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A few weeks ago, I was attending a church service at a nearby church. The minister gave a wonderful sermon on how God works in our life. During his sermon, he said that when something really rare happens, people are known to make the comment “million to one shot”, but this is really God working in our lives. This brought to my mind the time when a “million to one shot” happened in my life.
I was living in Texas at the time, and I woke up one morning with pain in my right eye each time I opened and closed it. It felt like some kind of debris, so I pried my eyelid up to try and dislodge it. That didn’t work, so I looked in the mirror and moved my eyelid around to see if I could see anything. I saw nothing. I tried eye drops to wash it out, and still no luck. I even watched a sad movie and cried, hoping that would work. No luck.
The next morning, I woke up hoping that the situation had resolved itself, but it hadn’t. My eye was bright red and hurt terribly each time I blinked. I ended up going to an ophthamologist that day to take care of the problem. When he came into the room, he could clearly see that my right eye was very irritated. After telling him the story, he looked into my eye with the equipment in his office and said, “Hhmm….well, that’s interesting. Million to one shot!” I asked him what he saw, and apparently one of my eyelashes had lodged itself into the tear duct! The chances of that happening were almost negligible. He was able to remove the eyelash with a small pair of tweezers, and the problem was solved.
When I heard the sermon and thought about this incident, I realized that maybe God had sent me a message. When the eyelash lodged in the tear duct, my life seemed to be going quite well. Little did I know that several years later, my life fell apart, and what I knew to be true in Texas was not true at all. I have grown so much, and now that I look back to that event in Texas, I was actually “blind” in so many ways.
The most amazing ending to this was at the end of the service. They sang Amazing Grace, and this confirmed my thoughts about the “million to one shot”. God works in our lives in the most mysterious and amazing ways – we just have to listen and be aware of the signs!
Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost, but now am found, was blind but now I see. John Newton
This past Christmas may have just been the most special of my life, and it all centers around one single yellow rose.
The past five years for me have been tough. I’ve endured three back surgeries, a coiled brain aneurysm, a divorce, and the loss of my father to cancer. During this time, I turned to God for help, and my strong faith in Jesus Christ sustained me. I have received many signs from God during this time, but none were quite as special as a single yellow rose that I received early in December.
My mom was visiting me, and we decided to go to a book signing that my friend, Belinda, was holding at a flower gallery near my home. The store was beautifully decorated for Christmas, and it was crammed with people feverishly looking for Christmas gifts and decorations. After visiting with Belinda, we made our way to the front of the store to leave. As we walked out, two men stood there with armfuls of roses. They were giving roses to each customer as he/she left. I was handed a yellow rose, and my mom was given a purple one. It was such a pleasant surprise and really made our day.
When we arrived home, I cut the stems of the two roses and put them into a vase. Both roses clearly had been freshly picked as they hadn’t opened yet. The next morning, both roses had completely opened up, and both were beautiful, but the yellow one was incredible. It was loaded with petals, more than I had ever seen on a rose. We remarked on the beauty of the yellow rose but didn’t think much more about it.
Later that week, my mom returned home. The purple rose started to wither at around day 5, and I tossed it at about day 7. However, the yellow rose stayed alive and beautiful for weeks! It didn’t begin to wither at all until about 3 weeks had passed. I was amazed at the beauty and health of this single yellow rose.
I wondered if this yellow rose was some kind of sign. I had never seen anything like it, so I looked up information about yellow roses. They are associated with the sun and convey feelings of warmth, happiness, springtime, platonic love, and devotion. First discovered in the 18th century, they can symbolize renewal…a time of starting fresh. I wondered if this was my sign that things would begin to improve for me. When the rose started to wilt, I took 4 of its petals and placed them inside my Bible to keep to remember this special flower.
On December 30, a friend of mine posted the above photo on facebook. I was stunned when I saw it was a yellow rose! I knew that God had sent that rose to me as a sign that He was right there with me. I knew that this was going to be the subject of my next blog. As I thought about writing the blog, I kept thinking about the song, “Lo How a Rose E’er Blooming.” I hadn’t sung this song in years, and I kept wondering why that song was stuck in my head. I kept thinking I should look up the words, but I never did. Then, on January 1, my mom and I attended a Catholic mass. The song after communion was “Lo How a Rose E’er Blooming”! I closely listened to the words, and the message became clear to me.
God’s gift to me this Christmas was a single yellow rose that signifies renewal, starting fresh, and comfort. He is walking right beside me. He has dispelled darkness and shares the load that I carry. He will care for me always and will supply my every need. Praise be to Lord Jesus Christ, my savior and king!
“O Flower whose fragrance tender, with sweetness fills the air, dispel with glorious splendor, the darkness everywhere. True man, yet very God, from sin and death now save us and share our every load.” Verse 3, “Lo How a Rose E’er Blooming”
“When the night has been too lonely and the road has been too long, and you think that love is only for the lucky and the strong, just remember in the winter far beneath the bitter snow lies the seed that with the sun’s love in the spring becomes the rose.” Bette Midler, “The Rose”