Published September 27, 2011

Shelia Shares....
"So Blessed"

August 23 there was an earthquake here on the East Coast. We got a bit of a scare, and a thrill, and a big ladder fell over at the office. But that was all. We are so blessed.

August 27 we felt hurricane Irene. Winds were clocked at 69 miles per hour. As she passed, she removed a large branch from one of our trees. The branch hung over our dining room. When it fell, the wind moved it from over the house to a spot on our lawn where nothing was hit. (I prefer to think a "hand" moved it to the best possible place where it could fall.) We are so blessed.

Then we had the issue of what we'd do to clean up that tree debris. In conversation with a friend, she mentioned that her neighbor would cut it up and take it away for the firewood. She arranged it. He cut it up, hauled away several truck loads and left my lawn looking like nothing had ever happened. It was without cost to me. We are so blessed.

September 7 and 8 saw a lot of flooding in Pennsylvania. Although we could not take our regular route to our office because roads were flooded, we found an open highway to get there. We had some water in our garage, which was unusual, but it could not have been classed as flooding. At our building, there was dampness in the one part of the basement, but not damaging water. We are so blessed.

We were just at the National Quartet Convention. I made my reservations at the Marriott Residence Inn where we have stayed the last few years. Since we do many artist interviews in our room, I called to confirm that I had the requested easy-access room. Not only did I not have the room, but my reservation had been canceled. The hotel said it was canceled by the head office and the head office said it was canceled by the hotel. When I didn't accept their blame of each other, they decided I had canceled by accident. (That would be a Shelia Shares story in itself.) As I was on the phone with the Marriott, a gentleman came to mind who sometimes books an extra room. I called him and he had an extra room near the Expo Center which I could have. We are so blessed.

While at NQC, we got a phone call from our office. The two primary lines (from which calls roll over to other lines) were not working. Verizon sent their repairman and it wasn't a problem with their equipment. (He thought we might have been hit during the bad lightning storm the night before and he was kind enough to not charge us for the visit.) From 600 miles away, Paul suggested what to try and Jason systematically checked phones at the office. Two separate phones had been hit and after those two were unplugged, the other phones were up and ringing again. We are so blessed.

On our way back from NQC, we were finally in Pennsylvania and had just gotten on the turnpike. Glancing at the car gauges, I noticed the gas gauge registering empty and when I told Paul, he noticed that the little light that goes on when it is "really" empty was lighted. Paul had been wearing dark sunglasses which made it impossible to see the fuel gauge. We prayed our way to the first exit and down the hill to the gas pumps. I think the car has a 15 gallon tank and the pump cut off at 17-1/2 gallons. We were traveling on fumes. We are so blessed.

We arrived home to find a refrigerator that was running but not cold. I emptied and discarded everything in the refrigerator. (I didn't even know that olives could mold, but at the right temperature they can.) We found a reasonably priced replacement and slowly I'll begin to restock it. We are blessed to have a refrigerator and to be able to buy food to fill it. We are so blessed.

Does it seem like we have been hit by a lot within the last month? Yes. Do we get frustrated? Yes. Do we wonder why? Yes.

However, through it all we continue to trust that God knows everything that happens. We continue to believe that He loves us and wants our best. We continue to realize that life is not always sunny for the Christian. And, we truly do believe, we are so blessed!

- Shelia

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