First. Let me say how thankful I am for hot, running water; electricity that rarely goes out; and computers that work. These are a few of my favorites things.
Second. I am so fired up about the WGR class beginning Aug. 31 at Fellowship Church. This is going to be a great semester as we reach toward freedom.
Third. It is a good thing I get to blog every day because my cup runneth over. Zim stories, post Zim revelations, parenting growing pains, a disturbing trip to the mall, my post-it notes update, funny Man stories….I’ve got a lot of words to get out. Whew. Let me tell you what is burning most in my heart today.
As we were very first flying from Knoxville to D.C. on our trip, the sky was near impossible to describe. It was as if we were floating in the “ocean” of air. There was a layer of clouds that looked like white crested waves, another large blue layer filled with small “fish-like” cirrus clouds moving slowly as if in schools. It was a magical moment to be flying in a plane and have the sensation of scuba diving. Softly, I heard the Lord whisper, “Things are not as they appear.”
Hmmm. I tucked that comment into my heart, feeling half encouraged and half warned. Later that night, three other people had similar impressions from the Lord, to not be deceived by appearances. In retrospect this is one of my greatest takeaways from this experience with God: we walk by faith and not by sight.
The sheer act of walking with God is one of close communion. Close enough to hold His hand, hear His whisper, feel His warmth. But it is also the sheer act of walking with God that invites us to lay down the need to know and control our own lives. Or perhaps, more importantly, lay down the arrogance that we can rightly translate our lives and circumstances.
Things are not as they appear. Here are some examples:
• The ticket lady had given us the cold shoulder. Our missed flight was not her problem. So while burning time in the airport, we began practicing our music. The three of us just sang out to the passing throng of internationals: “Declare His glory among the nations, For Great is the Lord, and most worthy of praise. Declare His gory among the nations. Among all the peoples His marvelous deeds.” A few moments later, the same woman who had completely rejected us, turned and put us up in a beautiful hotel and re-arranged our flights.
• I was prayer walking around the orphanage, asking God to renounce the evil that several of us had sensed was trying to gain a foothold. As I walked the property, I saw the iron barred gates at the entrance. I thought of the scripture that says the gates of hell will not prevail against them. I was intently praying this promise and walking toward the gates to touch them. Out of nowhere, a small child appeared two steps ahead of me and closed the gates. It took my breath away. Not from fear. But awe. Was God showing me the answer to my prayer?
On and on we had these “moments” that seemed common, but a with a spiritual weight. I have come home with a greater confidence and greater calm. It is one thing to sing “He’s got the whole world in His hands.” It’s another thing to actually live it.
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” Ephesians 6:12
“Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1