MANNA FROM MY FATHER’S HAND # 17
(Originally Posted 8/26/2023)
THE WILDERNESS WALK (Part 4)
Only you can prevent speed bumps.
What a curious and interesting sign I ran across in my travels in recent days. On the surface, of course, it’s urging folks to slow down and follow a slower speed limit without having to be forced to do so by bumps being added to the road.
Funny how that sometimes corresponds fairly naturally to our spiritual lives. Sometimes road blocks and speed bumps are added to our journey because we (or those in our orbit) choose to race through life, acting out of fear and anxiety rather than faith and trust.
It’s been another interesting week, wandering and wondering along in this “wilderness walk”. There have again been beautiful moments along the way, discoveries each and every day. Such as the fact that there indeed seems to be a pair of Bald Eagles that must be nesting around here, because they have made themselves known often (including a picture of the pair atop a tree from a few days back).
The doves here are smaller than the ones we have at home (have caught a few glimpses of them, but they have hidden themselves quickly, so no pictures have been snapped of them yet). They are probably “common ground doves”, and seem to be such sweet little birds, cooing softly on my early morning walks.
Many mornings, I have run across some ducks with their young (Black-bellied Whistling Ducks most likely). I have taken pictures when possible, but they are quite shy. It only became apparent afterwards that one time, my phone’s video was on by accident, recording as I walked along, trying to get a picture. They were so funny as I would get closer, they would move along the road to avoid me. Finally, when in close enough range, I lifted the phone for a picture, and they flew off. I’m posting a part of that video below along with a few pictures of these beautiful birds, because it seemed to fit in with the Wilderness Walk theme without even intending to do so.
Often, our lives need to be “one step at a time”, waiting for the right time to take flight.
Wings of the Morning
Gratitude for the fact that each morning, the Lord is just as close and real as elsewhere (whether home, caring for a loved one in another part of the country, etc.) has encouraged my heart, with this type of scripture echoing within:
“Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me”.
(Psalm 139:7-10 ESV)
In the Old Testament, there was an established place where people were to worship (in the Temple in Jerusalem). Jesus’ words to the woman at the well, asking WHERE we should worship (and other parts of the New Testament) clarify that the true “temple” now is in His “body”, the Church, as well as in each one who believes in Him. He goes with us wherever we are.
“But the hour is coming and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him.”
(John 4:23 ESV)
Wherever we are, as believers in Jesus Christ, we simply need to raise our eyes to His throne, and He is not far off. Each morning’s walk this week has gotten darker at the beginning, as the days naturally get shorter at this time of year. Heading out before the sunrise, it is beautiful to watch as the Lord “awakens the dawn”. This morning (probably “yesterday morning” since it’s now almost “tomorrow” already as I type) the enthralling “morning star” was shining in beautiful brilliance, and if you look closely in the picture below, you can actually see the little white dot in the center. Reminds me of these two scriptures:
“And we have something more sure, the prophetic word, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts,…”
(2 Peter 1:19 ESV)
“I, Jesus, have sent my angel to testify to you about these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.”
(Revelation 22:17 ESV)
What a blessing to know the Awesome One shines in the darkness of our lives, heralding the approaching dawn of His grace, each and every day.
Serene Blessing and Assurance
My life has personally taken a few twists and turns lately, hit a couple of speed bumps and road blocks perhaps. Tonight, I had to miss a wonderful worship evening back home, trusting and praying (of course) that it was a beautiful and inspiring time for those who were able to attend. Jesus was there. Jesus was here. I can’t be in two places at once, and must simply be at peace being where He has placed me for now. He is in ALL the places, in the hearts of each of His children by His amazing Spirit’s grace and power.
What a serene blessing and assurance, when seeing that beautiful morning star while walking along this morning … taking one step at a time … even in the darkness … even when road blocks or speed bumps have arisen out of the blue, either from my own doing or as a result of choices made by those I love, for good or bad. Nothing is missed by our Savior.
Funny how many weeks this “wilderness walk” blog post series is continuing on. It wasn’t MY plan, but somehow, it perhaps is HIS plan…. There is more to cover for sure. For now, it seems prudent to ponder that perhaps “only you can prevent speed bumps” is potentially a very likely possibility.