Of Mozzie Bites and Bush Fires
A week ago, I was sitting at my desk tapping computer keys writing my weekly blog when a pesky little mosquito circled me. It whined in my ear like a tiny screeching parrot. In the space of a minute, it bit me not just once but many times. Perhaps he liked my blood. I swatted him the best I could, but an hour later there was plenty of evidence that he had made a meal out of my arm.
My husband was shocked to see 10 angry red welts on my arm. They itched like crazy. My doctor prescribed antihistamines for a week and a cream to soothe it. Putting an ice pack on it did make it better. But not as much as I liked. Friends suggested remedies. They all helped a bit. But not enough. Till… my husband said ‘Why not try Telfast tablets (not Claratyne)?’ I did and there was an immediate effect! The itching lessened. Hooray! The angry welts were replaced by subdued ones. Thank you God.
I appreciated all the tips I received from loving friends. But the one that made a difference came from the man in my life. I bless him now as I type it. If not for Shan’s wisdom, I’d be too busy tending my itchy arm to write a new blog! If not for his suggestion I’d still be scratching furiously making those angry red bumps even “angrier, redder and bumpier”.
Mozzie bites are inconvenient. But not devastating. What a devastating week it has been for the people of New South Wales. We’ve been gaping aghast at our TV screens as we viewed evidence of horrific damage; over 200 houses lost. What tragedy! Our hearts have gone out to the many victims of the fires. How do people pick up the pieces of their lives after such an event? For those affected it’s a nightmare that won’t end for a long time yet.
We have family and friends residing in the Blue Mountains so naturally, we’ve been deeply concerned for their safety. A friend’s husband is a firefighter. I feel much for them. How hard it must be for the families of firefighters! It’s been heart warming to see the response of all of Australia as we rallied around in ways we could – praying earnestly, offering financial support and caring for those affected even from a distance.
Mozzie bites and bush fires. Our lives contain both in differing measures, don’t they? There are too many Mozzie-bite-moments in our lives. Those times when the irritations of life grab us and won’t let us go. Those close to us make those difficult moments more bearable. Sometimes a special person in our lives makes them better than bearable. They take us through – as did the man in my life with my own mozzie bites last weekend.
And then, we have the dreadful life shattering bush fires in our lives. When life spins out of control. Then too, family and friends help. But sometimes even they can’t make a difference. Because the problems are too big to solve. There’s little we can do but cling onto God and trust Him with our lives. A friend in the Blue Mountains has been sending me updates as he and his family have been through these horrendous times.
I quote from his last letter. “As always our faith and belief gives us the confidence that God will take care of us.” Yes, those bush fire moments (real or metaphorical) do come upon us without warning like stormy waves crashing upon the shore. Their intensity shake us. If God wasn’t in the equation, life would be very difficult; perhaps impossible. Yes, the God in my life is often my Refuge and Strength. I couldn’t make it without Him.
When the mozzie bites itch and the bush fires rage, I need a hand. The man in my life has helped me when I’ve struggled with some of life’s Mozzie bites. The God in my life has been a Rock over the years – guiding me, helping me, carrying me through my bushfire moments. I need them both. Life is worthwhile, life is rich – all because of Relationship.
Relationship with God and Relationship with each other. No wonder then that Jesus’ response to the question ‘What is the greatest commandment?” reflected this truth.
“‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.” Luke 10:27