So, full-time has gone to part-time and I find myself in a familiar place of needing God to part a sea. Or at least open a door. It’s a good place to be. Stretching, in a sometimes-I-think-I-might-throw-up kind of way, but good. Forces you to figure out what you really believe about God. To pass the time, I’ve been reading.
“When the water in the skin was gone, she [Hagar] left the boy under one of the bushes. Then she went and sat down nearby, about a bow shot away, for she said, “I can’t bear to watch the boy die!” So as she sat nearby, she[wept loudly.”
“Then God opened her eyes and she saw a well of water. So she went and filled the skin with water and gave the boy a drink.” – Genesis 21:15-19
In the dry places, absent of what is needed, God provides. He may need to open our eyes to see it, but His provision is there.
“ As surely as the Lord your God lives,” she replied, “I don’t have any bread—only a handful of flour in a jar and a little olive oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it—and die….Then the woman, Elijah, and her household ate for many days. The flour jar did not become empty, and the oil jug did not run dry, according to the word of the Lord He had spoken through Elijah.” – 1Kings 17:13, 16
In our times of a handful and a little, God sustains.
“And Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.” – 2Kings 6:17
When the enemy looks big and it seems there is no way to victory, God surrounds us.
“…go to the sea, cast in a fishhook, and take the first fish that you catch. When you open its mouth you’ll find a coin.” – Matthew 17:27
When our pockets are empty, God provides in ways we could not have imagined.
“The Lord drove the sea back with a powerful east wind all that night and turned the sea into dry land. So the waters were divided, and the Israelites went through the sea on dry ground, with the waters like a wall to them on their right and their left.” – Exodus 14:21-22
He parts the sea in the midst of impossible situations. For us, and for His glory.
It is never sink or swim with God. He doesn’t throw us into the deep end to see if we can swim our way out. I do believe that sometimes God has to bring us to a “no way out” kind of place before we stop leaning on our own wits, strength and understanding, and finally bend our knee to His lordship over us. But even in those places where we are being pressed for our own good, God cares for us. His eye is always on us, and we remain in His very good hands.
In Genesis, we read about the first time Hagar was sent out into the wilderness by a jealous Sarah. God found her there and spoke to her. I have always loved what she says in that passage:
“She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her: “You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.” – Genesis 16:13
I am overwhelmed again by the love and care of God. He is my Provider, my Sustainer, my Rescuer. I have nothing to fear. It doesn’t matter that I don’t see the way out. All that matters is this:
My Father is the God who sees me.
This is a good place to be, because I can’t come to my own rescue. The wind is blowing and the boat is rocking. It is a hard place, a stretching place, but it is where I want to live. Needing, anticipating, expecting the power of God to show up.
“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of His glory in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:19