This post is a throwback to the early days of Wellspring when I first began writing of the heart life. Over nine years later, this season is full of a strange tension.
Fingerprints of God
I readily state that I live watching for the fingerprints of God. Of late, it seems that a personal era was scheduled on Abba’s timetable to come to an end. The strange tension is that it really isn’t the end; it’s a growing forward. You know, all that I have been writing about and inviting you to consider for your own life as well. A few days ago, the boundless graces and fresh mercies of God showed up unplanned.
Friday afternoon, the day after our Independence Day holiday, my husband and I were on a phone call. I went to fetch my laptop, unplugged it from the power source, and picked it up as usual – on either side. Except this time, with no provocation, it slipped from the grip of my right fingers and that side came down hard on our wood dining table. My immediate thought was “that didn’t sound good!” It wasn’t.
For months I’ve wrestled with an element of take it or leave it as I keep writing and sharing. At the same time, there remains a steady determination to pursue what I know that I know Father has called me to and asked me to be about concerning His business. A strange tension. Whenever I pop my head up to survey the land, I see the need for the messages He wants released. But only He can penetrate hearts.
Really Dead and Likely Gone
Laptop story short, the techs I spoke to assured me it was really dead and best to consider my data gone. Unless I wanted to spend a minimum of $800 upward to $1600 and send it away for a month to highly unlikely recover anything, I was told to pitch it. There was a strange tension. Not so fast.
Yes, it meant a new laptop. The sooner the better. It would mean becoming crash-course acquainted with Windows 10, which – fingerprint alert! – was sneaking up as a have-to by the end of this year. When you realize you haven’t thought of things in a while, but He has, it is easy to see His fingerprints.
A new laptop, external hard drive, and One Drive set up later, more regular backups are burned into me. Isn’t that the way when the Lord is determined as well? He clearly wants to be heard – if we will listen. Ones say they can’t hear Him. But even when quiet, His fingerprints are there. We make use of another sense by noticing what’s occurring – or not.
Resurrection, With Lighter Luggage
Sometimes, someone has a good idea. You can ignore it, pre-decide it won’t work and not do anything, or figure it’s worth a shot and do something. My husband suggested we try to find a local computer tech willing to look at my laptop to see if they could retrieve any data. I am glad we did!
Mr. small business works out of his home Tech Guy performed surgery and recovered a majority of data. A few corrupted files here and some missing photos there, most of which are copied elsewhere, I was back in business. Thankfully I had a years-long habit of saving my writing on a flash drive. Between the two, most everything is re-accessible. Except for my voice. Recordings, that is.
The missing voice files I asked “why?” over consisted of my signature Wreck Room Renovations class and all but one retreat’s sessions, still on my recorder. Mr. Tech Guy gave it the ol’ college try, but nada.
Remember this post is largely about God’s fingerprints? It is also about interpreting His will.
His ‘New Things’ Heart
The former things, lo, have come, and new things I am declaring,
Before they spring up, I cause you to hear.
Isaiah 42:9 YLT
God has been faithful to us – you and me. Learning to reciprocate is one of the most valuable life lessons we can gain.
To that end I have attempted to be faithful to that which I know has been instructed, led, and orchestrated by Him. It hasn’t escaped me that the very data lost were the verbal teachings recorded at events that had already become, for me, the former things. I still have the written notes and teachings. I’m a scribe first by His design, and He honored that. His favor flows over that which is of Him, friends.
For a lengthy time now, He has been sharing new things and new thoughts with me. I am not seeing them spring up yet, though I am watchful – always – for His fingerprints. Meanwhile, He is speaking.
I was heartened by the fact that the laptop crash did not get me wrapped around the axle. Loss is a part of life. It has taken time to heal, have my mind renewed, and persevere in “a long obedience in the same direction”.1 The principles of God’s Word don’t shift and change. They are truth that is trustworthy. We surely do reap what we sow2; a principle that works both ways: negatively, or, in life more abundant.
A Strange Tension
It took the breaking of my laptop to receive an answer for a strange tension I had not yet resolved. The next day I got up and clear as the summer morning it was, understanding and peace settled.
The resulting decision is to return to the joy of writing for an audience of One. I’ll share when there is something to share. I’ll alert readers after another series of articles are posted on nancybentz.com.
I’m going to enjoy the remaining summer; there is travel planned and family to love on. We continue to meet with our clients and work in the ‘field’ that God has entrusted to us. As He stirs, we lean in closer.
Postscript for a Prescript
In the middle of writing this post, His fingerprints showed up again as I came across a 5+ year-old post: Vineyard Days – Under His Shadow. We can never out-maneuver His grace. Or timing.
~ Gracefully Free
1 Eugene Peterson 2 Galatians 6:7