God is good; God is great

Brenda Cannon HenleyBy Brenda Cannon Henley
“…He is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think…” (Ephesians 3:20)
A recent column dealt with God’s handfuls on purpose of grain given to Ruth by Boaz, the wealthy landowner, in order for the maiden to have food to eat and to share with her mother in law, for whom she was caring. I love the story told in the Book of Ruth because the unexpected happens, it is a great love story, and we see God’s hand is on anyone He chooses and not simply those chosen by Mr. Snooty Snoot from his small band of friends and family.

You may say, “Does that really happen in Christian work and with Christian people?” Oh, yes, it does! Positions are created that do not exist and are quickly filled by family and friends that cannot hold down an honest job in the real world. Some do not need to be in ministry and they are often mama called and papa paid. They may be lazy, have lives filled with sin and sarcasm, have no desire to reach others, and would not know work if it slapped them in the face. I have seen it way too often in our years of traveling the nation working with various churches and ministries. It is sad and I am sure heartbreaking to God. He loves to bless His children, but we have to be living lives that please Him and do not bring shame, sin, and sorrow to His heart and hurt the cause of Christ.

When God blesses us, we are happy and we honestly want to share our joy with others. We may go to extreme, but I’m not really sure God minds too much. I think that as long as we give Him the glory, He can use it for good. I surely hope so because I have been so thrilled with something He did for me that I have told everyone that will listen.

During Hurricanes Ike and Harvey, I lost everything I had, including my home, auto, and possessions of a lifetime. We regrouped and I had begun to buy, and was given much of a home’s possessions. I stored much of these new belongings in a very safe barn/garage next to our new home. Harvey’s floodwaters and the waters released from the lake area got everything there. Several possessions that I loved greatly had never been replaced because I did not know how to even begin the search. I had three fairly valuable paintings of old, salty, sea captains. One was exceptional and I treasured it greatly. I also had a vast collection of lighthouses in every form, color, condition, and shape that one can imagine. In connection with a new little cottage I have purchased, I started thinking about my sea captains again and my heart hurt.

Don’t you dare be dumb enough to write and tell me, “Oh, not to worry. They are just things.” I will not be responsible for what I might say or do to you. The last person that mouthed that junk to me wishes she had not. They may be things, but they are my things and I value them. You would, too, I dare say.

I casually looked on the Internet and found a few, but they were not nearly as handsome or as elegant as mine. Two friends in one of my groups wrote and suggested I check eBay and that there were several there. I had never purchased anything on eBay, so I was skeptical, but I looked. Lo and behold, there were two that really did look quite a lot like one of my paintings. Then I found out I had to bid, so I did, and I was notified I had won the bid, but then the seller added that the shipping of this large painting would be over $400. So much for that idea. Not only was the painting over $400, but the shipping was simply more than I could afford. I was sad, but went on with my living.

Two days later I thought, “Lord, I really would like one of my captains if you don’t mind for the new cottage. It means a lot to me. I know it is a little thing to you, but to me, he is symbolic and I miss him.” Think what you will, but a clear thought crossed my mind that said, “Go back and look on eBay again.” I felt foolish, but I did, and guess what, there he was. Mine, my very own, the captain I had, except this one was not in a wood frame (like mine), but an elegant golden leaf frame and I checked and it was a signed, authentic painting by Kim Benson, the lady that painted my original. I saw the price and bought it on the spot and prayed I could afford the shipping from Illinois.

I could not find a price for shipping, so I called the dealer or broker. She said, “Oh, we don’t charge any shipping for our art. We simply want people to be able to enjoy it.” You will have it on January 9. However, on January 7, a huge, heavily wrapped package arrived here in Texas and he is beautiful. In fact, he is elegant, and many tell me the frame is as valuable as the painting. Sure enough, I looked on the back and found the number and the artist signature. Please rejoice with me over Captain Jack O’Malley coming home for the first time since Hurricane Ike in September, 2008.

Brenda Cannon Henley can be reached at (409) 781-8788, or


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One Response to “God is good; God is great”

  1. So happy to read this story of restoration. God is so good even when life is so hard.

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