.
The time came when she delivered her new little bundle of joy, it was another boy and she named him John. But Clara became very depressed. Clara was a believer in Jesus and often attended the church that I belonged to. But her faith was weak. I tried to encourage her and tell her how much God loved her and how she needed to try and get herself together in order to care for her family. One day I came over at lunch time to visit and she was on the couch and totally didn't want to do anything. I was so concerned for her, so I helped her clean her apartment and then I prayed for her. I prayed that the Lord would give her strength and help her to get up and be the mother to those beautiful children that she needed to be. She thanked me and from then on, it was as if she was a new person. I saw her take more pride in herself and her family. It was a very nice transformation and I knew God had everything to do with it.
During this time in my life I was a newbie Christian and I had been praying for myself - asking God to show me and let me know if I was doing his will. Ever feel like no matter what you do there is a little voice inside of you that says - but you could do more. Or that wasn't good enough. Well I struggled with a few of those feelings and doubts. I also wondered if God approved of certain things that seemed to be in the old testament teachings which included not drinking wine, eating pork, you get the picture. Do these things still apply. I had not read enough of the bible yet to understand that Jesus died so that we no longer had to abide by those laws, and we are under a new covenant now.
One day I was over Clara's apartment and Mark was on the floor. He could scoot around on his behind poor little thing, that is how he would get from place to place. So he scooted over to the end table where there was a Bible, with his left good hand he pushed the Bible to the floor. I walked over to him and just looked at him. His big black eyes mesmerized me. It was as if I was under his spell. He took his hand and opened the Bible and placed his little closed hand on the book of Ecclesiastes. Then he looked up at me and gave me the biggest smile. I had never read this book - but I knew that I was going to as soon as I got home. I told Mark thank you for showing me this book, I will be sure and read it.
When I got home I ran into my home and quickly said hello to Larry and then went straight back into my guest bedroom which is where I do my morning devotions and read the Bible and spend time with God. I began to read the book of Ecclesiastes, the more I read the more my eyes were opened. I began to sob - uncontrollably. God was talking to me. He was assuring me that what I was doing in life was good and if I kept him in the center of my life - my children and I would be Blessed. Also that he places people in our lives for us to Bless and for them to be a Blessing to us - like Clara and Mark.
He showed me that sometimes there is no justice in the world, we can strive for it but as long as there is evil people will suffer. He also showed me that the more I read and understood his word and got closer to Him, my eyes would be opened. That I would see more suffering in the world. I would feel the pain of other more deeply. This has happened to me - Jesus's Holy Spirit will sometimes lead me to pray for the lost, the broken, I don't know who they are, the strong desire comes over me and I begin to weep for them. I learned that as long as I am loving Him and worshiping him with everything that I do in my life, I can enjoy a glass of wine after a hard days work if I so choose. He showed me that life is meaningless without him - like chasing the wind.
Prayer is an amazing thing and all during the time I knew Clara and her family others and I prayed for them. Clara had filed a lawsuit against the Dr. who gave Mark the shot and it had been an ongoing battle for many years. I'd like to report to you that God is so faithful! The lawsuit was finally settled and Mark was awarded a substantial amount of money for future treatment and therapy. They are building a new home to accommodate his needs. He will not have to worry for care for the rest of his life. He is also beginning to walk - which the Drs. had said would never happen.
This beautiful family is not in our lives any longer. They have moved to Houston, Texas where they would be closer to specialists that can treat Mark. Thank you God for having placed this family in our path for a season. It was a Blessing and a time of learning, and a time when my faith was truly strengthened. I look forward to what you have in store for me next.
Ecclesiastes 3 1-8
There is a time for everything, a season for every activity under heaven.
A time to be born and a time to die.
A time to plant and a time to harvest.
A time to kill and a time to heal.
A time to tear down and a time to rebuild.
A time to cry and a time to laugh.
A time to grieve and a time to dance.
A time to scatter stones and a time to gether them.
A time to embrace and a time to turn away.
A time to search and a time to lose.
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
A time to tear and a time to mend.
A time to be quiet and a time to speak up.
A time to love and a time to hate.
A time for war and a time for peace.
King Solomon wrote this book after he had tried everything and achieved much, only to find that nothing apart from God made him happy. He wanted his readers to avoid these same senseless pursuits. If we try to find meaning in our accomplishments rather than in God, we will never be satisfied, and everything we pursue will become meaningless.
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© 2010 Mary Gaines