“Bang, bang, bang!”
Belinda was at the sink going through her morning contact lens insertion ritual. I was sitting in a chair in my pyjamas reading from Proverbs and waiting for my own turn at the sink. The knocking on the door, seemed incongruously loud and we both jumped. I was closest to the door, so I peeked out the window first, making sure that I was not about to open the door to just any early morning body and saw Terry, a co-worker standing outside in her running gear, ready for her morning jog. We were all away overnight at a lovely northern retreat, for our annual district managers’ training. I made what turned out to be a rather feeble attempt to be funny.
“Terry, are you CRAZY???!!!!” I said as I opened the door. I’m not generally very energetic at that time of the morning. And it was cold out there to boot. I smiled, but Terry still looked a little taken aback at my odd greeting. I knew it was affectionate teasing on my part, but it appeared that she wasn’t so sure.
“The mist on the lake is really beautiful,” she said a little tenuously as Belinda joined me at the door. Belinda’s greeting, of course, was characteristically much more gracious, and Terry was quickly put at ease.
A minute or two later, after thanking Terry for the photo-opp. tip, Belinda was back at the sink, and I was standing on the beach, looking eastward into the mist rising off of Bernard Lake. I was hoping no-one in the resort was looking out one of the many windows behind me to notice the crazy person with the uncombed hair standing shivering in her pyjamas on the beach and looking out into the mist. But then a part of me didn’t care who was looking.
Terry was right. It was an unbelievably beautiful morning, and I was grateful that she had given in to the impulse of knocking on the door to share it with us at 7:00 a.m. I took a few photos of the lake that was eerily silent and shrouded in mist. I was soon back in the room taking my own turn at the sink. Belinda, fully dressed by this time, was meanwhile heading out the door to take my place down on the beach.
When she got back we shared photos (hers were way better than mine) and then she settled into the chair next to me and read the Daily Light out loud. I was quickly overwhelmed, once again, at the goodness of God and his ability to meet the deepest longings of our hearts and his ability to speak to us through his Word – that living, two-edged sword.
“A bruised reed he will not break.”
Her voice is gentle and full of grace. The words are almost song-like coming from her lips. But it’s not Belinda I am listening to. It is God that is speaking to me now. Deep is calling unto deep, and my heart is stirred in the deepest recesses.
“The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.—He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.—Thus says the One who is high and lifted up, who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: “I dwell in the high and holy place, and also with him who is of a contrite and lowly spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly, and to revive the heart of the contrite. For I will not contend forever, nor will I always be angry; for the spirit would grow faint before me, and the breath of life that I made.”
“I will seek the lost, and I will bring back the strayed, and I will bind up the injured, and I will strengthen the weak.”—Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed.—“Behold, your God. . . . He will come and save you.”
Matt. 12:20; Ps. 51:17; Ps. 147:3; Isa. 57:15, 16; Ezek. 34:16; Heb. 12:12, 13; Isa. 35:4
We prayed together – for each other, for Belinda’s team, for our co-workers, for open and receiving hearts as we looked ahead to our day of training.
It always pays to stop and to be intentionally mindful of the One who loves us - to open our hearts and listen for his voice. He alone knew exactly what the day would bring – what mixture of challenges along with the blessings, and where the enemy would soon be laying snares along the way. These few moments spent with His Word and in prayerful communion with him, and with each other, was the perfect start to what unfolded into this good day.