Once again I awoke this morning with the muscle in my left leg flared.
The saga continues.
Let me be honest, my initial reaction is ALWAYS frustration. Every single time I see that muscle flared I want to beat it down into submission. I'm human and that muscle causes me intense pain when it won't cooperate. But this morning my frustration was momentary - a blip on the screen. God started revealing himself to me through the flaring of my muscle. He spoke loud and clear to me in the midst of my suffering. My frustration couldn't help but flee. I was in the presence of the Almighty. Let the muscle clench with a death grip! Let the pain radiate throughout my whole body! God was all around me. His presence was undeniable.
As I lay there in my bed I closed my eyes and simply listened, yearning to hear what He had to say. He was thrilled to have my attention. I could feel His pleasure.
And then He touched my leg and told me, are you ready?
Somehow I knew what this meant. Miraculous healing was not what He was referring to. I would love miraculous healing, He knows this. I have cried out to Him, begging to feel his healing touch. But He hasn't healed me just yet. He is going to but it is not yet time. He is still building my story, perfecting my testimony.
This morning He asked if I'm ready for the trials ahead. There will be difficulty and struggle that is going to threaten to derail me and throw me off God's path. Satan is going to try to use opposition to stand in the way of living out the will and plan God has for me. God warned me this morning that this is going to hurt. Am I prepared to endure?
A smile broke out across my face. God in heaven cares enough for me to prepare me for what is ahead. He can't spare me because He wants the best for me and getting there is treacherous. Just like climbing a great mountain, to get the best view you must traverse the most challenging of terrains. You can't make it to the top of Everest unless you are willing to endure the ferocious winds and blistering cold that will threaten to halt your climb. The reward is at the top of the mountain. Push through the struggle of getting there and you will enjoy the most spectacular view of God's great creation.
God touched me with His love this morning and gave me the encouragement and the warning of a dutiful father… This is going to hurt but it will be worth it in the end.
Are you ready?