My Story Behind the Oswald Chambers Quote


  A while back I posted this quote in my Bits and Bites section. The background picture is the church of St. Martin in the Fields in London. It sits on Trafalgar Square and has a most remarkable history and, to me is one of the more interesting places to be in London. The blue of the sky was just at the end of dusk in November, and yes, it really was that blue.


I digress.


Back to the quote. The quote was related to me in Bible Study one week when I had gone to visit my daughter and her flock. Not wanting to miss out at home, I went with her. Now I’m a note taker and I was all prepared to take lots of notes since I was a visitor. The teaching leader began the lesson and I was taking notes merrily away- when she dropped the quote right in- sneaky woman- thank you, Lord (and thanks, Adele, for being His voice that morning).


Boom! Like a bomb, it went off in my head. Thank goodness she repeated it because it was all I could think of for the rest of the lecture.


If  you know me,  you know there was an issue in my life in the person of my grandmother/mother (long story); if you only know me through what I’ve written here- there’s a few chinks here and there where I hint about that life. She was 96 when she left this earth almost four years ago. From the age of 6 months on she had been the mother in my life. From the age of 13, life with her became increasingly difficult. From the age of 19, it became so intolerable at times that by the time my daughter married, there was a span of time for 3 years when I refused to talk to her.  Yeah, not a pretty sight.


My entire adult life with her was spent in trying to make sense of the relationship and the experiences she brought to my table- my cup ranneth over and not with the good stuff. Most of those experiences I would love to carve out of my memory. However, unless I lose my senses, those memories are etched by diamonds in my brain and nailed by thorns to my heart. Since her passing, life has been definitely more peaceful in my household and in my heart; but I still wrestle from time to time with the big question: “WHY?”


Take a look at the quote and I think the light bulb of understanding will appear:


“If you are going to be used by God, he will take you through a multitude of experiences that are not meant for you at all, they are meant to make you useful in his hands, and to enable you to understand what transpires in other souls so that you will never be surprised at what you come across.” Oswald Chambers


Now you see why the quote stopped me in my tracks.


My Sweet Savior was telling me to let go of the reasoning that has still occupied much of my thoughts. Hallelujah, what a Savior! I am still working the evidence out in my writing but the attempt to reason with it that was consuming me has ceased. As my older son says: “it is what it is”. And that’s about the only place other than the chemistry class where I think that saying is appropriate.


I sometimes have a problem wrapping up a posting so bear with me a little longer. The following scripture from Jeremiah has such significance to me, especially the last part. I’ve lived in four states and attended 14 different schools from kinder to graduation in three states and a foreign country.


For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.” Jeremiah 29: 11-14


I think most of us stop after verse 11-with the first part of the promise. But you know, God didn’t stop there and I’m so grateful that He didn’t. I know the rest of the paragraph there was just for me and I am back from exile! I don’t ever want to go back to that place. It’s going to take some hard work to stay here and the people who know me best may think life is the same ole, same ole.

But inside I know it’s not. I’m right where He wants me right now.

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