In the dream I was crying. A family member had passed away, hope was still being deferred and I was at such a point of despair and discouragement. And an angel of the Lord whom I could not see but only heard said to me " And then it came to pass. It came-and it passed. Just as all things will, but their is a greater thing to learn and receive than what you hope for now. Set your heart and your faith on the giver of these things, that in whatever may come to pass, you know truth."
This dream would become the center of my focus even until right now. I thought so much about that phrase "come to pass" how wonderful and yet, disappointing that the "thing" whatever it may be at the time placed in my heart, how it will come, so that it can also pass. This phrase is mentioned 396 times in the bible, and 453 times if you remove the word AND. I think back at so many moments when my heart was fixed on the anticipation and hope of moments, and the joy of their delivery, and the strangeness of there passing, just to have another new "thing" come along. Like even now. The hope I had for my daughter, the great joy at her arrival, and now the new season of life that has changed and begun. Today is her first day of Pre-K. Lord their must be more to life than just moments. And their is.
The last 6 weeks have been the richest season I have ever had with the Lord. After the dream I set my heart to know the giver. "But how God? How can I know you more?" And my personal instructions were this. "When you speak to me, do not ask me to do anything, and do not complain." Easy. I assumed. Turns out I didn't speak to God for 3 days! I had no clue just how much of my "relationship" with God consisted of me complaining, and asking. And slowly a new conversation began to take shape. With this instruction came another to commit to reading and studying the Word at least 1 hour a day, with additional time of listening to the Word through teaching. Now I love that we do not serve a religious God, but one of relationship, and so I'm not sharing this to tell you some formula, but to express that I asked and he told me what I could do differently to know him more. It didn't take much discipline to do it, rather it took a shift in my priorities. A serious pursuit to feed my very hungry soul. And in doing so I have never felt more alive. So full. I'm telling you their have been nights I have gone to bed pondering a revelation of his love that had me in tears, and when I woke up it was still their, that tangible wonder of him, his love, his plan for us as his. I say this because I hear this word "destiny" everywhere I go. Everyone is searching. Looking. Empty. Hoping for things to come-that will pass, and searching again. Your destiny is to know God. Not know of him, but to KNOW him, and to be known by him. It. Is. Possible.
When God created the universe for your pleasure he would meet with Adam and Eve in the garden. Their was no discussing the work week. No expression of lack or talk of need. God created us as human "beings" and yet we find our identity in being doers. Out of that relationship comes tasks and yes, things to be accomplishing through him, BUT it should always be from that place of overflow with him, that we do good. When I was reading that verse in Revelations (3 vs 20) that says "Behold I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me." I had always thought of that verse as being the opportunity for salvation, but then the Lord showed me that this was an invitation for us all, each day. That often he visits the heart of his children giving opportunity for us to respond to him. To invite him in to partake of more. I want the more- I want the daily intimacy of him. I want to know what it means to really love him with all my heart, all my soul, and all my mind (Matthew 22:37)
I have no real goal of why I'm sharing this blog post today, other than to express the opportunity that's available to have a life that feels alive, and full. Adventurous and never dull. Father provoke our hearts once again, that we may respond to your unfailing love.
Id like to just share with you briefly that our friend Stephanie has returned full time to work! (read the past 2 posts to know what happened) Her body continues to heal but it is my great joy to tell you she is well and full of the goodness of God. If you pass her in the hall ways at church, you should ask her to show you the side by side images of her eyesight before and after surgery. It is incredible to see what God did!
ALSO... both our trips to India are fully paid for! The morning we were going to be buying our tickets a woman called me and shared," I feel like this is the amount God told me to sow into your trip." It was the exact cost of our tickets. 5 others gave to me personally to fund the rest, and if you are reading this (you know who you are) please let me express how thankful I am for your generosity, and kindness. Surely the Lord has a reward for those who give to his kingdom and his servants, a principle I'm sure you know well since your hearts were so eager to give.
In the last 4-6 weeks Ferrill and I have driven almost 5,000 miles. I know this because of that cute tiny sticker they put on your windshield after an oil change. We have traveled to The Dominican Republic and Alabama for outreach. To Miami twice to meet the consulate for visas for Brazil, to Georgia and Saturday we returned home from driving 16 hours each way to Missouri for my grandfathers funeral. I was reminded of 2 things while I stood on that hilltop overlooking the cemetery, a gentle breeze soothing my soul. That ALL of Gods words, which are his promises are yes & amen. When my grandpa (who passed at 87) was in his early 20's he needed to have both kidneys removed,they had calcified after being kicked by a horse, injuring him terribly. Before surgery he told me, an angel of the Lord appeared to him and said not to worry, that he would live to see his grandchildren. Turns out he was born with a 3rd kidney that would last him his lifetime, and not only would it be 30 years before that promise would be fulfilled, but the Lord would even exceed that goodness, and grant him the joy of 2 great grandchildren.
I also thought of how salvation came to my family through adoption. My grandpa, adopted as an infant, came to know Christ after his parents 10 years later accepted Christ. And I sat there by his side, hearing my own daughters laughter as she played about. Taking in the reality of an eternal life, full of Gods promises, and thankful, considering it our privilege that the Lord has called us to adopt.
I am a prisoner of hope. Trapped in a mighty fortress.
Eager to share with you again soon, a new story.