"Today I Baled Some Hay to Feed the Sheep the Coyote Eat," is one of the best book titles ever. This 1983, short self-published book by Bill Stockton is about his life as a sheep rancher in Eastern Montana. My grandfather gave this book to me. I cherish this gift.
In Stockton's preface he writes,
"I dedicate this book to all those people who have never experienced the commonness of death, birth, and the uncommonness of life; to all those people who have never been out in ten-below weather extracting a rotted fetus from a mother ewe. . . . Welcome to the terrible, wonderful life of raising sheep."
On Friday my brother, Scott, flew in from Santa Cruz to spend a few days with my folks. On Saturday Scott and I returned home from a few days' rest in Zion. This morning my father became very ill. This morning I had 3 guest speakers coming to talk at my worship service, on their spiritual journey through sobriety. This morning I called the ambulance to come and get my dad, my Scott took care of the worship service, and I spent, until early afternoon, at the hospital, ER, with my mom and my brother. Dad is spending the night - still running tests - intestinal issues this time. My brother is with him. My mom is resting, the service went well, and I am preparing for work this week.
This book title runs through my mind whenever I think life is just calming down; something happens, and lo and behold, everything runs as it should. Just like a row of dominoes erect, yet ready to tumble, life does that - all erect, all in order, and then with one push, life begins to tumble, in a well-ordered fashion.
Today I had no time to look back in retrospect. I was given the gift of seeing this domino tumble happen in real time. And I am a true believer that as I've struggled to turn my will over to my Higher Power (my challenge for April), this is what happens - I step away from controlling, and the order is there, without my panicking and micro-managing. And - the hand of God has been a part of my life. And though I've titled this Serendipity - it truly is that chain of events that went off seamlessly - I'm going to give credit to my Higher Power for watching over me and my family, for knowing our needs, and for trusting me enough to trust His hands.
The more I try to control, the more I realize I have no control over anything but my own actions and my response to the actions of others. It is what it is - just like Stockton wrote, "So it goes."
(This 19 minute video of Stockton's book is beautiful. Watch!)