Tonight, as I rested by the waterfall listening to God, the world around me began to weep. The raindrops fell upon the canopy high above where I sat. There was such serenity in that place, communing with God that I couldn’t leave. As the storms clouds gathered and the thunder began to roll, it was apparent that I should return home, but I couldn’t make myself go. Jesus’s love had surrounded me, wrapping me in His arms, that omnipotent, all-knowing, unconditional love like no other. A brilliant light lit the sky above, and the sound of the thunderbolt striking nearby rattled the rocks upon which I sat. It was then that it felt as if our time together would be ended.
There was a flashback to the days when my father would drive me back to my mother’s house. They had been separated since my first Birthday, so it was nothing new. Yet, each time when we rolled into that driveway, a sick, feeling of despair would flood over my soul. As my earthly father and I would say our goodbyes, I would try not to look at him for fear that I would see the teardrops in his eyes, and then I too would begin to cry.
It never got any easier.
The years passed by and we drifted apart, both my earthly father and my heavenly Father. Neither stopped loving me, no matter how far I strayed.
He lay upon the hospital bed, weary and nearly gone. Miraculously he had rebounded the day before when we had received the phone call to all of the family to gather one last time. It was our last goodbye, one last chance to say to my father on this side of glory what we could. He had come to know the Lord in tremendous ways the last two years of his life. God had given him a second chance. That in itself is a story alone. But that day, as he lay there nearly motionless, trying to fight with every ounce of his being to stay awake one more minute, I knew in my heart that he would be with God soon. So, when it was time to leave, we didn’t turn into that driveway like so many times before. Instead, I bent over with tears in my eyes, and whispered in his ear, “I know that someday will meet on that far distant shore. If you get there before I do, give them all a hug for me. When it’s my time, I’ll meet you at the Eastern Gate. Know that when I walk out of here, I can never look back, but know that I will love you forever and ever.”
I slowly kissed him on the forehead goodbye, and then stood up, turned and walked out, not looking back for fear that I wouldn’t be able to leave.
Tonight, that was the feeling that had returned once more.
At that moment, it was as if heavens Angels began to weep. As each tiny droplet eventually rolled off of the leaf it first landed upon, it then cascaded down finally reaching the forest floor below. The sound of them falling, caressing the woods made a gentle, soothing sound. Before me the pool of water below the falls was silent, its deep shadows showing no sign of life. Then, one raindrop fell into the crystal, clear water, and it was stirred, as if by the toe of some angelic being.
At that moment, it was as if God had spoken and the scripture of the impotent man lying by the pool burst into my mind. The Greek word for “impotent” is akratés, which means lacking self-control, powerless, inclined to excess. Our fleshly bodies are so often consumed by the earthly desires that we are made powerless by them. We become obsessed to the point, we fall away from God’s graces; yet, He never loves us less. When we finally awaken to this fact, it is as if we have risen from a deep slumber, we are groggy and unsure of our next step. When we accept Christ into our lives, we are made anew, dying to our former selves, and those lusts of this world begin to lose their flavor, as salt loses its taste. We cast aside those addictions and soon find that we, like the man by the pool, are told to, “Rise, take up thy bed and walk.” When we stand, we realize that we are made whole. It is up to use to walk in His way, in His light from that point forward. Suddenly, the cobwebs are cleared from our heads and like never before, we can see more clearly.
The awakening has begun.
We have been spiritually healed. As Jesus said to the man by the pool, “Wilt thou be made whole?”
With each day, though we may never reach full sanctification, we can seek him. With each new day, when we fill ourselves with God, dying to our former selves, we find new tastes, brighter colors, and voices in the world around us we never heard before. It is those miniature glimpses of the new world in which we will be made one with God, heaven on earth, we find a new love for Him. We become so enamored with His love that we desire it. As the Apostle Paul wrote, “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”
As the deluge fell from the sky above, I begrudgingly made my way back home, leaving that place where God had enveloped me in his love. Unlike before, there was not a final farewell. For someday, when we are all called home, it shall be not a day of sorrow, but a day of glorious rejoicing. It is this, the greatest commandment, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.”
The raindrops fell upon the pathway before me as I waded past the deep undergrowth of ferns. The cool, dampness upon my shirt did not dissuade me the least. My lungs drank in the rich, moist air with one lungful after another as the Holy Spirit soared within my soul. The rain was merely teardrops of ecstasy as the Angels in heaven rejoiced.
His love for us all is cause for celebration, on earth as in heaven.
Seek Him with all your heart, your mind, and soul, and you will be filled with his eternal love.
Thanks be to God.
“The impotent man answered him, Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me. Jesus saith unto him, Rise, take up thy bed, and walk. And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked: and on the same day was the Sabbath.”-John 5:7-9