Skip to content

Blink!

Stay in the loop!

Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.

Recent Comments

Subscribe

Blink!

Blink!

August 30, 2018

“In the blink of an eye, something happens by chance-when you least expect it-sets you on a course that you never planned, into a future you never imagined.” Nicholas Sparks

With prayer and purpose I stitched together a sweet design for my summer:

• Serving as host and tour guide for the young daughter of close friends from Paris, France.
• Reconnecting with friends and family by escorting my mother to her small Wyoming hometown reunion.
• Attending my first writing conference, She Speaks 2018, where I would network with Christian authors, agents and publishers.

My summer forecast looked bright and promising. But then, on the first official day of summer, I blinked.

Science teaches us a blink takes only 1/3 of a second. Oddly enough, a person’s body falls two feet in the same amount of time. Trust me on this. I did the math.

During a routine cleaning of our pool, I fell off of a two-foot wall onto the concrete pathway below.

At first the doctors believed I had simply bruised my sternum and sprained my right ankle. But as time passed, new doctors and new tests revealed the gravity of my injury. Both my sternum and my ankle needed only time and rest to recover. My heel, however, had broken in two places and required immediate surgery. And one by one, my summer plans unraveled.

The Lord has redirected my steps many times. In fact, just hours before I learned the severity of my injury, I wrote about God’s redirection on my blog (you can read about it here).

But here is the hard truth about redirection: it hurts.

For me the pain cuts deeper when I see its impact on other people. Unable to walk or drive, I could no longer follow through with travel plans made with our young French visitor, escort my mother to her reunion, or attend the She Speaks conference.

During the aftermath of my surgery, Romans 8:28 became my lifeline:

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” (NIV)

I clung to this scripture and chose to believe it, even when I couldn’t see the good. Slowly, as the dust settled, I marveled as the work of the Lord unfolded.

Scrapping our travel plans with our young French visitor, we focused on showing her a few of the local attractions. But she spent the majority of her days quietly reading and swimming in our pool. After a stressful academic year, our quiet summer offered her opportunities to recharge through rest and relaxation.

When I had to cancel my mother’s reunion trip, she expressed one main regret-not being able to reconnect with one of my cousins. After learning this, my cousin and her husband graciously drove from Wyoming to Colorado to visit my mother. Rather than a few quick moments at a reunion, they enjoyed a longer and more intimate visit.

Although I couldn’t attend the She Speaks conference, I prayed for its success and for all of the participants. I rejoiced with my friends and the blessings they received. By all accounts this amazing event equips women to share the Lord’s message with others. Lord willing, I plan to attend next year.

I may never understand (on this side of heaven) all the reasons the Lord redirected my summer plans. But I’m okay with not knowing. I don’t need to understand in order to trust. Trust doesn’t need to understand the why; trust needs to know the Who.

So as I continue on my journey, I’m not seeking to understand. I’m seeking to trust. As you travel down your path, I pray you also will seek to trust the One who directs your steps.

Blink!

August 30, 2018

Blink!

“In the blink of an eye, something happens by chance-when you least expect it-sets you on a course that you never planned, into a future you never imagined.” Nicholas Sparks

With prayer and purpose I stitched together a sweet design for my summer:

• Serving as host and tour guide for the young daughter of close friends from Paris, France.
• Reconnecting with friends and family by escorting my mother to her small Wyoming hometown reunion.
• Attending my first writing conference, She Speaks 2018, where I would network with Christian authors, agents and publishers.

My summer forecast looked bright and promising. But then, on the first official day of summer, I blinked.

Science teaches us a blink takes only 1/3 of a second. Oddly enough, a person’s body falls two feet in the same amount of time. Trust me on this. I did the math.

During a routine cleaning of our pool, I fell off of a two-foot wall onto the concrete pathway below.

At first the doctors believed I had simply bruised my sternum and sprained my right ankle. But as time passed, new doctors and new tests revealed the gravity of my injury. Both my sternum and my ankle needed only time and rest to recover. My heel, however, had broken in two places and required immediate surgery. And one by one, my summer plans unraveled.

The Lord has redirected my steps many times. In fact, just hours before I learned the severity of my injury, I wrote about God’s redirection on my blog (you can read about it here).

But here is the hard truth about redirection: it hurts.

For me the pain cuts deeper when I see its impact on other people. Unable to walk or drive, I could no longer follow through with travel plans made with our young French visitor, escort my mother to her reunion, or attend the She Speaks conference.

During the aftermath of my surgery, Romans 8:28 became my lifeline:

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” (NIV)

I clung to this scripture and chose to believe it, even when I couldn’t see the good. Slowly, as the dust settled, I marveled as the work of the Lord unfolded.

Scrapping our travel plans with our young French visitor, we focused on showing her a few of the local attractions. But she spent the majority of her days quietly reading and swimming in our pool. After a stressful academic year, our quiet summer offered her opportunities to recharge through rest and relaxation.

When I had to cancel my mother’s reunion trip, she expressed one main regret-not being able to reconnect with one of my cousins. After learning this, my cousin and her husband graciously drove from Wyoming to Colorado to visit my mother. Rather than a few quick moments at a reunion, they enjoyed a longer and more intimate visit.

Although I couldn’t attend the She Speaks conference, I prayed for its success and for all of the participants. I rejoiced with my friends and the blessings they received. By all accounts this amazing event equips women to share the Lord’s message with others. Lord willing, I plan to attend next year.

I may never understand (on this side of heaven) all the reasons the Lord redirected my summer plans. But I’m okay with not knowing. I don’t need to understand in order to trust. Trust doesn’t need to understand the why; trust needs to know the Who.

So as I continue on my journey, I’m not seeking to understand. I’m seeking to trust. As you travel down your path, I pray you also will seek to trust the One who directs your steps.

11 Comments

  1. Jody R on August 30, 2018 at 5:48 AM

    Good Morning Shirley! Thank you for sharing your positive spirit! You made me laugh out loud, really, (not at you but with you!) on your testing of the time it took to fall off of a 2 foot wall. No more of that kind of testing, OK??? I continue to pray for complete healing for you. I love that out of this time of testing the Lord has shown up for you. God is so good and good at being God!

    • Shirley Desmond Jackson on August 30, 2018 at 6:42 PM

      Thank you Jody! Yes, I actually researched it and calculated it. And then of course I actually lived it! Thank you for your kind words.

  2. Miranda White on August 30, 2018 at 9:04 PM

    Hello Shirley , Thank you for inviting me to your page. I am so sorry you had to go through so much pain. I’m so happy to see the lesson that God taught you to share , so that you could share your experience with me. It is good when God helps us to experience being in his will with no questions asked, but just having faith in what he is doing in your life and that you are happy where he carries you.

    I have had an experience almost like yours. I really needed to hear this messsage.My pain was not physical but heartfelt .I have learned to trust him and just let life happen. With Him In control of my life I have faith and a happy ever afte lifer. Blessings and I am praying for you.

    • Shirley Desmond Jackson on August 31, 2018 at 3:11 PM

      Thank you, Miranda, for your kind words and prayers. I love how your faith in Him has brought you such peace and the freedom to enjoy life. Such a great lesson for all of us!

  3. Elvira Scaff on September 3, 2018 at 9:35 PM

    Life does change in a blink. In 1992, I was shot, in the back of my head. I was working and in the blink of an eye, I missed a year of my life that I will never remember. To this day, I suffer the consequences of that person’s act. However, I could be bitter about it but I’m not. I can’t be bitter about something I don’t remember. I made the new choice of what to do with my life. I went back to what I was trained to do, writing. When I first met you, Shirley, I was a correspondent at BFDS with Pat (who at the time wasn’t, I met her as she was assigned to sign and mail my letters). I believe that that one blink set me back on the path I was meant to take. I have poems published, I have stories published. These are things I would have never have done if I didn’t blink. Just like my blinking when met you and everyone else. No matter what road we take in our lives, our paths are always filled with trials, whether good or bad. We learn and we move forward. As you have shown, the plans you wanted to get accomplished were done, just not has you expected. You might never know why things were changed by your fall, but you can see the wonders that have come out of it. You have always been such a positive person. One that I tried to copy and succeed. As I’m sure you remember the old me. I think about all of us girls from back then and I know how much each and every one of you affected my life. I know you don’t like being laid up but a lot of good came it. Hugs. Thinks will always improve, you taught me that.

    • Shirley Desmond Jackson on September 11, 2018 at 9:59 PM

      Wow! Thank you for your vulnerability in sharing such an incredible story. I am so glad you took the opportunity to return to writing and to make the best of your situation. I think it would be so easy to become bitter, but as you say so eloquently, our lives are filled with trials and we learn and move forward. Seems to me you have conquered the ability to be positive and to see that things will always improve. I have such great memories of our time together in our Bible study group!

  4. Armelle NEBOIT on September 5, 2018 at 2:01 AM

    Dear Shirley, thank you for sharing this story with us. I like both your realistic and faithful view on this : “redirection hurts” but at the same time when we trust Romans 8:28, we are safe in His arms! Also when I read about the “She speaks” conference, I thought that you are so lucky in the US to have such events! I wish we had such similar events in France!
    Last remark : as you embark on sharing on your blog, God will work in your life in a way that you can share stories which can help many people! And being able to have people who relate and are encouraged by your story is also part of Romans 8:28!!

    • Shirley Desmond Jackson on September 11, 2018 at 10:04 PM

      Dear Armelle, thank you so much for your thoughtful comments. I love your perspective on how Romans 8:28 plays out in this situation-in ways I hadn’t even considered. I remember speaking with the mother of our French visitor during the days after my surgery. At the same time we both quoted Romans 8:28-I spoke in English as she recited it in French. We both laughed at how like-minded we were. God is so good!

  5. Bernadette Johnson on September 9, 2018 at 5:10 PM

    Thank you Shirley for sharing ,you definitely have a testimonial. It reminds me of When Paul said .Suffering from what he referred to as “a thorn in the flesh,” Paul prayed that God would make it go away. When God did not grant his request, he repeated his prayer. After a third prayer God gave Paul a profound revelation, “My grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength is made perfect in weakness”
    (2 Corinthians 12:9). Here is the sufficiency again that Paul asked about previously, that we need to receive constantly, and that God, who works His strength into us through grace, promises to provide.

    • Shirley Desmond Jackson on September 11, 2018 at 10:06 PM

      Dear Bernadette, Thank you so much for sharing your insights. I agree-His grace is sufficient for us. It is so great when He gives us experiences to help us realize this truth!

  6. Pressing Pause (Again) - Shirley Desmond Jackson on September 29, 2019 at 3:50 PM

    Thank you for reading this post. If you are interested in reading a related post, click on the link above to read “Pressing Pause (Again)”.

Leave a Comment