God's preparation/Our response
My mom and I were driving along the interstate having a small chat about where we should go for our Saturday lunch. This was a day for a break. I planned for no work, no phone calls to return. This was going to be free time. In a beat, we found ourselves pulled to the side of the road and me running down into thick brush where a man had flown off and into the ditch. I don't remember thinking. I don't remember taking a time of discussion with my mom about what to do next. She pulled over and I was gone....just like that.
Thank God the man, named Hugo, had on his seat belt and besides some cuts and a little shock he was able to climb out of his crunched up truck and walk up the embankment. Without thinking of anyone around me I was looking him over, checking him for cuts and talking with him as he tried to process what just happened. I explained to him that his tire blew out and pointed to it on the road. He stood dazed. I prayed over him and waited until I knew the right people who could take over were there.
Yesterday, I was driving home alone in my prayer time when I looked into the distance about 1 mile. Where I was it was sunny and no rain....but in a short distance I saw a downpour and I knew that in a moment if I continued down this road I would go right into it. I could pull over and stop or turn around and go another way and avoid the downpour if I wanted. This was an unusual rain....it was isolated and not moving.
Life can be both ways. Sometimes in an instant we are find ourselves doing things we never imagined. We appear somewhere doing something and we wonder how it happened. Like with Hugo. 10 seconds before he was in the ditch he never would have imagined himself there...and likewise I wouldn't have guessed I'd be running after him. Like Grace, she came into our lives unexpected. We thought we were adopting a healthy little boy but God walked us into an orphanage infirmary to meet a very sick and withdrawn girl. He presented her to us and the only question left was, what will we do?
Other times we can see the storm ahead.... We see where we are standing and it looks pleasant. Why would we go into that storm? Why would we ASK for something difficult, time consuming, and maybe painful at times? This was like Maxim. We've already seen. We've been down this road before. Why would we do it AGAIN? I don't want to find myself going through life only helping Hugo or Grace if forced to. I want to be fully positioned in my faith to see the storm and walk in knowing that on the other side is freedom for someone.
I used to believe that I had to be really strong or really smart to do anything. But God has continued to show me that it really has very little to do with me at all. Every step with Grace has been His grace. And every step with Maxim and Dolly will be His grace as he has given us with all of our children. I am not interested in rescue for the sake of rescue. Not for good deeds or paying it forward even. I really only want to extend the only thing that has saved this girl. God's love. If not for His mercy, His love and grace I would be dead.
There was a day my car flew into the ditch but I didn't have my seatbelt on. Someone came to my rescue too and God poured his grace on me to heal me and allow me to walk again. Sometimes we aren't prepared for those things the world throws at us and sometimes we don't think we are prepared for those things God presents us with either. But truth is, I've never felt incredibly polished and "on top of things." Often I feel like I am chasing a list of things that need to be done. But if for one moment I sat and stared at those things as the prerequistes for doing what God calls me to do, then I would have hung it up long ago. It's never been about me and it's not about you either!
His plan is not for us to stare at the worldly things and the excuses of why we can't do what he has asked of us. Colossians 3 says to set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. And Zechariah 4:6 says; "Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit," says the Lord. Our faith, our strength, all of our abilities are His unleashed through us when we say "YES!" to His will.
Randy and I are not trying to save the world. We only want to know that with all that we are, all that God would put inside of us of His goodness, with all of our resources, we followed Him right into the storm whether that storm was one we saw coming or not. We know there is no place He will call us to, that He isn't already there. And there is no thing he will call us to do, that He will not put inside of us the strength for. For no great thing that God would call you to do are you going to be able to do on your own!
"I pray that out of His glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through His spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love that surpasses knowledge - that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and Christ Jesus throughout all the generations, for ever and ever! Amen." Ephesians 16-20