I feel like I have been in a major time warp lately, Lord.
We’ve been cleaning out old files. Working hard to empty our off-site storage space so we can cut off that unnecessary expense.
I would say we’ve made A LOT of progress so far. There had to be at least 200 boxes!!! By Saturday, we were down to the last twelve. I went through seven that day alone.
Records from twenty years ago, when You first ignited a burning in my heart for Ministry in the Marketplace. Doing business Your way, Lord… instead of by the world’s “wisdom” or “values.”
Doing business In such a way that it begs the question: “WHY?”
“But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the Hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.” (1 Peter 3:15)
So many memories…
What an era of Adventure! Making You the center of my Work Life — and revealing You as such — was all so new to me back then. I had no role models at first… only this compulsion to follow You in the way I knew You were clearly leading me.
Through those old files, I saw… My initial crawling. My tentative first steps. My stumbling and, later, my running.
Crawling by faith. Toddling by faith. Walking by faith. Running by faith.
I saw the wise counsel of those You sent to nurture this flame in my heart. The other business owners and CEO’s whose hearts You had ignited in the same way. The en-COURAGE-ment they poured into me!
And I was reminded of the persecution that came with The Adventure. Persecution that included, at times, persistent “doses” of annoyance, harassment, hostility and oppression.
No, my life was never threatened. But my livelihood was… and the livelihoods of those under my leadership. All because of You, Lord… and my unwillingness to hide You under a bushel.
“Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven…” (Matthew 5:11-12)
There were clearly times when I ran ahead of You in presumption, Lord. Times when I lagged behind You in fear. And other times when I was right where You wanted me to be! When You were so close I could almost touch You!
Times when… Miracles happened! Mountains moved!
Times of “letting go” when the words of old friends became weapons. When the weak stood strong in the face of attacks.
Resisting by faith. Persisting by faith. Forgiving by faith. Overcoming by faith.
“Consider it pure joy whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (James 1:2-4)
Deja vu… all over again.
Seems like only yesterday…
… or maybe tomorrow?