The Oscillating God

Excerpt taken from Let’s Go Find This Kingdom Come – Chapter Six –

For the month of JUNE this chapter, in it’s entirety, will be online at the link above. There are some references to the chapter in this blog, so if you missed last weeks, you may want to go read the chapter.

The Oscillating God

I lay in my homemade sleeping bag, a queen size sheet that Karen had halved and sown at the bottom.  I stared at the ceiling perspiring from every pore, soaking my thin sheet. My head lie on a rolled t-shirt, a backpackers pillow. The stifling heat caused my breathing to come in ragged gasps. Every minute or so I would squeeze my eyes shut to clear the pooled sweat gathering at the corners. Both the sweat and the mosquito netting that hung from an exposed beam just above my head meant my vision was a constant blur.

I lie in my cocoon, trying not to move, and observed the mosquitoes trapped inside the netting. I realized that even with mosquitoes the old adage is true: “the proverbial grass is always greener on the other side”. The handful of mosquitoes that shared my living space were lethargically trying to escape while a thousand others outside the netting were frantic to get in. Of course, my little roommates were only trying to leave because they were too drunk to continue the feast and were seeking a safe place to sleep it off.

I was thankful for my shabby netting - it seemed to work well enough, at least regarding the mosquitoes. I doubted it would stop the rats that ran across the exposed beams over my head. Fortunately, they seemed to have some place to go and were less interested in me than I in them.  

The Philippines is the hottest, most humid place I have ever been in my life. New Orleans in July doesn’t hold a candle to its suffocating heat. It was unworldly, unrelenting. I was 8 days into a 10-day whirlwind worship mission trip with a handful of saints. There were five of us in total lying on the second floor of the two story tin shack located on the side of a Filipino volcano.  That’s right, in case the natural heat wasn’t enough; we were on the side of an active volcano. We were beyond exhausted but none of us were sleeping. Our insomnia wasn’t the result of the disagreeable plywood floor, the ravenous mosquitoes, or the indisposed rats; it was because of the damned beautiful oscillating fan.

That fan was the center of our universe; it was the most important thing. It was life and death.

While I lay there, in my delirium, my mind began to wander. I didn’t have Google. So my thoughts went un-checked. And because of this, I found myself loving one fella while hating another.

I imagined that there were two people involved in inventing the fan…

I imagine they were probably a father and son team. The father, lets say his name was Hank, spent years in the heat, probably in Mississippi or something. He grew up with a vision that would eventually change the world. He spent, lets say… forty-seven years, bringing his vision to life. And finally the day came when his dream was realized - the electric fan. He had done it! This beautifully stunning device made the world a better place…

As the wind caressed my skin, I loved Hank…

But then Hank got old, as every fella does in the end. When it was time for him to retire, he could have passed the company on to his brilliant manager, Edward. Instead he decided to trust his wayward son, Doug. “Son,” he said, “everything I have is yours…”

And that’s who I found myself hating. Doug. I hated him with everything in me…

You see, Doug didn’t go out and make the fan better. He didn’t have any bright ideas at all. In fact, Doug left Mississippi and moved up to Alaska where he plugged in his fathers brilliant creation and thought to himself, “who would want all this wind blowing at them all of the time?” With this utterly stupid thought in his head and while sipping on magic bean juice, Doug came up with the worst idea in the history of ideas: the oscillating fan…

As I lie there, staring at the ceiling, my emotions where as fickle as the wind. One moment I wanted to hug Hank, who was well in His grave by now. The next moment I wanted to find Doug and reunite him with his dad. The fan was my delight and my torment.

For the brief seconds the moving air brushed my clammy skin I knew to the core of my being that God was good and He loved me. “Oh God.” I blissfully sighed. And then the stupid fan moved on and I began to doubt, “Oh God!?” I cried out again, this time in desperation.

I don’t know about you, but much of my life I have served an oscillating God much like that fan. You know, the fella with the fickle nature; my delight one day, my torture the next. The guy that has sunshine and ponies in one hand and a Skill saw in the other. I have determined His nature through the lens of my needs. When life was kind, with demands met, health great, and friendships deep and true, I’d sigh blissfully “Oh God.”

But life isn’t always kind. Skill saws happen. And when the valley of the shadow of death is upon us, that’s when we must know to our core that our Fathers nature doesn’t change. He isn’t fickle. He hasn’t gotten tired of us, or had second thoughts about us. He hasn’t turned His heart from us; He’s not judging us, or condemning us. He is still the same always-good Love He has always been.

I am growing in my revelation regarding my Fathers heart toward me, “Only goodness and love all the days of my life,” that’s what I say. I say it when life is a “mountaintop” and I am learning to say it when life is a “valley.”

My Father doesn't oscillate! He is never my torture; He is only my delight! His love is steadfast and relentless. His love is pure and beautiful. His love pursues me, enraptures me, consumes me. His love is the beginning, the end, the before, the after, and everything in between. Oh yeah, in case I haven’t mentioned it yet, His love is always good.

Its called faith...

To continue reading click HERE. This chapter will available for the month of June.