Monday, November 13, 2017

Amazing grace, right?

Does God Speak to Us?

“I don’t know why, but I have to go, and I have to go now,” I said. 

My husband, just home from work, was clinking coins from his pockets into a green ceramic dish on our dresser as we discussed my idea of taking the kids on a road trip to visit my dad. 

At the time, I didn’t realize how profound those words were.

The thought of traveling surfaced weeks earlier, but I resisted it. After all, my husband, due to work commitments, couldn’t go with us. Although I loved road trips, I hesitated to travel alone with our young children.  I felt vulnerable staying in a hotel without another adult.  What if our car broke down? What if I got lost? What if I needed help? (This was before GPS. This was before cellphones.)

My husband, also concerned about our safety, tried to talk me into waiting for a later date.

But I couldn't. By the time he could join us, the kids would be back in school.  

I knew that if I didn’t visit Dad now, it would be another year before we’d be able to consider the trip. With the kids out of school, summer was the perfect time to go. This was my one shot at getting there this year. Despite my fears, I felt an urgency to make the trip.

My own words surprised me: “I don’t know why, but I have to go, and I have to go now.”  

With that, my husband and I ended our discussion. We called Dad, set dates, charted maps, made hotel reservations, and serviced the mini-van. 

I’ll never forget that moment, or the subsequent trip.

The kids and I visited Dad at his vacation home in the mountains of upstate New York. The kids laughed and giggled as Dad pulled them in a trailer attached to his ride-on mower.  He gave them stuffed Dalmatian puppies and battery-operated horses that galloped and whinnied. We roasted marshmallows on an open fire and feasted on gooey s’mores.  When it came time to leave, it was a sad farewell.

That Christmas, Dad planned to come to visit us in Florida, but he didn’t. Health concerns kept him away. A cancer diagnosis followed, and the following spring, Dad passed away.  (See previous blogs)

Had I waited another summer, the opportunity to take the kids on a road trip to visit Dad would have been gone.

Looking back, I believe it was God who, despite my fears, prompted me to take that trip.  When my husband and I discussed the pros and cons that decisive afternoon, God spoke to me and through me. 

I needed to go, and I needed to go then.

I'm so thankful I did.

Since then, whenever a nagging inner voice insists I do something, I listen. I pray. I discern. I respond...not quickly, not impulsively, but over time; days, maybe weeks, I listen to be sure it’s a call from Heaven itself.   

Always, I’ve been amazed at the wonders of His touch.

Click here and let's Shout to the Lord! (Hillsong).

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