Sunday, October 26, 2014

We Were Headed There

Common chatter filled the family car. Hair combed, teeth brushed, our Sunday clothes rested upon our backs; we were headed there. I closed my eyes and let the warm sun kiss my face as it beamed between the pines. I prayed for the others, who were gathering in...

Soon, my eyes opened again to breathe in the blessed Sunday air, and I watched the ordinary pavement pass beneath us. With only a mile separating us from there, we were in that final stretch. Anticipation made its way deep into my lungs as I envisioned that empty pew awaiting. Something up ahead moved. It was a truck speeding toward us from around the curve. It continued toward us crossing deeper and deeper into our lane. We moved over as much as we could and with only a couple of yards to defend us, I lifted my right hand knowing it would offer little protection against the windshield of glass. My husband and I gave no warning to the children, but gasped softly, awaiting for His Will to be done. At the last second, the truck was moved out of our path and we saw that steeple just up ahead, one more time.

As the hymns began, I couldn't sing loud enough. The church I had looked forward to attending this Sunday morning, was nearly shy by four this morning. I thought of the members in the vehicle behind us, and I thanked Him for not forcing the eyes of their flesh, to see us any differently than they have before. The Lord had Mercy today.

As the service continued and one young mother stood with her daughter by her side, she spoke of her dear sweet grandmother. By all standards of modern medicine, she shouldn't be here today, but for whatever reason...He has seen fit, she stay a little bit longer. I listened to the Testimonies, I listened to the songs and tears fell as I realized...we were almost headed There.

Today could have been the day, that sweet glorious day, that I left here, heading for There. I looked around the room and thought about one of the Testimonies....look at our players. We have a really strong, stout team at my little church. Everyone seems to play a different part and no one is more vital than the next. Today, I was given one more chance. One more day to teach my Sunday School littles that I know Jesus. One more day, to press on the glass doors that lead toward that Altar, one more day, to hear the earthly Angels sing His praise and one more day, to try and prepare someone else...before heading towards Home. We may not be at His feet today, but I'll carry my cross a little farther. When the sun sets, I'll be one day closer just like the preacher reminded us this morning. I have to remind myself each day, where exactly it is I am traveling...


Sunday, October 19, 2014

The Sheep Will Follow

The sun warmed my face as we drove in silence toward that little country church. I closed my eyes and listened to the quiet, as miles of pavement separated us from that rustic white steeple I was longing to see.

We sat on our usual pew and before I knew it, I had the prettiest little blue-eyed baby in my lap. She captured the attention of anyone who met those blues and with a smile, could light any dark room. We sang the southern hymns and she sat in silence watching and learning, listening and growing. I could feel her tiny heart beat and I imagined how strong it would grow over the years if she remained on the pews. She was distracted as I held her over my shoulder to see the view behind us. She listened to music all around her and soon a voice came from the pew just in front of our seat and her head darted around towards it without a moment's hesitation. It was her Daddy. She knew his voice. I smiled and wondered if I was that attentive. Would I stop on a dime to follow The Father's voice?

After a lovely service, I came home to sit in the sun and listen. The trees blushed with Autumn and the meadow swayed with an easy breeze. I asked The Lord what shall I hear today as I looked around at the shy land. The locusts spoke all around me and I listened to the gentle leaves. I closed my eyes and heard the chimes from a distant hill and it sounded like church. I could hear a train from a nearby town but I dared not open my eyes. The faint smell of last night's campfire smoldered just out of reach and the sun burned my skin as I sat listening to how profound the quiet can be.

I thought of the day when The Lord might come back. My soul wants it to be soon so the children don't have to see what I know is eminent. I envisioned the school where I work and how it would be so much easier for Him to return and keep those children from the fright of the world. I remained calm, though chaos wanted to consume me, and I left it all there, and went back to the still where my flesh longed for another chance. One more chance to do better.

I knew something was odd about the quiet so I opened my eyes to see if it all was as still as it sounded. A bird flew above me and I realized that none of the birds were singing. How different it all sounded without their voices. I wondered if they had no song or if they too were just in the quiet. I questioned the quiet for only a moment and I thought of the little girl with blue eyes at church. Even as an infant, surrounded by distraction, she knows that voice. She didn't need silence to hear and that was inspirational.

A beautiful butterfly flew right past me as I sat still, enjoying my quiet time with Him. I thanked Him for the still, I thanked Him for the peace. I looked up towards the bright of the sky and a feathered fowl encircled above. Wings lifted and fell in slow motion and without a sound, he soared away. I am Blessed again this day. Thankful for the chaos that leads to the quiet. A lamb knows The Shepherd's voice...and the shepherd knows the cry of His sheep. He goes before His sheep and they know His voice, not to follow another....

 John 10 King James Version (KJV)

10 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep.To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out.And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice.And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.This parable spake Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which he spake unto them.Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.

1 Thessalonians Chapter 4