Miracles have always happened for me.
I won’t tell you ALL of them just yet, because you’d really think I was some kinda crazy religious nut… but there have been a bunch of them in my lifetime. I’ve always had this hunch that I’m one of God’s favorites for that reason.
And not ‘favorite’ in an arrogant, I’m special and better than everyone sort of way, more of an in awe because I don’t know why God would choose me way.
I have definitely screwed up more than enough for one lifetime.
But anyhoo all I know is that I pray, and God answers me, in spite of it.
Annie’s brain tumor, for instance.
And more. SO much more. So much during the years of torment and torture between 2011ish and 2016ish, or was it 2017… I lose count now. But there were answered prayers. Lots of them. All of them.
God is El Roi,
a friend told me on the phone once, during the worst of it.
Huh? I responded. I mean, I know Him pretty well, but … what’s that…
El Roi. God sees.
Interesting, I thought. All those semesters of Bible college and whatnot and I don’t recall that one.
I mean, of course, I goofed off COMPLETELY all though Bible college on account of how I was there for the dumb choices and the baseball players which might be why I don’t recall all the details and names of God and whatnot and yet God loves me and answers my prayers anyway.
Me. A Bible college goof-off.
One night I was working a vendor table at an event and sat down to read a book while the crowd was in the auditorium, a book about Spiritual Warfare, because events had transpired that had caused me to be quite certain that what was happening right then was, in fact, demonic — and it was beyond my level of Bible college competence to handle so I was reading about it in my down time —
And as I was reading this book, blinking back tears on account of the torture and torment I was living in and total overwhelm and sleep deprivation and desperation and panic and WHAT SHOULD I ACTUALLY DO BECAUSE I DO NOT KNOW, this elderly lady* made a beeline to me, at my vendor table, when EVERYONE ELSE WAS IN THE OTHER ROOM, and said the Lord had told her someone at this event needed her and when she saw me reading that book, she knew I was the one.
The Lord wanted me to tell you that He is El Roi and He sees,
And she prayed with me. And in her prayer she talked to God about everything going on with me, because somehow she knew.
Huh, I thought. I never heard of El Roi, and then twice in one week. How did she know?
She invited me to her Wednesday night Bible study… about Spiritual Warfare.
Is this the most whackadoodle thing, or what?
Just wait. There’s more.
And then I got a necklace in the mail from some very precious friends.
In it was a card that read,
You are loved and seen. You are not forsaken. He is walking through the valley with you.Love, your friends
And with it, a Giving Keys necklace.
A Giving Keys necklace that just so happened to be stamped with the letters, E L R O I.
I don’t believe in coincidence.
I believe in a God who goes OUT OF HIS WAY to orchestrate so many little details into a story so outlandish that there’s NO WAY these things could have happened any other way but that GOD Himself had to do it.
And that’s the story of my life.
Well, that’s part of one of the stories. There are lots more.
I bought a house in 2017, and that whole story was crazy and outlandish, as well.
Like, so crazy and outlandish that seven different miracles had to happen in order for me to get this little yellow house, but they did – one two three four five six seven – and here we are.
Me. A Bible college goof-off.
*And that lady lives exactly one block away, on the same street. Our house numbers are one digit off from each other. The week we moved in, I had my girls and pets in the yard to take a selfie of our fam in front of our new house… and she came walking down the street.
This week in Bible study,
I read in Genesis about Abraham and Hagar and Sarah and realized that the name El Roi came from this story — a story I wrote about here, back in 2013 — when God sought Hagar out and met her at the well at the point of her greatest need, and called her by name.
Exactly like that time (those times?) He met me, at the point of my most desperate need.
Hagar, God said. His first word to her was her own name.
He knew her and saw her, and knew her name, and she called him El Roi.
He knows me and sees me.
What a gift that is, to be seen.