Sunday, February 3, 2013

Slow Development

I think lots of "ordinary" Christians secretly wish they had a really cool testimony. The stories where a person is brought from the brink of hell-breathed fiery destruction, or saved from danger and certain death, or given a new chance at life after a long, heart-wrenching struggle -- well, they stay with people. They inspire. They testify to the power of God.

Still, the rest of us really don't need to envy them.

When we really think about it, quiet testimonies like "I gave my heart to Jesus Christ when I was 12. I've been following him ever since," are a blessed, beautiful thing. In some ways they have as much power as miracles. In retrospect, you find many circumstances that were, in fact, miracles. I've realized that a lot lately about my life.

At very few points in my life did I notice a miracle in the works, big changes in my relationship with God. Most of the time, I couldn't see God slowly shaping my heart. (It's still a work in progress.) Only when looking back can I see how my slow growth is being made into its own unique story, complete with real angels, demons, and heroes, though at no point have I been close to dying. On the outside, no circumstance appears to be extraordinary. My path doesn't look like it's been fraught with pitfalls and snares. Now I know they're there, but I'm grateful that God's so far let me move at a slow pace on a relatively sheltered path. It's given me time to look back.

That low time in my life where I was slowly brought up? A miracle. The way I've been shaped by my surroundings? A blessing. The parts where I thought I was in control? Near brushes with disaster. There are lots of little stories about all the stops on my road. I think they'll slowly find their way here to the blog or find other outlets. They're missing the fire and brimstone, but the important element is still there: God's saving power.

At this rate, I'll be a perfect Christian about 500 years after I die. God bless us tortoises.

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