Funny Thing #10
Matthew 6:6 MSG
I was not ever really much of an outside kind of kid, except once in a while when everybody was having snowball fights, building snowmen, and snow forts, I’d make my way outside…with book in hand.
I’m not sure why, but I liked sitting inside the snow fort while every one else in the neighborhood was getting belted with snowballs.
It was quiet inside the fort.
It was like my own little piece of heaven.
When I would go inside my Mom would ask me if I had fun with the snowball fight and I just smiled. The truth was, I did enjoy my time in the snow. It’s surprising how cozy it can be in a house made of snow.
What I remember most was how quiet it was inside. I love the quiet. I’m not sure why but I do know when it’s quiet I can feel and hear God better.
Jesus instructed his disciples in Matthew 6:6, "Here's what I want you to do: Find a quiet, secluded place so you won't be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace.”
Through the years God has been gracious to teach me how to know He wants to tell me something.
It’s a little hard to describe but it’s a feeling I get that only happens when God wants to show me or tell me something. It’s a whisper.
God calls my name.
Years ago in the beginning I had trouble believing that God would take time to talk to me. I didn’t really think I was worthy of God taking time to speak to me.
When I was seeing a Spiritual Director years ago he helped me understand that God really does love me and wants to communicate with me.
During that time I went to a large conference in Texas that focused on listening to God. While I was there I asked God to help me to believe the love He had for me was very real.
During the last session with thousands of people in a large auditorium, we were told to close our eyes and listen to what God has for us.
I was tired and I didn’t really expect anything unusual to happen, but I closed my eyes and I asked God to send the Spirit to help me. I was not at all specific about what I was asking for but I closed my eyes and waited.
I absolutely did not expect what happened next.
The Spirit came through me like a freight train. That’s exactly how strong it felt. God said, “I LOVE You!”
Every fiber, bone, blood vessel, and organ in my body shook. It was so strong that I started sobbing uncontrollably.
My very very good friend and longtime prayer partner was sitting next to me. She immediately knew what had happened. That was a gift, because I could not compose myself enough to speak.
I was indeed mute.
She knew I was in no shape to walk back to the hotel and she put her arms around me and got me outside and onto a bus that was headed to the hotel. She sat me next to a woman.
When we pulled away from the parking lot I realized the woman next to me was a professional counselor who attended my church. She asked me if I was okay.
I shook my head yes and I was somehow able to tell her that the Spirit of God ran over me.
She was a very wise woman and she smiled and said, “how wonderful!”
Somehow I made it back to my room where I was able to tell my prayer partner more about what happened. My speech was still limited. We went to eat our evening meal and I was only able to eat a few bites.
After dinner we went back to our hotel room and I told her I wasn’t sure I would ever be functional again. The power of God that went through me that day was indescribable.
I couldn’t stop crying. It was so wonderful. It was so powerful. It was so much more than I could ever describe even today.
I sobbed myself to sleep telling God over and over again, “I love you. I love you. I love you.”
God has spoken to me with dreams no visions for a very long time and that night I had a dream.
In the dream a lovely small blonde headed boy came to my bedside and he touched my forehead with his tiny hand. He said, “it’s okay. You’ll be fine.”
When I woke up I was fine but God allowed me to remember how deep and wide His love is for me.
It’s been nearly twenty years since that day.
Both women who helped me that day have gone to be with Jesus. I smile every time I think of them sitting with Jesus in heaven.
Now, there are times on a cold winter snowy day I imagine I am a little girl sitting warm and cozy inside my fort.
Todays quote tells us, “I have a lot of growing up to do. I realized that the other day inside my fort.”—Zach Galifianakis
I still have a lot to learn about God and God’s love for us, but I’ll never forget how deep and wide God’s love is for His children.
…that’s you. Gods love for you is deeper and wider than you can even imagine!
Spiritual Practice: Receive God’s Love
Open your hands and your heart and receive God’s love.
In God, Deborah