This Sunday's gospel from Luke 18:1-8 is quite appropriate in terms of my recent encounters here at Camp Shelly. The persistent widow is something we need to learn when we seek to know God but it also is appropriate when dealing with humans as well. I often wonder what would have happened if she had not gone back that last time . . .
Many of you have heard my encounter with case management in terms of my injury to my ankle. After being good and using the crutches for two weeks I went back to the Doctor in Hattiesburg who said that I no longer needed the crutches but would need to slowly over the next 6 weeks rehab the ankle to where I could begin to run again. He did not need to see me again and wished me luck on my deployment. (side note: It's cool who God places in your life as this guy was a believer and an Army brat himself. He was heading to Israel on a two week mission trip and we were able to pray for each other's ministry)
Well I went to Camp Shelby's case management that next Monday to get myself closed out and back in a deployable state; however, was told since the doctor did not write the word closed or cleared I needed to continue to come in. They called the clinic to ask for the notes from the doctor and until they got them my case would remain open. So I went back three days later and they did get the note from the doctor that I needed to re-acclimate myself over the next 6 weeks to normal activity. However, I still needed to come into case management. Of course being the logical person I asked why? She had no answer and said but you need to re-acclimate over the next 6 weeks. Exactly and I'm on a temporary profile saying I cannot run or do anything high impact for the next 6 weeks so why do I need to come in? Again she went back to the 'man behind the curtain' came back and said but you need to re-acclimate that's what the doctor said. Again I asked why? since that is what the temporary profile is for . . . She left - came back and said but can you do your normal activities my reply was yes because I'm on a temporary profile. . . She left - came back but you need to re-acclimate over the next 6 weeks. Finally, I told her - look if I have an open case with you I cannot deploy with my unit who will be gone within the next 6 weeks. Unless you can tell me why I need to come in here to see you when I am on a temporary profile and how that is any different from getting a profile from the TMC (where I would never have even been in their system) you need to close my case. She left - when she came back this time she stated - we've decided to close your case.
Persistence pays off!! So now I have been cleared and am again in a deployable status. Much to the delight of my soldiers, who came back yesterday. Again the question . . .what would have happened if I hadn't been persistent, if I had stopped? How often do we miss what God is desiring to do in our lives because we don't persevere - How long is too long? We cannot know the mind of God - and what we have been called to do is to come before him day and night - to be persistent in season and out. Will you have the faith to be persistent before God in whatever is going on in your life? Because that is the only way we can remain in a deployable state so God can use us for his mission.