Do you ever feel as though you are ready for a challenge? The “Rocky” theme song plays in your mind, and you honestly think, “Bring on the competition, I am ready to play!” I have had those moments where I’m feeling ready to conquer the world. Times when anything seems possible, and I want to do my part.
I have read the miracle stories in the Bible. I know Peter walked on water; David killed a giant; and Moses led a million people through the sea. Believe me, I know the stories…..A man was swallowed by a big fish and lived to tell about it. Barren women gave birth, and people with all kinds of diseases were healed. A rock wall crumbled at the sound of a trumpet, and food fell from the sky each day to feed a nation. There are stories of times when the sun stood still throughout the day and night to help a group of faithful warriors, and times when every pool of water turned into blood to convince a stubborn ruler.
Story after story of amazing miracles, feats, and changes. Stories of impossible situations where the circumstances shifted, evil people were converted, and nations were saved. Word after word, line after line, story after story, all with one thing in common…. they are all true!
I read those stories and think to myself, “I want to walk on water! I want to kill a giant! I want to be part of a true miraculous story.” I tell God, “Put me in; I’m ready. I can do this! I know I can.” I feel as if I’m standing there waiting, looking to see where I need to go, and what I need to do.
It’s the waiting that gets me. I’m sitting on ready; I feel prepared. I’m looking to Jesus, and I imagine that I am stronger than Peter, the wind and the waves won’t scare me! As I sit and wait, I am thinking, “Come on, God. I believe in miracles. I know we can do this! Put me in and let me play!” I think I am pretty convincing. I can recite a list of reasons why I should be in the game, but to my dismay, at times I feel left on the sideline. Like the second string player standing shoulder to shoulder beside the coach on the sideline, just waiting for the sign to go in.
My life sometimes feels like a game that I am losing. Three years ago today, my son left this earth at the young age of sixteen and moved on to a better life in heaven. People say that time heals all wounds, but I just don’t believe someone who lost a child could ever agree with that statement. Time passing by does help you feel as though you are slightly closer to seeing your loved one again. I am three years closer than I used to be, and I am glad for that. Looking back, I see many times God has comforted and carried me through some very sad days. I still have my pit, but it is not quite as deep as it used to be. I know God has brought a lot of good through Holt’s life and even his death, but that does not take away the hurt or the void left in our family. Nothing, this side of heaven, can justify the pain.
Despite my life’s circumstances, I still believe in miracles, that God is the one in charge. I will be honest and tell you that I don’t always agree with the plays he calls, but God is the coach, and like it or not, I am only a player. If I want to get in the game, I have to listen for his call and follow his directions. If I try to make my own play or sneak myself into the game without his permission, I’m going to regret it; I will only make a mess of the things and penalize my team.
There are times when I want to walk to the bench and give up on trying. Times when I feel like saying, “Forget it. I don’t want to play anymore.” When I pray for miracles and nothing seems to change, I can’t help but feel discouraged. Still, I have to believe that God’s miracles did not stop when the Bible was finished. Maybe it is God’s timing in each story that made them turn out so amazing. Peter looked toward Jesus at just the right time. David threw the stone at just the right moment. Moses parted the sea just when the Israelites needed to cross. If the timing had been different in those situations, the results may not have been the same.
God is charge of more than the players; he is also in charge of the time each play is called. Although I feel ready to be part of a great trick play, could it be that God knows exactly the right moment to execute his call so the results will be amazing? Trusting that he hasn’t put me in the game yet because the timing is not quite right. Maybe he is working on a play that will capitalize on my strengths. He knows I am willing and able, but if he sends me in too soon, the results could be altered. The way I see it, I have two choices. I can sit on the bench and pout about the waiting, or I can continue to stand by his side and trust that when the time is right, he will honor my desire to be part of a big play. “Put me in!” is my plea, but I have to trust my coach knows the right time to call my play.
The Holt Rowland Foundation is still praying for God to direct our purpose and waiting for God to send us in the game.