A year later, no longer interim but experiencing one of the hard days that come with ministry, struggling to remember why I should press on, I read Acts 11:23 in my office. I highlighted it in my Bible and then I took out pen and a post it and wrote a tiny, simple phrase with a big, extraordinary mission “Remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast purpose” and taped it inside a cabinet above my desk. An ebenezer on a cabinet for the day God gave me a clear vision.
This past November, Libby and I drove in the wee morning hours to a specialist in the metroplex, the sun rising in front of us. We had been searching for answers the past 5 months for some health issues she was having. I checked on her in my rear view mirror as her hand held its spot on the place that ached and she stared out the window. Worship music kept rhythm with our car and I thought about the day before when I entered the conference room at the church for ministerial staff prayer time and 6 men sang a loud and hearty “Happy birthday” to me and then moments later quietly and earnestly pleaded for answers for our little girl. I grinned. Tears slipped down my cheeks as hope and gratitude filled our car. Our Maker was showing His majesty in the colors of the sky in front of me, a team of people were lifting us up, and I felt like each mile marker we passed was a little bit closer to answers for us. I whispered a tiny, simple prayer with a big, extraordinary hope “Help us to trust Your plans, whatever they are.” A benediction in the car, for the day God gave me peace.
This past week, I cleaned out my office. Took books off shelves, threw trash away, put picture frames in boxes. While I worked, I wished the preschool halls around me hadn’t been vacant for months. I pulled a bunch of post its off my cabinet door and set aside the one with a vision from years ago. I ached for the sounds of families checking in, volunteers greeting people, kids shouting. I took all the cards and coloring sheets off my office door and buried underneath I found that very first card. Our entire family longed for one more”normal Sunday” before we said goodbyes but it was not meant to be. Very soon, we will leave this town we have called home for the last 13 years, and we will head west, this time with the sun rising behind us. Tears will probably slip down my cheeks but I’m trusting that hope and gratitude will fill our car because we know He is our future and we know our past gives us so much to be thankful for. “Help us trust Your plans, whatever they are” I will whisper. As we pass the mile markers on our way to our new town, I will remember the mission straight from His word (Acts 11:24) and ask Him to help us “Remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast purpose.” And I will voice it because I feel the light of His Word directing our path “Thank you for the Bible, God”
Take our tiny, simple prayers Jesus and make them something extraordinary for Your Kingdom.