Sunday, September 23, 2012

Without a Voice

Slumped over at The Altar, the young mother wept. I closed my eyes and prayed hard, asking The Lord to give this young lady what she needs. When I opened my eyes and lifted my head, someone knelt at my side and reached up to touch her back. The hand of her husband looked large next to the hand of his own mother, which had also been placed on the young mother's back. Tears came to my eyes as the mother of the son, reached over to touch his hand. They both held hands and I was moved at the sight of them both praying with her. I knew the young mother could feel her husband and mother-in-law holding hands but still holding tight to her.

We all went back to our seats where nobody seemed to want to let go of The Spirit which was clearly moving. The young mother stood and without a voice, praised HIM. It didn't matter that many ears couldn't hear her, she praised HIM anyway, with all that she had. She was perfectly aware when she stood, that her voice was weak but faith and mercy placed her on her feet anyway. Common circumstance had strained her vocals over the weekend but the longer she stood, the stronger her voice got. Whispers had turned into bits and pieces of words and I was amazed, that HE was giving some of her speech back. I could hear every word as I sat only a few seats away and I was thankful for each and every strained sound, because she put forth the effort.

I had invited some friends to church just before leaving this morning, and I knew they probably wouldn't make it on such short notice. I didn't have time to be disappointed, before a family walked in and took seats in front of us. Though it wasn't the ones I had invited this morning, they were long-time friends of my family. My eyes lifted and I couldn't help but smile as their little girls' eyes met mine. It made my day that more friends would be part of this service.

I've been home for hours now and I keep replaying that service over and over in my mind. So many people minding The Lord this morning, I just don't want to let that go just yet. Again, we failed to meet for Sunday School but that's perfectly fine with me. I can't wait to go back tonight, if The Lord sees fit to place me there.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Poison Ivy

I walked outside with the full intention of getting closer with HIM. I had already been in prayer much of the morning, because everywhere my eyes fell this day, there were needs.

Slow and intentional were my steps as I heard the screen door squeak, then click shut behind me. A mild breeze caught my attention as the leaves flickered. I wanted to go see my tree, the cherry tree that we almost didn't buy, because it was frail. All other shoppers had passed it up, but we went back in bought it. I could smell fresh cut grass and breathed in the country silence deep into me. I began to walk towards the tree looking at every flower I passed, every bird that flew, every cloud in the sky...knowing HE was about to show me something...

I kept repeating, "I want to see, I want to see..." but often times people look for something in desperation that they mask what HE is giving, and therefore never receive some of the best gifts of all. Suddenly, everything became full of quiet. I could hear nothing but everything and it was as clear as crystal. I was unaware that I was still walking until I actually stopped. I had heard something.

A  crackling sound, a break, then a thud, had me looking at tall tree near where my cherry tree was planted. Though it was rooted in the thicket adjacent to our property, I folded my arms and just watched it. Every few seconds another nut would fall with a deliberate thud so strong it would bounce from the dirt ground below and rest a few feet away from the tree. Every time I tried to look away, I couldn't. I knew there was something about that tree...

I walked along the tree line of the woods and even picked up one of the nuts. It was so smooth. I ran my fingers over its thin exterior and felt one small spot that was mighty warm where the sun had grazed it. Every few seconds another nut would fall and they were so loud that I knew they dropped with purpose. I soon was released from the hold the tree had on me and I stepped away. I walked up to the little cabin's porch that is perfectly placed behind my barn and I sat, and I watched that old tree. I could still hear the blatant nuts breaking loose and dropping to the earth but I still was unsure of what HE was showing me. I bowed my head and closed my eyes...

When I opened my eyes, I placed them back on that tree. With a soft wind blowing, a smaller insignificant tree started turning bright yellow. I looked around smiling wishing someone else was there to witness the green tree turning bright so beautifully golden in a glow I've never seen before. At that moment, at that very second, all the other trees remained green but this one lit up and I stood to my feet. It soon dimmed again and was just ordinary like the others but I had to walk back over there immediately and look at the tree I had not noticed before.

I walked with a near gallop and soon arrived at the trees again. I stood there and wondered why I had not noticed the other tree in the first place. The trunk of the tree was covered in poison ivy but its leaves were quite healthy. I knew that the other tree had been making such noise before that it must have overshadowed the smaller one. I began to smile when I noticed The Lord had reached down and touched the quiet one today. Even though there was some poison ivy that had crept up over the years, it's roots were strong and it was healthy. It may not flourish with fruit or nuts but it obviously has something to bear in its own little way. The Lord saw that and gave it gold.

How wonderful it is to be HIS child. I love days like this when I get to see and hear and feel. I am unworthy, yet I am Blessed.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

The Invitation

We sat on a different pew, so I knew there would be something new for me today. As songs began everything started to be usual, which can be quite great at my little country church. As the song "How Great Thou Art" poured from us all, I began to feel HIM. I looked to the friend sitting next to me, because chills filled my arm and I wanted her to see it. As our eyes met, she was holding up her arm too, and it was covered with them, just like mine.

After Sunday School, we met in song again. I wondered if The Spirit would pay us another visit. I almost waited. As the songs reached inside me, my eyes began to fill. The lights above seemed to reach right down to the floor and I blinked slowly trying to clear my vision, but couldn't. I finally closed my eyes, and prayed. I decided to simply invite HIM back. I asked HIM to please come back, and move through the church once again. In less than a minute, I heard one of our members crying out...and I knew HE was back. His voice was loud and clear and it felt good. I gathered each word he burst out into that aisle and placed them gently on my heart, and that felt good too. A smile crossed my lips as I realized how simple it was to get HIM back.

It wasn't long after that, a young girl made her way to The Altar. I followed as did many others. I placed my hand on the cross at the bottom of the pew as I prayed. I thanked HIM for answering my simple prayer. I looked up and with her head still bent in prayer, I noticed she had three hands on her back. One was a very young hand, a fellow teenage friend. One was the hand of her mother. I was certain of the three hands, she could tell which one belonged to her mother. The other hand belonged to the sweet lady from the second pew. Though I only saw those three hands, she had to feel a fourth hand...and I'm certain she also knew to whom it belonged. The Lord reached down and gave her what she needed and when she got back to her pew, she shouted in Praise lifting both her hands high above her head. I grabbed a tissue as tears exploded like fireworks being launched on the fourth of July. I tried to catch them all but there were too many.

Her Daddy stood up as if being set on fire and he preached, and I thanked HIM for all of that. In closing, a man asked his his own Daddy to read The Son. I had never heard the story and even though it was difficult for him to read through the tears, he stood up in front, and read it. He knew a Blessing would come from it, and everyone was on their feet, wiping tears from their eyes, by the time he finished.

I am truly Blessed. I sent one small invitation, and brought home so many gifts. I do not deserve all that HE gives.