This cardboard box

Wow – I think I want to avoid days when Eric leaves for Tohoku- they seem like doozer days!  Influenza;  my back going out;  and today – continued lower back pain, my cell phone crashing, and the return of lice in two of our kids’ hair.  (I have always vowed to be “real” about our missionary lives – it doesn’t get much more real than lice!)  I have to tell you- lice for me has to be among the creepiest and worse mom scenarios.    But here we go – round two begins!

Tonight, not wanting to poison our kids with more of the special shampoos that did not work anyway after a week’s use in round one,  I tried a variety of natural remedies highly recommended — Denorex, vinegar, blow-dryer, and hair spray.  The kids didn’t get to bed until 10 pm as I subjected them all to these .  Oh- the joys of more stacks of laundry that need to be done tomorrow!

I have been pretty aware these past few weeks of my fraility.  That I am a broken vessel who God somehow wants to empower for day to day living.  But boy- there are moments in my days when I don’t know quite how this is all going to happen. Today, two special friends sent me words that quite literally helped me get through.

A friend JoNancy sent me this poem by Joseph Bayly, titled “While Packing Books”:

This cardboard box
see it says
Bursting limit
200 lbs. per square inch.
The box maker knew
how much strain
the box would take
what weight
would crush it.
You are wiser
than the box maker
Maker of my spirit
my mind
my body.
Does the box know
when pressure increases close to
the limit?
it knows nothing.
But I know
when my breaking point
is near.
And so I pray
Maker of my Soul
Determiner of the pressure
upon me
Stop it
lest I be broken
or else
change the pressure rating
of this fragile container
of Your grace
so that I may bear more.
And then my friend Jeanie sent me these verses from the Psalms:
O, LORD, how many are my foes!
How many rise up against me!
…But you are a shield around me, O LORD;
you bestow glory on me and lift up my head.
To the Lord I cry aloud, 
and he answers me from his holy hill.
I lie down and sleep;
I wake again, because the Lord sustains me.
…From the Lord comes deliverance.
May your blessings be on your people!
I know I can lie down and sleep now – I will deal with the cell phone issues tomorrow and the little critters are as gone as I can humanly make them for tonight.  I am sure that when I wake up the Lord will sustain us all and bring deliverance.  He will not allow me to be crushed.  Thankful for the sweet reminders today that He knows my pressure points and I can trust Him to know what I can handle and to sustain me in that.

2 thoughts on “This cardboard box

  1. Oh Sue. . . my heart and prayers go out to you! As if you didn’t have enough to contend with! The lice thing is hands down the most awful trial a mom goes through. They are creepy vermin and pernicious. I don’t know how many times I thoroughly cleaned house, washed loads of laundry and even threw away rugs in addition to all the attention to hair! As well as prayers for your family to weather this new storm, I will also pray for the family(ies) through whom the lice came! With the Japanese emphasis on personal hygiene, having to contend with creepy critters must feel shameful–another difficulty on top of everything else! Lord have mercy!

  2. Yes Sue…Trust HIM you can…it may not always be clear or easy to understand…but the fact that we are “ALL STILL HERE” means HE is not doen with us YET! So hang in there Girl! Battle those lousy little lice and get the phone fixed when you can…HE KNOWS what HE is doing and YOU ARE A PART OF iT all! 🙂

    Blessings SUE,Olivia, Annie, Owen, Ian and Eric!

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