It’s a chilly night, and I’m out in the forest with some friends enjoying a meal by the campfire. The chill is against our backs as we chow down on some baked beans and hot dogs, which taste twice as good mixed with the smell of smoke in the cool night air. Our conversation is woven with laughter, which occasionally sends mouthfuls of half-chewed beans into the fire. It’s one of those good nights. As the fire turns to glowing red embers, we zip into our sleeping bags and begin to drift into slumber.
On October 28th, 2015 a massive military blimp that was tethered to the ground, broke loose and floated all the way to Pennsylvania. Along the way, it was dragging it’s long metal tether cable hitting power lines and causing 18,000 power outages.
There are times I almost shock myself with the amount of things I’ve never read in the Bible. I find familiar verses as I’m reading, but I’ve never read it straight through to really understand the context. I’m working on it!
Today I found myself reading through Hebrews 11… Go there. No, seriously, go get your Bible, or download the Bible app on your phone and read through Hebrews 11. Not sure what the title is where you are, but mine says “By Faith.” First, it explains what faith is. Which is so beautiful. After the explanation, it’s literally a list of names of people in the Bible who stepped out in faith. When it made zero sense, but “by faith”, they did something seemingly crazy because they trusted in God. Whatever He said, they would do. Wherever He led, they went.
I remember the rush of determination I got when I started going geocaching (basically, an outdoor treasure hunt). Running through the bushes, looking under rocks, climbing through the trees, I was determined to find the treasure, even if that meant getting stuck by thorns and spending hours looking in the dirt. I wanted it. And I knew I was capable of finding it, because my dad would tell me I was.
Long story short, we’re talking about Hannah. Hannah prayed for a baby. Prayed and prayed and prayed. It consumed her. She spent her time crying and wouldn’t eat. If you haven’t already read 1 Samuel 1, go do it.
Hannah is so well known for her beautiful prayer in the book of 1 Samuel. But here, in verse 18, is where I found myself longing to be more like her. The message version says her face was radiant. Radiant meaning – shining, or glowing brightly.
I want this. I want my face to be radiant. No longer downcast. No longer sad.
Ever have one of those moments where you look around and you’re struck with a massive magnitude of meaning? A completely unexpected moment where something mythic unfolds right before your eyes?
I had a moment like that a couple months ago in Kenya. Now, every missions trip I’ve been on has been filled with occasions that have stopped me in my tracks. A church filled worship service in Poland , a mountainside prayer night under the stars in El Salvador, a prayer moment with a father and his kids in Trinidad. So many memories of pivotal God-orchestrated intersections with beautiful people.
We can sometimes find ourselves in a state of constant okay-ness. When you pass someone that you know in the hall or on the street and they ask, “Hey, how are you?” you can truly respond with, “I’m doing okay.” And that’s not a bad thing. You’ve got your health, your car, your job, maybe you even have a happy family. But, ask yourself this, are you desperate? Continue reading “More Than Okay”→