The Free Press was not on the front porch this morning like it is supposed to be! This tiny little factor seemed to change my entire 'beginning of the day' routine. Yes, I could still read it on line (and did), but it's just not the same. I fear I may be out of sorts all day.

"Out of sorts" - I find this to be an unusual expression. I believe it is the opposite of "fit" ... as when the pieces all fit together perfectly. Out of sorts speaks of just enough disorder to cause confusion (Think of someone exchanging the the location of "e" on your keyboard with the location of "v").

I certainly am much more a 'person of routine' than I often consider myself to be ... rise up at the same old time ... get the Free Press (except for today!) ... have my OJ and vitamin while reading Portals of Prayer ... get clean and clothed ... bowl of Cheerios with fruit ... open up the lap top ... and I am ready for my day. On certain days Monica makes an appearance (I could tell you the days), while on others I am gone before her day needs to begin. I can only wonder why no printed copy of the Freep would leave me feeling as I do?

There are certainly many others I know whose lives are out of sorts for much larger issues than mine ... the recent death of a loved one ... the loss of job (even if through retirement) ... chemotherapy or radiation ... surgeries and hospitalizations ... fractured bones or relationships ... headaches and heartaches ... the list goes on and on ... and on and on ... What is a person to do?

When one looses their balance one thing that they should NOT do is continue to stumble around like a drunken fool! Something much more practical is to take a moment to gather yourself (perhaps by sitting down or holding on to something). Take a deep breath. Get reoriented. And, when ready, move forward.

These seem to be the simple steps taken by the author of Psalm 121. "I lift my eyes toward the mountains. Where will my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to slip; your Protector will not slumber. Indeed, the Protector of Israel does not slumber or sleep. The Lord protects you; the Lord is a shelter right by your side. The sun will not strike you by day or the moon by night. The Lord will protect you from all harm; he will protect your life. The Lord will protect your coming and going both now and forever."

Simon Peter had one of those "out of sorts" mornings while walking toward Jesus on the sea of Galilee. "When he saw the strength of the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, 'Lord, save me!' Immediately Jesus reached out his hand, caught hold of him, and said to him, 'You of little faith, why did you doubt?' When they got into the boat, the wind ceased." (Matthew 14.30-32)

The promise - and the outcome - in both stories are the same. The pieces of our lives do not always fit together as we anticipate ... or as we think they should. But our Lord Jesus has no desire to leave us "out of sorts." He reaches out to us ... helps us catch our balance again ... and reminds us of his promise to make all things fit together (Romans 8.28)

Now, I want to check out our front porch one more time!