It’s a fact whether it ‘feels’ like it or not. My God loves me. When I’m in that desert place and I “see” nothing, “hear” nothing, “feel” nothing. Jesus is close. When that unexpected hospital bill shows up. The Holy Spirit knows all about it. When a loved one is sick. When relationships are broken. When the job is going nowhere. On and on and on and on….. life. I grasp onto this Rock and I hold on tight. God loves me more than my human mind could EVER comprehend. Someday I’ll experience it to the fullest.
I had a dream once. Or maybe they call it a ‘vision’. Because usually I’ll forget a dream. But I’ll never forget this one. I had died and was entering Heaven. Jesus was there to meet me. The King of the Universe was greeting me as a friend! He said there was someone waiting to see me. We started off and then I knew! It was my Abba Father! I ran! And there He was! Waiting for me! I ran into His arms. I experienced a sense of belonging that I’d never experienced before. He was so happy to see me and to talk with me and love me and hold me. I really can’t describe it all in words. But I hold onto this vision often.
Yes, my God loves me. This I know. Life and life’s circumstances can try to make me believer otherwise, but the Truth is this: God loves me. It’s my story – it’s my TRUTH- and I’m sticking to it.
“Our Only Business is to Love and Delight Ourselves in God.” Brother Lawrence
Brother Lawrence was a French monk (Carmelite) who lived from 1611 to 1691. Prior to becoming a monk he was known as Nicholas Herman of Lorraine. Like St. Francis, as a young man he was a soldier, but after becoming a monk he lived a quiet life performing various domestic chores for his monastery.
When talking to individuals, Brother Lawrence shared information about his own repeated efforts to keep his attention riveted on God no matter what business was occupying him. He reports that eventually this continual recollection of God became effortless and filled him with peace and joy.
I had expected great things from a Church I was attending. I was saddened and disappointed when God closed the door for me there.
But then He opened it where I didn’t expect, and in a way that I would have never imagined. I felt Him prompting me to begin re-establishing broken relationships with other people that had been hurt and disillusioned. Instead of obeying Him, I did the Jonah thing. I didn’t want to go there. But the Lord wouldn’t let it go. So one by one, I made some phone calls. I met with old friends. It felt so good to ask for forgiveness and be forgiven. It felt so good to practice the love of Christ. And every single time I obeyed Him, He blessed me.
It happened again, just yesterday. I had been thinking of DW. It felt like the Lord wanted me to call her. So I did. And again, her and I both got to experience love and healing, that presence of Christ. This must be what true Christian fellowship feels like. Then God blessed me again! The next day I was at the Festival of Books in Sioux Falls to promote my book and storytelling program. The Lord brought a stranger to my booth. At least I thought she was a stranger. But come to find out she has been reading this blog. And this ‘stranger’ blessed me in a way that only could be attributed as a blessing from God Himself. WOW, God!
Another thing. I love to pray and would spend hours in prayer at my former church. But then things changed. The prayer room was dismantled as different people had different priorities. That door was closed and I was grieving heavily over this loss. Loss of what I believed was my purpose. But then unexpectedly God opened the gates of prayer in my own home with a sister He had recently brought into my life. I’d known this woman for the past few years, but only casually. I didn’t know she was a prayer warrior. But God brought us together and I am so blessed by the prayers God births through us. This sister and I had a connection, we just didn’t know it, until the Lord showed it to us a few weeks ago. He showed us how her and I shared something very special. It was over a decade ago, years before we even knew the other existed. We had both been counseled by a very special person who brought us closer to our relationship with Christ. Isn’t God amazing?!?
Yes, I know….. It’s a small world sometimes. But I say it’s a big world! It only seems small because it’s a BIG GOD we serve and Who blesses us. I took a class in statistics in college. What’s the chance of these things happening? Not much.
Seemingly unrelated, random events of our lives that then cross paths as we follow our Lord and Savior, Jesus. I’m not a philosopher. I’m trying to comprehend these things and so many others. But I can’t. All I can do is get goose bumps. Holy Spirit goosebumps. No, His ways are not our ways, our thoughts are not His thoughts!
‘For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.’—
Jesus is so alive! I have been without a Church for several weeks, and I’ve been sad about that. Yet it seems that everyday, someone will cross my path….. at work, or a friend, or in a conversation with Al. If they are not speaking encouragement into my life, then I find myself speaking a word of truth into their life. Last night, at the gas station I work at, a vietnam vet came in. He stopped suddenly and began to hyperventilate. He asked for a paper sack. He suffers from Post Traumatic Stress. I was able to minister to this man, and speak of God’s love for him and purpose for his life. I could tell he hasn’t considered God for quite some time. What an amazing blessing, to get to be used by God in that way! What a ministry each and every one of us has!