Well … here I go again … I sat down to write about a miracle which Carol and I experienced earlier this week, and God gave me this to share first:
By the way, the original title of this post was to be, “I Know Jesus Saves … But, Does He Plow?”
It was about a “Miracle in the Snow,” but God wants me to share this first:
If there’s one thing I’ve learned with my walk with God, it is this:
If it is important to you, it is important to God.
If it matters to you, it matters to God.
That’s why He always wants to be “part of the conversation.”
He always wants to be your first option; not your last.
He wants to be your first choice; not your last.
So often, we turn to God as a “last resort,” only after everything we’ve tried has failed.
Even as Christians, sometimes, it seems like we have this built-in response to situations that ends something like this: “OK, God, I’ve tried everything else, and it hasn’t worked … Will you please help me?”
Please know that, regardless of what you are going through, Jesus is right there with you. Always.
Psalm 46:1 says that “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”
Yes, our refuge and strength, and, in times of trouble, He is always “present.”
I remember once, a long time ago, I was living in a mobile home, way out in the middle of the woods, and, in the middle of a severe storm, with tornados all around, it felt like the house was going to be lifted off of its foundation. The mobile home was “tied down,” but that wouldn’t keep the walls or roof intact. I went to the center of the house, the bathroom, and prayed. I mean I really prayed. The wind was whipping all around, a constant roar, the walls were shaking, and the rain sounded like bullets hitting the house. I could hear crashing sounds, but the wind was so strong and loud, you couldn’t tell which direction the noise was coming from. I can’t tell you the number of tragedies I’ve witnessed or read about as a result of tornados (or, “tornadoes”- both are considered proper plurals), and, as I sat there in the dark, the world around me shaking, I thought of all those stories and experiences. I prayed. Hard.
(Personal note from present time: Carol and I were married in Ringgold, GA. A couple of years ago, the area was hit with three tornadoes within a few hours span. Most of the downtown area, in the area where we were married … was destroyed … it just didn’t exist anymore … I know what it’s like … that feeling you get … every time a storm approaches … and, I mean every time a storm approaches …)
At that time, I had many, many dogs, and the dog pen was located about 20 feet or so from the house. I was as worried about the dogs as I was about the house. They had shelter and safety, but not from the large trees which surrounded us, and I could not hear anything above the storm. There was just no way to go outside to check on them. Keep in mind, also, that with a severe storm comes lightening. And, lots of it. What about those crashing sounds? At times, the crashing sounds drowned out the wind. Even after the major storm ended, the lightening, wind, and hard rain continued.
I remember that this was a Saturday night, and, as is often the case, the Sunday morning dawned with a clear, bright, sunny sky. First thing, at daylight, I ran outside … sure enough, the crashing sounds I heard were trees … large trees … and limbs … and, they were scattered around the property. First … the dogs … they were fine … no damage at all to their pen or shelter …
However … what struck me, as I surveyed the damage … was how the damage was “all laid out,” especially where the two huge oak trees had fallen … One had fallen along the driveway, but where and how it landed was what was unusual. It had large limbs, and it had fallen just to the left of the electric service line. I was living way back in the woods, and the single line was weaved through the trees to get to the service pole. It had missed, somehow, by inches, the power line. However, the limbs, now on the ground, extended underneath the power line. What this meant was that, “somehow,” as the tree came down … the limbs were “held back” until it passed the power line on the way down. Then, the limbs were, somehow, “released” as they fell to the ground.
There were two trees down … the other tree, and where it fell, was nothing short of a miracle.
I mentioned that there was a distance of some 20 feet between the house and the dog’s shelter.
This large oak, brought down by the storm, fell exactly between the two. I remember drawing a map of where the tree fell, in relation to the house and the dog pen. It landed exactly in the middle. Because of the reach of the limbs, and this being such a huge tree, a couple of inches either way … and either the house, or the dogs, would have been gone. It fell, literally, perfectly, as if placed there … on purpose …
This was Sunday morning, so off to church … it was also a miracle, with the amount of trees falling all around, that the entire driveway was clear … a driveway of some 500 feet or more … not a single limb blocking the way …
It was during praise and worship that God spoke directly to me … let’s face it, most of my mind was on the storm clean-up, and wondering “what might have been.” But, God broke through and gave me this message … clearly … A totally unplanned message I then delivered to the congregation:
“If it’s important to you, it’s important to Me. If it matters to you, it matters to Me.”
Richard. Vincent. Rose.