Showing Off | Articles | The Fellowship

Showing Off

    Jul 30, 2023 | by The Fellowship

    Each summer, my family volunteers at a camp for families with special needs members. It is something we look forward to every year and are so blessed to be a part of. My family and I recently packed up and headed into the mountains of East Tennessee for a week of fellowship, reconnection, and fun!

    Our week at camp had been everything we hoped. Though exhausted, my husband and I felt renewed and our tireless children were eager to share all they had done that week. The final volunteer meeting had concluded and we were saying our last goodbyes. My husband asked our son, who had just turned seven the day before, if he needed to get anything before we headed home.

    My son remembered his new book and eagerly ran to get it. In between him and his book was a puddle on the floor from a nearby cooler. In a split second, my son was on the floor screaming out in pain. I turned to see him soaking wet and bleeding from his head. I scooped him up and sat on the floor with him, doing my best to help calm and reassure him. A cursory glance let me know the gash on his head would need several stitches. Inside, I began to panic.

    But God also chose that moment to scoop me up and reassure me. The volunteers surrounding us leapt into action. Some women grabbed my other two kids and took them out to play. Others got washcloths and paper towels to help stop the bleeding. Another ran to see if the camp doctor was still on campus. And several more started cleaning up the water/blood mess on the floor.

    A kind gentleman bent over my son. With gauze pads and a steady hand, he started calmly talking about which hospital would be best to go to, considering we were in the middle of nowhere. He had such a peaceful manner and seemed unfazed by the chaos. About this time I learned the camp doctor had left and we were on our own. A bit of panic set in and I took a deep breath. Right then, the gentleman helping us introduced himself as a retired pediatric emergency room physician. No wonder he had been so calm!

    My son was given a makeshift bandage and we were given directions to the nearest children's ER. While on the way, my son and I were recounting what just happened. I expressed my thankfulness for how God had just shown up with volunteers and the help that we needed. While my son agreed, he had a slightly different point of view. He agreed that  the volunteers helping clean up and take care of our family was God showing up. He said that the pediatric ER doctor being there was God showing off.

    I talk with my children about different ways that God meets our needs. We talk about how He helps us through neighbors or friends -- and in the less tangible ways that He gives us peace or hope when we need it most. But I have also taught my children that while God says He will meet our needs, somehow He seems to delight in meeting them abundantly. In circumstances when God gives us more than we need, I tell my kids that God is showing off. He is not doing those things because He has to, rather because He wants to and He can. I believe God loves us and wants us to know that He is there, and sometimes He does that with a dramatic flair. 

    God continued to show up that afternoon. There was no wait at the ER -- we were seen immediately. The first staff member we encountered happened to be a Pokémon aficionado -- so instead of my son being nervous, he spent the first bit of time rattling off memorized Pokémon statistics to an eager and friendly ear.  Once in an ER cubicle, one of his favorite movies was playing on the TV. When the doctor finally came in, he was the “go to” guy for stitches and had a great bedside manner and a punny sense of humor that put my son at ease.

    As I laid in bed that night and thought back on the day, I could not help but marvel at how God answered prayers before I even had time to pray them. I was surrounded by people who helped without being asked. Before I had time to pray for a doctor, one was already bent over my son.  Before I had time to pray for a good experience at the hospital, we were already out of there, and my son was looking forward to his "action hero scar." 

    Seven stitches for my newly turned seven-year-old. Seven stitches that I painstakingly watched the physician sew up. Seven stitches that he will bear the scar of forever.

    But those seven stitches were prayed over by dozens of people before we ever reached the hospital. Those seven stitches were expertly sewn. Those seven stitches are healing beautifully and causing him no pain. And those seven stitches are a beautiful reminder that we love a God who loves us so fiercely that He cannot help but show it off!

    V. C. 

    Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine …
    to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout
    all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

    Previous Page