Friday, January 8, 2016

Christ in My Car Console?

How does He do it?
I really want to know.
How does the Beginning and the End; the Alpha and the Omega; 
the One Who was, Who is and Who is Yet to Come...
How does He stuff Himself - and all of His glory-  into my car radio?
I want to know.

Happy New Year everybody.
2016 is already shaping up to be a banner year over here at the ol' McGarity homestead.
True, I'm still taking down the final relics of Christmas past.
(Every now and then I'll walk around a corner and see an angel still trumpeting over the living room....argh...)
A Christmas spent, for the first time in 47 years, in Southern California rather than Daphne, Alabama.
Yeah, I'm not gonna lie...that was a rough first.
But as with every life challenge, when I look closely enough, I see Jesus winking at me from the opposite side of the sadness, knowing I'll eventually discover the Providential purpose for the pain.

In my case, I believe that, other than taking care of a long overdue tonsillectomy for my daughter (hideous recovery...bless her heart), I was meant to be home for Christmas for a couple of reasons.

  • To rest.
  • To spend true "down time" with my husband and children.
  • To plan and dream and cogitate on the coming year.
  • And probably most importantly, to not feel the rush and stress and exhaustion of travel.

Yep, I got alot of great work done - in my head - and as I dropped Braden off at school this past Monday morning, I could focus on my prayed-upon-the-entire-holiday-and-finally-answered-word-of-the-year...
As in....
GO get 'em.
GO do it.'t. be. stagnant.
Hey, did you hear Me?!?!?!  #GO!!!!!!!

(It's funny, the more I type GO, the more it looks misspelled to me.  Such a weird word.)

Anyway, mostly I want my #wordoftheyear to reflect a passion for LISTENING before I move.  
I want to renew my faith, the kind of faith I feel I had a few years ago, before I started teaching again.  
Before the rushing around and the grading papers and the faculty drama and the vocal assessments got me wound up again.
I want to hear Him.  
See Him. 
Feel Him in everything.  
I spent part of my Christmas season prayerfully making that happen in my heart.
I finally feel as if I have my footing again in this endeavor.  

One of the ways I've found to keep step with Him is, if I'm not working outside of my home for the day, I drive the extra mile west from my boy's school and feast my eyes on the ocean for a few minutes before I drive home.  It never ceases to amaze me.  I find myself catching my breath with each white-capped wave that breaks.  On slightly warmer days, I roll my window down, literally tearing up when I smell the familiar sweetness of the beach.  It's an olfactory memory from my childhood that breaks my heart in the most profound way, and one that propels me into creativity.  I love it so.

This morning, I looked left as I turned onto Main Street and exclaimed, "Brae, look at the mountains in the distance!  They're snow-capped!  I don't think I can recall seeing the mountains since we moved from Long Beach.  Do you see them?"
His response?
Still, I felt that familiar peace wash over me, the kind that blankets my heart when I acknowledge the majesty of the world in all that He created.
Mountains and ocean in one day?  Today?  Do I have time?  The laundry and the bathrooms and the weekly Disney Musicals reflection were beckoning.  
Nah, no time.
Or do I?
Should I?
Shouldn't I?
The tug-of-war was on.
Was I being selfish taking the drive and "wasting the time?"
Or was I being called to GO despite the day's obligations. 
I'm telling ya', it's really painful being in my head sometimes.
Sooooooo dense.

"Okay, Lord," I thought.  "You're on.  If you want me to GO home, tell me.  If you want me to feast my eyes on your creation and GO to the water, tell me.  I'm listening either way."
Seriously, not 30 seconds later, I heard...

"Take a look at the mountains
Stretching a mile high.
Take a look at the ocean
Far as your eye can see
And think of Me."

Matthew West's More

That beautiful Matthew West song that tells us of God's great love for us - and how He shows it in the mountains, desert, ocean, stars, every perfect creation under the Heavens - came rocking from my car speakers.
But seriously?  
That it mentioned mountains first...then oceans?!?
" You're just showing off God."

So How does He stuff Himself - and all of His glory-  into my car radio?
He's in every molecule...
Every moment...
Every majestic sight, sound, smell, taste, touch...
Every everything that ever touched the earth.
So what did I do?
I went for a drive.
And felt my breath catch.
And tears well up.
And heart swell at the gifts and the glory He prepares for me each and every day.

- Praying amazing, glorious, 
God-and-glory-filled moments 
for each of you in 2016.  
Thanks for reading.