As the needle bends

A world view thru my hobbit hole door

In all things God works for the good of those who love Him

When I heard Ken Lay’s statement after being convicted on all counts on Thursday, May 25, I thought at least he wasn’t beating his chest, crying "poor, pitiful me." Since then I’ve heard, read, and seen some discussion that possibly,he misunderstands the scripture from which his statement came:

"Despite what happened today, I’m still a very blessed man. And, most of all, I believe God, in fact, is in control and that, indeed, God works all things good for all who love the Lord."

So, instead of cluttering up someone else’s blog with my opinion about this, I decided that I’d just write about it here.

I’ll admit that I thought Mr Lay sounded a bit like a pompous windbag when I heard his statement, but I do remember thinking that it was good that his feet were so well grounded because he’s going to need that faith where he’s going. Some of my blog-buddies at LoneStarTimes were discussing it today, and got me thinking about what that particular scripture means to me. Then I read what JimB posted on his blog about the statement and the scripture, and I just had to share write this, whether anyone else ever reads this or not.

1995 was a really less than spectacular year for me. My mother passed away from cancer on April 30. On May 31, I was told that my husband needed a heart transplant. On June 30, I got to practice my CPR on him – and it didn’t work. Enough about that. That’s the setting, not the story.

While I was working through all that I had to work through, both with Mama’s death and estate (not to mention 30 years of our family’s STUFF that had been crammed into every nook and cranny of "our" house) and with my husband’s death, I spent a lot of time with Mama’s baby sister. Aunt Lora was always a rock in my childhood,kind of a second mother, and when I was an adult crying because I wanted my Mama, she was there again. We walked and talked. We worked and talked. We discussed a lot of really silly things and some really deep things, and I don’t think I’ll ever forget her voice when she said, "Susie, don’t you ever forget that God will not put more on your plate than you can handle. But He does like to push the envelope a little some times – I think He knows that it makes us stronger, when we come out the other side."

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

Which is followed closely by Romans 8:35-39

35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. 37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Aunt Lora would say that means that God can take a sow’s ear and make a silk purse out of it, and it won’t ever be a sow’s ear again, no matter how muddy it gets. I think she’d say God never made a black cloud that doesn’t have a silver lining, and that God lets us choose our own path because the journey to Him, and with Him, mean so much more when you’ve seen the other choices. I can’t ask Aunt Lora, because we lost her last fall to Alzheimer’s. But I can still hear her voice, and I can still hear those scriptures – they were read at her funereal. And I’ve never thought that they mean that God will keep anything bad from happening to me, just because I love God, as I think some of my blog-buddies seem to believe is Mr Lay’s thought. I've always been taught that as long as you really love God, no matter how bad it seems to get, nothing will happen that you can’t handle. That no matter how bad things seem at the moment, someday I'll understand why I had to endure the bad. That was my mantra for the year after Mama and Jim’s deaths, and sure enough, I made it through,with many special memories of a journey that I wasn’t sure I’d survive. And I’m stronger for the trip.

I can’t pretend to know what is in Ken Lay’s heart, but perhaps the part of this scripture that he didn’t include in his statement describes his view of the possibilities that his future seem to hold for him, and that he believes that nothing that lies ahead of him, that he and God together can’t handle.

As The Needle Bends

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May 26, 2006 - Posted by | Life and Ramblings


  1. BSue,

    That was a beautiful and very heart wrenching post. I too lost my husband who was 32 at the time (I was 27). I had just gotten out of the hospital having had surgery for cancer when the news reached me. I hated God for a long time until I read a book entitled, Why Bad Things Happen to Good People. I don’t remember the author. Now that I have become a Christian, it all makes sense to me. Chance and circumstance happens to us all.

    Comment by Neocon | May 27, 2006 | Reply

  2. Neo, I treasure a book that was given to Mama when she was in the hospital, during the beginning of her illness called “God Works the Night Shift” by Ron Mehl.
    Aside from chance and circumstance, God never promised that our lives would be smooth sailing, and He did promise that we would have to face the consequences of our actions – just that He’d never forsake us while we are facing those consequences, as long as we don’t forsake Him.

    Comment by bsue | May 27, 2006 | Reply

  3. I’ll have to read that one Sue. Since becoming a Christian, I find the Bible supplies most of what I need. As your post says, God does not separate himself from us, we separate ourselves from him. He is always there.

    On another note, I went to a graduation today at Texas A & M University – for Magnolia High School. They said a prayer! Yes, they used the term, “heavenly father” and ended the prayer in “the name of Christ Jesus our Lord”. The superintendent of the school system even invoked God and told the seniors that if you kept him in your life, you would make it in the real world. Prior to that they said the Pledge of Allegiance and did not leave out “under God.” I was very impressed! So different that what you see reported by some schools. For instance, the one school where no mention of God was allowed, but at the end, all the seniors sneezed and one guy went to the podium and said something like “God Bless you, each and every one!”

    Does this old heart good!

    Comment by Neocon | May 27, 2006 | Reply

  4. PS – I love the pictures of Ginger!

    Comment by Neocon | May 27, 2006 | Reply

  5. BSue,
    I think you are right.
    I’m overwhelmed by your and neo’s words.
    May God bless you both.

    Comment by NAT PIERCE | May 27, 2006 | Reply

  6. Nat, thank you!

    You are a decent and loving person and I know that both BSue and I appreciate you and your thoughts.

    It was a tough time for us. But I believe God works in mysterious ways. I think BSue would agree.

    Comment by Neocon | May 28, 2006 | Reply

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