It seems that the times where it’s most difficult to hear from God is when we aren’t surrendering to him something he is asking of us. Searching my heart, is there something that I’m not giving to you God?
The old preacher looked down at the frayed and cracked edges of his black leather bound Bible, sitting closed on the table before him. The withered hands of his slowly parted the pages in the center of the book and leafed from chapter to chapter. Notes, highlights and underlined verses were found on every page. Coffee stains and taped pages, the old man’s eyes peered through the reading glasses resting on his nose. Familiar words, familiar paragraphs and familiar columns that brought back memories upon memories; causing the silver haired preacher to silently, and tenderly, reminisce over his walk with God.
The old man sat in a blue suit and red tie. Pulling lightly at his collar, he cleared the old throat and began turning to a page he knew very well. A few more pages, a few more throat clearings, until finally his hand came to rest on top of a page headed in bold, black lettering Matthew 6-7. “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.”
He slowly closed the bible, bowed his head.
“I pray, Father,” his withered voice began, “That Thy Kingdom would not be a part of our ministry…” Though his eyes were closed, he could feel the disturbance inside the other members around the table. “I pray, Father, that our ministry would be part of thy Kingdom… And the road that we will walk today, we do not know where it will take us. But… we trust you. And we love you God… We love you.”
With that he opened his eyes to find a board of people, some young, some old, all nicely dressed, slightly startled by his prayer. The board had just recently discussed how they would have to pull back on supporting a ministry on the other side of Columbus. The difficult economy made it impossible for both ministries doors to be open, and the board had concluded that they would have to back off on giving.
“Gentlemen, We know what we are meeting about, and I am going to spare us the delicacy of pleasant feelings and beating around the bush.” He was serious. Most of the time meetings such as these were a bore, but at these words, everyone’s attention was on him. No one moved. “We know that unless our brothers and sisters in west Columbus make this month’s financial deadline, they will be forced to close their doors, and the likelihood of them re-opening them is slim to none.” Some of the member were nodding.
“Yes, it’s sad,” one of them said “We’ll pray for them.”
“God will use them other ways,” another concluded, hoping that was the end of the matter.
“Their doors will not close,” The preacher said sternly. The board members thought he was going to advocate a time of prayer, or a surge of faith, but the preacher knew what he meant, and he prepared himself for the barrage his next statements would bring…
[to be continued]