Only God knows how many "parts" this road to Bear Paw will have. Over the last several days we have faced some new and fairly large obstacles on this road. So much so that I was prompted to call on a prayer warrior and spiritual mentor to pray with me over the situation. I needed that support first of all because I was emotionally shaken, but also because I've gotten a little sick of hearing my own prayers on this matter. Side note, isn't it wonderful that the Holy Spirit intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. Sometimes I feel like I keep trying to pray but can't express with the right words what is deep inside. Other times it's just the same words I've been praying the whole time: Lord, your will be done, may this be for your glory, open the doors you want us to proceed in, close those you don't. God knows my heart, he hears the words that are never even expressed and understands those that are repeated over and over again.
Romans 8:26-28 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will. And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
But, sometimes it helps my soul to pray along with someone else and the Bible says God is there with us as we pray together. Among other things, we prayed for peace, and God met me right there, immediately, with a peace that passes understanding by a long shot! Not only peace, but a filling of the Spirit that prompted a day of endless worship and praise. Quite a difference from the way the day started. Keep in mind the circumstances had not changed.
I also came away with the reminder that God is handling this process. He will get all the glory for the outcome and even more so as we face humanly impossible odds. The timing is his as well. It is definitely not unfolding on the schedule we had originally, or even secondarily, set. In the face of discouragement and wondering "had we miss read God's calling", I was reminded how threatened our enemy must be. We have prayed from day one that God would close the door to Bear Paw if he had other plans. We didn't want to waste time and effort in pursuing the camp if those efforts should be placed somewhere else. Doors have not closed for us. These challenges we are facing are obstacles, and yes they are tough, but the door to this new ministry remains open, so we continue to pursue. Satan will continue to throw obstacles, fears, doubts, and distractions into our path but greater is he that is in us than he that is in the world.
All of us face these times of uncertainty and, quite frankly, those of you who might think you've got things fairly well planned out... you don't. We never really know what tomorrow holds. We do know that God is the same God that created the universe, who knows each of us intimately, loved us enough to die for us, and strengthens us through trials. How do we persevere? Our hope is in God!
Isaiah 40:28-31 Do you not know? Have you not heard?
The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom.
He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.
Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall;
but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.