If you don’t know it yet, life can turn on a dime… in the time it takes to answer a phone or a doctor to walk in a room.  For example…

Turn #1: Three weeks ago Brian and Angie Jones (Friends of mine from N.W. Alabama) noticed their 18 month old child Sawyer had a fever… swelling in his foot… and other odd symptoms.  After a week in a local hospital where the doctors were stumped, they transported him to Children’s in Birmingham.  For the following weeks the doctors there were stumped also.  His fever couldn’t be controlled… there were sores in his mouth… and the blood work wasn’t definitive.  Eventually Sawyer had emergency surgery at 2:00 AM Sunday morning.  An x-ray revealed two holes in his bowels.  They removed two sections and gave him a colostomy.  Hopefully he’s on the road to recovery now.

Turn #2:  The Youth Group of Huffman Baptist camped out at Oak Mountain this weekend.  Sunday morning at 4:00 AM one of the parents got a phone call that their older son had been in a serious auto accident and was being airlifted to University Hospital.  His leg was shattered, his arm was hurt extensively, and he had a gash on his head.  For a while Sunday the situation was extremely serious.  Yet after surgery where they placed rods in his leg and arm… along with stitching his head… he received a prognosis that he would have about a 98% recovery… with time.

Both sets of parents are believers.  Both are thankful for a God who hears prayers.  Both are starting to get their bearings on life, probably with a different perspective than they had just a short time back.  God be glorified!

Those events were reminders to me of how fragile life can be.  I remembered also that I don’t need to presume upon even the next moment.  It came back to my mind that I can make my plans but it is the Lord’s will that always prevails.  Then I contemplated again what James wrote…

James 4:13 Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”— 14 yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. 15 Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” 16 As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil.

I have been guilty of mapping out my life without proper consideration to the unknown that is kept in God’s secret wisdom.  If/when I verbalize “God willing” in my speech it has the effect of keeping me on point regarding God’s providence.  It also has the effect of reminding those who hear what I say that God is over all the issues of life and that we all need to be walking by faith rather than by sight.

What are we to do… to prepare for what we don’t know is coming?  Here are a few suggestions…

Walk with God daily.  That way when the unexpected happens you don’t have far to run to get to Him.

Walk with God daily by systematically reading His Word… The Bible.

Walk with God daily through prayer.  Talking and listening to God is a vital part of Christian maturity.

Walk with God daily through worship.  Have CDs or songs on your I-pod that glorify and honor God.  Worship is God’s prescription for encouragement and comfort.

Walk with God daily through strong relationships with other Christians.  God will use them to strengthen you.

Walk with God according to Mark 6:31… “Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, (Jesus) said to them, ‘Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.'”