The Mute, Poignant Ironies of a Life Well Lived
Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Ironies are rarely mute.
It’s just that they choose to speak afterward.
They’re kinda’ like God.
It’s sometimes said that, “Coincidence is when God chooses to remain anonymous.” Or, as a dear friend of mine once put it, “I don’t believe in coincidence. I believe in God-incidence.”
Thanks be to God, I’ve recently accepted an offer of employment in my field, and will shortly be relocating to be more near that job. For me, that means an out-of-state move. I am thankful… IMMENSELY thankful, for the opportunity, in so many different ways.
As part of my expression of thanks, I had written a note of thanks to one of my Flickr contacts recently, and wanted to share the essence of that letter with you all.
So, with little editing, what follows below represents the gist of the idea I shared in the message.
And before you read further, be aware that this note contains very poignant irony.
I cleaned out my wallet recently.
The pile of papers – mostly receipts, though it included some cards – was about an inch thick.
Apparently, it had been in need of a good cleaning for quite some time.
In doing so, I found a “fortune” from a “Chinese fortune cookie,” which, interestingly, I had dated 2/9/08. (I REALLY needed to clean it out!)
Part of what was amazing as well, of course, was that I actually kept the dog-gone thing!
And though I don’t take genuine stock in what they pretend to portend, I must acknowledge what I now perceive as mute irony, because it read, “You will make many changes before settling satisfactorily.“
Reflecting, there has certainly been much water to flow under the bridge of my life from that time. And, many of the changes have been good, albeit with tumult. But, that’s life, eh?
And yet, through it all, I give thanks to God, for He has preserved me, and I am not ready to quit this journey of the discovery of His goodness in my life!
Please do continue to remember me in your prayers, as I do you in mine.
As I looked over the e-mail correspondence I had from around that time – Saturday, February 9, 2008 – here’s what I’ve been able to find: A page from the daily meditation booklet Forward Day by Day, a post to an earlier blog I’d posted 31 March 2008, and a photograph I’d taken in Florence, AL on the campus of the University of North Alabama 2/18/08 4:41pm.
What I found even more ironic was the FDBD meditation, which follows below.
Before that meditation, however, a brief note… It was during that time of Lent, wherein I was fasting and praying fervently, that God would direct my path, that He would show me the way He wanted me to go.
It was the “aha!” moment, when, the day I had gone to photograph a tract of land I was selling, when I perceived that God confirmed to me what He wanted me to do – which was to Go West, and trust Him. The vehicle which I used was “Travel Nursing.”
While driving back from photographing the tract of land, I received a phone call from a Travel Nursing Agency, and pulled off the road across from a Volunteer Fire Department to complete the call. Immediately afterward, I walked across the street to chat with the men. Since I was dressed nicely, feeling rather spiffy, and had a few frames of film remaining, I asked one of the firefighters to photograph me. As we walked outside, I shared with him that I was a Certified Volunteer Firefighter, and had recently become a Registered Nurse. The next words out of his mouth – and he, a complete stranger to me – were, “Have you ever considered Travel Nursing?”
Interestingly, the day prior, I had earnestly asked God to confirm with me what I sensed He was encouraging me to do.
There was my “sign.”
It wasn’t as if he was the only one. It was the Lenten season, and I had asked many of my friends and acquaintances to be in prayer for me, that God would show me what He wanted me to do.
So, irony or not… I felt it was a confirmation of what I sensed in my heart that He wanted me to do.
From there, I began searching for opportunities with Travel Nursing Agencies.
The post from my earlier blog – one I’d posted 31 March 2008 – will be published in another entry.
Following is the Forward Day By Day meditation from Saturday, February 9, 2008.
Feb 09, 2008
Philippians 4:10-20. I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
My beloved Lutheran grandmother was a fiercely independent woman. She strongly resisted moving from her little house, even when she was a widow living alone in her nineties. After a fall which broke a hip–when her doctor insisted that she be discharged from the hospital directly into a nursing home–I was afraid she would be furious. After all, she had been summarily evicted from her home, able to take from a lifetime’s cherished possessions only enough to furnish a small room.
To my surprise, I arrived at the nursing home to find her reading in bed, relaxed and cheerful.
“What happened?” I couldn’t resist asking. “How can you seem so calm about this?” She smiled ruefully and quoted Saint Paul: “I have learned in whatever state I am to be content…I can do all things through him who strengthens me.”
For my grandmother as for Paul–writing to the Philippians from a prison cell–external circumstances could not determine peace of mind. Theirs was not a complacent self-sufficiency, however: it was God who strengthened them to be as content with little as with
May this Lent lead us to a similar freedom.
This entry was posted on Tuesday, June 15, 2010 at 7:33 PM and is filed under - Faith, Religion, Goodness - What is the Soul of a man?, - Uncategorized II. Tagged: Catholic, changes, Chinese, Christ, cookie, Discovery, faith, fortune, Forward Day, friend, God, goodness, health, hope, irony, Jesus, Lent, love, note, Nursing home, poignant, prayer, Religion and Spirituality, satisfactorily, settle, Thanks be to God!, Volunteer Fire Department. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.