Friday, October 16, 2009

When God Has Other Plans

We had guests this past week & all wanted to go on a watch. I wasn't sure how this would go over with the beavers, who are shy & elusive, but 6 of us headed down at just the right time. As we sat on the landing, I drifted immediately into the amazement of the mirrored evening. I was in "the zone", talking with my Lord & aware of every subtle change in the reflection of the evening sky. If we were quiet enough the first beaver would glide across right before our eyes. I prayed fervently for God to grant them this blessing.
I realized that I can discern between the rings left by different parts or different movements of fish under the water. I saw 3 "pinwheels" but inches from the shore. This has left me all the more perplexed as to what, or who is making them.
As folks grew restless I wondered if we had been too late. The dawn had been dark & the beavers may well have slept in this evening. Instinct told me that the sound of many feet so close above their burrow had given us away. How does sound travel underground? 15 minutes...they wait 15 minutes after a warning or alarm. As the darkness settled, 4 of our troupe headed back. It would be another 15 minutes....or would the beavers think we had all gone? YES ! Within moments, the young man who had remained with me spied their wakes. Both beavers had traveled a different route & now swam out in open water. I had wanted everyone to have the memory of a beaver swimming right across in front of them, or even a distant glimpse, but God had other plans.
Sometimes sharing silence can create a greater bond than the deepest of conversations. This young man, the last hold-out on the evening watch, has a heavy burden & faces difficult choices. In the silent watching we shared, God forged a connection for him to later unburden his heart. We sat up well past my early morning rising time as he shared with me the wrestlings of his spirit.
I firmly believe that when someone goes to another "for advice" they really have their own answers. People usually just need someone to reflect back what they share. That will guide them to what they already know. Choices that we face that are heavily laden with emotion are the most difficult for us to find our way through. Jesus himself said not to rely on our feelings, for the adversary uses them so well against us. We need the quiet of others to help us return to our path. God has written His word upon our hearts & grants us discernment when we ask...and often, shared silences to help us find our way.

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