August 2011 - Denise's soap, Heating Pad, WalMart

"God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble…

be still, and know that I am God" (Psalm 46: 1, 10)

My life is filled with miracles from God. Some folks may say they are coincidences.

The dictionary describes both: A coincidence is "an accidental and remarkable occurrence of events, ideas, etc. at the same time, suggesting but lacking a casual relationship." A miracle is

"an event or action that apparently contradicts known scientific laws and is hence thought to be due to super-natural causes, especially to an act of God."

Last summer, granddaughter Jennifer and Sam came to visit me. Her friend Denise and three children also came. The children were delightful. I loved the sound of their laughter, having much fun playing games -- especially "Hide and Seek." There are lots of places to hide, and run, in my big house. I whispered to Sam to hide behind the close-out door of the dirty clothes hamper in the bathrooms! Denise gave me a gift--a bar of her homemade soap. It's wonderful!

One morning, I was in the shower enjoying the pleasant scent and nice lather of the soap.

I decided the next thing to do: call Denise and ask if she would sell me 15 bars to put in all my family's Christmas stockings. These thoughts were interrupted by the ringing of my portable telephone that I had placed on the floor beside the bathtub. "Hello…"

"Hi, Tillie. This is Denise!" I'm thinking, "Miraculous! This is unbelievable!" "Are you OK today?" I replied, "Not exactly at this minute. I'm in the shower and all soaped down."

"Oh! Hon, I'll make this simple for you. I don't want you to hurt yourself while in the shower, Hon. I'll talk fast: I'm with the Kid's Wish Network…" COINCIDENCE! No Miracle! Wrong Denise! I was getting a chill from the open shower door. Did she really expect me to listen to her in my condition? I hung up the phone!

After I was dressed and walked into the kitchen, my answering machine was blinking. It contained the rest of her speech!!!! "I'll send you a discount letter…Twelve Dollars…700 terminally ill children's wishes…" She must have talked five minutes; then asked, "….as little as $12. Would you do that, HON? Tillie, Hon? Are you there? Tillie? WELL! God Bless You!"

Yes, Denise gave me the soap at Christmas.

I can't back up my car! It just goes all crooked when I put it in reverse. I've hit both sides of my garage doors…more than once! You must back up very straight until the whole car passes a small patio with a brick planter box that extends from the corner of the house, six feet from the garage and flush with the driveway. I've hit that a few times, too. Did you know LAVA soap makes paint scratches go away?

A long time ago, about 1980, I backed out of the garage and the back bumper on the passenger side of the car scooted up on top of that planter box, lifting the rear wheel off the ground! It was the worse thing that ever happened to me. I was leaving to go to work at 10:30 a.m. (my working hours were 11:00 to 7:00). The only thing I could think of to get out of this predicament was call a wrecker. NO, I couldn't call my husband! He would never understand.

No way! Call a wrecker! Pay him $100. CASH!

Jack was retired and working at his handyman business somewhere in the neighborhood. At that very next moment, here comes my husband, swirling his El Camino into the driveway. I was petrified! He looked at our car, grabbed the middle of the back bumper, lifted our Cadillac off the planter box and onto the driveway. Then he went into the garage, grabbed a tool out of his closet, climbed into his pickup and drove away. Now, THAT was a MIRACLE! I was just standing around; being quiet. He never, ever, mentioned this to me all during the rest of his life.

I told several people, after their promise never to mention it to Jack!!!!

It was 2:00 a.m. Thursday morning of April 28, when I finished the May "Happenings." I knew a sore throat was coming on for several hours because of the pain. But the May edition had to be mailed the next Monday since it reminded everyone of National Day of Prayer. Now, I could go to bed with a heating pad on my throat and the pain would go away. I searched and re-searched for almost an hour. I could not find my heating pad anywhere. I called Memorial Northwest Hospital which is about five minutes from my house. I asked if their pharmacy was open. No! The hours were 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. That would be nearly seven hours. I need relief NOW. The only other place I knew that was open was Wal-Mart on 290 at Tidwell. I called to verify. YES! It was now 3:00 a.m. Night driving is a no-no for me; but there would be very little traffic and freeways had street lights all the 15 minutes away.

I parked my car in the first front row handicap place opposite the entrance across the driveway. There was a lady in a pink dress standing at the entrance, probably a clerk waiting to be picked up after her shift. She asked, "Do your lights go off automatically?" "Yes! Isn't it wonderful? I never think about turning them on or off. But Thank You for asking. There was a time when they didn't and I didn't!" We both laughed, and I walked about 20 feet before I was really in the store. There was hardly anyone inside. I thought, "Gee! I wish I needed something else. This is a perfect shopping time!" I beckoned to a group of clerks, and one came over to me. I said, "I can't walk very far, and I don't know your store. Can you please direct me to the heating pads?" She had just finished pointing and saying, "Three aisles over," when the lady in the pink dress rushed in, screaming, "Call the police! A man has just attacked a lady in the parking lot. He knocked her down to the ground and is beating her! Call the police!" She began to cry. The clerk yelled "SECURITY! SECURITY!" and four uniformed men came running from different areas of the store and out the door. Some of the clerks followed them.

I was trembling in fear! I said to the lady in the pink dress: "That could have been ME! You know, I just left the parking lot. Was she being robbed?"

"I don't know. I just hope she's alright."

I looked at all the heating pads and selected the one I needed. I never heard police sirens. A guard was standing beside the check-out counter. I asked, "Would you please walk me to my car? I don't usually shop this late, but needed this heating pad; and I'm hesitant to walk out the door alone. Do you know what happened out there?"

"Yes, it was two of our employees! They assured us they had settled their differences, so we let them go. I'll be happy to escort you to your car."

WOW! They probably hadn't had any excitement for days, until I came along at 3:a.m.! And I didn't need it. I felt so sorry for the woman getting involved with such an uncouth man.

Before I fell asleep, I included them both in my prayers. They need the love of Jesus in their lives. Every time I've thought of this night, I have asked God to send someone to help them.

Peace comes in daily prayer and keeping in touch with God. His presence with us is His greatest present to us.

A few years ago, I mailed "Happenings" in window envelopes. I'd copy 3 addresses per page and cut them to fit the windows. It was quicker than typing addresses on each envelope. I had a full box plus some left over when I discovered address labels! I really needed to use these. I cut strips of paper and applied labels to them for my April "Happenings." I used the leftovers in May. First, I applied all labels to the paper strips; then stuffed them in the envelopes. It's faster that way rather than applying label, stuffing envelope; applying label, stuffing envelope. Suddenly, the Lord (or the Holy Spirit which dwells within me) spoke: "Check your envelopes! You MAY have enough labels for them!" I began inserting labels, and had three envelopes left! The Lord guides me in every step of my "Happenings."

Some people believe in luck; I believe in blessings.

Some people believe in coincidences; I believe in miracles.

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