Wednesday, April 24, 2013

To Fly...

Wind riffles the grasses on the airstrip. A few wisps of white cloud streak across a pale azure sky. And the voice of an undaunted old warrior and his guitar echoes in my ears from my car stereo.

So many changes...

I think back. Back to the day when I went into my room and threw almost my entire CD collection on the floor and left it there. My mom came in and looked at them. "What are you doing with those?"

"Getting rid of them." Unsympathetic, unwavering reply. I'd heard Heaven's music that night...and I wanted nothing less than that.

A struggle? As I think back to the melodies that have carried me through childhood and the teen years, I confess the desire to go digging in our yard-sale pile rises up occasionally. A struggle, definitely.

But a turnabout? Never. By God's grace, at any rate.

I think back. Back to the morning when I woke up to a little hand poking my cheek and telling me happy birthday. 20 years old... No more a teenager. I've lived for 2 decades. Unthinkable.

I think back. Back to the night when, at near midnight, I dressed myself, grabbing car keys, and pulling on shoes, and then sat on the bed, trembling in the face of some horrific, crushing, monster of a fear. Desperation begged me to flee... Common sense and the prayers of a friend kept me where I was.

I sought refuge atop the old motor home in the driveway and "considered the heavens." And as a frustrated trickle of tears and words began to flow, the desperation subsided, the burn cooled...and I stole back into the house, strengthened.

I think back. Back to mission reports--to standing up front at the first, quaking in fear, and then relaxing, telling the story of my beloved Thailand and the Karen to people who'd never heard it. Giving the call to go and do and be... And seeing a church on its feet in commitment afterwards.

I think back to leaving my sister at the airport. To watching her go off with the YD team, headed for the Philippines, while I stayed behind, feeling displaced, unsatisfied, and suddenly, very useless. The feeling didn't depart easily. In some senses, I wish it would come back. I satisfied by the average.

My eyes steal to the dash of my car, where  book lies. I just finished reading it this morning. Never mind that I started reading it this morning as well. The stories contained between those covers touched my heart once again... and so did the realization that if I had known of this place, my life as a terrified, confused, and hurting little girl might've been so different.

But I look back. At what I've been through. At all I've come past. All the Lord has brought me past. And in a heartbeat, I say, I wouldn't change it. I once told a friend that because of this happening, this had happened, and because of this happening, this happened, and then this and this, and if this hadn't happened, I wouldn't be able to understand where they were coming from.

I remember telling them, with no regret in my voice, that all the pain I had been through had, in a small way, been for them. So I could understand. It's been that way so much. I can identify because I've walked there. It's a gift God's given me I wouldn't trade for anything.

The sweetness of a springish-summery day wraps around my little cruiser. The old warrior with his guitar is still singing, still playing. The blue sky is still there, the grass still waves. The clouds are still wisping past, leaving trails for angels to follow.

It's all the same.

But oh, so different.

And would I change that?

Not a chance.

Perhaps that's what this are for. So we can look back and "remember how God hath led us in the past," before moving on to the next mountaintop He has for us to conquer.

Where lies the next as-yet-untouched peak? I don't know.

But God does. And He's bringing me there one step at a time.

Sounds scary, sure. But "we have nothing to fear for the future, except as we forget how God hath led us in the past."

No fears. No doubts. More faith. More trust. More claiming of promises.

Give me the Lord and His love...and I won't climb to the top.


I'm going to fly...