9. Calm in Trials

9. Calm in God’s Pavilion 

“For months Ellen’s body wracked with pain,” her husband, said. She lay helpless from two compressed disks in her back. He winced as he helped her with simple needs like personal hygiene and eating.

Ellen had said, “My hobby is helping others.” For months she lay unable to help even herself. Riveting pain often interrupted her sleep. In those long pain-filled hours she turned her thoughts to the Lord.

After many months flat on her back, Ellen rejoiced to be able to attend church again. “I’m thankful,” she testified. “When I can’t sleep at night, it gives me more time to pray.”

After she became a widow, she moved to a nursing home, debilitated and in a wheel chair. “How are you?” she asked residents, wheeling toward them. “Jesus is with you.”

How did Ellen think of others when she faced such great needs of her own? She testified, “I have known the Lord about forty years, and I still have much to learn. I place my full dependence upon Him.”

Ellen displayed contentment. Her heart seemed to be somewhere other than the nursing home. Perhaps she found a secret hiding place—a place of renewal.

Psalm 27:5 promises, “For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion” (KJV). The essence of prayer is entering into God’s pavilion. Ellen entered and knew how to remain there, especially during adversity. Now she resides in Heaven.

Do we complain when swallowed up by pain? When troubles come do we still have a thankful heart? Do we pray in the face of unwanted circumstances that threaten to consume us? Prayer is responding to God’s invitation to enter into His pavilion, where He hides us under His safe covering. Like Ellen, we can depend on Him and live with a heart full of joy.

Dear Lord, help me to remain thankful when I suffer pain. Equip me to endure troubles. Give me, like Ellen, the habit of helping others. In times of trouble, hide me in Thy pavilion. Thank you, Father, for the safe, tranquil place of prayer where Thou embracest and careth for me. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

This is a reprint article by Lynn Wallace, © 1960. It went online in November 1960 on Prayer Support for Women. This does not appear to still be online.

Bio: Ambassador-Emerald International published Lynn’s book, Our Lifeship: Studies in Proverbs for Women. Periodicals published about eighty of her articles and fillers. Accent Publications published two of her curriculum packages. Leon, her late husband, and she served on the Navajo field several years.She plays the piano for Canyon View Baptist Church in Montrose, Colorado. She enjoys jeeping, reading, and artwork. writeheart@montrose.net. www.writingfrommyheart.com (Our Lifeship available from PayPal.)

6. Keep Calm by Pleasing God

6. Please God

Ellen and Chuck met some people with handicaps. They thought, “We can help these people.” 

They went to their pastor. “We know some special people,” they said. “Some limp and use a cane or walker. Others roll themselves in wheelchairs. Harold can’t talk plain. Several have hearing problems. We’d like to help these people. Can we start a class for them.” 

“Yes,” the pastor agreed. 

Every Sunday I saw these “special people” limp or roll in on wheelchairs. Jesus Christ stepped in and redeemed some of these special souls. 

When Ellen went forward to pray with one of these women, it blessed my heart. 

Sometimes, one got noisy. In her quiet way Ellen took that one of of the service. I marvelled at her patience. 

“What have you learned from these special people?” I asked. “We learned that you don’t stop because you have a problem. Keep going on.” 

My only daughter was born normal. However, I found it difficult to raise her without a daddy when he went to be with Christ. Ellen taught me not to give up, but to keep pressing onward. 

A compressed disk in her back forced Ellen to retire. She did not complain. She depended on Chuck to get her up and down. When able to attend church again, she testified, “When I can’t sleep at night, I’m thankful. It gives me more time to pray.” 

When Chuck’s heart failed him, leaving Ellen a widow, she moved to Valley Manor, a nursing home. She continued reaching out to others in this place. I only heard her complain once because she could not speak to others. 

Ellen would readily admit she has her faults, but to me she set forth an example of a woman who pleased God. He says that it pleases Him when we obey His command to love one another” (1 John 3:22-23). My friend certainly loved others. 

Now she has met her Lord. This godly sailor resides in Heaven where her beloved husband dwells. 

God does not call all of us to reach out to the handicapped as Ellen did, but we can all show our love to others. When we put others before ourselves, it helps bring calm to our hearts. 

Bio: This article is based on a section in Lynn’s book, Our Lifeship: A Study in Proverbs for Women. You can see more about it at www.writingfrommyheart.com. Thank you for your interest.

What Is Your Hobby?

Chuck said, “For months Ellen’s body wracked with pain.” She lay helpless from two compressed disks in her back. He winced as he helped her take care of simple needs like personal hygiene and eating.

Ellen confided to me once that her hobby was helping others. Now she lay helpless, unable to help herself.

Often the pain interrupted her sleep. She laid there and turned her thoughts to the Lord.

After many months flat on her back, Ellen rejoiced to be able again to attend church. “I’m thankful,” she testified. “When I can’t sleep at night, it gives me more time to pray.”

With her delicate frame and frail body, Ellen’s eyes sparkled and her voice radiated excitement when she spoke of helping others.

We do not gain this kind of wisdom overnight. A careful reading of Proverbs 2:1-6 indicates that it may take years. Ellen said, “I have known the Lord for over forty years. I still have much to learn.”

Later, the pain subsided to a tolerable level. Ellen reluctantly admitted she still had a little pain.  She did not like to complain and dwell on her troubles.

A sweet person, Ellen readily admitted that she had faults. We can learn from her sweet testimony which stemmed from a wise heart.

When Ellen and Chuck met some special people, they thought, We can help these people. “Pastor,” they said, “We would like to help some special people with handicaps. We know of no one ministering unto them.”

“Go ahead,” he encouraged them.

They visited these special people and picked them up for Sunday School.

Every Sunday I see these people limp in or roll in wheelchairs. Word spread and their numbers increased. Christ redeemed special souls.

It blessed my heart when Ellen went forward to pray with one of these special women. Sometimes the people make noise. At times, Ellen or Chuck removed one from the church service. I marvelled at their patience.

Once I heard Ellen chatting on the phone with one of her special friends. Her foot hurt. “Yes,” Ellen said, “I know about the pain.” Then in her own quiet way, she encouraged this lady to turn her problem over to the Lord. Ellen taught me much about caring for people.

One special person, Lucille received Christ several years ago. She told us, “It was hard to leave my (former) church, but I can’t go back.”

One day Lucille testified in a church service, “Jesus died for me. You need Him, too. Take Him as your Saviour.” She joined the church by baptism one week later. Our pastor prayed that she wouldn’t have a seizure in the water. Her testimony blessed the whole church. Ellen and Chuck’s work with special people bore fruit.

“What have you learned, Ellen from these special people?” I asked.

“We have learned that you don’t stop because you have a handicap or a problem. Just keep going right on.”

My only daughter was born normal, but I had problems raising her without a daddy after he went to be with Christ. Ellen taught me to keep going on.

“What is your hobby, Ellen?” I asked her.

“I don’t have time for a hobby,” she responded.

“Would you say that ‘helping others’ is your hobby?”

“Yes, I suppose it is,” she said.

Dew of Compassion and God’s Love

I will be as the dew unto Israel: he shall grow as the lily, and cast forth his roots as Lebanon (Hos. 14:5).

God said, “I will be as the dew unto Israel.” He chose these people. They strayed away from Him. He punished them to correct their backsliding ways, and draw them back to Himself. His eyes of compassion look down on the tiny country of Israel. One glorious day He will return and judge their enemies. He will regather them and give them new, soft hearts. In that day, He will reign as their King.

While here on this earth, Jesus Christ had great compassion on the multitudes. They wandered as sheep without a shepherd. He showed His compassion by healing the sick, casting out demons, and feeding the hungry. We show our love as we pray for them, share the gospel, and minister to them.

God’s love and compassion knows no bounds. The Saviour extended His love toward us. He calls us to share what He did for us with others. When we yield our lives to Him, we minister to the hurting and troubled in our society. Some will come to Christ. He did so much for us; He deserves our best.

Prayer: “O Lord, spread abroad Thy love in my heart that others may come to Thee. In Jesus’ name. Amen.