What a week it has been. What a week indeed.
Since emerging from the depths and abysses of semi-despair (it had felt like it, or perhaps as a kind euphemism this could be replaced with ‘troubled estate of fervent Christian mind’ – I was at no moment about to renounce my faith nor let the enemy claim the victory seat in the throne of my heart that will never be his), to Divine revelation through the words of one who ministered to me, whom I had rightly turned to by His grace…
What it week it had been.
That I should be able to deliver a Bible study on Tuesday evening in a proper state of mind, while the skies in my head cleared and my Creator shone His Loving rays into my misty eyes, to recovering – if only incredibly gratefully – the following morning, and engaging with a commendable presentation on evolution, subtle racism, men-as-wild-animals and Neanderthals in the Senate Suite in the Castle in the darkened evening (nevertheless lit up by a splatter of stars in the night, just as He always has been and will always romance) and finally, that glorious Friday morning as I trod along that morning path to school with the Sun shining marvellously in my face when I found myself smiling again,
Really smiling again.
I had an academic supervision that morning and his comments were ‘outstanding, simply outstanding’ and what could one do but to just give thanks in praise and worship and skip all the way home, rewarding oneself with a little weaving through of the charity shops (where an almost-certain ninety-nine percent of my clothes come from, teacher-y as they are, in the words of Naomi), and just… being incredibly joyful, you know?
Tea had followed with Guo Ting where lips of His anointing spoke of His Love and how He had found me in Cambodia when I was 17, and threading through this very night with a follow-up and this time, with her friend, Bodhi, where good conversation on Pure Land Buddhism, hynopsis, “Fa Xing” (or, the Higher Source of Good and Evil which one can truly be found within oneself) and its juxtapositions (and really, strangely, more similarities) with the Christian faith. He is one of questions, good questions. I also now have a worthy contender of names – a Bodhi tree was one of significant relation to Gautama Buddha. It is my firm belief, however, that the Love of God still stands, still reigns 😉 We look forward to another meeting after he is back from a healing hynopsis next week, (quite a pricey one at that, yet I did not feel compelled to put it down straightaway, if in fact it might help disprove anything, him being thoroughly convinced at it), and I pray the LORD will continue and lead and guide. I feel he is seeking, as much as she too, is seeking, even if the fence is getting a little warm from the sitting, but His promise is that
“You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart” — Jeremiah 29: 13
Three years they have got, and sometime in those three years, I believe, they will find Him.
Today, I was incredibly impacted by Eric Ludy’s call for Intercessors, (his theology a hearty mix of C T Studd and Spurgeon and Ravenhill) as I first did with Elizabeth Alves, the book a gift from dearest Aunt Lucille:
The video’s message is powerful in its conveyance, soul-stirring it is – ‘the medium is the message’ rings a little true in its dramatic effect, and this has been His reminder to me that in the time that I am elseplace, I must be an Intercessor. I must stand in the gaps, and Pray.
Friday evening, I had skittled a little.
It had begun slightly harrowing as I took a dimly-lit path (my only light coming from my handphone) where people smoking weed called out for 20 pounds for a smoke as I hurried on along my way, and though afraid, I reached the grounds of safety (strange that things as such should mar Durham’s pristine glory in that I am reminded that I find myself in a world now so foreign to me in a greater sense of the word), I looked up at the stars which guided me, the Hand which guided me, and entered safely the little house where You had arranged a Missions Fair.
There was no coincidence, You don’t plan coincidences do You.
That I should stumble upon a conversation with Andy and Esther Wade, a father and his lovely daughter of 18, and be reminded as You spoke through them.
Felt a calling to Morocco, he did, when he first set foot on the grounds soon to be his home for the next 15 years (a quarter or a fifth of a Life) when he was but 18, felt that “this is it” and the LORD made you wait how many years? I asked. He showed me his fingers, his dusty blue eyes peering deep into mine.
Eight good years, and the LORD prepared him well in those years. Had to go to University to read English he did, and so teacher-trained would he be, and the LORD never wasted any of those 8 years.
Experience, you know, he said. You need experience. It equips you.
I almost teared at the depth of this encounter, at how God would be speaking this into my heart, even as I tried to hold on to some kind of a silver of hope that there would -there might- there-still-could-be kind of a possibility.
She had waited 6 years.
I wonder sometimes, still wonder, what is the number You might have for me.
But I wonder more at who You are now. Exact numbers no longer mean anything to me when I fix my eyes on You whose Hands hold Eternity.
“What brought you the greatest joy in the field?” I asked.
Not numbers of people saved, not the revolutions or revivals, not anything else, but this:
“The Sun shining on my face. The Sun shining on my face.” he said.
I paused, if only to catch a mid-of-a-half-and-not-really breath.
Those were the exact same words You had for me that glorious morning as I walked through Pimlico Lane, among the towering trees like those of Mandai, only a trillion times more beautiful as the path trundles along in its ups and downs.
Those were the exact same words You had for me that morning.
That is how real You are.
I shook Andy’s hand, hugged Esther, and I left.
I know now.
I’ll most certainly be heading to NIE, and I have to go through my years of teacher training.
You told me so.
I remember dedicating the year ahead to You in Phnom Penh, at Daughters of Cambodia.
These years, but a speck in eternity. You’d get me through.
The night was late as we trod to Hallgarth Street, and our voices rose to You in jubilant song.
“Give me oil in my lamp keep me burning, Give me oil in my lamp I pray, Give me oil in my lamp keep me burning, keep me burning til the break of day!
Sing, Hosanna, Sing Hosanna, Sing Hosanna to the King of Kings!
Sing, Hosanna, Sing Hosanna, Sing Hosanna to the King of Kings!”
She strummed, and we did the vocals. I was astonished that she had sung this childhood song in her country too, and that only served to strike a chord with our hearts aligned to serve Him with our lives in this manner.
You don’t find many called. Each are called differently, graciously, by the LORD.
But its always a joy to know that another had been called, too.
A decade down the road, we half-seriously joked (what irony), we would remember this night when we sang this beautiful song in resonant memory. It is captured. It is replayed. It will be replayed, when the time is ripe.
For Esther had said:
“It is the LORD’s flame He’s put in your heart, and He’ll be the One to keep it burning.”
And one day, so is my promise to Andy as I left,
I will convey his regards to his good old friend in the unknown village, whose name is Michael King.
I’ll make it to Cambodia.
Once again, it is when I meet Him in peaceful surrender that He surprises, ever surprises.
He blew the doors wide open this morning, as I facetimed (yes, it is now officially a verb) Home.
Yes from Pa, and a Yes, too from Mom. The Summer awaits. Round 5.
Progress in the building of His School is well, and all is good to hear.
O, How Gracious is the LORD! 😀
One of my favourite Psalms this is,
and I have, and shall sing forth again in Joyous praise:
Oh sing to the Lord a new song;
sing to the Lord, all the earth!
Sing to the Lord, bless His name;
tell of His salvation from day to day.
Declare His glory among the nations,
His marvelous works among all the peoples!
For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised;
He is to be feared above all gods.
For all the gods of the peoples are worthless idols,
but the Lord made the heavens.
Splendor and majesty are before Him;
strength and beauty are in His sanctuary.
Ascribe to the Lord, O families of the peoples,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength!
Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His name;
bring an offering, and come into His courts!
Worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness;
tremble before Him, all the earth!
Say among the nations, “The Lord reigns!
Yes, the world is established; it shall never be moved;
He will judge the peoples with equity.”
Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice;
let the sea roar, and all that fills it;
let the field exult, and everything in it!
Then shall all the trees of the forest sing for joy
before the Lord, for He comes,
for He comes to judge the earth.
He will judge the world in righteousness,
and all the peoples in His faithfulness.
And now, it is time to Intercede.
The Sabbath approaches, and You fill me with gladness 😀