Grumpy the Gator

In Grumpy the Gator, a group of children playing encounter a grumpy alligator. The story teaches children to always keep a safe distance from animals in the wild, and to find an adult if they see an alligator.

Grumpy the Gator

Its Always A Story With The Hendersons

Alert and Ready to Act

Listen. Listen for any message that God sends. Be ready. Follow that gut instinct. Yes, I’ve said or written those words many times. I pray that I will always be ready to listen for His instruction and that I will follow through and act accordingly. Sharing His love with others is important.

Recently, I failed to follow my own instructions. I failed by not listening and taking action at that moment. My intentions were good. But, something odd happened and I didn’t realize the message God had sent until later.
The gut instinct was there, but I chose to hurry along with items on my “to do” list.

A strange thing happened. I opened my phone case to check for emails. Instead of my email list, a weather alert popped up. Big bold letters about the weather forecast for the Philippines. My first instinct was to say, “Why am I getting alerts for the Philippines? I didn’t put that setting on my phone.”
I quickly scanned the forecast and thought there must be a mistake. A typhoon was forecast for that area. Authorities called for everyone to take shelter as soon as possible. I paused and prayed for the people and animals in the path of the bad weather.

Refreshing the screen, the next window showed the local forecast.
Weather in the Lowcountry of South Carolina would be unusually warm for the next few days. Records could be broken. Temperatures in this area can change quickly.
I scanned a few emails and put the phone away.

The next morning, I awoke to the realization that the message on my phone about weather in the Philippines should not have been put aside. My “to do” list could have waited. God had sent me a strong message through that weather forecast on my phone. I should have been alert and ready to act.

The fact is that Alan and I sponsor a child in the Philippines. There was only one way a weather alert could have come to my phone. God. God was giving me a way to pray for our sponsored child and his family. I had neglected the tap on the shoulder from God.
Realizing my failure, I went to God in prayer and asked for His forgiveness for not being alert to His prompting.
I began praying for our dear sponsored child and his family. I prayed for every person and animal affected by the typhoon.

While a typhoon was hitting the Philippines, this country was dealing with horrible tornado outbreaks and loss of lives and property. I prayed for all those people and animals, too.

God teaches us the most valuable lessons in every moment. He provides opportunities to share His love with others and the ability to pray for each other.

The next time I feel a nudge from God, I plan to be alert and ready to act. My “to do” list can wait. His creations are more important.

Thank You God for forgiving me.

We await news on our sponsored child and his family.

I pray 2022 will be a year filled with love, laughter, and many blessings from God for everyone.

Have you been alert to His messages lately?

Happy New Year,
Melissa aka Mimi

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45 Comments
  • Joanne Viola
    Posted at 13:42h, 03 January Reply

    Melissa, thank you for your transparency in reminding me, as well. to pay attention to those gentle nudges from God. May we remember He sees all things, knows all things, and nudges us for reasons beyond what we are able to see and know. Blessings on your day!

  • Kimberly Rose Johnson
    Posted at 15:10h, 03 January Reply

    The Lord truly amazes me on a daily basis, especially lately. Who would have thought He would warn you with a message on your phone about something that wasn’t even in the forecast. I’ve experienced a number of promptings from Him over the past several months.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 16:49h, 03 January Reply

      I’m in the “alert” mode and ready to respond to His nudges. I pray I don’t miss any. Yes, He amazes me on a daily basis, too. Thank you for reading and commenting. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Jessica Brodie
    Posted at 15:30h, 03 January Reply

    I still fail to recognize that nudge, and I always feel so bad later. Recently, my teenage daughter was quicker than I was to give some cash to a woman in need outside the store What a lesson! You are right: BE READY. Follow that gut instinct. Thank you for your transparency in reminding us we are still human and still make mistakes, but we should strive to do our best. I’ll join you in prayer for your sponsored child and family!

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 16:51h, 03 January Reply

      Thank you for your prayers Jessica. We are still waiting for word on him and his family. I pray I will be alert to all His nudges and that I will follow through on what He wants me to do. You are a wonderful example for your children. How precious that your daughter saw a need and responded. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • JD Wininger
    Posted at 16:37h, 03 January Reply

    Oh how I pray you’ve already heard something Ms. Melissa. I know those long hours of not knowing when someone we care about is in harm’s way can be so difficult. Praying great news soon ma’am. God’s blessings; and thank you so much for your reminder that when God prompts us He means now, not when we “think about it.” Amen!

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 16:52h, 03 January Reply

      Thank you JD. We are still waiting for word about our sponsored child and his family. Compassion International has sent several updates about the region. I pray I am alert to His nudges today and everyday. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Jill Weatherholt
    Posted at 17:23h, 03 January Reply

    I pray that you receive word that your sponsored child and his family are safe, Melissa. It’s so important to stay alert at all times. Thank you for the reminder. Wishing you and your family a peaceful and safe new year.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 20:55h, 03 January Reply

      Thank you Jill. Yes, stay alert at all times. Have a blessed New Year! 🙂

  • June Foster
    Posted at 17:35h, 03 January Reply

    It’s easy to do. I keep thinking of the scripture – be still and know that I am God. I’m not sure why I feel like I have to go headfirst into every day and not wait for those quiet whispers from the Lord. Thank you for your post. Very timely.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 20:56h, 03 January Reply

      Thank you June. I pray we all are alert for those whispers from God. Have a blessed New Year! 🙂

  • Ava Pennington
    Posted at 19:58h, 03 January Reply

    Such a good reminder to pay attention to those promptings when the Lord brings someone to mind. Thank you!

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 20:56h, 03 January Reply

      Thank you Ava. I’m listening for His promptings. Have a blessed New Year! 🙂

  • Ava Pennington
    Posted at 20:24h, 03 January Reply

    I, too, have brushed aside promptings of the Holy Spirit, only to later regret not using those promptings as a reminder to pray for the person. Thank you for this reminder.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 20:57h, 03 January Reply

      I’m praying we all recognize those promptings from the Lord. 🙂 Blessings!

  • Janet from FL
    Posted at 20:34h, 03 January Reply

    Well don’t be too hard on yourself. Sometimes we don’t know the message is from God, and sometimes we just don’t understand what to do about it. The fact that you took the time to pray for your sponsored child the next day, shows you are listening. It took sleep for your brain to understand the message was from God. That was the Holy Spirit nudging you, and you answered. I would say “Good job” faithful servant of God.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 20:58h, 03 January Reply

      Wow! Thank you Janet. I hadn’t thought about the situation that way. I’m praying I will be alert for His prompting today. Have a blessed New Year! 🙂

  • karentfriday
    Posted at 23:52h, 03 January Reply

    Wow, Melissa. This is an eye-opening story and example of some of the many ways God speaks to us and tries to get our attention. Thanks for sharing it!

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 00:10h, 04 January Reply

      Thank you Karen. I love how God speaks to us in many different ways. Happy New Year! 🙂

  • Diana Derringer
    Posted at 00:22h, 04 January Reply

    How often I also remain too focused on my to-do list. Thank you for your nudge to do better.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 00:24h, 04 January Reply

      Thank you Diana. I appreciate you taking time to read and comment. Happy New Year! 🙂

  • Savoring Sixty and Beyond
    Posted at 13:41h, 04 January Reply

    Isn’t God amazing? I wonder how many times I have failed to recognize His nudge and not even realized it? Your post is a gentle reminder to always be alert and on guard. Thank you so much for sharing your story.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 17:22h, 04 January Reply

      Thank you. Yes, God is amazing. I’m ready to receive any nudges He has for me today. Have a blessed week! Happy New Year! 🙂

  • Nancy E. Head
    Posted at 17:34h, 04 January Reply

    God bless your sponsored child, the family, the nation. I know I’ve missed promptings too. May we be ever vigilant to listen when He nudges, speaks, urges. God bless!

    • Melissa Henderson
      Posted at 21:30h, 04 January Reply

      Thank you Nancy. We have been told that it may be some time before we get an official update. We keep praying. Have a blessed week! 🙂 Happy New Year!

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 21:31h, 04 January Reply

      Thank you Nancy. We have been told that it may be some time before we receive an official update. We keep praying. Happy New Year! Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Lynn J Simpson
    Posted at 21:46h, 04 January Reply

    I loved reading this, Melissa. I fail to listen to nudges more than I even know, so wrapped up I can be in my own agenda and problems. I pray your sponsored child is well and that your weather has settled down!

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 23:58h, 04 January Reply

      Thank you so much Lynn. The temperatures are cold and the wind has left. I’m praying I will be alert and ready to act when God nudges me again. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Melinda Viergever Inman
    Posted at 02:50h, 05 January Reply

    It’s so easy to push right through those gentle reminders and nudges to pray. And then, later, we see clearly where it came from. Like you, I am striving to learn to listen to that first nudge and to act upon it. I now stop and pray, even if it’s only short. And then, I rely on the Lord to take me back to it, if I need a nudge. He does. Thank you for sharing so honestly!

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 13:22h, 05 January Reply

      Amen. Stop and pray, even if it’s short. He is listening and He knows our heart. I’m listening and ready to respond. Have a blessed day! 🙂

  • Karen Jurgens Harrison
    Posted at 06:22h, 05 January Reply

    What a great reminder to always listen to His nudges! Is God not nudging the world right now to be ready to meet Him in the clouds? May we as believers fill our lamps with oil and be watching for that day. May we proclaim the gospel to fill the ark of salvation. Prayers for your sponsored child and family. Happy New Year to you and your beautiful family, dear Mimi. xoxo

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 13:24h, 05 January Reply

      Yes, yes, I believe God is nudging us right now and giving us ways to develop a deeper relationship with Him. I pray we are alert and ready. Thank you for your prayers. Have a blessed New Year dear friend. 🙂

  • Yvonne Morgan
    Posted at 21:05h, 05 January Reply

    I am praying for everyone impacted.
    I thank God that He does not give up on us when we fail. I have done the same thing too and it is heartbreaking to realize what you missed. Thanks for sharing your heart.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 22:27h, 05 January Reply

      Thank you Yvonne. I am thankful God hears our prayers. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Vickie@ Vickie's Kitchen and Garden
    Posted at 11:03h, 06 January Reply

    I’m so glad you prayed for everyone’s safety during these tragic natural disasters. I know God hears our prayers no matter how long. Our world has needed a a lot of them lately. Our support and prayers are greatly needed.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 14:09h, 06 January Reply

      Yes, I agree. Support and prayers are greatly needed. God listens and hears every prayer. Have a blessed day! 🙂

  • Barbara Harper
    Posted at 21:43h, 11 January Reply

    I often tend not to “get” things in the moment, but to realize later that I should have responded in some way. Praying for grace to be more alert and in tune with the Holy Spirit’s prompting.

    I will often pray when I hear of disasters in the news, especially that God will use them to draw hearts to Himself.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 23:45h, 12 January Reply

      I think there are a lot of us who tend not to “get” things in the moment, and then, realize later that we should have responded. I am thankful for God’s forgiveness and mercy. When I do realize what I should have done, I pause and pray. 🙂 Have a blessed week!

  • Jeanne Takenaka
    Posted at 23:38h, 12 January Reply

    Melissa, the way you stay attuned to God’s promptings is such an encouragement. Thank you for the reminder to look at the unusual happenings in my day as a tap on the shoulder from God, where He’s saying, “Pause. Take notice. Pray.” I hope your sponsored child and family are okay.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 23:47h, 12 January Reply

      Thank you Jeanne. We still haven’t heard anything about our sponsored child and their family. Compassion International said it may take some time before we get any word. We keep praying. I’m hoping and praying I stay alert to Him. Have a blessed week! 🙂

  • Debbie Scales
    Posted at 17:22h, 13 January Reply

    Melissa, in this noisy world, it is hard to listen for “the still small voice of God.” May I, like you, stay alert and recognize God’s nudging when it comes.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 00:22h, 14 January Reply

      Amen. I pray we all stay alert and recognize His nudges. Have a blessed weekend! 🙂

  • Maria Khan
    Posted at 12:56h, 10 February Reply

    Great! It’s so important to stay alert at all times in order to ensure the safety of your sponsored child and his family.

    • Melissa G. Henderson
      Posted at 12:14h, 12 February Reply

      Yes, stay alert. Thank you for reading and commenting. Have a blessed day! 🙂

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