My little explorers chattered together as they were happily pulled along down the driveway of my childhood home. The unlikely January weather made it feel like a day in early spring, not the dead of winter, and the earth smelled like a hundred memories of growing up here, making "forts" in the woods, playing house where I pretended to be a settler like Laura Ingalls Wilder, or a Native American princess like Pocahontas, or a lost orphan from England (I grew up constantly putting on an English accent when I played pretend-- go figure!). We turned that old familiar bend in my parents' long driveway and the memory of the feeling of His presence on so many night prayer walks down this driveway throughout high school and summers home from college just struck me like deja vu. The memory of that hunger for Him, that desperate knowledge that nothing else would satisfy but Him, speaking to my heart out under the bright stars hung over my childhood home, singing praise songs to Him as I walked down that dark driveway...
The day gave me a Spring-time feeling; that time when all that has been lying dormant is beginning to awaken, to come back to life.
So many friends in my life have been confessing to me a similar experience of so many elements of faith in our walks with Him feeling like they've been lying dormant. And we have been asking one another to pray-- pray that they will start to feel alive to us again. That moment today, pulling my little men in that red wagon around that bend in the driveway, was like a little experience of awakening.
I know that walking with God is just that-- walking; it is an active journey. It is a series of seasons of life. It ebbs and flows. The weather changes with the seasons and He changes me with them, forever inviting me to trust Him, whether in the summery seasons of faith or the wintery ones. To keep walking that road, exploring its contours whether blanketed by snow, covered by leaves, smelling of fresh spring earth, or humid from the heat of the sun as we walk... And wherever I plant a foot, His have already trod that ground.
I am struck by His mercy. For the way he deigns to walk so close, to lead if we ask, to quiet if we don't genuinely want to hear Him, and to speak up if we do. I just want to live a life which is set up to amplify the sound of His voice, and to have a heart which is poised to receive what He says, and to have feet ready to move on it whatever the earthly risk may seem.
Lord, I know that everything comes from you and there is nothing I can muster up on my own-- Oh, that you would give me a ready faith. And always always make me an intrepid explorer of Who You are, Lord Jesus, in whatever season (And draw my little nephews to seek Your heart above all else as they grow into men, too!)