They are there (or near there).
This winter my family has been faced with many trials. This winter God has been teaching me that He is enough. He is, was, and always will be enough.
368 miles is FAR! It is too far away for ME to be able to rock sick babies. It is too far away for ME to drive my mother-in-law to physical therapy for her shoulder. It is too far away for ME to sit by my grandmother's hospital bed. It is too far away for ME to hold my brother's hand as he endures yet another round of testing for his eye. It is too far away for ME to hug my sister-in-law to ease her fears about my brother's eye. It is too far away for ME to be at the hospital RIGHT NOW as my mother goes through a 3 hour stress test for her heart. It is too far away for ME to even make a casserole. It is too far away.
But, honestly, my casseroles aren't that great. Sure; I add some kind of meat and some kind of potato and a random vegetable (just to make it look healthier) and, of course, butter and cheese.
But my God, the One Almighty God, makes AWESOME casseroles. He adds HIS strength and HIS grace. He mixes in HIS mercy and HIS forgiveness and HIS peace and garnishes it with HIS Scripture, like
The Lord will fight for you; you need only be still.
The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.
1 Peter 5:6-7
Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.
Now, that is some good casserole!
God is teaching me, in the uncomfortable ways that He sometimes teaches us, that I don't need to hug sister-in-laws or hold brother's hands or rock sick babies because they are all resting in HIS Everlasting Arms. I don't need to worry about physical therapy appointments or sitting by hospital beds because HE is the Great Physician and the Calmer of Storms. 368 miles is no distance for God.
But what can I do from 368 miles away? I can pray. I can fall down on my face before His throne and lift my family up into His presence and THAT is all I need to do.
Thank you, God, for being enough ALL THE TIME EVERYWHERE and for making the best casseroles.