Mark on the Move

When You’re Up on the Roof

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You’ve probably heard the story about the guy who watched torrential rains fall and worried as the streets started flooding.  Before long, the water was up over his window sills. Finally, he found himself climbing up on the roof.  The rain was falling fast and hard and he had run out of options.  He had no place to go.  He did the only thing a person in a foxhole can do, he began to pray.

“Lord, I’m up on this roof and I need you to rescue me.  I need you to come right now and save me before I drown.”  He waited.  After a while, a little boat comes along with a space just big enough for him to get in. He turns it down because he has put the situation in God’s hands and feels sure God will rescue him.  So he waits some more.

As the rains keep falling and more time passes, he keeps praying.  This time a yacht comes by and it has a special room he can sit in and a good hot meal on the table to refresh his body and soul.  It looks good, but he turns this boat down as well.  “Oh, that’s okay,” he says, “God is going to rescue me.”

Finally, in the late hours of the evening, the water is nearly covering the roof and things are looking pretty bleak.  A rescue helicopter spots him and throws down a ladder for him to grab onto and be saved.  He gives this one some thought, but still feeling sure that God will rescue him, he waves the helicopter away, shouting, “God will take care of me.”

Finally, he is washed away in the flood waters and he seeks God’s face one more time.  “Lord, why did you forsake me?” he asks.

God has only one reply. “I sent you a boat, a luxury yacht and a helicopter.  What more did you need?” 

I remind you of this story or whatever version of it you may have heard, to suggest that when you’re recovering from a stroke, you can feel like everything is overwhelming, like you’re sitting on top of a roof and you might drown any minute.  You need more help than you’ve ever needed in your life, but you feel like you’re all alone.  You may even be drowning in your own sorrows. You may think you need to just sit and wait to be rescued.

The truth is that you never know who God might send to help you.  He knows you’re going to need numerous therapists and the help of family and friends.  He knows that there is nothing that feels normal about the way your life has been changed. 

The thing to remember is that you may feel like the floodwaters are rising, but God will keep sending you the right kind of help.  He is with you on that roof.  He sees the storms you face.  It’s up to you to accept His help with grace and gratitude. 

Believe me, this part was not easy for me, but once I was willing to accept the help of others, things started to improve in my recovery.  I hope the same thing is true for you.  God will be with you in the storms of life.

They will call to me, and I will answer them. I will be with them in trouble; I will rescue them and honor them.

Psalm 91:15, (NCV)

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