• St. Luke's ELCA

Daily Inspiration - September 4

Better Late Than Never

I’ve always prided myself on being a fast learner. Indeed, I’ve bulldozed through most of my life at breakneck speeds, completing a volume of tasks that no mere mortal could manage. Sounds pretty full of myself, doesn’t it? Well, I was. And I was also blind to the truth that I am actually an incredibly slow learner when it comes to what’s important. In fact, it’s quite ridiculous to reflect back and see all the invitations God was presenting to me throughout life; opportunities to draw closer to Him and know Him, to which I paid no heed—and some of them were challenging and pretty obvious! I ignored them all. I kept plowing ahead doing things my way, chasing whatever I could in order to fill that void inside of me that I was desperate to fill, fleetingly asking God if He cared, if He was even there. I basically ignored God and His answers until I was laid out flat. Literally. Until I was in so much pain with a ruptured disc that I ground my teeth down and couldn’t breathe easily for....years. Until I could no longer stand, dance, sit, run, travel, roll over in bed...Until I developed an autoimmune disease that made it difficult to see, think, eat my favorite foods, get out of bed...Until my house flooded and my disease spread to my lungs and I could no longer live with my family. Until virtually all that I thought that made me “me” went away: some temporarily, some permanently. What was I to do other than feel sorry for myself? If I wasn’t Kris the jogger, the traveler, the mother, the wife, if I couldn’t think or move or be with loved ones...then who was I? Perhaps the better question would be, “WHOSE was I?” And BAM. There He was.

Jeremiah 33:3

“Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known.”

And He washed over me like a flood (pun intended) and brought me to my knees. You see, I couldn’t see Him until He was all there was left to see in front of me. And it was through the personal pain and total desperation that I finally turned my attention to the Light. And it saved me. He saved me. And I was reminded, and continue to be reminded, to focus on the million precious moments presented in every day rather than the rough ones. And that I simply cannot do a single day without God.

Psalm 121:1

“I lift up my eyes to the hills-- where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.”

One would think that, with all I have experienced, I would have learned my lesson by now, right? Well, remember that I’m a slow learner. Sometimes, I forget and draw away from God. And then I feel that loneliness again and am reminded to lean back in, to pick up my Bible, listen to Christian music, read a devotional, listen to online services, smile at people, call someone, spend time with Eric and Taylor, write a card, send money to a worthy cause, and pray. And I find my answer once again. Who is Kris? She is, to steal a line from Jay, a beloved child of God.

1 John 3:1

“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.”

I am grateful and ready to start again, every day if need be, serving and letting Christ’s light shine through me as He sees fit. And each of my above-mentioned examples can be done from my bed, reminding me that I can contribute even if I happen to not feel so well that day. With God, all things are possible.

John 12:26

"If any man serves me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honor."

I can slow down and breathe, now. I’m not alone. I am safe and saved. What I’ve been chasing has been in me all along, and always will be. Same goes for you, too!

Trusting God’s promise of being with us always,

Kris Nordeng




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