I shielded my eyes as morning light streamed through my bedroom window. I've always been in awe of God's creation--and the beauty of a sunrise--but never up early enough to take note of such Divine artistry. (My family agrees I'm not a "morning person)."
On this particular day, to awake suddenly at daybreak was highly unusual. Strangely, instead of feeling groggy, I felt as if a surge of energy coursed through me. (Note: this was while still horizontal and before ingestion of at least two cups of strong coffee). Was God trying to get my attention? If so, it was working.
The Lord knows me well. I am most receptive to ideas when I'm in a state of relaxation. And bed--well, that's one of those places. Within a mere second, as if by special delivery, an image came to mind. What I sensed, however, seemed to last much longer than that miniscule amount of time.
Imagine a vast expanse of clear blue sky, dotted with the most fluffy, bright white clouds. This was the image before me. Within it, I felt surrounded by immense beauty and light that came from every direction.
Then, two simple words came to my heart: "We Belong." This was a different answer to prayer. Usually they were directed to me, but this was different. The focus was on "We," not "Me."
So what was this about? I pondered the question. I had been praying for a number of people, as I usually do, and also sent up prayers for our church. In addition, I hoped for answers for the times I felt alone, even when surrounded by others. "We Belong" was a comforting thought. I wasn't truly alone, and neither was anyone else. This was about something much bigger, because "We" encompasses all of us, and together we belong...to God.
I was glad to have such a reminder. We're all in this together, to help each other, to share our faith, to encourage one another. To belong--what a great feeling!
Then, as I did each morning, I bowed my head. As I began to recite the Lord's Prayer, the first two words jumped out at me. "Our Father." Another reminder we all belong to God. He's not just "My Father" or "Your Father," but "Our Father."
I am certain this is just the way God wants it. Collectively, as a church body, we say, "Our Father." Yet in our individual prayers, we are reminded we're all in this together.
And truly, We Belong...to Him! #
A little homework: Reflect on the Lord's Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13). How many times do the words "us," "our", and "we" appear?
[Answers: The word "our" appears twice; the word "us" appears four times, and the word "we" appears once].