When all the nation had finished passing over the Jordan, the LORD said to Joshua, “Take twelve men from the people, from each tribe a man, and command them, saying, ‘Take twelve stones from here out of the midst of the Jordan, from the very place where the priests’ feet stood firmly, and bring them over with you and lay them down in the place where you lodge tonight.'” Then Joshua called the twelve men from the people of Israel, whom he had appointed, a man from each tribe. And Joshua said to them, “Pass on before the ark of the LORD your God into the midst of the Jordan, and take up each of you a stone upon his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, that this may be a sign among you. When your children ask in time to come, ‘What do those stones mean to you?’ then you shall tell them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the LORD. When it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial forever.” Joshua 4:1-7
I find that little monuments in my life are powerful reminders of the Lord’s faithfulness and a reminder of who I am and called to be. My family is in a big life transition. I’ve recently taken a job with a church in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota. There is excitement and a deep gratitude to the Lord for all He’s brought us through. Just as the Lord commanded Joshua to take 12 stones out of the Jordan to build the monument, I feel that the Lord is inviting me to take the metaphorical stones out of the ‘river’ of my experience, and set them as a monument that I can look back at and say “The Lord did something great here.” To stay on theme, I’ll be focusing on twelve different defining moments all connected to our past 3 ½ years.
For those who have followed my blog during our time on the reservation, this may be review, but the Lord’s really been working on/in my heart lately. Today in church we sang “It is Well with My Soul,” a song that I believe I can now truly sing after these few years. I think it was Rich Mullins who once said something to the effect of: “Christianity isn’t something that you do – it’s something that does you.” That’s how it feels. I’ve been so blessed, but realize that the greatest blessings are those that have come out of: learning to be poor in spirit, mourning, learning (and still learning) to be meek, hungering, thirsting and aching for God and His way(s), learning mercy, welcoming the purification process instead of trying to avoid it, learning to make peace instead of having my way (still learning), and suffering. Christianity is truly peculiar. I am well aware of the nagging depravity of my human nature, but the mystery that I’ve experienced is this: that through brokenness, I have found myself more whole than the person I was before…