Enter the Sand Dollars
I received an email I didn’t like.
You’ve been there.
The second you see the name, or the subject or the first line, your cortisol spikes as if you’re being attacked by a rabid bat. And because our glorious bodies are designed to protect us, we stay in an elevated hyper defensive mode for an extended period.
So, the email basically threatened to ruin my afternoon. No not literally, there wasn’t a threat at all in the email, it was just run of the mill bad news. But, from that moment on, ll I could think about was that email, the person who wrote it, (someone I really didn’t want to be thinking about,) my response or eight different responses, and my arguments, and counter arguments. And then I started the internal berating for even giving this email and this nonsense space in my world at this moment.
How do you get out of that cycle, because as much as we can attempt to design our lives for less stress, there will always be an email, or a person or a bill, or something that will position us one on one with a flying beast with fangs.
Enter the sand dollars.
Stay with me here.
The place we are living in Mexico is 8 minutes from the clinic and about a about a block off the beach, and at low tide there are usually a few sand dollars to be found. Whole, symmetrical, sandy white sand dollars with beautiful little flowers engraved on the top. They always make me marvel at the artistry of our Lord. How something so picturesque and delicate can come out the wildness of the sea. Every time I discover one, unbroken, my heart races a little and I feel like a kid at Christmas.
“What are you going to do with all of these.” My husband asked me one day after we had collected a few.
“Decorate with them, give them as gifts? I don’t know, just look at them as a reminder of this time.” I replied as if it was the simplest thing in the world.
For the last few days, the weather had been wild and windy, and we weren’t finding more than one sand dollar every half mile or so. It was a pretty clear and calm day and the “moment with the email” had me antsy and so I stopped trying to read or forcing myself to write and I grabbed the husband for a quick walk.
The moment our sneakers hit the sand it was like the earth sunk into the shore and all the sand dollars were uncovered. Every few steps another curve of a dollar would be exposed. I’d bend down to wipe the beach away and dollar after dollar would emerge. These course little white circles of differing sizes littering the empty shoreline.
“Oh! Look! Ekk” I exclaimed step after step. Yes, I think I actually said “eek!” at one point.
My heart was bursting, my mood lifting, all thoughts of “the email” sanded down and blown away by the beauty of this currency of the earth.
“I think God is rewarding us.” I said to my husband as we were walking back. Hands overflowing with sand dollars, we had to have at least twenty-five perfect pieces between us. We had left behind all that were still alive, or not perfect in every way. Picky in our scavenging.
I continued, “I mean that’s stilly right, He’s not like that, but maybe this is all kind of a gift from God that we’re where were supposed to be.” The end more of a statement than a question.
My mind returned to the email, but I instantly looked down at my little tokens of this time and this place and said a thank you to the Lord for showing me how to be present.
There won’t always be a beach to walk, or even the time to get up from your desk and escape those emails or conversations or any of the big bad wolfs that threaten your peace. But there will always be a way to stay present and grounded in the Lord’s provision. He will always uncover His grace in the rough moments, you just have to go looking.
Were doing great serving at Siloe Ministries in Baja Mexico. Please consider all the ways you can support their ministry and spread the word of the Lord through basic healthcare and wellness education. Make a tax deductible Donation directly or shop off their Amazon Wish list.