We should always listen to the word we get from Jesus, even when everything around us tells us otherwise.
It's Friday. I’m on a United flight to Los Angeles, wedged between a guy drawing cartoons on a yellow pad and a woman reading Ladies Home Journal. I’m trying to get to Santa Barbara, and this whole trip feels a little weird.
My wife, Stasi, and I were really looking forward to the baptism of our dear friends’ daughter in Colorado Springs this weekend. Not a time to skip town. But last weekend I kept feeling this nudge, this “prompting” that I should go and see Sam. (Our oldest son – he’s a freshman at Westmont College in SB this year). You know what I mean about those nudges – you just have a sense, call it intuition, or a thought you can’t seem to shake. But it made no sense. Next weekend is open, no conflicts. This weekend is the baptism. Besides, I was on the road in Dallas this week on business. I’m tired. Staying home makes sense.
I checked the weather, looking for some confirmation. I mean hey – if I go to California I wanna go when it's sunny and warm (winter has been dragging on here).
The forecast is for rain. The trip is making less sense.
But I’ve learned over the years that sometimes God tells us to do things that don’t seem to make sense in the moment. Right I mean, look at Abraham – sacrifice your son with a knife? Look at Joshua – take a fortified city with trumpets? Look at Gideon – get rid of 90% of your army, on the eve of battle? There’s a pretty long biblical record of God asking his people to do things that at the time didn’t seem to make a lot of sense.
Back to the prompting. I asked God, Do you want me to go this weekend, or next, Lord? He said, This weekend. I pushed into it a little bit. This weekend, Lord? Am I hearing you right? Yes. I don’t want to just charge off on a whim. I mean, a prompting is one thing. Ask God what it means. I even asked Stasi, twice, “What are you hearing from God on this?” She said, “I heard ‘Go.’”
Walking with God requires humility, and trust. I don’t know all that God is up to; I don’t even see things clearly from my point of view. So, I booked a flight. Driving to the airport I asked Jesus, Are you in this? I do that a lot, as I head into different situations. Are you in this, Lord? Because if he is, then I’m good. I don’t really need to understand, I don’t need to know anything else. If God is in this, I’m good. He said, Yes. And something in my soul quieted down a bit. Peace came in with that “yes.”
It’s a good thing I just remembered that. Because my flight got cancelled. It's two hours later, and I’m on a different flight (to L.A.) sort of zigzagging and fighting my way to get to Santa Barbara. Doubt really wants to creep in. This doesn’t make sense. I’m an idiot. One more time I check in – Jesus, are you in this? I am. Okay. I’m sticking with that. I’m going to let my heart rest in that.