Monday, normal day after the worship intercession group I’ve been attending now for nearly two years. Driving home after some shopping, I took a detour to stop in at the church I’ve been attending since summer, and squeaking into the office just 15 minutes before they closed, I met the receptionist and began sharing with her the wild way I/we got connected to the church and all of the God connections that have happened to me there since August. I had to add the latest dot-connection with her:
The day before, for once relatively early to church, we sat down politely in the middle of a row so people didn’t have to climb over us to find a seat. I put my travel cup with the photo of my kids under my seat, got up to use the restroom, promptly noticed when I came back that I’d kicked it over, so I moved it to underneath the chair in front of me. Just before worship started, a couple sat down next to us, the polite one empty seat between me and the young woman. Nothing unusual in that.
At the end of the service, though, the young woman, Stephanie, pointed to my cup as we stood to leave and said, in surprise,”I know those people!” It was my turn to be surprised! It “turned out” totally randomly – ha, I know better – that the teacher of one of her children at a local Christian school is the mother-in-law of my daughter-in-law, and she and her husband took a foster parenting class with my son and his wife! I’m starting to feel like a bowling pin knocked down in amazement on Sundays by a ball rolled by Abba/Jesus /Holy Spirit just to remind me He’s here in my life, active and loving.
Pastor Jeff came into the office about that time, and since I’d wanted to share all the dot connecting with him, I repeated the”coincidences.” I added that I/we are trying to figure out where to move once the house sells: stay in Tucson moving nearer the church, or move back up to East Mesa and find a new church?
(Sound of “pins resetting” in the celestial bowling alley )
Pastor Jeff asks me,”Have you heard of Red Mountain Church?”
I add a question,”You mean the one north of the freeway?”
Jeff: “Yes. My uncle Rob is the pastor there.”
Me:”You mean the Rob who lived across the street and down six houses from me in Mesa, whose wife bought some things from my yard sale in 2013? That pastor Rob?”
Strike! Down I go figuratively in absolute astonished wonder at what a bowler Jesus is!
Why does this matter in the grand scheme of my life? Well …Jesus keeps reminding me what he told his disciples before he sent them out to minister in his name: :
Jesus called for his 12 disciples to come to him. He gave them authority to drive out evil spirits and to heal every illness and sickness.
“So don’t be afraid of your enemies. Everything that is secret will be brought out into the open. Everything that is hidden will be uncovered. What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight. What is whispered in your ear, shout from the rooftops. Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but can’t kill the soul. Instead, be afraid of the one who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Aren’t two sparrows sold for only a penny? But not one of them falls to the ground outside your Father’s care. He even counts every hair on your head! So don’t be afraid. You are worth more than many sparrows. What if someone says in front of others that they know me? I will also say in front of my Father who is in heaven that I know them. Matthew 10: 1, 26-32 NIRV
“Hmmm…,”notes my Father in Heaven, smiling, “when Rose heard that, hairs #20, 512 – #20, 567 stood at attention!”
God bowls me over to lift me up, connects dots again and again to remind me how very much he loves me and yes, he is indeed out of love paying attention to my situation and yes, he wants me to remember that GOD IS IN CONTROL so I should get over fear and thinking that man is in control of my today and tomorrow. And yes, I WANT to say in front of others (you in particular) that I KNOW JESUS, AND HE IS LORD OF LOVE AND LORD OF ALL!
I was so swept away by God’s love for me in Jesus again today, suspecting he’s connecting more dots I just can’t see yet to bring his goodness and victory out into the open in and through my life, perhaps so you, dear Reader, can believe he is doing and wants to do the same in your life out of his immeasurably passionate kindness, goodness, mercy, power and love for you.
So the one”…BUT…” to pray today is your call, your crying out to truly see some dots connected, or your recognition of the dots God has connected for you in the past: LORD, here I go again thinking that my life doesn’t matter to you, thinking that people determine my situations and blessings or lack thereof, BUT I know that in truth, YOU ARE GOD AND YOU ARE LORD AND YOU ___________________________________ and YOU WANT TO __________________________________________ to me, for me, in me, and through me, so I’ll say THANKS by faith that you are connecting dots for my blessing. BOWL ME OVER WITH YOUR LOVE! In Jesus’ name, for God’s Glory, and Holy Spirit, I’m watching AND listening for Your Amen!