I thought about skipping today in light of the heinous and cowardly attacks in Paris, but isn’t that exactly what this ideology wants? To silence us and make us afraid of standing against moral filth and evil that is so prevalent! To prevent us from speaking out and standing for what is good. It was difficult to quiet my mind and search my heart for what He would want from me today in this challenge. Let’s just be honest here for a moment. I know this is not a struggle against flesh, against someone in a hijab or any other head garb, but against the rulers, against the authorities, and against the powers of this dark world and the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms (Ephesians 6:12). This attack is not the first and according to scripture, surely not the last, but knowing all this does not make it easier to be a follower of Christ. The more things like this happen, the harder it is going to be as the wheat will begin to be separated from the tare (Matthew 13:30). Being a Christian business owner and seeing how France reacted to these attacks with martial law and closing its borders, gave me a glimpse of what could happen here and made me realize all the more how short of time we really have to openly share the gospel! So, with a new day of His mercies, I hold fast to the confession of my faith without wavering and press on to day 13!
This weekend we are hosting seven high school girls and two leaders in our home for a D-NOW conference and so I spent my morning serving and getting them off to their days’ activities. Once they were gone, I needed to head to the bank for the restaurant to grab change for tomorrow. As I drove, I thought about 9/11 and how those line of events changed the very fabric of our society; how people, including myself, lived in fear after the incident. I began to run through my daily memory verses in hopes one would speak truth into my heart at that very moment. I smiled as two jumped right in my head and down into my heart, calming the fears that has so paralyzed me in the past. I knew then, the ones I would need to share and leave behind on windows in the coming days.
Once I dropped off the change at the restaurant, I went around to the front of the parking lot and slowly made my way in front of Planet Fitness, watching the healthy and fit make their way to and from the gym. I stopped my van and just prayed, still trying to quiet my mind long enough to just hear a whisper or a nudge, but I got nothing & realized my mind was still thinking about Paris. Shaking my head at myself, I took a long breath and let it out and visually took the anxiety I was masking as peace and laid it before His throne, praying for His Will. I looked up and began to move my car to another part of the parking lot when I saw the front of a car that had a New York license plate. My thoughts immediately turned to 9/11 again & so I thought perhaps this might be a nudge. I parked, got out of my van, and went to place the index card between the window, but I could not find the little space to leave it in. I tried all around the window to no avail. I began to think, “We’ll maybe this just isn’t the car and as usual you really aren’t hearing Him, you are not as discerning as you may think.” With those thoughts badgering and distracting me, I didn’t notice a guy coming towards me. My heart dropped to my feet thinking this actually might be the cars occupant and I might be getting caught by not just anyone, but a New Yorker! As I kept trying to find a spot, the guy walked right behind me and into another car that was parked to the left and my heart rate began to return to normal. At this point, I began to realize there was no way I was going to be able to leave the index card on the window. So, I looked down at the handle of the car and saw that it was perfect for leaving it in between the door handle. I carefully made it so it would not be blown away or missed by the person that would find it. Satisfied, I made my way back to my van and drove away.
I join many whose hearts hurt for those effected by the attacks in Paris. I know the propaganda spewed out on the MSM is not calling for us to love one another, live in harmony with one another, or to persevere through this, but that is exactly what we must do. We are not American, French, Arab, Asian, Canadian, Australian, Russian, Brazilian, Italian, South African, or Irish, but we are all human beings and need to stand together through whatever the enemy throws our way.
1 Peter 3:8-9 ” Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another, be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble. Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.”