I have never heard God speak to me so loud and clear as I have on this trip, which is pretty exciting because His voice kept my mind and heart in a high place throughout the time, and it saved me from wallowing or being disgruntled as I served.
God spoke to me about many things, and I will share blurbs on each one:
• God speaks about what it means to be a “God of Wonders”
• God speaks to me about my role in His kingdom
• God speaks about the true gift and the Giver and that which is more precious than gold
God of Wonders:
“What does it mean God, that you are a God of Wonders?” I pondered this on the plane ride from San Francisco to Indonesia. I know it’s common knowledge that our God is a God of Wonders, and that He does many signs and wonders, healing people, and doing crazy things like letting people walk on water. All that is great, but like a Lord of the Rings movie, if you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all. So I sat there and asked, “What is the new revelation you want me to grasp about you being the God of Wonders?” I started to think and look up bible verses with the word “wonder, marvel, awe” in it.
What makes God wondrous? Is it what he does? Is it His miracles and signs and healings? Or is it who He is? Just that He is wonderful?
I made a list of expectations for the trip and thought, “I will know you are God of Wonders if these expectations are fulfilled.” Then God spoke to me through John 5:20.
“Elani, what happens when you lose marvel of me? You lose your wonder, your awe, your love, your attention of me. I become like one that you don’t care about, old news, stale. When you lose your marvel of me, you’ve lost everything. You’ve disqualified yourself from knowing that which no eye has seen, no ear has heard and no mind has conceived.”
I realize that marveling God leads ME to a place of wonder and of asking, an intimate place that leads me to hidden treasures, and which results in deep worship. That when God says he’s a God of Wonder, he’s a God of the People Who Wonder. That to behold “wonder” is a gift. There are those that wonder, and those that do not. Those that wonder will be taken places that no eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has conceived. Of course God will do his thang and heal people and make miracles happen, but even that can get old. What God is after is our wonder of him, our marvel that leads to worship. And the amazing thing is, He allows us to press in, to ask for more and more and more. Prepare to be amazed, because he will always outdo himself. He goes from glory to glory and brings us along for the ride!
My Role in the Kingdom:
In the working world, I have a job title, as a video producer, and in God’s kingdom, I also have a role. God has called me to be a scribe trained for the kingdom.
52 And he said to them, “Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like a master of a house, who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old.” -Matthew 13:52
There is a daily dying of oneself when you capture someone else’s life behind a lens. You must always be positioned apart from the group in order to capture the group. You must roam the land and listen and see where God is moving and be there to catch Him. At times, it felt like it was just me and my camera.
As silly as it sounds, I crave to be a part of the fun, to be in the photos, and to be seen. And God brought to my attention my selfishness and challenged me to be selfless.
As I walked around by myself at the crusade, I would pray and ask God, “Where do you want me to stand so that I can capture your magnificence?” I am to know the layout and the land and where I should be for what opportune shot. And even though I didn’t express it out loud, God spoke to my heart when I felt left out.
He said, “So you feel lonely, ay? Do you think you can give your camera to someone else and that it would be pleasing to me?”
“No, Lord…no one else knows how to use this thing as well as I do.”
“Right. I have appointed you and called to be a scribe. For your role is holy, set apart, and I am training you to see the kingdom on earth as I see it in heaven.”
You would think that after God encouraged me like that, that I would not struggle any more – but I did… I struggled with not being seen and not interacting as others would. I struggled with the idea of always being there to capture the moment rather than to partake in the joy of the moment. I struggled with not being able to see God work miracles through the laying on of MY hands. When everyone else had great testimonies of what they would witness and experience, all I have had was a heavy camera to carry.
BUT, and at the point of my heart’s rebellion, God spoke to me saying, “You don’t think you’re powerful? You want proof you can heal? You can do nothing apart from me. But your mere presence is powerful. You are powerful not because of what you can do, but because of who you belong to. You bring light, joy and freedom wherever your foot treads. You are a new breed – one that can minister powerfully even while holding a camera. One that I have set apart and entrusted with the treasures of my kingdom.”
“You are disheartened that you are unseen? That is a lie. Everyone sees you. They need you to see them. Every time you make eye contact and acknowledge someone and point that camera you are saying “I see you” “I acknowledge you” and without words you communicate value and worth to them that says, “You are welcome to partake in my joy and freedom. I invite you to carry this light inside you – the light of Christ.”
“I am sending you out like a lamb among wolves – to walk through dark places and usher my presence, to keep your joy, freedom, and light and offer it to every eye that falls upon you. You are not alone, for I am with you wherever you go.”
In His voice I found comfort and joy. It became my honor to roam the land. I was honored to walk in dark places alone. Honored to greet unfriendly faces and see them light up when I would take their photograph. Honored to share with the masses the things God has placed in front of me. Thank you Jesus for this time of serving you. It is my honor to work on your behalf.
We are called to be like Jesus, and so I need to get this one thing down. Jesus said, “for I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.”
The Gift and The Giver
I finally started to see awesome miracles and healing happen under MY very own hands.
This lady here, her knees are healed and they stopped shaking, she was able to walk freely. Before she used crutches, and needed people to help walk her to the alter call area.
I thought that I would be so excited and amazed to see healing under my own hand; however my emotional response took me by surprise. I realized that when healing DID happen, there wasn’t anything I did differently than the times that healing didn’t happen. I also realized that I didn’t feel powerful or anything. I just knew that Jesus had done it!
I even thought this lady who received healing was ungrateful because after her knees where healed, she just said Hallelujah once and immediately asked me to pray healing over something else that was wrong with her body. I was like, “shoot lady, you want a full body make-over with new eyes and everything and you haven’t even praised God for the amazing gift you just received!” Something in me was turned off because I felt like she was ungrateful and just wanted gifts from God and not the Giver himself.
Looking back at my thoughts, I realize now it was wrong of me to judge her and think those things. God showed me that His love for His people was way beyond my love for the people. He was going to heal who he wanted to even if I didn’t really contend for them. God was going to heal them even if He did not receive praise and glory because that is who He is – he loves us first.
There was also the flip side, and those who DID receive healing that are amazed and would began to praise Jesus! Surprisingly, the best part was not seeing the actual healing, but seeing the person light up with this intangible gift called “faith in Jesus Christ.” I saw that those who received faith with their healing received faith in the Giver himself and not just the gift. The thrill of seeing people light up with the light of Christ, and come to faith in Jesus Christ, was more exhilarating than seeing healing happen under my hand; because I saw that there was a change in a deep part of their soul, and not just the surface area of our flesh.
I return from this trip not so much as amazed at miracles and healing as I thought I would be, but more so eager to know God even more. It amazes me that God’s word is so simply true and powerful. I love that Jesus shows up and does his great wonders through our simple human bodies and our simple human words. I love that there is such power in the name of Jesus, that even the scariest looking demonic oppression cannot win against our Lord. I love that the effects of Jesus’ presence is so clearly visible and instant. That people who were set free from the night before, from demonic oppression, did not need deliverance again the next day. The people that received healing for clear vision the day before did not need their eyes opened again. Jesus is so real. As His children, we are so powerful, and have such amazing perks like reaching into heaven and simply asking our Father to show up and help us out with something. And He does.
I plan to reach into heaven a lot more now that I really know that I am a beloved daughter of my Heavenly Father and can help myself to anything in the fridge as many times as I please. My Heavenly Father is the God of Wonders, and He never disappoints.