Sunday, January 25, 2009

Thoughts on a Sunday....

I have just come back from church, and I have to tell you about a conversation I had with our vicar after the service. He saw me taking a few photos during the coffee and chat session, and smiled as he said, "Are those for your daughter?" I said that yes, they were, and we chatted about how great her faith is, and how she left her home and country to go to New Zealand 3 and a half years ago, because God called her to do so. And is having a wonderful adventure down there. Far away. In the bottom left hand corner of the map.

She didn't know a soul when she left, and she simply, quite simply trusted God. We talked about faith and trust and how sometimes we put the "me" ahead of God on the little pedestal in our minds. I do. All the time. We all do. I can think of a million "yes, buts" when I am sometimes really feeling that God is wanting me to do something. I don't trust enough. I wish I did. In his sermon, Adrian had talked about Jesus often not performing his miracles before testing faith a little more. Think of Lazarus, the wine into water, so many.

When I started work at my school, I knew, without a shadow of a doubt, on that first day at the interview, that it was the wrong place for me. I just knew. No tangible reason, just a really powerful feeling. But I thought, hey, I have to earn money, so anything will do. It can't be that bad, can it?? And squashed the little voice which said "I have other plans for you". Yes. Well. I had bills to pay, so I put the bills, and me back firmly on that pedestal. Dusted off the hands, and went to work. His plans would have to wait.

We all know what followed. I should have listened, but I did not trust enough.

Anyway, back to that conversation. I was telling Adrian about our family verse in Psalms. Our family's verse. When Geoff came home one day back a couple of decades ago now, and said that we were moving back to the UK, as we had planned years before, then forgotten, I was ready to do so, but very apprehensive. He would be back at sea, and I would be alone with the 3 children in a new country. So I went to my Bible study and moaned a little. A lot in fact. There was much sighing and sadness at the thought of leaving. So I opened my bible, and as these things happen, it opened here.....

If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.
If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me
and the light become night around me,"
even the darkness will not be dark to you;
the night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to you.
Psalm 139:8-12

I flipped it closed, looked at my friends, and said, "Ok, I am going. I need to pack."

And we moved country, just like Diana moved country too. And Adrian said to me...."But Linds, you trusted enough to move, and look what God has done in your life!" And it was a like a light going off in the brain. I can be a little slow to work things out at times. I did trust! He never left me! Look! I wouldn't be surrounded by these friends, my son would not have met his wife or be having this baby, Diana would not have been in NZ....... so many many things would have been different.
I look back, and Adrian was right. At crucial moments in my life, I have trusted, and it has all worked according to His plan. Not mine. His. Hindsight is a spectacular thing.

We cannot measure our faith against each other's. Diana's is not "better" than mine. It is different, because she is different. I am human and have so many faults, but my faith has carried me (and consequently my family) through so many difficult times. Hahahaha. That sounds minor. Mega times. MEGA. And then, fool that I am, I didn't trust when I heard that small voice. I am an idiot.

So now I am going to tell you about yesterday, and that walk. I crossed the little rickety bridge onto the island, and there was no-one there. I wish I had taken a chair, because I could have sat there for hours. Anyway, I looked around, and started talking aloud to God, as I am prone to doing. We had a conversation.

And I asked for an answer now to one specific thing. Patience is not one of my qualities, you may have noticed. Like, immediately. I had my camera and I was looking around, taking those photos, and I looked down, and all around me was the letter Y. Twigs. Some broken, some just lying next to each other, all facing me. All around me. And I started laughing. Wherever I looked, more "Y"s. Everywhere. I turned in a circle and I was surrounded by them. But further away, there were none. I could have danced, but then I think one of those anglers may well have dialled 999. He answers prayers in the most diverse ways, and He used what was around me.

Faith. Trust. It is the key to the door for wonderful things, my friends.
Believe me. I know.


Janine said...

Thank you for this. Glyn has probably told you about my mom in law and reading that verse really helped. Bless you.

Sandra said...

Thank you for the beautiful verse Linds, it really made me think this morning, knowing that I'm here and my whole family is back in South Africa. :)

I get chills seeing all those Y's around you, that is just amazing. What a wonderful Lord we have :)


Laurie in Ca. said...

This is a beautiful post that I needed to read this morning Linds. I really needed it. I always find myself comparing my faith and trust to others and fall short. I keep forgetting to remember that my relationship with the Lord is mine, he deals with me where I am at. I fail to listen to that small voice too. But He is always back again to whisper to me in the places where I will be still to listen. I just want to grow up and not be such a rebellious child of His all the time. I just love the "Y's" that he showed you at your feet. He is everywhere and in everything isn't He? See, I needed this this morning. Thank you my sweet friend. I will be praying for you too.

Love and Hugs, Laurie

Linda said...

This was just beautiful Linds. I think you spoke for me too. I don't know why it is so hard to just "let go and let God" when we know very well He is going to do what is best for us.
Thank you so much for sharing your heart. It blesses and encourages and teaches.

Needled Mom said...

This was the perfect Sunday post, Linds. Yes, we all have problems not trying to be in complete control of our destiny, don't we?

Dawn said...

Oh, Linds! What a wonderful sermon you have preached and illustrated just now. It's 9:00 at night over there, but I hope you get this. I was in tears when I started reading and am in more now. I need your prayer right now - right the minute you get this. Something sad has happened today - please pray for me and the whole family. Thank you!

Susan said...

Thanks for sharing your wonderful experience with God speaking to you. I love the way God meets us and our needs just where we are. What an awesome, wonderful God we serve.

Crystal said...

I love that scripture! He really is close all the time, even when we are on our pedestals. And it absolutely amazes me the way He sends His messages to us. It makes me smile when I think about Him watching us find these answers and His delight when we find them. You really are an encouragement and a delight to visit :)) I hope your week is blessed with many good things!

Vee ~ A Haven for Vee said...

What a fine dance you must've felt like doing there in your time with the Lord... Brings to mind 2 Corinthians 1:20.

Loved these photographs you've shared...

Becky said...

I wish I knew how to respond to what you've said. It's so perfectly true and beautifully said. Thank you for the reminder of the importance of trust.

Margie said...

Hi Linds,
I have popped over here from time to time and really enjoy your posts. (I am Heidi's Mom) I enjoyed this post very much. You are so open with your discussions and your heart really shows. I work on Faith and Trust daily in my relationship with Him. I love reading Ephesions 3:14-21. In 'The Message' Bible verse 20 says. "God can do anything, you know--far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us."
When I get out of my own way God can provide so much more.
Getting out of my head and bringing Him into my heart!

Diane@Diane's Place said...

I can be so dense when it comes to listening to His still small voice at times it's a wonder He doesn't club me upside the head, figuratively if not literally.

Then there are the times I hear Him clearly but go ahead and do what I want to do anyway instead of listening to Him.

I'm so grateful for his grace and mercy and long suffering towards me. It's a wonder He doesn't just squash me under His thumb like a bug when get rebellious and hard headed.

Hope you have a great week, my friend, with much progress with your physio etc.

Love and hugs,


Luanne said...

That is such a comforting verse. Wise words to remember. All those Y's. It is amazing what God shows us when we stop long enough to look for him and hear his still small voice.

I have been busy and missed your last post. The photo's were wonderful and very surprising for me. I thought it was winter in your area so I was surprised to see so much green. I'm afraid the poor grades I received in geography class are showing.

Thank you for such a delightful post on the Lord's day.

Judith said...

Linds, Satan would like nothing better than for us to doubt God and ourselves. You have such a beautiful and inspiring faith. Hold on to those promises, and don't beat yourself up for wanting that paycheck from that awful job. I believe God has something much better in mind for you.

I love how, when you're needing to understand things better, you look for solitude to do that in.

Olson Family said...

One - I'm glad I'm not the only who takes a bazillion pictures. And with digital, it's a cheap activity :).
Two - honestly, I did not read your Sunday post before I posted my Monday post. We're all a bit reflective, yes?

Barbara said...

Great testimony Linds.

Kathleen Marie said...

What a fabulous post! I don't know what people do without faith or how I ever lived without it but I also pray and ask for more faith to get me through.

I don't understand things, for one, just exactly why I am here but maybe I don't need to understand, just trust and have faith.

Thanks, I needed to hear this... Bless You!

Lisa Marie said...

How beautiful! Thank you for causing me to really "think" today