Tuesday, July 26, 2005

A Time of Refreshing

I'm at Plains Baptist Assembly today. My summer schedule is catching up with me. Today, after Aladdin (a Camp staffer's nickname) and I had spent some time sharing about God's grace and provision, I busted out some work that I have been putting off for some time. I have some in-depth writing that I need to get to, and some reading to go along with it, so I plopped down on the couch in my duplex and started reading. That's when it hit me. I'm sure you know this feeling: You sit down to read or watch something and are so overwhelmed with exhaustion that you can't even focus. That was me at 10:45 this morning. So, I leaned back on the couch, and blinked....well, the blink lasted 2 hours! I slept right through lunch and almost missed my afternoon lifeguarding appointment! I awoke at 1:15, and was supposed to be at the pool by 1:20. I made it, but just barely. But something happened during my sleep. My dreams were crazy. I can't remember them, but I remember the feeling I had when I woke up. I'm sure you've been there.
So anyway, I hurried off to the pool, not realizing yet what had happened as I slept. At the pool, I had a great time. I gave swimming tests to the rug rats that are here. The group here this week is the Lubbock area pre-teen camp. The kids did great, and I really enjoyed sitting by the pool just watching the fun unfold before me. From there I had three more hours of visiting with staffers and then it was off to dinner. It was at dinner that I realized I had been whistling a lot this afternoon. Not only had I been whistling, but there was some bounce in my step, and a tune in my head (an old hymn: "Power In The Blood"). At dinner I became aware that the tune in my head, and the tune of my whistle was this old hymn! That's when it hit me: This morning, when I had intended to work, God called me to a time of refreshing. Sitting here at my dining room table at the duplex as I write this, I feel different. I'm not exhausted! It has been a while since my head has been this clear, and I've felt this awake. And my appetite is back! I ate like nobodies business at dinner this evening.
I keep thinking back to 1 Kings 18 - 19 where Elijah was pulled aside for a time of refreshing. Most people think of Elijah's time in the cave, the face to face encounter with God. But I'm thinking more of his time under the broom tree. There Elijah fell asleep and God sent an angel to bring him food and water. From his sleep and nourishment, Elijah traveled 40 days into the wilderness for a life-changing encounter with God. I feel like today was a time of refreshing, and will continue to be as God re-vitalizes me for the journey ahead. It is my hope and prayer that this refreshing for the journey will be the starting place for an encounter with God that further defines my relationship with Him. In the middle of 1 Kings 19, Elijah get's to see God! But, verse 8 of that chapter makes me think about how Elijah got there. From a time of refreshing Elijah found the strength for the journey that turned into a divine encounter. Lord, may my 36 hours at the camp this week be the refreshing for the long journey ahead. But more, may the long journey be to the place where You await me. I pray, O God of Abraham and Isaac, that You would be my divine vision that drives me through this journey. I'm ready for the journey. I'm ready for Your vision. I'm longing to see You as Elijah, in the quiet whisper of Your Spirit. I'm ready for the journey.

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