Choosing Stones

Sleep just wasn’t coming. My mind was doing hurdles through what seemed like an obstacle course of information. The first consultation with the stem cell transplant specialist left me feeling completely overwhelmed and inadequate for the task that was about to be set before me. As I lay there, all I could even pray was, “God, there is NO WAY I will be able to do this! I am so inadequate. This is too big for me!”

“The stones have a story, too. They were prepared for such a time.” It was just a soft whisper, but my spirit immediately felt more calm. Peace smoothed over me as my mind now went to David and his 5 smooth stones facing a giant. So way past midnight sleep remained even more elusive as the deeper truths of those 5 stones came alive to me.

Erosion. A constant beating. Wind. Rain. Heat and cold. Broken and tossed from one place to another by swift currents. These are the actions which creates that beautifully smooth finish of rocks and stones. In time, the elements of nature refine the appearance of the hard bedrock of our Earth.

Then he took his staff in his hand; and he chose for himself five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in a shepherd’s bag, in a pouch which he had, and his sling was in his hand. And he drew near to the Philistine.1 Sam 17:40

As I lay there thinking about David’s story, for the fist time my mind shifted from focusing on David or his skill at choosing good smooth stones. Nor was I focused on his time of preparation for this moment. All valid points. But not the message God wanted me to catch in this season. Instead, He wanted to teach me about the stones themselves.

Each stone at one time had been part of a larger rock or bolder. But time itself brought the forces of erosion to create a smooth surface. Years of harsh weathering causes large rocks to fracture and split. More years of weathering and being tossed down stream, the broken shards hit against other rocks and boulders. With each toss of the waves, rough abrasion polish the harsh edges of the broken pieces. Finally, a smooth surface becomes the result.

That God would take this simple truth to speak to my hurting heart speaks of His love for me. As I was struggling with thoughts of how I could possibly be fit to care for my husband, He chose to encourage me through an item that has such sweet memories.

Through the years of raising our kids, we often visited places near streams or lakes or rivers. Always you would find Raphael kneeling near the water choosing stones. He loved the simple pleasure of watching the rocks ‘skip’ over the water. Of course he also loved the thrill of competition to see who’s rock went the farthest and had the most skips! I can still hear him explaining to the kids how to choose the best rock to get the most ‘skips’. The smoothest ones usually worked the best. I love seeing pictures of our son and his family enjoying times near the water. From one generation to the next, the art of choosing stones, and just simply enjoying God’s creation, remains part of the DNA.

While lying there that night, my mental hurdles changed pace. Although the tasks facing me had not changed course, the way I viewed them did. I recognized that through the years of life, God has been using the weathering of situations to continue smoothing out rough edges in my life. Just as smooth stones skip on top of the water more easily, they also can cut through the air more freely headed to its target. David’s wisdom was not only in his choosing of stones but, like the wise virgins getting extra oil, he went armed with more than one to be prepared for any surprise the enemy might throw his way.

Although I might feel like a small stone on the ground next to a giant circumstance, my Creator has allowed life’s weathering process to prepare me for such a time. That night He reminded me of the past giants which hurled stones had already brought down. Today I am facing a new giant -AL Amyloidosis IgM Lambda with stem cell transplant. Yet my stone has been refined for such a time as this!

What giant are you facing today? Do you feel overwhelmed as it taunts you in your sleep? Go to the stream of Life to find your stone. Or perhaps you already have your stone chosen and all you have to do is put it in the sling and aim. Either way, be encouraged –

Your stone is prepared for such a time as this!

Just a couple of weeks after God spoke to me about smooth stones, a package came in the mail. Our grandsons had painted rocks for us. Such confirmation from pure hearts of a child. After all the polishing and removal of rough edges, our Father allows us to add our own personality. What love He has for us!

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