What’s in a Name? Everything!

[Deep sigh.]

You reminded me this morning why You gave our home here a particular name.  It happened shortly after we bought this place last year.  We noticed most of the nearby properties had names.  I will never forget asking You what we should name our place.  Your answer was swift and crystal clear:

Sanctuary Hill — a place of worship, refuge and safety.

It couldn’t have been more obvious then — or today — that this is the perfect name for this place!

Only the two of us “girls” were awake early this morning.  Skippy was in the back yard.  I was on the front deck.  The sun was rising over the treetops of the forest just to the east of our ten-acre spread. I settled into a canvas chair, closed my eyes and took two long, slow, deep breaths.

Breathe in Your Joy-filled Grace.  Breathe out the weight of the world.  Breathe in Your Loving Kindness.  Breathe out all noise and distractions.

With eyes still closed, my ears filled to overflowing… with the songs of what seemed like hundreds of birds!  It was SO BEAUTIFUL!  I could almost count them… almost.  But no, I couldn’t possibly.  I didn’t care.  It was  SO PEACEFUL.

I opened my eyes.  Our resident bluebird, proud papa that he is, flew back and forth to his birdhouse multiple times.  Each time, carrying a juicy worm — the ultimate in Organic Fast Food!  The orange butterflies… Could they really be as happy as they seem, Lord?  Flitting to and fro, cavorting as if our whole yard was their personal playground.

Time stood still… even as it flew by.  Holding onto it was like trying to hold mercury.  I wondered for a moment if I should ask You to repeat the gift You gave King Hezekiah long ago, when You commuted his death sentence and gave him another 15 years of life.

“This is the Lord’s sign to you that the Lord will do what He has promised.  I will make the shadow cast by the sun go back the ten steps it has gone down on the stairway of Ahaz.  So the sunlight went back the ten steps it had gone.”  (Isaiah 38:5b,7)

Reversing the movement of the earth?  But that was then… and this is now.  I don’t need a miracle like that to know You will do what You have promised, Lord.

“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful.”  (Hebrews 10:23)

We drove 75 miles tonight — each way! — to have dinner with a former client and his wife.  We drove home through the darkness of endless country roads that have never known street lights.   Now, I’m going to crawl under the covers and settle into the darkness inside our little mountain retreat.

Grateful to be home.  Grateful to be safe.  Grateful to be Yours.

“The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.”  (Deuteronomy 33:37a)

[Deep sigh.]

Abba’s Girl

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