Sunday, May 25, 2014

We Will Run

Late last night my middle child and I returned home from the Florida Parent Educators Association Homeschool Conference. While there, instead of doing my usual of stalking the vendors' booths and attending workshops, I had the privilege of working in the IEW booth by assisting parents in selecting materials for their children. I saw the gamut, too. Some parents were brand new, excited and charged to begin their educational journey with their kids. Some parents had hit that bump in the road, and came in with tears swimming in their eyes. Some parents waxed nostalgic as they selected materials for their child's last year of homeschooling. I was crazy busy, and no wonder, too, as I later learned that that conference was officially the largest homeschool conference ever the world!
In my element! (Thanks, Michelle, for taking the photo!)
Perhaps that's why, once I got home and crawled into bed, I had this dream. In it, I was traveling with my family in an RV. We were cruising down the back roads of America, on our way home from a long journey. Suddenly the RV came to a halt. There was congestion up ahead. As I looked around, I realized there was no way to turn the RV around, so I climbed out of it, walked about a football field length away to find out what was holding everyone up, and searched for assistance. While I was searching, I saw the congestion almost magically clear and the RV, containing my loved ones, instantly disappeared with everyone else, presumably on its way home.

I was alone. Here's where it gets strange. Oddly, I wasn't afraid. In an instant, I decided I would just run home. I kicked up my heels and took flight. And I was fast! I ran quickly and nimbly, easily jumping streams and running up hills, and I never got tired or out of breath. I knew with all that I was that I would see my family at home as long as I stayed the course. When the alarm clock rudely interrupted my epic journey, I was initially upset. I could still feel the warm breeze on my arms and smell the grass in the field. I could hear the trickle of the stream. I wanted to be back in that dream and not sitting on the edge of my bed, rubbing my eyes, and willing my sore feet to move.

This dream reminded me of C.S. Lewis' fabulous series, The Chronicles of Narnia. In the last book (The Last Battle), the Pevensie children go through the mysterious door to a wonderful land on the other side. Excited, they also begin running, "further up and further in," little suspecting they have arrived in heaven. They run joyfully, faster and faster, marveling at having no fatigue. I thought it was such a powerful description of heaven written for young children, fascinating them and encouraging them, as they imagined the Pevensie children's fate.

Life, any way you slice it, is tiring. Daily we face uncertainty and battle fatigue. Life places demands on us, and we respond, but simply because we live in finite bodies, we tire. As we go about our daily business of living, loving, working, playing, and serving, it is a comfort to me to know that at the end of the race, there will be rest. Perhaps my favorite scripture illustrating this comes from Isaiah:

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;
the will run and not grow weary.
they will walk and not be faint.
Isaiah 40:28-31, NIV

Those are words of comfort and truth! They provide rest for my soul, and strength for my day. And when my days are done, they will carry me over.

Mac Powell sings a song that I keep reflecting on. "When Love Sees You," is sung as if it is the Lord Jesus singing to us. I love the video, and I hope you do too. May you have peace for your days and rest in Him!

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