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God is our refuge, even with open garage doors

Moving from a rural location to the city requires a bit of adjustment. When the sun set on our Etta hill with no moon to light the night’s sky, a darkness as black as coal settled over our hillside. I didn’t have a complaint about the darkness; it’s just the way it was.

Now we have street lights — one is a short distance from our front door. It gives an amber glow all during the night, and I like it a lot. No, I’m not afraid of the dark, but the soft light in the darkness is a new experience for me and a pleasant one. I’ve decided that I like a night light.

In Etta, we had a large carport, but it was open. Othel always liked an open carport, so when we built our home we built an open carport that looked a bit more spacious and always kept us dry getting into and out of our vehicles during rains.

Our Brandon home doesn’t have an open carport. We have an enclosed garage (a garage holds more stuff than a carport) with remote gadgets that operate the garage door which descends to protect our stuff.

That garage door has been and remains a major adjustment for us. We keep forgetting to lower our garage door when we leave our home. I’m pleased to confess that we have greatly improved our attention to this matter, but we still get an occasional reminder from a kind neighbor that our garage door is up, and all of our garage stuff is exposed for the curious and the tempted to view.

This morning Othel and I woke early as usual, and Othel brewed his cup of coffee and settled in his “devotional” spot for his study. He unplugged his phone and noticed he had a message from the previous night. The message was delivered at 10:30 p.m. after we had bedded down and said goodbye to consciousness.

After Othel read the seven-hour-old message, he bolted from his chair and raced through the kitchen into the garage. There it was — early dawn in a panoramic view. Our neighbor had messaged us that our garage door was open. And it was still open.

He raced to where his bike was parked, and it was still there. A quick survey seemed to show that nothing was missing. The raised garage door for eight-plus hours during the night hadn’t invited a single thief or predator.

Minutes later when Othel told me how we had slept with the whole end of our home open and the back door unlocked, I thanked God that he had kept us safe and had spared us from harm and loss. Later in the morning a news brief popped up on our phones — a mother and daughter were shot during a home invasion in west Jackson; the mother died. That was less than 12 miles away.

I testify: “My God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation. He is my stronghold, my refuge and my savior — from violent people you save me.” (Even when we forget to close our garage door.)

Letters to Camille Anding can be sent to P.O. Box 551, Brookhaven, MS, 39602, or e-mailed to camilleanding@gmail.com.