Friday, February 6, 2015

Back-Handed Confirmations

The first couple of times it happened to us, we were confused and perplexed. But eventually, even slow learners like me can catch on to the back-handed confirmation of the Pick-pocket.

Whenever Wendy and I have felt like God was prompting us to take some faith-risks, we almost always experience some kind of financial smack-down that makes it look like we should have played it safe.

Just a few months ago, The Well -- the church we've been attending for several years, and where I was on part-time staff as worship director -- called for 21 days of prayer about the church's vision and future. A prayer room was set up in our pastor's house, and people could gather -- individually or in groups -- at all times of the day and night to pray about the church.

It was during our final corporate prayer time, as the 21 days drew to a close, that I felt very strongly that God was saying that our season with The Well was over. It came as a surprise to me, but before and after handing in my resignation, I had complete peace about the decision. ("Are you sure?", Pastor Ron playfully teased me. "No resigner's remorse?")

Wendy & I will miss the weekly gatherings with our friends at The Well, although BBQ's will undoubtably help us stay connected with a pretty cool bunch of people. We said our good-byes on the final Sunday of January, less than two weeks ago.

Leaving The Well also means a reduction in our finances, obviously. But when you are convinced God is leading, that's not an obstacle that you allow to influence your decision-making.
And within a week, the Pick-pocket was back at it, and suddenly we were unexpectedly faced with expensive car repairs. With more on the horizon.
Now, the last thing I would want to do is to suggest that our experience is normative for anyone else. But Wendy and I have definitely observed the same pattern over many years in our lives:

  1. Hear God.
  2. Step out in obedience (faith-risk).
  3. Instant financial "situation".
  4. Smile & accept the back-handed confirmation.
  5. Remember Ebenezer. (1 Samuel 7:12)

And as the inscription on the stone reminds us, God has been faithful this far. And so, we have confidence that He will continue to bring us along. Even when we have no freakin' idea what He's up to.

When we first moved to Winnipeg, oh so many years ago, Wendy placed a stone with the word "Ebenezer" written on it in our kitchen window. Every time we did the dishes, it quietly reminded us to continue to trust, even when -- maybe especially when -- we couldn't see the path before us.

So for now, we recognize the back-handed confirmation, remember the significance of the Ebenezer stone, and trust.

No comments:

Post a Comment