We had looked forward to this time for months. With our son having left for boot camp only two weeks prior, we knew that a few-day visit from our friends would be the perfect pick-me-up for our droopy spirits. But as the time approached, I felt myself sinking into a deep pit. Son had not called or written–my heart breaking while other Moms reported glorious words from their offspring. Energy levels plummeted with the mood. I looked around the house and wondered how I would ever get it cleaned before my friends arrived.
|Our friends Rachel and Marcia from Oregon in Tombstone–original building
|Arizona’s oldest continuously published newspaper–started 1891
There I sat in the dining room, tears running down my cheeks, my Bible Study open to pages proclaiming how God answers our prayers in the hard times, and all I wanted was a letter from our son. It was a hard time fraught with doubt, fears, and a severe case of the “what ifs.”
But God was watching and He was in control! In a couple of days, about the time I was ready to give up, the form letter arrived and son had scribbled words of love in a corner. Then my dear friend said that the lady who cleans houses would be available to come before my company arrived. One thing after another fell into place.
|Historic typesetting machine used to publish “The Epitaph”
Life began to look brighter and I could see the light and smell the fresh air at the top of the pit. Quickly I scrambled out, thanking God for His promises to see me in my distress and provide a way out.
When our friends arrived, I was imbued with energy from above. We toured the majestic Kartchner Caverns. Droplets of water sparkled from stalactites that clung to the glorious caverns carved by God so long ago. One whole arena called the Throne Room boasted formations of various shapes, thick and twisted, thin and tall like a straw, striated chunks of rock colored red from iron deposits–all molded by the Creator’s hands. We praised God with wonder from our hearts.
The next day we toured the Wild West town of Tombstone. In the 18 years I have lived in Arizona, not once have I gone to this famed location where the notorious Wyatt Earp was a law unto himself. Having watched a reenactment of the famous gunfight at OK Corral that took place in 1881, we then strolled the dusty streets and poked into lace-frilled shops.
|A reenactment of the notorious gunfight behind the O.K. Corral 1881
I never would have believed that I would hike anywhere in the desert in summertime. But the third day had us hiking a small trail in a canyon where stands of Saguaros rose up the mountains bordering the canyon.
|Wyatt Earp, the actor. Rumored to be a great grandson of the infamous Earp
It wasn’t just one Playdate with God but it was three glorious days of marveling at His mighty power in me, the beauty of His desert creation, and sweet fellowship with God’s gift of friends.
|Just a small stream of water flowed over the dam. We paused and ate our lunch under the trees, eyes on the water.
|A bloom in the desert to Glorify God
“I will extol the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips. My soul will boast in the Lord; let the afflicted hear and rejoice. Glorify the Lord with me, let us exalt his name together. ” Psalm 34: 1-6 NIV
Giving thanks to the Lord for:
926) God’s goodness
927) God’s watchfulness
928) God’s provision
929) A form letter with scribbled words of love
930) Friends who bring the joy and delight of the Lord with them
932) Hiking the desert in summer
933) A stream of water in the desert, even a little is refreshing
934) Thunderstorms that cool the desert heat
935) Capturing lighting in a photo
936) The flower that blooms in a rugged climate