The mental checklist threatened to ruin the pace I was determined to set for the last week of summer. Slow. In the town I live in, the speed limit is 35 wherever you go. We are pretty good at slow here. We are forced into slow.
The mind is a fierce fighter.
As christian music softly filled the silence of the car, we meandered towards home.
When Jacob spoke, his words hushed my internal conflict instantly. “Mom, I love to watch people solving problems. Or when they are in a situation and they have to find a way out. I love to watch how they figure out their problems.”
I will miss these conversations. The ones that occur at spontaneous and random moments. The ones we have at 8:30, 11:00, whenever a thought occurs. The ones that make summertime a bittersweet season.
“That’s neat. Like what kind of problems do you mean?”
“Well, like that man right there,” he pointed to the cross walk. A man I see in our town no matter the time of day or night. A man I have felt burdened to pray for for the last year. A man who looks to be recovering from a stroke and is always out walking.
Nothing is random in life.
Jacob continued, “I feel like we should always be praying for people with problems. You know people who need help.”
My body felt as though it had taken a plunge into a refreshing spring on a scorching summer’s day. The underwater silence. The peace. The outside world is silenced and everything no one else can see is alive, vibrant…..REAL. You resurface and your lungs feel they may explode and you know you can’t retell it. They need to see it for themselves.
Hands gripping the steering wheel, I resurfaced. “Jacob, I’ve never shared this with you, but that man you are pointing to is someone I’ve been praying for for the last year. I’ve told Daddy about him and a few friends. I don’t know why God has placed him on my heart. But the fact that you just felt the urge to pray for him is like hearing God speak to me through you.”
A moment ticked by.
“Mom! Did you just hear what the radio said???”
“They just said, ‘We need to remember to pray for those in need. Those who need our prayers.”
“Well, then we must pray right now. God is clearly speaking to us.”
I prayed. And I thanked God that He is a God that still speaks to us. That He is a God that cares deeply and passionately for His people. That He cares enough to intersect our to do lists, school supply labeling, house-cleaning days. And I prayed that my boys would KNOW that they serve a REAL God. And we prayed for a man we don’t know, who God has put in our paths.
As we neared our house, I said to the boys, “There will come a time you will have conversations with people who do not believe in God. They don’t believe in the Bible. Because they don’t believe in the Bible, you can’t say that you believe in God because the Bible tells you so. You can tell them you know God is real because you have seen Him in the most real ways imaginable. And you can share exactly how God has worked in your life. Then let God do the work from there.”
Later that morning, I heard Zachary retelling Steve how God talked to us in the car.
One of my favorite songs reminds me that “God’s not dead. He’s surely alive.”
Oh the sweet gift of the Lord to give a gift like that on a day I was desperate to hear from Him in a noisy world.
The gift of a normally annoying speed limit that forced me to SLOW DOWN.
God is in everything. But He is magnified in the slow.
Go slow this week. Hunt for Him. Seek Him out. Make the most of every moment. They are fleeting. The slow allows you to linger a bit longer.