There are times when God makes himself perfectly clear to me. Times when I can almost see him and touch him...then there are those moments like I experienced in the parking lot last night that leave me dazed and confused, asking if I am really a Christ follower.
Having just left a time of praise and prayer, 45 minutes with Jesus and others who are longing for more of him, it was time to pick up kids from catechism & youth group. Kid #2 was on time, kid #1 not so much.
After running a friend home, running to the store and taking #2 home, there I found myself back in the parking lot for the third time, AT CHURCH, with rage coarsing through my veins. "I am exhausted, I have things to do, things I want to do, it is time for them to be finished. Why can't you be done with youth group on time?" Thoughts like this run through my mind in the parking lot.
As I continue to experience grace & peace in this world, I am dumbfounded at how I can be so in touch one minute and so out of it the next - part of Satan's work I guess. Having read enough John Eldredge books to know that there is a battle going around us all the time, and that I need to judge what is going on around me by its fruit, invariably I find that I have not arrived and that I am not even close yet when "parking lot" moments occur in my life.
The youth group was late because they had surrounded the home of a gentleman from our community who is battling cancer. Some 45 kids and youth sponsors surrounded the home of this couple and turned to Christ in prayer. It was a moving time, I am sure, for two of the kids and their parents, who are part of this youth group. As I learned of this today, tears filled my eyes and shame filled my heart for what I was thinking as they were offering petitions to our Lord.
To experience grace & peace is to come to that point where life isn't about us anymore. It is to come to that point where Jesus Christ and what He is up to is what life is about. It is about not thinking so much about our own timetables. It is about circling someone's house in prayer and loving others above ourselves.
When this occurs John 10:10 becomes available to us. "The thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy. I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full."
In this world so driven by schedules and a me-first attitude, I experience grace & peace when Christ shows up - and when he reveals himself to me. He did it at my computer twice within five minutes today - bringing tears to my eyes as he shows me just how present he is if - just if - I take some time, even in the parking lot, to experience the grace & peace he wants for all of our lives!