Resting, Resting

Fleeting
Fleeting

The dream began when my grandmother gave me a sparkly star pin. She brought it back from Bethlehem when I was a teenager and every Christmas when I took it out of my jewelry box I remembered how she talked about her trip to Israel and how much it meant to her. I wanted to go too.

There are so many needs in the world. Frankly, I tend to be the over-responsible big sister type who feels the need to rescue and fix. I also grew up with a fear of not having enough. I justified my ability to pinch a penny so hard it screamed for mercy by giving my reserved squashed coins to charity -widow’s mite and all that.

A couple of years ago someone encouraged a group of us to remember dreams we had relinquished, thinking they were not practical, or were meant for people who needed them more. I realized I had not asked my good heavenly Father for things because I thought, that like my earthly father, he was on a tight budget, and that his resources were limited and had to be carefully meted out to fulfill the great commission of making disciples of all men. It felt selfish to ask Abba if he would give me a trip to Israel like the one my grandmother took. Maybe for someone else, but not for me.

But I dared to ask. And he answered.

The whole time we were in Israel for the past two weeks this song ran through my head:

Jesus, I am resting, resting

in the joy of what Thou art.

I am finding out the goodness

of Thy loving heart.

I know the word in the old hymn is “greatness” and not “goodness”, but that’s the word that kept showing up in that half-sleep time while dawn lightened the skies.

So many things seemed to make the trip look impossible -and up until two days before departure we thought we would have to cancel, but my health improved, our son-in-love came out of his coma and encouraged us to go, and people stepped in to look after things I had assumed were my responsibility alone.

Every day was a gift from a good Father. I thought that nothing could top the feeling of standing on top of Mount Carmel and realizing this was the place where God showed up for Elijah and sent the prophets of the false god, Ba’al, who demanded appeasement, running in ignominy. I thought that would be the highlight, but it just got better.

“Rest,” He said. “Sit down and let others do the running for a while. Rest and let me love you.”

One day, in a lower room below the busy streets of Jerusalem, perhaps on the very pavement where Jesus stood, where the soldiers humiliated him and put a crown of thorns on his head, I sang. I sang with tears and a heart full of gratitude,

I love Thee for wearing the thorns on Thy brow.

If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus ’tis now.

Ecce Homo
Ecce Homo

When we came home a couple of days ago, we immediately went to see our son-in-love, who has been on his own journey in the valley of the shadow of death. He is out of ICU, and starting to walk and rebuild his strength in a rehab hospital. The hospital staff are calling him “Miracle Man.”

God is good. So very, very good.

IMG_0946 from herodian toward dead sea ch - Copy

12 thoughts on “Resting, Resting

  1. I am not a crier, but I have to admit, my eyes are a bit misty as I delight in the goodness of our God! Thank you so much for sharing your story. So much encouragement and so much to be grateful for! Blessings as you bask in His great love and provision for you and your family!
    ❤ Shannon

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  2. Charis, so happy to hear you got to enjoy your tour of Israel and see your dream fulfilled. Your son in love is doing well and you are feeling much better. We are in a new season and you are a signpost of God’s love and mercy! 🙂

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    1. Yes! One morning I woke up very early and watched the sun rise over the Lake of Galilee. He sang this song in my heart:
      “Rise up, my love, my fair one,
      And come away.
      For lo, the winter is past,
      The rain is over and gone.
      The flowers appear on the earth;
      The time of singing has come,
      And the voice of the turtledove
      Is heard in our land.
      ” (Song of Solomon 2)

      I have never heard such singing of birds. In the spring Israel is a gathering place for many, many migrating birds. The hills were covered with wild flowers and the cooing of doves was constantly in the background. Yes, it is a new season and he calls us to come away with Him.

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  3. Blessed by "John"

    So very happy to know you had your dream come true and to hear what a blessed time it was. How wonderful about the birds at Galilee! I LOVE birdsong and birds – God is so so good and gives us such amazing things – like birds! Also especially overjoyed to know your Son-in-Love is rehabilitating. I pray it will be swift progress and homeward bound he will be very shortly – how much he’s been missed by his loved ones, I’m sure.

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