There are times when we question 'Why?'.
I know we have no right to ask God to explain himself . . . but, being sinful humans, we often do. Thankfully, He understands and His grace and mercy extend way past our arrogance and He speaks to us; sometimes with a quirky sense of humour.
I remember a time when I went to reconnect with God at a silent retreat. A few years previous, I had attended and it had been life changing. This year however my heart was so heavy. My mother was dying and I wanted the same encounter that I had at the retreat before. I was also seeking an answer to a very large 'Why?'
By day two, however, I was still feeling absolutely numb. Scripture was not ‘jumping off the page at me’ . . . my silent worship did not move me. I felt defeated and a bit confused as to why things weren’t connecting the way I thought they should. I had come for a close, deep encounter with God and instead was disconnected completely. I felt shut out from the Lord. Why had He closed the door to me? Flipping through my Bible, I looked at the clock and realized it was still hours before lunch. Hmph.
Tired, I decided to take a nap . . . ‘Why not,’ I reasoned, ‘It’s not like you've got anything to say to me.’ Fluffing my pillow, I felt a twinge of guilt . . . ‘Well God,’ I prayed, ‘If you want to meet with me, then you will just have to wake me up.’ And with that, I hunkered down and was asleep in minutes.
Tap tap tap . . . . Tap
Huh? Groggily rubbing my eyes, I rolled back over.
Tap . . . tap . . . tap . . .
My eyes flung open and I was scared out of my gourd. I was staying on the fourth floor of the retreat center . . . there were no balconies . . . but there was someone tapping on the window right above my bed! ‘Couldn’t be,’ I reasoned, turning my back to face the door.
Tap . . . tap . . . tap . . .
Oh my word. It had to be an angel. God had sent an angelic being to bring me a message! It was the only explanation. Frightened but yet somewhat intrigued, I gingerly pulled back the curtain and came face to face with . . . a seagull.
His eyeball was staring right into mine. As if to mock me, he tapped on the window one more time to say, ‘Yup, it was me!’ and then flew off.
What? Huh? I began to laugh. Silent retreat or not, I could not help myself. There I was alone in my room laughing like a crazy woman. Deep . . . healing . . . belly laughs! Tears flowed as I sat up on the bed amazed at God’s sense of humour. ‘Lord,’ I asked, ‘Do you laugh out loud like that?’
‘Go read Psalms,’ he urged. I didn’t even have to turn the page before I came to:
Psalms 2:4 “He who sits in the heavens shall laugh;”
I spent the rest of the weekend going thru the book of Psalms highlighting every reference to joy, laughter and the like. The deep encounter I thought I needed ended up being a lighthearted, intimate time with the Lord as He brought back the joy I had lost.
And my angelic seagull? What became of him? Curiously, he never came by for a visit during my God time, but would ‘mysteriously’ reappear to wake me up after every nap and in the morning! Tap . . . tap, tap
Because God does sit in the heavens and laugh! And, I’m so thankful that when God closes a door . . . He sometimes taps on a window!
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