Sunday, March 4, 2012

A letter. Pondering miracles. And anticipating one!

Here I am posting a letter I found dated March 3, 2006. Throughout the years for one reason or another (always to do with a little girl named Mikayla) reminders of it keeps coming up. This letter was written to two men much older than I, and my ponder with them over miracles... and one miracle in particular that I am believing God for, one I've been believing Him for for years! It came up again today. It's superbly long, but I feel I must share....

March 3, 2006

Dear Coach Hazelip & Mr. Jennings,

If it won't hurt your feelings I will address both of you here in one letter.  Before I begin sharing my ponderings, I want to start with saying these two things:

1) Thank you both so much for your sweet concern and care and for your time to detail your wisdom to me for my concerns and my cares. 

2) Whether I See it or don’t ~ I still believe in the One Who can!!! ~ Jesus Christ is still and will always be the LORD of my life!  There will always be things I question, yes.  But that  is one thing I KNOW for sure!!!!!!  He IS my Life!!!!

Coach Hazelip, you've talked to me of Andrew Murray's book several times before.  I've read little things here and there from it.  And finally you've mentioned it to me enough times to perk my interest enough to be moved to order it.  Done.  It's on its way.

And Mr. Jennings, how kind of you to take the time and the laboring it takes to share with someone you’ve never met what you know!  I am sure that you are very busy with the many things that are a part of your life.  I appreciate your investment into mine; you've both made me feel special by your efforts.

Coach Hazelip, you began with: Asking in "Jesus' Name."  And in my estimation, a perfect place to start.  For those are the very words that the Holy Spirit keeps bringing up and reminding me of in a myriad of different ways throughout my journey, and especially my latest season in it. 

Though this will be long, this will tell you only a tiny piece of my journey in my feeble attempts to show you a glimpse of the bigger picture of where I’m coming from.  It began a long time ago, even from when I was a little girl; but its exaggeration began to stir a greater stirring almost three years ago, when I was introduced to a little girl before she was even born. The parents of the child are not related to me by earthly standards… though they ARE blood-relatives of mine in Jesus!  But in earthy ties: no relation.  We are of the same church family.  But we had never been superbly close friends or anything.  I mean I loved this couple, and I admired their love for Christ; but they’ve just been over-there in their world, and me over-here in mine.  Our paths just hadn’t crossed often. My point being: [not to sound ugly or heartless] but why do I care so much?  We had no previous ties that would cause my heart and its normal pull to ache out-loud to God in constant pleading prayer about this thing.  Does that make sense? All of that was said to say, there is no doubt in my mind that my drawing to them and to her was the Holy Spirit’s drawing!

Mikayla is one of two - she has a twin sister.  Before they were ever born the doctors warned the parents of complications.  Mikayla, they said, had no brain-stem (which turns out not to be so, but an under-developed brain instead).  They were told that neither one of them should live, and they shouldn’t have…… but God intervened and they did. (I DO know that He performs miracles in our day. And I have seen Him do great things…… but still, I believe He wants to do more.)  They both spent a long time in the hospital.  Often it was a day-by-day don’t-know-if-they’re-going-to-make-it kind of thing.  God did huge things in the whole process of it.  After time Eliana was made well, and today she is a healthy normal child.  Mikayla has beautiful eyes.  You couldn’t know that she’s blind just by looking at her eyes.  Her eyes are normal.  Her eyes are healthy.  But she has no optic nerve, therefore leaving her unable to see because her eyes have no connection to her brain.  She suffers MANY problems because there are parts of her brain that just are not there.  Some parts that she does have go no where, they are not connected to anything. She can’t walk. Can’t talk (well, in clear audible terms). Can’t easily move her arms as she wants them to move.  But she has the grandest smile that Heaven’s ever seen!  She can hear.  And she knows me… and she definitely loves me so!  Before she was ever born I felt that God told me:  “this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in [her] life” – John 9:3.  It happened in such a wild way, I wasn’t asking for it or looking for it… yet I felt He told me.

Mikayla is so precious.  I could love her just as she is. I LOVE that child!!!!  I could leave her in her deformities and still be okay.  I wouldn’t have a problem with leaving her blind, or mute, or lame; she’s still beautiful to me.  In all honesty, I could leave her there and be fine.  I’ve left many others along my path in their handicap, and it’s never bothered me to do it. I have an autistic niece that’s almost 25 years old… I’ve been happy to leave her in her autism and I’ve never ever questioned God about it.  I can even see God’s Glory all over Mikayla’s life.  She doesn’t have to be made whole for God’s Glory to be seen!  Sometimes His Glory shines the brightest on the backdrop of the darkest thing!  Sometimes His Glory shines the greatest when the ones that live in that dark backdrop still find joy and peace in Jesus even in their horror.  It’s often in the lives of the unhealed Mikaylas of the world that people can see Jesus the loudest!  I know this!  And I really have no problem with this…… Normally!

BUT this time? It’s different, and I feel that the Holy Spirit won’t leave me alone about it; nor does it seem that He’ll let me leave her there.  In all honestly, I’ve tried to.  It would be easier if I could.  Less painful for sure.  I’m not even around her that much.  It’s not like she’s an everyday part of my life.  It’s not like she’s mine, or one of my sister’s children, or my brother’s child, or my best-friend’s.  I’m embarrassed to say that, but she is distant enough that it doesn’t have to continually crawl all over me like it would be if I saw her everyday or if I was constantly in the midst of her parent’s hurt…… yet it does!  We have no really close ties (before the fact that God intertwined their lives with mine and made me love them like crazy), it would have been easy for me to pity her and her parents from afar from time to time, but mostly just not think about it.  I asked God once, “I’m not meaning to be ugly God, and this sounds so mean, but why do I care so much? Really, why do I care?”  And I felt He said to me (surprised that He even answered), “Because when they (her parents & her family) are too close to continue to hope (because the hurt of the hope is too painful) you still can!  You are distant enough (not so close that you’ll be in the continual pain of it or have to continually see on a daily basis how really hopeless it looks), I made you to hope (have faith in Me) when they can’t.”  Shew!!! Tall order!

I did a lesson one time for a Ladies’ Class, and one question I asked resonates within me all of the time.  It’s a constant question inside me. The question was this:  “Whose hope rests on you?”  The whole nation of Israel and all of Abraham’s descendants rested on Abraham’s believing God for what God had said to him. Oh sure, if Abraham had not believed I’m sure God would have looked for another… Still, our hope in Christ rested on man’s believing what God had said.  I don’t know that we get the magnitude of how far our belief (or our lack of it) reaches.  My faith or my failure to believe in the things that Christ has said to me does not affect me alone……… whose (and how many “who”s) hope rests on my belief?  Whatever my decisions, it affects more than me alone, more than those I can touch around me…… it affects generations yet to come!

That whole “Whose hope rests on me” thing is a whole HUGE story in itself…… time won’t allow me to tell it now, but oh how I wish I could download it from my computer system (brain) into yours!  It’s huge!

“I made you to hope when they can’t.” 

Does Mikayla’s hope for healing rest on my belief?  Or does it not?  Did the Holy Spirit really say that to me?  Or did my mind make it up?  Will it be a long time in coming to test my faith to see whether or not my faith will fail?  As did Abraham’s.  Will I be as Sarah after it’s been such a long time and say, “Perhaps we can…” and explain it away to “perhaps we can make sense of it this way” and leave her showing God’s Glory unhealed when I believe that He told me He would heal her?

You wanna know what Mikayla’s name means? Mikayla means “Who is like God!”……  In Scripture when there was a “Who is like God” moment, it was said in awe of a “Who is like God” kind of thing over some thing that He had done!  Something incomprehensible! Unexplainable!  Something mighty and powerful!

A couple of years ago, I went to bed at a ridiculous wee hour of the morning after a full day of being enthralled and in total awe of God in the things that He had been teaching and telling me. I was blown away by His Hugeness!  He was doing then what He continues to do now in growing my belief!  I often say to people that God is the One that won't let me drop it.... because with all of my heart and because of the way that its done I don't believe its me... but instead I so believe that it is HIM that wants and works with me so hard to help me to believe Him for something too huge to fathom.  I tell you the truth when I say that I am not seeking these thoughts of healing and miracles and such as that on my own.... but instead I feel that it's seeking me!  That may sound strange to you (it sounds strange to me!), but that's exactly how I feel.  I’m not searching the Scriptures to find it.  I’m not intentionally searching the Scriptures to prove my point, or to prove my case.  I LOVE to study God’s Word.  I love it!  And when I open my Bible each day to do that, I’m wanting to KNOW HIM!  It is HIM that I seek to know in His Word!  God, I tell Him, show me YOU!  Jesus, I want to know YOU!  To be honest I spend more time in the Old Testament than the New. This “the same things that I have been doing, and even greater things than these” is not my favorite subject!  Yet, in the wildest of ways I believe that it is the Spirit that keeps drawing me back to these Scriptures.  It’s everywhere I look.  Everywhere I go.  In His Word.  And out!  I would drop it if I could, I think……… but HE just won’t let me.

That particular night two years ago, I woke up several times from my sleep during that night before rising VERY EARLY the next morning.  I can't even begin to tell you (it would take too many pages to do so) of what transpired in those hours.....................  In the 4 o'clock hour I awoke startled by a dream.  I woke in the part of my dream where Jesus was loudly and emphatically saying to me:  “In Jesus’ Name!  In Jesus' Name.... In MY Name, Sharon!!!!  I Am trying to show people Who I Am! … DON’T LIMIT ME!!!!!”  My heart was beating so ferociously from its impact.  The importance of the words so huge that I got up to write them down for fear I might forget them.  That whole day His Hugeness almost spooked me (for lack of knowing a better way to put it), so the dream held more meaning than just merely going to bed and dreaming a dream.  I’ll say this though so you’ll know, that’s the only dream I’ve ever had where I dreamed Jesus was talking to me.  I am not saying that it was actually Him, but the words of its message kept ringing inside me in a volume that I could not quiet… and even now, two years later, it rings there still:  “Ask in My Name, Sharon.”……”Ask in My Name!”  There is power in the name of Jesus, Sharon.  And the part that resonates within the loudest of all:  “DON’T LIMIT ME!”…… “I’m trying to show people Who I Am.”

There’s so much I don’t know, I won’t know, and won’t pretend to know… but one thing I know for certain about God through my study of Him in His Scripture is that often He shows people a glimpse of WHO He is by showing them what He does.  What is Glory? How do we see God’s Glory? We can only see His Glory, when we see a “Who is like God” kind of thing that He’s done!  It’s our way of catching a glimpse of Him.
Even in our day, man is “known” by what he does.  i.e.:

Who is Barack Obama?     President of the United States
            Who is Julia Roberts?        An actress.
            Who is Jon Hazelip?          Former ACA basketball coach J
            Who was Charles Spurgeon?  A great preacher in his time.
            Who was Joe B. Greer?     A farmer/preacher/missionary.
            Who is Tim Lee?               Leads an Overcomers class.
            Who was Jim Elliot?         One of the 5 missionaries killed 
                                                   while serving his Savior.

… just to name a few.  But that’s not really “who” they are. That’s “what” they “do.” It’s automatic for us to attempt to tell people who we are by telling them what we do..  God did the same thing. All through His Scriptures we read these words that He’s said:  “…so that they will know that I am God and there is none other like Me” … And when those words are spoken they always follow or precede some great act of what He has done or what He is about to do.  In our meager thinking we would word it this way:  “I’ll show them this … then they’ll know that I’m that….!”

After waking that night with those words ringing in my ears, I felt He told me to start reading at Acts 4:27. This is NOT my normal way! This is NOT what I normally do!  This was way out of my comfort zone! And I felt ridiculous to do it. I was determined that I was NOT going to get up to start reading at Acts 4:27.  After the consistent compelling that would not let me return back to my slumber, I finally did.

I got up. Turned the lamp back on. And though there were countless Bibles lying there on the floor to pick from I chose one that I rarely even ever study in, I had pulled it off of the shelf just the day before …… and I began to read at Acts 4:27,  “Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against Your Holy Servant Jesus,  Whom You anointed.”  I read that, then looked down to see what was written in the footnotes about the Scripture that I had just read.  It said,  “…Pontius Pilate was the Roman governor over Judea.  He bowed to pressure from the crowd and sentenced Jesus to death!”  WOE!  God knows me, and because of the place where I was, there was no doubt in my mind that He was talking to me!  He was speaking a very intentional word to me.  And I heard Him speak it!  The sword penetrated its mark inside me.  Even the day before I had underlined on the pages of a book that I was reading about the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law, the writer said:  “… they hadn’t learned the first lesson of leadership. A man who wants to lead the orchestra must turn his back on the crowd.”

Woe! For how often are we paralyzed from the work of God because of our fear of the crowd?  I KNOW He was talking to me!  He touched a nerve in me on this one!  He KNOWS my “fear of the crowd”!  He knows it!  And God was telling me not to “bow to the pressure of the crowd” and in essence “sentence Jesus to death” by doing it!  Ewe!  For we can “sentence Jesus to death” from His power and from the things that He’s come to do~~ through our lack of faith or fear…  The day before I had just emailed a friend saying to him:  Dare we stand in the way of the blind man being brought to Jesus!!!  Dare we be guilty of standing in the way of the blind man and Jesus’ healing to make him to see!  In Mark 10, the crowd rebuked the blind man that called out to Jesus.  Dare we do the same!  Even in our ignorance, dare we be guilty of doing the same!  In that blackened pre-dawned morning,  I heard the Holy Spirit say to me:  Dare you, Sharon Lee, stand in the way of the miracles of Jesus because you “bow to the pressure of the crowd!”  Woe!

            #1 – “Do NOT limit Me!!!!!
            #2 – “Do NOT bow to the pressure of the crowd!!!’

Caught up in the woe that I’d just read, I almost forgot to read further.  Yet when I continued my reading I read:  “They did what Your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable Your servant to speak Your word with great boldness. Stretch out Your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of Your Holy servant Jesus.”

I truly don’t know exactly what to think, but that’s what I read.  I don’t know where those Scriptures came from; I had not been studying them. Needless to say the magnitude of whatever they might mean took my breath away. I lay back down to go to sleep in total exhaustion with my heart still thumping so rapidly inside the walls of my chest I said to Him in the merest tiniest whisper before I fell asleep: “Father,  will You tell me this?  Will Mikayla – whose very name means,  “Who is like God!,” will You make her eyes to see?  Will You make her legs to walk and her mouth to talk?… so that she can tell of Your Glory?”  I wasn't asking Him to do it, I was asking Him if He was trying to tell me that He was. I left my question and my wonder in His lap and fell back to sleep.

My alarm went off, earlier than I cared to get up, with Dr. David Jeremiah reading these words from His Scripture:

“Praise the LORD.  Praise, O servants of the LORD, praise the name of the LORD.   Let the name of the LORD be praised, both now and forever.  From the rising of the sun, to the place where it sets, the name of the LORD is to be praised. The LORD is exalted over all the nations, His glory above the heavens.  WHO IS LIKE the LORD our GOD,  the One Who sits enthroned on high, Who stoops down to look on the heavens and the earth?” – Psalm 113

I slapped the snooze button on that clock so fast,  my eyes almost popping out of my head … because I recognized those words!  I KNEW those words!!!! And I jumped up to get my Bible.  I didn’t even wait to hear what Dr. Jeremiah’s lesson was on.

Yep!!!!!!!!!!!  The words were penciled right there! Just like I knew it was!!!  Right next to the Psalm being read:  “Mikayla Wright – 04/04/04.”

…. right next to the passages that says:  “Who is like the LORD our God …?”!  Glory indeed, “Who is  like the LORD our God…?”!!!!!!!!!~~ And it’s what her very name means.  “Who is like the LORD our God…?”!!!!! and I wake this morning to Dr. David Jeremiah reading those words to me.   I know that verse!!!!!! (113:5).  I know that verse!!!!!!  I had given that very verse to Jon and Wanda Wright on April 4th of 2004; and not even realizing at the moment that I did it that it was quoting her name!!!  I mean, I knew that her name meant that, it’s just that when I wrote that verse to them on the card that I sent,  I wasn’t thinking of that at the moment – it had not entered my mind. I didn’t realize what I was writing. Later Jon even asked me,  “Sharon,  you know that verse that you wrote on that card you sent us?  Did you know that that is what Mikayla’s name means? Did you do that on purpose?”  I was like:  “Ah!  I knew her name meant that,  but I didn’t realize or think of it when I wrote it down to you!”

Also, penciled right next to that verse is address of another Scripture that I sent to them on that same day:  Psalm 106:8,  “Yet, He saved them for His Name’s saketo make His mighty power known!!!!!!”

Whoa!  Did you catch the “His Name” part - and connect it to my dream of “In My Name, Sharon!”?  Did you catch the “to make His mighty power known” that is said in that verse -  then connect it to “I’m trying to show them Who I Am”?

In the Scripture that Dr. David Jeremiah woke me up reading, did the “praise the name of the LORD. Let the name of the LORD be praised, both now and forever……, the name of the LORD is to be praised.” make your knees weak and your heart beat faster?  Did you notice that both in my dream and in His written Word that in His Name was emphasized three times?  Did it blow your mind as it did mine? 

I fell asleep asking God if He was going to heal Mikayla and make her whole, reminding Him in my asking (as I often do!) that her very name means:  Who is like God.  And I awake to His Words being read that says:  WHO IS LIKE the LORD our GOD.  Can I make that up?  Can I call it coincidental? Is it ironic? Just a fluke?  A happenstance?  And to make the awe of it even more of a wonder, every morning my alarm wakes me up to a CD.  Every morning!  The same CD, the same song on it, has been waking me up for eons……… how did it get changed so that instead of my CD waking me up as it’s done forever, that Dr. Jeremiah’s program on the radio station did?  Okay, granted, someone could have changed it.  But can it be ironic that it happened on this particular day, after that particular night, with those particular words??

If you read more of the Psalm 106 chapter you’ll find that it says:  “We have sinned,  even as our fathers did …”  [I had said that very thing to Him in prayer before I had gone to sleep the first time;  asking Him to forgive us and our fathers for not believing Him!]“we have done wrong and acted wickedly.   When our fathers were in Egypt,  they gave no thought to Your miracles …” [Is that what we do today? No longer give thought to His miracles? … but instead we write them off as “the past” … and stay bound in our Egypts because we don’t believe?]“…they did not remember Your many kindnesses,  and they rebelled by the sea, the Red Sea.  Yet, He saved them, for His name’s sake, to make His mighty power known!!!!!” ...... is that where He is leading toward today? Despite our “no thoughts to His miracles,”  and our “not remembering,”  “YET” even in our “rebellion” … is He about to make His “mighty power known?” … “for [His] name’s sake?!!!!

                v. 9     “He rebuked the Red Sea…
                          “He led them through …”
                v.10     “He saved them from …”
                           “He redeemed them.”
                v.12    “THEN THEY believed!!!!!!!!!”

I had written some thoughts before I had gone to bed on that same night “He touched … they saw … then they followed!”?    How many times does it tell us on those written pages of  His God-breathed inspired Word that He “does” … “then they” believe?

John 4:50b says,  “The man took Jesus at His Word.” That’s what I want to do!!!!! I want to simply “take Jesus at His Word!” It says; “The man took Jesus at His Word,” and his son was healed … and “…he and all his household believed.”

Even in Exodus 34,  when Moses asks God to show him His Glory, God told him,  “”I will cause all of My Goodness to pass in front of you,  and I will proclaim My name, the LORD,  in your presence. …… There is a place near Me … when My glory passes by, I will … cover you with My hand until I have passed by. Then I will remove My hand and you will see My back….””

            Moses asked Him to:  Show me Your Glory.
            He said:                     I’ll show you My Goodness!

“Show me Your Glory” … “I’ll show you My Goodness … HOW do we see His Glory? … By seeing His goodness!  By seeing His “back” … by seeing where He’s been … by seeing what He’s done! … by seeing what He does!

We cannot see His face and live … but He’ll let us see His back … where He’s been! … what He’s done!!!!  And in seeing that, we see glimpses of His Glory!!!!... and sometimes that’s a “then they believed” moment.

These are some of the words that I wrote in my prayer journal the next day:  

     “LORD, Son of David, have mercy on me… I WANT TO SEE!” The crowd rebuked the two blind men … no doubt,  the crowd will rebuke me. Let me NOT be as Pontius Pilate and “bow to the pressure from the crowd” and in so doing cause Jesus a death of anther kind! Let me holler, and yell, and shout again, and as many agains that it takes as those two beggars on the side of the road did those many years ago, begging Your mercy, and knowing Your power, and NOT doubting Your miracles, or letting Your disciples stand in Your way of them! Don’t let me allow man rob me of my belief!!!!  As I cry,  “I want to see” … don’t let me give up as Your disciples rebuke and try to silence me!!!   Don’t let me allow man to take that from me!!!!  Don’t let me believe the physical more than I believe the spiritual.  Because YOU … You are talking to me! And You are asking me to believe! The invisible is making Himself known to me!!!! The Invisible becoming more Visible everyday even in His Invisibleness! Don’t let me fall and believe the physical visible more than the spiritual invisible… and what man can see… and what man can “make sense of” … over what God can and just might want to do!  Let me die before my belief is limited to such and I allow it to be taken from me!

                 “Oh LORD,  Son of David,  have mercy on ME … I want to see!!!!!”

     I don’t want to be a ‘know-it-all’ or ‘have-all-the-answers.’   I just want to love You! And I just want to take You at Your Word!!!  And not limit You! I want to believe what You said (and say) simply and just plain out:  “take Jesus at His Word” because You say so!!! I want to be humble, and keep my face at Your feet.  And be “blessed … [as the one] who has believed that what the LORD has spoken to her will be accomplished,”  (Luke 1:45) … because “nothing is impossible with God” (1:37) … and because Jesus wants to glorify His Father … and His Father wants to glorify His Son!) Let me NOT stand in the way of Your Glory!!!!!!!

Now that, dear men, is just one thing in so many that He’s done.  I’m NOT seeking it!  I’m NOT looking for it!  And it won’t leave me alone.

My belief that God will make Mikayla’s health whole is different than any other thing that I’ve felt. The only way I know to describe it is like this: I feel like what I have for Mikayla is not just a “hope,” but something I know! Not something that I need to beg and plead for in prayer, until I’ve prayed hard enough and cried out long enough that God will heal her.  To me it seems a done-deal waiting it’s time to happen. To show you a comparison: there is a guy named Kenny that my heart just aches for. I think of him all the time. He’s 25. Beautifully handsome. Wrestled in high school. Loved to ski on the water. He lived life full speed ahead with reckless fun.  He turned the eyes and the heads of every girl that he walked past…… until 2 years ago when a snow skiing accident took his walking from him and left him paralyzed from the neck down. Imprisoned inside his own body! He’ll tell you that no amount of concentrated focused, determined effort, or will-power has been able to make his big-toe move.  No matter how long or how many times he tries to. Sometimes at night when I’m laying in bed, right before sleep, when my body is totally in that heavily relaxed state, I’ll all the sudden think of him and panic! He can’t move! He can’t move! He can’t get up! He can’t get out!  Inside a prison that he can’t control. And I hate it!  I don’t even know him.  I’ve never met him. He has no idea I even exist. I was introduced to him by my sister who saw his Blog page on the Internet. His imprisonment haunts me. 

I don’t have a “knowing” for him that I feel for Mikayla. My prayers for asking God to heal him would be that pleading and begging and oh-please-do kind. I didn’t know there was a difference, until God introduced me to Kenny. I think I needed to see the difference from a knowing-hope (faith) and a hoping-hope. I’m not saying God won’t heal Kenny. I don’t know if He will or He won’t. I can hope He will. Even when it defies explaining I can ask that He does… but inside me with him it’s not a “knowing”! With Mikayla it’s different!

Thanksgiving 2005 – Sad to say, I saw my 25 year old niece with autism for the very first time. Actually I’ve seen her lots of times over the span of the years since she’s come into the world. But this time I saw her with a compassion that I had never seen her through before. I was ashamed of myself when I realized that I had passed her by all these years without really seeing her as Jesus does.  She too is imprisoned inside the body that keeps her chained. I was at my mother-in-law’s, and I went in the bathroom and crumbled to the floor and cried. I told Jesus that I was so sorry! And I asked Him, “Why have a never seen her before?” The words I heard in my heart shocked and gripped me with a ferocious fear: “Are you ready for this? [talking about Mikayla] Do you know what you’re asking? Do you think I would stop at one?”

That scared me!  That really, really, really scared me!  Mikayla seemed safe enough. But the idea of whatever “more than one” is scares me! And the question of am I ready???... I’m a hermit at heart! I laughingly tell the people I know that I’m a “Herminite.”  Fear of the crowd?  Oh yes, He knows my fear!  And definitely He has been addressing the issue I have of ‘fearing the crowd.’ 

The thing about Mikayla to me has never really been about Mikayla.  It’s always been about His Glory!  Well, Mikayla, yes.  But so much bigger than just Mikayla.  His Glory… and all those that will believe when they see it.

What does it all mean? I am not sure. And I can’t for the likes of me figure out why it crawls all over me and won’t let me go. I’m gonna believe in God whether He heals Mikayla or He don’t.  I’m gonna be fine if she walks or not.  I’ve seen His power!  He’s REAL to me! This isn’t something He needs to do to prove something to me. He’s still God, and I’ll still behold His Glory! I’ll still be awed by His wonders!  And still be thrilled from His Word!

He won’t let me leave it alone.
Coach Hazelip, what you said about asking in Jesus’ Name being the equivalent to asking Him to do His will. I get that. I understand. I’ve been taught that. I’ve taught that. I just don’t know if we know what His will really is. I asked Him about it myself, asking Him what is His will, because I don’t want to miss it.  I’ve asked Him, how will we know if You want to bring healing to a person if You don’t tell us? We just don’t know. We can’t know what we don’t. If He doesn’t let us know, how can we know? I’ve asked Him to help me know what I don’t. I know people will get sick. I know people have to die. I don’t have a problem with that. I even know that our will is not always His will! And I know that His will is ALWAYS best!  I know that what we even really want is His will above ours, because of that truth. I’ve been happy and content in that answer for years.

…… but not now.  It’s things like these kinds of things that I can’t explain that won’t just let me be content there anymore.  When I read your letter (take no offense by this), the tears just poured down my face. I cried and I cried and I cried.  And through the tears kept saying to Him:  But that’s not what You said!  But that’s not what You said!  I’m only going by what You said… and that’s not what You said.  Jesus Himself used His Scripture to speak to satan when He was being tempted:  “It is written……”  What about the things written, Lord?  What about what You said!

In both the Old Testament and the New, Scripture was plainly written in black-and-white, but His people could not see it.  They decided instead that it meant something that they could make it fit to mean.  I don’t want to be guilty of doing the same. I don’t want to make it fit, and miss the black-and-white truth of it.

Several years ago a guy said to me as He tried to explain something in Scripture, “Well, the only way to make sense of it is…”  Wait!  Wait!  Do you hear what you’re saying?  God never made sense!  Nothing He did made sense!  We can’t try to make sense of it!  Does He not tell us that His thoughts are not our thoughts, our ways are not His? Can I not open and close the case with one statement:  Jesus on a cross didn’t make sense!!!

 My brother-in-law at Christmas when I asked him about what he thought about miracles, he said, “Well, I can only answer that question by going on what I see…”  No! No! No! We can’t go on what we can see! No! I felt that everything he said to argue against the question at hand was the very argument and evidence “for”!  Abraham’s faith wasn’t based on what he could see.  Noah’s wasn’t.  Moses’ wasn’t.  Joshua’s wasn’t. Even our belief that Jesus Christ is the Son of God isn’t based on what we can see!

And still I keep thinking, there where things written so plainly in Scripture – or Jesus spoke the plain Truth of a thing – and they missed it!  Again and again they missed it! Why would we think our generation might be any different? Wonder what the things are that we miss?

Mr. Jennings, the thing that you addressed about our “it’s all about me” mind-set. Granted, we just default to that in our natural selves, don’t we? And it’s just natural for us to pray for what we want.  I know that we can pray for a thing that we want so badly, begging Him for it in prayer, asking for it “in Jesus’ Name;” and then in His Sovereignty and great wisdom and grace He does not do or allow that thing.  And in the long run (though we might not find it out until eternity), it will be not our “want” but His “will” over our want that will prove best!  I had a pregnant friend who for a while thought that her unborn baby had downs-syndrome.  She anguished in prayer, and writhed at the thought of it.  It was a hard, hard time!  I asked God to let the boy be born healthy, yet always said to Him with my asking, but really “Your will, Lord, and not ours” because we don’t know what is best.  I warned the mom to pray the same (after wrestling through, she finally gave in to its truth and did).  Our fear in my reminding her about Hezekiah overshadowed our “want,” because we were reminded that we don’t know what is best and He does.  Hezekiah was told he would die 15 years before he did, when told Hezekiah turned his head to the wall and cried out in prayer asking God not to let him die… so God gave 15 more years.  But in those extra years that he lived he greatly displeased the Lord.  It would have been better off for him had he never been healed. We want His will, not ours. But what if He’s told us a “will” of His, and we miss it?!

 It’s not about me! And it’s not about Mikayla. It’s about my Father’s Glory!!!  God wanted to glorify His Son.  Jesus wants to glorify His Father! And just as Jesus was birthed and lived inside the skin of a baby two thousand years ago, He still is birthed and lives inside human skin. In this generation, your skin, and mine, and countless skins all over the globe. While Jesus walked this earth He longed to bring His Father Glory. The Jesus in me that now lives in my skin LONGS to bring His Father Glory!  I don’t care how He does it! I just want to do the work He’s given me to do! I just want believe Him in all things that He’s said… for if I miss it, it’s not me, but His Glory at stake! I want to live to please my Father!  I want take Him at His Word like Abraham did… against all the sense it didn’t make… and regardless of what he couldn’t see.

What if this heated stir inside me really is the Holy Spirit’s quickening, wanting so badly for me to believe something beyond what I can, so that through Jesus’ name our Father can be given Glory?  That’s what I loose sleep over at night.  Not the Kenny’s of this world stuck inside a skin he can’t move… UNLESS God searches to and fro throughout the whole earth looking for one whose heart is fully committed to Him, so that He can give him strength and use the one to speak the power of Jesus name to put movement back into Kenny’s skin… all for the Glory of our God!

I totally agree that Jesus being able to turn the heart of man, forgiving him of his sin, saving his soul, and changing his life is a FAR greater glory than a physical healing! Shew, yes, there is great Glory in that!  That’s the Ultimate!... and really the only thing that matters!  Skin will go back to the dust it came from, both the healed skins and the sick skins will turn back to dust.  And in the long run, we’re not really too long in these skins anyway.  Matter-of-fact, we spend way too much thought, way too much time, and way too money prettying up the skins we got.  An old man inside a cancered-skin can shine God's Glory greater than many young tanned healthy skinned ones do.  A baby inside a deformed skin can be the perfectly chosen skin to show Jesus to a world that don’t know Him.  And He uses many of those skins to show His Glory.  Some people can’t see Him, and won’t stop to look at Him, until their healthy-skins turn gray with an illness; or are crippled in an accident.  I imagine they KNOW that they might have lived their wholes lives and lost their souls if it weren’t for change in their skins.

Often in the both the Old and New Testaments though, God showed the people a physical thing, to help them see and believe in the spiritual. His ways are never limited to His always acting the exact same way.  I know of only one bush that He lit afire without burning and chose to talk through it.  He is most creative, and in so many different forms was most creative in His appearances.  We can’t limit Him, telling Him what You did then You must still do now.  Mr. Jennings, right again!  I’m on the same page with you two.  Yet, He is a patterned God~ the same today, yesterday, and tomorrow.  No doubt, in the things He has yet planned to do He’ll be creative in the way that He does it. I just don’t want to be guilty of limiting His doing it in my life if He wants to, because of my unbelief. I’ll answer to Him for what I know He’s said, I’ll be responsible for what I do with it.  I’m really not sure what exactly He is telling me…

… but this I know: Jesus said, “When I return  will I find faith on this earth?”

I want Him to find faith in me…… not for my glory, not for the Kenny’s, not for the Mikayla’s, but for His Glory!  For the renown of Jesus’ Name!  For the Kingdom’s sake! … His will on earth as it is in Heaven!

I thank you guys for listening. This is just one thing in so many. I don’t know what it all means….. but one thing I know, I cannot not believe!

                                                                                    Sharon Lee

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