Thursday, October 10, 2013


When the LORD brought back the captives to Zion, we were like men who dreamed. Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, "The LORD has done great things for them." The LORD has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy. Restore our fortunes, O LORD, like streams in the Negev. Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy. He who goes out weeping carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with him. ~ Psalm 126

Nearly every morning Sandy and I have a coffee together. Then she goes to her office just off the living room, and I go downstairs to mine. She curls up in her big chair to read and journal, and I go outside, sit in a red canvas chair, take in the stars, and then settle in behind my desk to read and journal. Before we head out for work, we huddle up a few minutes and sort of debrief. Last week we talked about the Psalm at the top of this post.

We feel like we have come out of captivity. Don't misunderstand, we do not consider our stint in China as serving time. Far from it. No, ours was an incarceration of a different kind. The best way I can describe it is to say that as things unraveled we just didn't have the confidence of God's leading in our lives--like we were always looking through prison bars. We felt battered, and a sense that we were being bounced from pillar-to-post. In the midst of it all we continued to bring our disquieted souls to God as best we knew how and prayed for the restoration of our fortunes. God only knows that we had financial needs, but those were not the "fortunes" we were seeking. What we needed most was a new song, a renewed joy, and a fresh vision from God.

God is doing just that. Materially, our needs are being met. Geographically, spiritually, and emotionally the prison doors have been sprung, and we are walking toward the daylight of an ever expanding freedom. Friends in our world are celebrating with us the great things the LORD has done on our behalf. Together, we are filled with joy. We know that weeping and sowing will always be a part of the journey, but some of those tears have begun to bring forth fruit, and a harvest is just around the corner.

We are possibility-dreaming again...the prison bars have become window frames.

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