I was up, drifting in and out of sleep at about 4:53am yesterday and for some reason, even though there was no sign of it, I kept hearing the sound of rain. I’d click off my fan to be sure it was raining but would hear nothing. I’d doze off a little and be so sure I heard it pouring or heard a thunder only to click the fan off to nothing. I refused to settle for the thought that it was just the noise from the fan that was playing tricks on me. I did this at least 5 times every couple of minutes as I was always so sure it was raining. About 2 hours later — when I finally got my sleep’s rhythm — and for real this time, it did eventually start to thunderously rain. Rhinos and Hippos at that, almost all morning.
Lately, I’ve been thinking about women in Scripture per words or promises that were given to them from God and their reactions, all of which led to major change events. Women like Sarah and Mary.
I think of Sarah and realize how to this day, we often times get side tracked by the lack of evidence of the things we hope for. We waver in faith when we hope for green and haven’t got the blue and/or yellow for it. We drift off, settling for the glaring purple that’s available and say to ourselves, “maybe the green I was sure of and waiting for was just a figment of my imagination”. Worse still, we accept red and live in denial that it’ll eventually turn to green.
I think of Mary, of how out of all the other women, when it came to words spoken and promises made, the details of hers — given her circumstances — might’ve gotten her a year book feature in a present day “most likely to be unfulfilled” section. Yet she responded to it unwaveringly in faith and expectantly with a song.
The thing is, at the time I started sensing the rain, my blinds were shut and it was dark out, so it wasn’t as though I could see the cloud’s formation or tell that there was any at all. Even if it felt like my fan was taking me for a ride, I was sure it was raining when it wasn’t. I was sure it thundered though it hadn’t. I was so certain in the Spirit. That’s why I kept waking up and clicking the fan off and on to be sure it was. And I did this repeatedly for almost 2 hours before it actually started pouring.
When I eventually woke up for real to devote time to God, I remember being grateful for that teachable experience. I remember praying and thanking the Spirit for the enablement to faithfully trust. I remember thanking Jesus for the grace to apply that experience to all areas of life — like a transferable skill — especially when it pertains to God’s promises that seem to tarry. I remember asking for the enablement to sense always in the Spirit even before it’s made manifest in the physical, to lean not on my understanding and remain sure of all truths God has spoken over my life even before they come to pass.
I pray for us, that we’d fix our gaze on Jesus as we receive the enablement the Holy Spirit gives to remain faithfully unwavering in foresight and expectant of God’s promises, regardless of the lack of evidence thereof… just like Mary and like I was… about the rain.
“Then the Lord said to me, “Write my answer plainly on tablets, so that a runner can carry the correct message to others. This vision is for a future time. It describes the end, and it will be fulfilled. If it seems slow in coming, wait patiently, for it will surely take place. It will not be delayed.” — Habakkuk 2:2-3 NLT
“Now Sarai, Abram’s wife, had not been able to bear children for him. But she had an Egyptian servant named Hagar. So Sarai said to Abram, “The Lord has prevented me from having children. Go and sleep with my servant. Perhaps I can have children through her.” And Abram agreed with Sarai’s proposal. So Sarai, Abram’s wife, took Hagar the Egyptian servant and gave her to Abram as a wife. (This happened ten years after Abram had settled in the land of Canaan.)”
“Then God said to Abraham, “Regarding Sarai, your wife—her name will no longer be Sarai. From now on her name will be Sarah. And I will bless her and give you a son from her! Yes, I will bless her richly, and she will become the mother of many nations. Kings of nations will be among her descendants.””
“Then one of them said, “I will return to you about this time next year, and your wife, Sarah, will have a son!” Sarah was listening to this conversation from the tent. Abraham and Sarah were both very old by this time, and Sarah was long past the age of having children. So she laughed silently to herself and said, “How could a worn-out woman like me enjoy such pleasure, especially when my master—my husband—is also so old?” — Genesis 16:1-3; 17:15-16; 18:10-12 NLT
“In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee, to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings, favored woman! The Lord is with you!”
Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean. “Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favor with God! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!” Mary asked the angel, “But how can this happen? I am a virgin.”
The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God. What’s more, your relative Elizabeth has become pregnant in her old age! People used to say she was barren, but she has conceived a son and is now in her sixth month. For the word of God will never fail.” Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” And then the angel left her.” — Luke 1:26-38 NLT. Read till the chapter’s end.