Sunday, May 20, 2018

Traveling the Distance

There is truly nothing like the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit. In the words of UK recording artist Seal, having Jesus in my life is a "growing addiction that I can't deny." (Kiss From A Rose, 1994)

When you are spiritual, you mind the things of the spirit (Romans 8). You are open to how God speaks, which He often does in the variety of ways.  God is so unlimited and unrestricted in how He deals with His creation.  Example: Driving along I-75 on my way to the Red Ink Conference.

My colleague and sister in Christ, Tenita Johnson, hosts a Red Ink Conference each year.  This conference ignites the author, editor, playwright to utilize their gift with no reservation.  Over the last  three years, I've seen major growth and phenomenal results.  This conference birthed many budding authors and placed a fire under the feet of those aspiring to write.  It is a work that I'm sure for her, started in tears; but now, she's reaping the harvest of years she'd sown in tears.

Driving along the interstate, I meditated and prayed for traveling mercies.  I thought about the distance I was traveling as I anticipated the wealth of information I was about to receive at this conference. Troy is not terribly far from where I live, but it's certainly not around the corner from me either.  After a quick glance at my GPS, I continued driving and took notice of how the sky clouded up as if it was about to pour down any minute.
Picture courtesy of Google
I kept driving, and literally out of nowhere, RAIN!  No warning droplets of rain, but downpour!
The roads immediately transformed from dry to extremely wet pavement.  Bumping my windshield wipers up to a faster speed, I marveled at how it seemed to be raining in one place.  It was like, I drove INTO IT.  As I continued down I-75, the rain dissipated, however the roads got rough.  Michigan is known for our infamous potholes after a harsh winter season. Potholes replaced the dotted lines that divided each lane. As long as I stayed in the middle of the lane, I didn't haven't to worry about pot holes or damaging my car.

Next thing I knew, I was staring deep inside the trailer of a truck in front of me.  It startled me a bit because I'm not accustomed to driving behind an 18-wheeler with an OPENED back end.  My first thought was "What's gonna fall out of this trailer and crash my windshield?" The long, seemingly unending hallow hall of darkness loomed in front of me and evoked a weird, scary feeling.  The longer I stared into this dark space, I felt anxiety brewing.  I had to get from behind this distraction.  Once cleared, I switched lanes and kept it moving.  

Then, the revelation initiated it's heavenly download and the tears came.  Just like Father God.

Webster's define distance as a point or place that is far away from another point or place.
Oftentimes, we will have to travel outside our comfortable space to get to the next phase of our destiny.  And that's good, because extreme comfort can produce complacency.  Growing in your gift/craft often requires traveling outside of your norm to achieve next level success.  Some of the most precious things aren't within our reach.  

Traveling the distance will bring about obstacles, challenges, introspection and conquering fear.
Sometimes you may have to do things scared.  The objective is to get it done. The rain came upon me quite suddenly.  Although my visibility was limited, I still had to keep moving.  We may not see our all that our future holds.  Because the storms of life have reduced visibility, our future may seem gloomy.  The thing about rain is that it promotes growth.  We would have a drought (naturally and spiritually speaking) if rain ceased completely.  Through Christ, we can soar above the storm.  Just keep moving.

Traveling the distance can be rocky.  Although the rain dissipated, potholes appeared along the lines that divided each lane.  I was reminded of how our walk is a straight, narrow walk and wide pathways leads to destruction (Matthew 7:13). All I had to do was stay right in the middle/center of the road.  I chuckled because I thought about my sister, Pastor Lisa Reeves and how she preached about staying in the middle.  The center is a place of stability.  In fact, in my blog "STORM ALERT," I talked about whenever we have a tornado warning, we are instructed to go to the lowest part of the house/building or the CENTER of an interior room.  When we are centered, rooted and grounded in Christ, storms of life can arise and attempt to shake our faith.  But being centered makes us unmovable. That's why the psalmist said "and he shall be like a tree planted (grounded) by the rivers of water..." (Psalm 1:3)  That water is the living water, which is Jesus Christ.  He brings that fortifying nourishment we need to stand!

Traveling the distance can be scary.  Seeing that long narrow dark space inside that trailer disturbed me.  Do you realize that the enemy wants you to abort mission and not fulfill the divine assignment on your life?  The enemy will plant distractions in your path.  It is up to you to remove the distraction or no longer entertain it.  I could have continued driving behind that trailer and allowed anxiety to build up.  Instead, I refused to allow this distraction to disturb me, saw a clearing and got from around it.
God always makes a way of escape (1 Corinthians 10:13); it's up to us to simply utilize the option presented.

Traveling the distance, running this race (1 Corinthians 9:24, Hebrews 12:1) will not be a cakewalk, but as long as you keep moving with faith and patience, you will arrive into a place of immense blessings.  Do not be afraid to GO; just be LED by the One who knows the plans concerning your life (Jeremiah 29:11-13). 

Ignore those clouds; the Sun of righteousness is still there. 

Keep traveling the distance!


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