I wasn’t feeling it.
That connection with God, awareness of my calling and purpose, joy in His presence…
After a week of phone-in devotions, it seemed our two-way communication was on the fritz. I went off to church feeling “meh,” not expecting anything from the Lord, but not offering anything either. You could say we were sort of giving each other the silent treatment, Jesus and I.
During the middle of the service, the lyrics to the song “Same God” by Elevation Worship instantaneously overwhelmed me and I found myself undone. (Go listen to the song and then come back here. I’ll wait…).Tears poured from my eyes as I let the truth melt like wax over my tired soul – that God is the same now as he was in the Bible, and more poignantly for me was the thought that the only thing separating me from the heroes of the faith that I read about in the Bible were a few hash marks on a timeline.
I am so grateful to be reminded that God’s story is still being written, even though the 66 books are done and published. The arc of The Story – from the days of creation in Genesis to a new heaven and a new earth in Revelation – it contains me. You won’t read about me in those pages, but I’m standing somewhere in the middle.
In that moment, while the song filled the room, I could see it – myself in the timeline. God over it all. The God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Noah, Elijah, Moses, Daniel, Mary, Peter, Paul… and Tricia.
WHAT? I’m on that same list?!
Yes, I am – and you are too. The current present-day “heroes of the faith” are US.
If you don’t feel adequate to be on this list, don’t worry. You aren’t – but neither were they! There are murderers on that list, so the fact that you yelled at your spouse today doesn’t disqualify you. God uses and speaks to people regardless of their merit.
Those people in The Story – I yearn for what they had. Not just the dramatic miracles, but the closeness with God thing. The back and forth conversation – the friendship! The people I read about in the Bible, they walked and talked (sometimes wrestled and argued) with their Creator like it was a normal, everyday thing.I wonder if it’s harder or easier to walk with God in 2023 than it was back then. On one hand, maybe it’s easier because we know the ends of all the stories, big and small. From the rainbow after the flood to the empty tomb and everything in between, we know how it ends.
But on the other hand, we don’t know how our own stories end. Not now anyway. We know The End is heaven, of course, but what about the ends of the smaller stories? A battle with cancer, a failing marriage or friendship, the search for a spouse, a financial downturn, a global pandemic, a calling grown cold… We don’t know the ends of those subplots when we are in the thick of them. In 2023, we must find the faith to get through them without a burning bush, writing on the wall, talking donkey, cloud by day, fire by night…or hem of a garment to hold on to.
Yes, God still moves and acts, and I do know His voice; but would I give up the comforts and modern technological advantages of this current age to walk with Jesus in the flesh? Would I trade wifi and Amazon Prime and roller coasters to walk the dusty streets with him – to eat the bread that he just multiplied for a hungry crowd from two loaves? I believe I would. Sigh. Anyone have a way to get 1.21 gigawatts of electricity for this flux capacitor?Still, my heart resonates with this truth – that God has placed each of us on the timeline in the specific place we land for such a time as this. It’s not an accident that I’m here or that you’re here in 2023, and so I pray – God give me the faith to stand THIS day, THIS century – with the faith of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and all the rest. Help me to follow their examples. Help me to make You proud and represent You well. If Hebrews 11 were still being written, I’d want to be in it. Maybe it would say something like:
“By faith, Tricia, despite her great many flaws and coffee addiction, lived wholeheartedly for God in a fragmented world, fixing her eyes on the big picture of God’s story, and listening to the voice of Jesus, following his lead to love and serve others.”
Or something like that… it’s a work in progress.
What would yours say?
By: Tricia McCorkle