Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Did Mommy Miss the Mark?

Pocket Full of Quarters Trek 2015
Shiloh’s Shenanigans
Did Mommy Miss the Mark?

By Shiloh The Shepherd’s Sheep Dog
Mommy - Cheryle M. Touchton

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

Mommy tells people that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. She explains that sin means missing the mark. I might not understand what that means but Mommy must have sinned because it sure seemed to me like she didn't do what she intended to do. Isn't that what missing the mark means?

Mommy tried to blame what happened on a speed bump. She quickly explained how slowly she was going, which is true. But I was watching the entire thing and I saw what really happened.

Mommy went through her regular packing routine. It isn't easy. She turned off the lights, opened the curtains, checked the door and cabinet latches in the circle order that she always uses, and checked the fridge and microwave doors. She went outside, unplugged the water and electricity, curled up the hoses, put them away, latched the 2 cabinets underneath and pulled on the cabinets to check them. She climbed in the driver's seat, put on her seat belt, and remembered her cup of tea. She groaned, took off her seat belt and carefully twisted to step over my food bowl. She must be getting more limber because she only knocked out a few pieces of food this time. She grabbed her tea from the microwave and quickly - too quickly - closed the door. She knows it doesn't always close completely but she didn't pull on it to check. Sure enough, it didn't latch all the way. When she slowly drove over the annoying speed bump, Hallelujah threw a fit and bounced the glass plate out of the microwave and to the floor in a crash. Glass shattered and went everywhere.

"Shiloh stay!" Mommy said firmly. I'm flattered that her first thought was for me but I was already staying. I knew what glass did to my feet. Mommy took a deep breath, reminded me again to stay, put the camper in park, got the swish broom and dust pan, and started picking up glass.

"I should have listened to Bob and bought that dust buster," she muttered. "Why don't we have gloves in here?" We found glass for days. That first night, she forgot and walked barefoot on the floor. She still winces when she steps down on her middle toe on the right foot. She can't see the glass in her foot but she knows it's there. Mommy used to have serious feet problems and Daddy says she is never to go barefoot. Did she miss the mark again when she went barefoot?

So you tell me. Don't you agree, Mommy missed the mark or is there something I don't understand? She meant to close that microwave all the way. She knows it doesn't always latch. She knew not to go barefoot, especially after that much glass, but she forgot. Mommy says the wages of sin is death and that microwave plate sure did die. Mommy says there is a difference between sin and accidents but she's had things like this happen to her before.

Mommy called Daddy and confessed. "I think the speed bump caused it but Shiloh is going to tell you that I didn't close the door all the way when I got my tea out."

"You're probably both right," Daddy said kindly. It never seems to surprise or bother him when Mommy tells him what I say. "You probably didn't close it completely but that plate fits down in a groove. When you went over the bump, it bounced the plate out. "

Daddy couldn't resist adding, "Bet you wish you'd bought that dust buster now." Daddy loves being right, which he usually is, but I had to wonder if reminding Mommy he was right was also an example of missing the mark.

Daddy immediately went to helping Mommy solve the problem. "Measure the space. If you see an appliance repair shop, stop and see if they have one. I don't think the camper stores will have one. I'll order one if you can't find one." He's also offered several suggestions for getting the glass out of the toe, but so far, Mommy still winces if she steps just right.

Mommy also says, "All who call on the name of the Lord Jesus will be saved." She explains that the Greek word for saved is sozo She says it means much more than saved for an eternity. She says it also means healed, delivered, and preserved. I think that means God is going to heal Mommy's foot.

Why do campgrounds put in speed bumps? Hallelujah really doesn't like them and it makes him act out. Since he is usually the smallest camper in the campground, I suspect that other campers don't like them either. Aren't campgrounds supposed to try to delight their customers? Doesn't that mean that campgrounds are missing the mark too?

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Pocket Full of Quarters Journey 2015
She Was Listening

In Twin Falls, Idaho
By Cheryle M. Touchton
The Pocket Full of Quarters Lady

If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. James 1:5-6

"Be careful not to slip! They don't have a rug in there and when I bent over to dry my feet, I slipped right down on the floor. Be careful."

"I'm so sorry you slipped. Are you hurt?" I asked. I had just walked into the KOA bathroom with my shower supplies.

"I will be tomorrow. I think I'm going to tell the office."

"Good idea," I said as she walked out. I was surprised that it didn't turn into an encounter after that lead in but oh well. What do I know? God's ways are mysterious.

I carefully stepped in and out of the shower, noticing that the shower curtains were too short so all of the floors were wet. I dried off and dressed. When I came out of the shower stall to put on my makeup, the same woman said, "You were fast! It doesn't look like you slipped."

"I didn't. I was careful. Thanks for the tip. I thought you left."

"I did but I forgot my blow-dryer." We began talking. You can probably guess that it did indeed turn into an encounter. She was pretty sure she was going to heaven because she'd been good - not perfect - but good. She went to church occasionally. I spoke Gospel scripture to her about salvation by grace and not by works. She got it instantly and wanted to pray for forgiveness and salvation.

The entire time we'd been talking, I was aware of a young woman standing behind me. She was slowly putting on her makeup and using a curling iron while listening carefully. I kept glancing at her in the mirror out of the corner of my eye as I talked to the other woman but hadn't spoken a word to her yet. When I saw that she was getting emotional, I turned to her and said, "Would you like to pray with us?"

"Yes," she said gratefully.

"May we hold hands?" I asked both women. There in the bathroom, standing in a circle, both women prayed to receive Jesus. I got their contact information and the first woman left.

"Where are you from?" I asked, deciding that I needed to know more about this lovely, tattooed, thin woman who had met Jesus so quickly.

"I'm from all over," she wept. "I can't seem to settle down. I'm here with my boyfriend but I don't think it is going to work out."

"How long have you been with him?" I asked.

"A year," she said, continuing to cry. "He is rude to me. I think he wants me to leave. This keeps happening to me."

"It isn't going to happen anymore," I said firmly. "You are leaving this room changed from the inside out. You are a princess of the King of Kings and deserve to be treated accordingly. I can't tell you what to do but I know who can. The Bible promises us wisdom. It is in the book of James. It says that if you ask for wisdom, you will get it. There is a catch however. It also says that if you don't act on that wisdom, you will feel like you are being tossed about in the waves - you will feel seasick. The Bible also promises strength and courage. May I pray for your wisdom, strength, and courage?"

"Yes," she whispered.

I put my arms around her and could feel her trembling. I asked God to grant her the wisdom to know what to do about the boyfriend and the strength and courage to act. After I prayed, I encouraged her to act immediately on the wisdom she received.

"If you decide to leave, do you have somewhere safe to go?" I asked.

"I do," she said. "I could go home to my mother." I have a feeling that will be one happy mother. I have her contact information and can't wait to find out what she did.

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