A marker board 730 miles away answered a prayer for direction, and here’s how…
This past week has been a rough one for me. I cried a lot and wondered if I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing and if I’m where God wants me to be.
Wednesday night, I felt the overwhelming need to post this on Facebook. At the time, I didn’t know why.
Thursday morning, the tears were still afresh, and while at work in my office, I prayed that God would manifest His presence, that I would be able to see Him clearly, and discern where/what He wants for me and my life. For, at the time, the doubts were high and my spirits were low.
During my work day, I missed a call from a friend, whose child has been in the church preschool where I am the director. We bonded over a year ago when her family was going through the storm of job searching, and one day when she was dropping her child off, we paused our day to pray together. There were other brief bonding moments too, but when you pray with someone, it takes your relationship to a whole other level.
The job search took her family away from Georgia and to Missouri.
She left a voicemail that said she saw my Facebook post, which reminded her of our time praying together, and she asked if I’d give her a call.
At this, I looked toward heaven and smirked. I could already tell that God was at work, going back to the need to post what I did on Facebook the night before.
I returned her call, and also left a voicemail, letting her know that I needed prayers too, and would look forward to talking together.
When she called back, I asked her what was up. (Busy mom life means that sometimes you have to cut to the chase, you know?)
She told me about the storm her family had just entered. Keep in mind, that the initial stormy weather that took them to the midwest had calmed, but that same storm was not yet completely dried up, as the “adjusting to a new place” phase takes a while.
I was floored at her news. I silently shook my head back and forth, somehow telling this storm, “No! You can’t do this!”.
She went on to say that in her husband’s commute to work, there was this restaurant he passes, and had wanted to try out. On this particular day, after the storm reared it’s head, he stopped in for breakfast.
There, he saw this marker board:
When he came home, he told his wife, “If God is as good as you say He is, then I’m going to claim this verse through this storm.”
As she was telling me this part of the story, she was trying to find the picture of the marker board, so that she could share the verse with me. Unable to find it in the moment, I told my friend that this totally sounds like a “Romans 8:28” situation.
At that moment, she sat straight up and exclaimed, “That’s the verse! That’s it! Let me look it up!”
I knew it by heart, so I recited it,
“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”
That was it, but my friend said that it was a different translation on the board, and as she continued to hunt the picture, I shared that this was a “Romans 8:28” situation, because God could use this storm for His good. He could use it to introduce Himself in a brand new way to her husband. God could take something bad and cause it to work for good.
Because, God can indeed use ALL things…the good, the bad, and the ugly…all of this can be used to bring God glory.
We cried as she found the picture and confirmed that it was indeed the same verse. It brought comfort and hope to us both that it was no coincidence and that a higher power, that God, is at work here.
For me, it also confirmed that God’s Word is indeed alive and active.
“For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”
Then, my friend asked about me, and what was going on. I told her that I was doubting that I was where I was supposed to be, and that perhaps, God has somewhere else in store for me.
That’s when she shared with me about what the preschool meant to her, and how the love of God is evident there. She went on to say more, and I am confident that God spoke through her response, straight to me.
I left the conversation with no doubt that I’m where I’m supposed to be for this moment in time. She left the conversation with the validation that God never leaves us.
Wanting to explore God’s fingerprints here more, I asked my friend the name of the restaurant, and I called them, seeking the employee that wrote the verse, Becca.
When I talked to Becca, I explained that the verse she wrote on the marker board last Friday in Missouri has made it’s way to Georgia, answering a question that I asked God, and I shared how it helped my friend’s husband too. I asked if she’d mind sharing with me why she choose that particular verse.
That’s when she told me that she’s currently going through a storm that has caused her a lot of anxiety. She’s been reading her Bible, which has helped, and she figured that if God’s Word has helped her, that perhaps it could help others too. So, she’s been writing verses that have helped in her situation, and Romans 8:28 was one of them.
We were both in awe of how God worked here. Tears welled up for us both, as we could clearly see God’s fingerprints. I thanked Becca for being used of God to bless others, and for sharing her story with me.
Who would’ve thought that…
-a hostess at the Belgian Waffle and Pancake House in Ozark, Missouri could write a verse on a marker board, and…
-that it would “speak” to a man who came in after hearing stormy news, who…
-would share it with his wife, who is shouldering the storm with him and…
-that it would bring insight to my cries to God for discernment and direction?
Some say that God does not exist, that His Word has no power…I’d say otherwise. I see Him over and over and over, and this story is no exception to that fact.
Back to the verse I posted on Facebook that started the chain of events here…
“Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.”
I’d say that God INDEED did far more than I would’ve thought here.
For, none of us could’ve imagined how Becca writing a verse on a restaurant marker board would do all this, and perhaps even more, as this story makes it’s rounds, showing others the POWER of our alive, active, living, loving God.
Praise be to Him the glory forever and ever, Amen!!!!
*This story and the names within are shared with permission.