Monday, February 16, 2009

Dancing with tambourines

I’d be dancing with a tambourine if I had one.

Jamaica has hovered on my imagination for several years and I thought this was the year to go. Until last week.

I told you last fall that God has asked me to pray about joining a team going to Jamaica. I did pray and I expected to go, but God never gave me the go-ahead. When the deadline came to buy plane tickets, I didn’t feel God’s permission and I didn’t go.

The team went last week and I stayed home, praying for them.

A week ago, a small ache began in my cheekbones and I assumed I had a sinus infection setting in. But by Friday, I was sitting in a dentist’s chair getting a root canal.

The week had been painful and uncomfortable.

When I realized that I could have spent the week in Jamaica with a horrible toothache, I began thanking God.

But why did he ask me to pray about going if he knew I shouldn’t go?

I think this is why: to be sure I noticed what he had done.

If he hadn’t asked me to pray about the trip, I wouldn’t have seen the overlap of toothache and trip.

He didn’t give me the toothache but he set the stage to keep me in the right place to deal with it. And to notice that listening to his words protected me.

He reminded his people before: "I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness.” (Jer 31:3)

But here’s the tambourine part: “Again you will take up your tambourines and go out to dance with the joyful.” (Jer 31:4)

Even without a tambourine, I’m dancing with the joyful for such a Father.

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