Friday, April 17, 2009

Out on a limb

Only after we have yielded to Him can we reflect the face of Christ."  Celtic Daily Prayer

Yielding and reflecting.  I have always had the sense of God providing/meeting us in proportion to our own risk.  If we stay near the trunk of the tree, grasping on for dear life, holding what we already have, He will meet us there, giving lightly.  But, if we step out to the edge of the branch, trust Him to hold us, or even further, yield the branch altogether, HE will grasp us, hold us provide right there.  Catch us when we jump.  And there, what will be seen of us is His glory.  The times that I have risked most have been the times when I've been most overcome by His graciousness, His power, His care.  And my response is overwhelming praise.  He shines in my face at such moments.

Beve and I have owned 4 houses in 4 towns.  And these houses--both the buying and selling--have been moments of gigantic risk for us.  We bought land out on the Olympic Penninsula on the strength of a counseling opening in the Sequim School District, months before Beve even had an interview.  And once he actually got the job, we waited for God to sell our house.  Without a realtor.  We've only ever used the Holy Spirit as our realtor, either as buyer or seller. We stood way out on a limb to trust that He was in it, that He could do exceedingly abundantly, beyond all that we asked or even thought.  And you know the end of that story:  He sold that house about a minute before Beve had to move out to Sequim by himself.  And we rejoiced, we were humbled, we worshipped at His feet when He caught us.

This scenario has played out three more times as well.  But here's the thing: it's hard every time.  We always stumble on our way to faith, we always have to step gingerly out to the end of the limb.  I remember telling Beve once that I was a small island of faith in the midst of a swirling sea of doubt.  But you know what?  We risked it anyway.  And He catches us when we jump...every time.  Maybe not exactly as we expect, but always in such a way that we know it's Him.

"To hear with your heart,
 To see with your soul,
be guided by a hand you cannot hold,
To trust in a way you cannot see..that's what Faith must be."

This little chorus is what I'm talking about.  These words play repeatedly in my head when I step away from the trunk of that tree.  Step gingerly on to the end of the branch, and trust that His holy arms will catch me when I jump.  Not seeing with my blind, human eyes, not hearing with my deaf fleshly ears, but with my soul, my heart, my faith in the one who calls me onward. Further up and further in to faith, further in to risk! The proportion sounds just about right.

This is good news for me in this season of my life.  Once again I'm tentatively releasing my grip from the trunk of the tree of life, and am clawing my way to a small limb...and I trust that He'll be there at the end, holding on to my hand.

No comments: