I am continually amazed at how God knows exactly what I need and when I
need it. Just when I begin to think that He does not see or does not listen He is
there, just in the most unexpected way.
December was like that. The months leading up to December brought many
emotional ups and downs. We grieved over friends who moved. Not one, not two
but three. Three really great friends all moved within weeks of one another. In
that time, we also waited three months on a contract for a more permanent
location for our church. Silence prevailed, and we were eventually forced to walk
away from that potential location. Dreams of not having to be in a portable church
meeting space were dashed. Dreams of being able to better serve families in our city were put on hold. In the meantime, we cautiously celebrated a potential
foster care adoption, but right before December that celebration turned to grief.
When December arrived I found myself wondering if God had forgotten us. I
kept asking Him, ‘do you see us? Do you know that it hurts to help friends pack?
Do you not know that we are tired of the labor required for a portable church
location? Why are we entering another Christmas without the son you grafted
into our hearts? Where is he? Does he know he is loved? God, do you see?’
These questions plagued my prayers.
Then, one day FedEx delivered a box to my doorstep. I wondered who
would send our family, in Tennessee, a package from California? Thinking my
husband ordered something online, I let the package sit until he was home.
However, when I mentioned the package later that evening he assured me it was
not a surprise Christmas gift or anything special of which he was aware. I took
the task of opening the box. Inside I found a silver Christmas angel from a friend,
whom I had not seen or talked to in two years. The accompanying note might as
well as been written by God Himself. It read, ‘I wanted to thank you for reminding
me (three Christmases ago) that God sees. I carried the silver angel (that you
dropped on our doorstep) with me until the silver was worn away. El Roi, the God
who sees, has given our family new life…’. Reading that note, I found myself
gripping the edge of the kitchen counter as my knees and heart buckled under
this divine, unexpected and yet most holy of moments. You see, three years prior
I had taken a small, silver angel ornament from our Christmas tree and placed it
on the doorstep of this friend, who at the time lived nearby. In a brief and hurried
note, I guess I must have noted to her that El Roi saw her that year. Now God
basically sent that message right back to me.
I never again asked God if He saw us last December. It was clear. No
circumstances changed. Nothing in our day to day existence got easier, but I no
longer had to wonder if God was there, if He knew the pain of lost friends, of
waiting, or of grieving the son not in our home. He had spoken. It was in a still,
small voice written in a card by a friend thousands of miles away that God
Friend, today He is still the God who sees. He is El Roi, and He is watching
over you in the most unexpected of ways.