Monday, January 17, 2011

God is the Captain of my Ship

Have you ever had a moment in your life when God was so evidently present that you were no longer fearful, but instead comforted? I had a moment like that last week. Last Monday I was facing a huge task list for the week- I knew it was possible to get it all done, but it was going to take some serious time management. I had a manuscript revision due on Friday, so Monday & Tuesday I was going to go over conceptual edits, while Wednesday & Thursday I was going to rerun my statistics. Monday & Tuesday went according to plan, but as soon as I got to my office on Wednesday morning, I dreaded that the rest of the week was shot. I had a phone call waiting for me, letting me know of some MAJOR malfunctions in the lab; I dropped everything & ran over to help....19 hours later I was finally finished dealing with the lab crisis. Early Thursday when I got to my office, I was motivated to make up for lost time. However, as soon as I sat down I got another call. After meetings & more meetings, I returned to my desk at 3pm. “Ok Darby, data time” I thought to myself. I plugged in my external hard drive, beep...... beep ..... beeeeeeeeeeeeeeep... My hard drive was DEAD! In November I needed a new cord for the hard drive, so I thought “Well, if I get another new cord it will probably work.” I went & bought another new cord & plugged it into 6 different computers. My external hard drive was officially DEAD. Since I just got a new computer I hadn’t had a chance to back everything up yet. So I sat, staring at my lap top (tears running down my cheeks), thinking of the 8 years of data, manuscripts, lectures, test banks, & pictures (including our wedding pictures) that were gone forever. Why didn’t I back up all my files immediately?! Why did I think an external hard drive was invincible?!

Thursday evening we had a birthday party to go to, & I tried to pretend I was fine, but I’m sure it was obvious that my mind was distracted. Isn’t it amazing how God can place something on your heart, that you think is intended for someone else, but you later realize it was for you the entire time? Last Sunday, our message was on John 6:16-24 & Mark 6:45-52 where Jesus saved the Disciples from a storm & brought them to safety on the shore. During the message I had someone in mind that I knew had been struggling & I thought this message may be comforting to them. Little did I know that I would be referring back to those verses later in the week. What perfect timing God has! I knew that I could not solve my hard drive crisis, nor could I.T.; I had to turn to something way more powerful than myself. I willingly invited God to navigate my ship to the shore.

Oh how God provides & placed the scriptures on my lips to pray! Romans 12:12 (“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer”) ran rapid on my heart. I prayed & prayed all evening, & I meditated on His Word all morning. I had no desire to talk with anyone but God.

On Friday morning I was at Best Buy when they opened, & they told me it would be $1600 to retrieve my data, if it was even possible. I purchased another external hard drive & returned to my office. When I got to the parking lot at the office, I saw my friend Beth, who just happened to be running late. I truly believe that God placed her there at that moment to distract me on those last few steps inside, & to remind me that this storm was not about me, it was about my dependence on the Lord to provide.

When I sat down at my desk, I had great expectations from God. If He raised a man from the dead, can’t He raise my hard drive from the dead? I truly believed that He was physically capable of doing this, & I asked Him if He would. God knew what was on my heart, so I specifically & boldly requested that my hard drive would be fixed when I plugged it into the computer, not the expensive $1600 route. I was asking for a technological miracle & I was joyful in hope.

I plugged the old hard drive in, & it worked long enough for me to copy everything onto the new hard drive and then died again. This time I had tears running down my face for a totally different reason from the day before. There was no explanation for the temporary life of my hard drive, for the exact about of time it needed to be backed-up, but divine intervention! Praise the Lord!!! (Yes, I now have everything backed-up...in 3 places) He does provide! Even at the meeting with the reviewers later on Friday, when I showed up completely empty handed (and extremely nervous), went perfectly. Thank you Lord Jesus for your faithfulness! Thank you for jumping into my boat & “immediately” taking me from my storm to the shore! God is the captain of my ship: when I was struggling, He was there!

I thanked Phil for his encouragement & support, & he jokingly replied, “I had you on suicide watch.” My response, “you’re a very smart husband.” Just kidding! But seriously, thank you Phil for being so supportive, & not laughing at me when I asked you to pray for my hard drive.

I don’t pray for sports games, but apparently I do pray for hard drives. It seems silly to call a hard drive death a crisis right? Maybe so, but at the moment, it was a HUGE storm for me; I’m so glad that no matter how big or how small a storm, God is faithful to listen, to be present, & to provide comfort. How come it so often requires a crisis for us to return to the Lord? If you have asked yourself this question, I encourage you to invest a few minutes in this video (click on the picture below). The Lord is present with you & wants to be the Captain of your pink kayak.
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