I think of myself as an adventurous person even though I am a small-town gal. I don’t have a problem going on road trips to new places by myself [or even with my little brother]. Though I do admit, I don’t like driving after dark in unknown areas.
I look forward to traveling to new parts of the United States this year, as well as another country. The people are the most interesting to me. If I could throw out my watch and not have to keep a schedule, I would talk to every person I meet, asking them to tell me something about themselves. In my heart, I feel everybody is my friend. Even in passing along the sidewalk I will say hello, making eye contact with them.
As you know I am an intercessor, so it isn’t uncommon for me to be praying while I explore new areas, even if I am driving, it is just who I am. I think about the people who walked the same area centuries ago. What did society look like then? What prayers did believers pray for the community, making it a place where people would excel and prosper? What visions did they see for the neighborhood? Did they see answers to their prayers, or did it happen years later?
After I ask myself these things, I finish by asking Papa God one question: What things do You see in heaven for this area Father? And whatever is laid on my heart I proceed to pray it. Usually, I end by asking Father God to encounter the area with HIS love and that people would know Jesus in a personal way.
About 7 years ago I started asking family and friends if they would do me a small favor as they traveled to exciting areas. I asked if they would take a moment to think of me and write my name in the sand or stones [whatever the landscape is] take a picture [preferably with them in it] and send it to me. I know this sounds a bit strange.
I have shared with these people that if my name is written in the ground, then maybe, one day I get to visit that area. But there is another reason I ask for such a bizarre request.
Let me explain. When the person thinks of me as they write my name on the ground, I feel I have a connection in that particular area. I will research that part of the world and pray however the Lord leads me to pray. It makes me feel special when I get a picture sent to me with the location, especially when it is unexpected. The picture above is the second one I got from this sweet friend of mine, totally out of the blue, she was in the Sahara Desert.
There is another area of ground I identify with; it is in Jerusalem. And as this week is drawing near to the day we acknowledge when Jesus was crucified, I think of the ground of Golgotha. My name might not have been written in the dirt where His blood was spilled but scripture indicates that HE thought of me [HE thought of us all] in those last moments before He said: “IT IS FINISHED.”
Jesus came into this world miraculously, born from the Virgin Mary to be our savior. There are people in my life who think that when a person makes a claim that they’re a Christ follower [Christian] then that person thinks highly of themselves, self-righteous and judgmental of others. Or to be a Christian there are too many requirements.
But when I read about Jesus’ life in the New Testament, I read how HE showed mercy and He loved people [even those that were unaccepted] at all times. Jesus, a King but always serving others, HE even washed feet. He didn’t judge. He was moved by love when he told the accusing crowd, who wanted to kill the adulterous woman, he who that is without sin cast the first stone.
Jesus showed us how to live. Live in peace. Live in love. He even showed us how to love and forgive those close to us, even when they fail to identify that they know us.
As for ‘requirements’.. the Disciples even asked Jesus; “What must we do to do the works God requires?” His answer; “Believe in the One He has sent.”
But the reason for this post is not to convince you of my beliefs. My reason is to simply share with you why I will stop and reflect this Friday of what Jesus endured so that I can have my identity in HIM.
Visualizing in my mind’s eye the ground at Calvary, the hilltop where my name is written, where Jesus thought of me.