17 August 2007

Change of Plans

This week has brought more highs and lows and certainly a change in our plans. Before we left Raleigh I was spending time reading in James. I was impressed with James 4:13-15 as I thought ahead to our upcoming move. This week as plans have changed, the Lord has brought it to mind often: “Come now, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there…Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away. Instead, you ought to say, ‘If the Lord wills, we will live and also do this or that.’” This week I am again humbled at how my life is indeed a vapor, and how I don’t know what tomorrow will hold, as I sometimes believe I do in my pride.

Shortly after writing last week’s post I began having reactions again to various things I had smelled either cooking or just in the air (i.e. perfume). And this time there seemed to be little relief. By Friday or Saturday Mark and I knew that we needed to change our plans and leave Cayman much earlier than first planned. By Sunday night I had a confirmed ticket for a flight to Charlotte on Monday, and Mark had a “buddy pass” to be used on Monday or Tuesday. (We praise God for this provision of a stand-by ticket given by friends of my parents.) On Monday God answered our prayers of a reaction-free flight for me and a seat for Mark. We left Cayman with sad hearts as we cut our time with his family short. But we also had hope that I would have some relief of my symptoms in an environment I was more familiar with.

So, we have spent most of this week north of Charlotte at my parents’ house. At first I was doing very well being back here, but an experiment with last night’s dinner brought on another reaction. It seems to be confirmed now that I am most definitely reacting to corn being present in the air. Whether or not I am also reacting to other things (like shellfish or tomatoes) has yet to be decided. It has taken me the past 24 hours to even feel somewhat “normal.” I have started seeing a chiropractor again and pray that that will at least help settle my system down some. I am also praising God today that I was finally able to get an appointment with Carolina Asthma and Allergy on Tuesday, August 28th. Would you pray with us that they might be able to get me in even sooner if possible?

The emotions of the past two weeks have been up and down, but I also have had much comfort from our Lord. I appreciate each one of your prayers for me. While God has not chosen to take the reactions away, He has provided the grace to go through them. And He has given me a most wonderful husband who has served me faithfully in the face of pain, exhaustion, and uncertainty. We are unsure if we will be able to leave for Scotland on the 5th as planned, but know “If the Lord wills, we will live and also do this or that.”

I leave you with a song that has touched my heart since really listening to the words yesterday while driving. I hope you can actually hear the song some day--it's beautiful! What an encouragement to me. The chorus is my prayer during this time in my life, and I hope always.

In the Valley
Taken from: Sovereign Grace Ministries

Words and music by Bob Kauflin
As recorded on Valley of Vision

When You lead me to the valley of vision
I can see You in the heights
And though my humbling wouldn’t be my decision
It’s here Your glory shines so bright
So let me learn that the cross precedes the crown
To be low is to be high
That the valley’s where You make me more like Christ

Let me find Your grace in the valley
Let me find Your life in my death
Let me find Your joy in my sorrow
Your wealth in my need
That You’re near with every breath
In the valley

In the daytime there are stars in the heavens
But they only shine at night
And the deeper that I go into darkness
The more I see their radiant light
So let me learn that my losses are my gain
To be broken is to heal
That the valley’s where Your power is revealed

© 2006 Sovereign Grace Praise (BMI).


Ronnica said...

Rachel, there's so much we can learn from how you handle your allergies. I'm praying for you!

Mark and Rachel said...

Thanks, Ronnica. God has taught me a lot as I deal with this lifestyle. I can only say He's changing me and given me the grace to handle things as I have.

Anonymous said...

Mark and Rachel
I am praying for you guys. God's grace is sufficient.


Anonymous said...

I love that song. I didn't know you were into Sovereign Grace music!

We are praying for you.

the Tabbs

Mark and Rachel said...

Our church in Raleigh sang a lot of their songs...only for a long time I never knew they were SG songs. Before we left, a friend made us a CD of a bunch of their songs and the song I posted was one of them. They have great theology in they lyrics, one reason I love them and why you probably do too :)