Sometimes as we talk in counseling about the ways in which God has been present to us, I discuss with the women the concept of the “continental divide” of our faith…..that epiphany moment following an uphill journey in search of sufficient evidence to overcome one’s doubt that God is present, good, sovereign, and cares for us personally. It is that moment at which we finally take that leap of faith and begin to know and live into the assurance of our faith, regardless of how things around us feel. I was discussing this concept with a woman recently and she asked if she could tell me about the moment a few years ago when she finally knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that God was real and present in her life. I told her I would love to hear it…..and she gave me permission to share it with you after I asked her to write it down:
“It was a very cold November night in Birmingham, Alabama. How and why I was there is not important in this particular story. Just know I was very alone, very scared, and very tired. I had been walking all day like every day going nowhere. I had on flip flops. (It still got warm in the daytime). And I was homeless, so my choice of footwear was very limited. My feet were cracked and bleeding. As if that wasn’t enough, one of the flip flops toe strap broke, this time beyond repair. I kept walking, switching the one good shoe back and forth on my feet for just a brief amount of comfort. I kept walking. But this time I had a destination. The 23rd Street Bridge, which was not just high enough for certain death, but there would surely be a train passing by soon….because there always was! And it would take my corpse to an unknown destination where an unknown person would find me and, well, it just didn’t matter. That was my plan.
So, I finally hobbled my way there, put a leg over the side and waited. No train. I waited some more. What is going on? There is ALWAYS a train. I sat there. It was 2 or 3 a.m., so no cars were passing either, which was good because surely somebody would have ruined this plan of mine. Well, I need to tell you, Someone did. After what seemed like forever my frustration got the best of me and I stood up to look to see if further down the track I could at least see a light of a train on its way. I didn’t see one. But something did catch my eye further on up across the bridge. AS I walked further across, there was a small grade and when I got to the other side of the grade there they were. What had caught my eye was a BRAND NEW PAIR OF WHITE FLIP FLOPS….size 10….my size. Not scattered and strewn here and there, but right beside one another for me to step into…….and keep on keeping on.
Thank you, Jesus!”
November 9, 2017
After a “continental divide” moment of catching the vision of God’s presence, goodness, sovereignty, and intimate love, one will never question those aspects of God again. She may question the circumstances and what she is supposed to do and how to find God’s will in the midst of it, but as far as faith and doubt, that dividing line has been crossed and the journey will never again be as difficult an uphill struggle.