This morning has been absolutely amazing. I arose early, though not unusual these days. However, when I walked outside to pick up the newspaper, things seemed almost primordial. It was somewhat overcast, the air filled with a fine mist but not enough to cause one to feel concern for the rain. I had to stand for a while in the darkness of the driveway, just to contemplate the serendipity of what I was now a part of. Getting up early has its beautiful moments.
Interesting to me was that I had to touch the plastic wrap on the newspaper to determine that it was in fact misting. I then came back inside to do my scripture reading, now in the Book of Timothy. I’ll sound even more dramatic here, but it suddenly seemed that same environment was now present within my soul. I had been set up by creation. This was going to be a good day in the Lord!
Paul’s letter to Timothy is such sound instruction for those coming into the faith, and perhaps for the many Millennials now trying to figure out the faith? Both seem to be my focus of late. Aging has brought on an awareness of the duty we seniors owe toward those coming behind. I daily pray that God would give me the courage to talk about things which I have learned, that are not new, but because of their perceived potential to unseat the status quo upon which our institutions are anchored, few men will share openly. Yet, there is really nothing new under the Sun. “Do justice, love mercy and walk humbly” if I may paraphrase the prophet, Micah. Nothing new, but something difficult for every age!
After my trip through First Timothy, I offered a prayer of thanksgiving for the richness of God’s Word, its very preservation and ever emerging revelation a true mystery. After my devotions, I often simply flip through this precious leather backed companion. This morning, I noted an earlier underlining in I Corinthians 15:56. “The sting of death is sin and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” I needed that!
Of late the ole ticker at times offers faint reminders of my aging; even my eyes are becoming more difficult to focus. As well, I have just walked through a bout with a virus brought home from daycare by my wife after she picked up our new grandson. It is not pretty when ole people get new people illnesses!
What triggered this morning’s blog post was when I glanced across to the next page, II Corinthians 1:3. “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles….” Bam! There it was again, the faithfulness of God! With this I walked down into my basement office, opened the sliding door, and flipped the mouse to awaken my word processor.
As the door opened to an emerging sunrise, my magical outdoor setting had by now become even more enchanting. This time the woods that surround the rear of our home resonated with the songs of hundreds of birds, each singing their song to the “top of their lungs.” I had to walk outside once more and literally lift my hands in Thanksgiving. As I stood looking around at the blessings God has given us, I wept in praise and the awareness of His Presence. It was then that I sensed my true neediness, though accompanied by an “in the moment present-ness” I had not felt for some time.
It has been almost seven years since December 28, 2008, when I received a “word” about the church in foreclosure; along with a promise, that if I would repent, He would reposition and replenish my life. My life has been almost a blur since that moment. Now, after a hard push through seven years of politics and community service, multiple transitions in my approach to church leadership, several attempts at start-up businesses, and the wedding of my only daughter. Shall I mention again the life changing experience with a first grandson? Perhaps I have finally realized what God meant in ’08!
If I would repent, He would reposition me, not in the church, the community, or even financially, though each of those arenas has surely been touched upon. His word to me has been so amazingly reinforced by this morning’s mist-filled moments. The repositioning was to be in Christ, alone. The replenishing not of my purse, but my soul! Perhaps all my neediness was necessary in order to understand what I already had in Him.
It’s good to come home and like the Prodigal, no longer needy!