Thursday, August 6, 2009

His Watchful Eye




My friend Miss Betty told me I needed to share this little story, so here goes...


Recently, I was unexpectedly blessed with a few days of recuperation at the beach.

The ocean has always been a place of peace and healing for me. A yearly beach trip is a sanity-saver. I’m not one to lie in a lounge chair by the pool, however. I don’t let a little sand and wind keep me from the edge of the world.

After several days of rain, we finally saw a patch of blue sky. I grabbed a towel and ran out and plopped it down on the soaking wet, hard sand. I tried reading, but it bothered my neck...so I just lay flat on my wet towel and watched the sky. The action was lively. Blue, gray, and white swirled together like some exotic ice/whipped cream concoction. Shapes formed and dispersed.

Then I saw the face of God.

No kidding...that’s what it looked like, beard and all.

I contemplated the visual. I stared at the gentle eyes, and wondered for a moment what God really looks like. The image was sweet and comforting, even if stereotypical. He seemed to be looking at me with a little smile on his face. I fumbled around for my cell phone to take a picture, but the clouds had morphed into a different shape by the time I managed to dig it out of the beach bag.

They had formed a huge eye, like the one in Great Gatsby.

The eye of God “going to and fro over all the earth?”

***************

I can’t stay still for long, so I started walking down the familiar shoreline to the inlet. Families were out on the sandbars together, playing in the surf. Adorable children were everywhere, making me long for James.

As the sun began to shine more brightly, it got hot. Before long, I couldn’t resist the urge to plunge into the ocean. I love the buoyancy of salt water, the rocking of waves. I played for a while, then began walking back to shore, moving slowly against the tide. As I got within a few feet of shoreline, I felt my foot hit something heavy. A silent, sickening thud...then something long and slick slowly moving across the top of my instep. I couldn’t move.

When the churning water cleared, I saw a 4-foot shark swimming away from me in the shallow water. Sharp, triangular fin gleaming in the sunlight, he slowly curved his way back out to sea.

Breathless, I ran up to the nearest group of people. “Did you see that?” I panted. They looked at me like I was crazy when I told them I’d just kicked a shark.

I went back to my towel and lay down, shaken. I offered up a silent prayer of thanksgiving for Divine protection. When I opened my eyes, I was blinded by the sight I saw. The sun was a dazzling circle of diffused light, surrounded by a dramatic cloud formation on either side. The clouds formed the shape of huge wings.

***************

At a time of such fear and uncertainty in our lives, I am grateful for this symbolic, but overt, reminder of God’s watchful eye and protective wings. Hints of his presence and intervention are scattered throughout creation.

God only knows how many mysteries we miss.

***************

“Nothing in all creation is hidden from God's sight” (Hebrews 4:13)


Psalm 91

1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.

2 I will say of the LORD, "He is my refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust."

3 Surely he will save you from the fowler's snare
and from the deadly pestilence.

4 He will cover you with his feathers,
and under his wings you will find refuge;

his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.

5 You will not fear the terror of night,
nor the arrow that flies by day,

6 nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,
nor the plague that destroys at midday.
7 A thousand may fall at your side,
ten thousand at your right hand,
but it will not come near you.

8 You will only observe with your eyes
and see the punishment of the wicked.

9 If you make the Most High your dwelling—
even the LORD, who is my refuge-

10 then no harm will befall you,
no disaster will come near your tent.
11 For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways;

12 they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
13 You will tread upon the lion and the cobra;
you will trample the great lion and the serpent.

14 "Because he loves me," says the LORD, "I will rescue him;
I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.

15 He will call upon me, and I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble,
I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With long life will I satisfy him
and show him my salvation."

***************

(p.s. In case it's hard to tell, the picture is of the tail-end of the 'wings' apparition. Of course by the time I pulled out the phone, it had already started to change. But you can still get the idea.)

5 comments:

Mary Jane said...

Dear Kim ~ Please tell Miss Betty thanks for encouraging you to write this post. I needed it today ~ especially Ps. 91. From years of Bible reading, I could almost recite it from memory, but this morning it was a fresh balm. (I'll explain why in just a moment.)

I have followed Katherine's progress from the beginning. I am a Wilmington, NC pastor's wife who suffered a brain aneurysm one month prior to Katherine's AVM. We have 3 grown children and a 13 yr. old "surprise baby." On Tuesday morning, my "baby" son and I stopped for coffee at a drive-thru and two cups of the EXTREMELY HOT beverage spilled into his lap severely burning his thighs, buttocks and private areas. It was and has been a traumatic experience for us all. We have been clinging to Isa. 43:2-3 & 5. We are now in the burn unit at Chapel Hill hospital. Please keep our son Joshua in your prayers.

I'm so glad I took the time to check your blog this morning. You always bless my heart but this morning, as a mom with a suffering child, I needed your words. Thank you for being His vessel of blessing poured out on all of us! I love you Kim!
By His Grace, Mary Jane Waters
email: mjwaters1@juno.com

Peggy Dabbs said...

Kim, Thank you so much for sharing
the picture and the story with us.
How many different ways does our God protect us everyday? Psalm 91
has always given me great comfort too.

I just finished reading Katherine's
recent posting! How exciting that
so many things are beginning to
come together, at last!! She may
still have a long way to go,but we
need to remember that she is coming
from ground "zero".

Love and prayers,
Peggy

Marita said...

"...Because the Holy Ghost over the bent
World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings." GMH

thank you for another inspirational blogpost!

Lyndsey Williams said...

I now see the wings, but when I first looked, I thought it was "His Watchful Eye". So many ways of seeing Him...

Thank you as always

suzirockett said...

I wish I could see everything the way you do...you continue to bless me and everyone else with your words and your heart!