The (Vacation) Table

I just got back from a vacation from a small island called Seabrook Island in South Carolina. Just south of Charleston, this is a small island, only 6 miles in diameter – but delivers big with huge private beaches and amazing views of the Atlantic. What an amazing place to visit.  Time just seems to slow to a turtle’s pace as my whole body just relaxes into God’s creations on this little tiny island paradise. I’ve visited this island every year (except one!) since 2005, and not only am I blessed to be able to go to such a beautiful place, I’m blessed every year to see something different on this small island. I’d think after going for so many years that I’d have seen everything there is to see, and that it would just be the same thing every time, but that’s not the case.
God is just so good to put things in my path. Five seconds longer inside the condo and we’d have missed an alligator that was slowly walking across the golf course into the bushes. By the time we saw him, he was nearing the bushes, but it was enough time for me to grab my phone and get a video/photo of him (or her!?) mosey-ing into those bushes. I thought how cool that was – in all these years of visiting, I’d never seen an alligator. I’ve seen lots of dolphins and lots of deer roaming the island… lots of pelicans and egrets, but never an alligator. We happened to walk out of the condo at the perfect time for my eyes to see something moving to my right. Once I focused in on what it was, I was amazed.
Do I think God put that alligator there for me to see it? I’m not entirely sure, but I do know the timing was perfect and I wonder why I looked up when I did, and why did I look that way and not elsewhere? And what happened to allow us to leave the condo at that precise moment, and not 30 seconds earlier or later? Coincidence? Quite possibly, yes.. But I also know that God gave me a cool highlight of this trip to remember with that alligator. Each trip is something new and exciting on this little island. Last year it was 3 different piebald deer. The first year I went, it was the dolphins. Another year I went it was only a couple of days after Hurricane Matthew had hit, and I got to see the after-effects of a storm of that magnitude. A different year it was watching lightning bolts way out in the Atlantic ocean from a storm that was happening out there, but I was sitting on my balcony which was completely dry (and continued to be), and one year it was jellyfish strewn across the entire beach each morning (this year they were rolling in with the tide one evening, but it was different- another unique experience). Something I’ll surely not forget is the year that sand dollars (that were no longer alive) were washing up as the tide was going out, and we collected as many as we could hold (I think there were 13 total).  Every year brings something new for me to “remember”. Something that I can think on and smile and remember God’s creations.
Something else that happened on this trip that was quite interesting was the fact that this condo unit, while larger than what I normally stay in, did not have a dining room table (only a bar with bar stools facing the kitchen). After looking at photos, the only thing I wished we had that didn’t show, was that dining room table.  I wished many times before we left that we had a table in the condo, but didn’t say anything to the property management company because I figured the bar stools would be fine – and we had a table and chairs out on our deck we could use. After we entered the condo, the others went to take the wheeled carts that we carried everything up in the elevator back where we’d gotten them from downstairs, when someone just walked right into the condo. I was a bit startled, but said hello. She said “I heard you wanted a table since there isn’t one in here”. Hmmmm…. “I didn’t ask for one, but I’d sure like one”. She told me she was pretty certain they told her it was me that wanted a table. Again, I reiterated how it would be great, and I wanted one, but never actually emailed or called to ask. She then went straight away and brought up a table. I was blown away. That table became instrumental in our dinners that we ate inside, as we talked and laughed and enjoyed each others company. Although this table may sound insignificant, the temps were unexpectedly and unseasonably warm this year (95-100 degrees each day – setting records for May – perfect for many pool days), so eating at the table on the deck wasn’t desirable.  So we still had the opportunity to watch the ocean right outside our window as we ate our lunches and dinners in the condo – at the table we wanted, that we didn’t ask for, that was simply provided.  I once heard my friend Robin say “We can’t put God in a box…”, and that really resonated with me.  God is capable of anything He chooses.  Do I think God provided this table?  I’m not sure, but I honestly have no other explanation as to how this happened – moments upon entering the condo.  Quite honestly, this could’ve happened just to increase my faith in God.  God knows the desires of my heart, even if it was simply a vacation table, and His plan all along could’ve just been to increase my faith in Him by giving me just that. 
In the evenings as we’d sit on the beach, we’d watch the little Sandpipers quickly walking down by the water eating their own dinner. We also watched the Pelicans flying high above, and then nearly stopping mid-flight when they’d see something in the water they wanted – and then dive bomb straight down into the ocean to grab a seafood dinner of their own.
Whether it be an alligator crossing a green, a table to enjoy meals, or simply anything we desire, God is so faithful to provide. He’s interested in the details of our lives.  He provides for the Sandpipers and the Pelicans, and they never worry because they have no doubt He will provide for them. Maybe I should follow suit and take some lessons from these smart creatures God created and realize that He will provide for me just as well (even down to the details of a table).
In retrospect, do I really believe it was about this table appearing seemingly out of thin air?  No.  I do know, however, it was something that increased my faith in God.  Just another example of how He is so capable of providing what we need, just at the right time.  This wasn’t just about a table – it reminded me of how God is in the details of life and how His timing is perfect in ALL aspects of my life.
Let’s never lose sight of how big, vast, and wonderful our God is.  At His discretion, He’s able to do anything that will continue to bring Him glory, or increase the faith of His child.  By this simple act of kindness of someone bringing us a table, my faith was increased.  And by writing this blog and sharing this story – I’m hopeful that it brings HIM the glory.


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About Dena:
“First and foremost, I’m a Daughter of the King and a long-time Christ follower. I’m also a dog mom who enjoys reading Christian books, cardio drumming, traveling often, and I’m a bit of a techie geek. My life has seen its fair share of curve-balls and I’ve found that I’ve become closer to Christ in each trial as He’s comforted me and shown me that I can solely put my faith and trust in Him. 2 Corinthians 1:4 NLT says “He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.” I feel thankful and blessed for the messes in my life – as they have brought me closer to Him.”

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