There was this moment…

Dear friend,

Yesterday, in a momentary conversation, I learned about a Pacific hurricane by the name of Hilary. We’re now watching and preparing.

It could drop a year’s worth of rain in 24-48 hours. In the desert that’s likely to cause flooding. Please pray for us. In all the years I lived in Florida, I only experienced tropical storms and hurricane near misses. Right now though, I’m thankful for all the years of preparation experience.

The last time this happened in Southern California was in the 1970s. Hurricanes and tropical storms are rare in Southern California. But last year, just as we settled into our new home, we experienced a tropical storm that brought torrential rain. And this year, a hurricane barrels toward us.

Watch the Salton Sea.

Watch God.

The local weather reporter did an amazing job of educating viewers on how to prepare for a hurricane. It’s surreal. But God is in command of all nature. I don’t think God is sending a hurricane, but I know He can use it.

Watch the Salton Sea.

Remembering back to 2019, we visited the rank, odiferous stagnant Salton Sea. It was, in the 1950s, a resort area, a destination spot, and thriving with tourism. Now it’s disgusting in its appearance and odor, especially in 110+ heat. But I could see potential for this vast expanse of water and land.

In faith, I could see it as redeemed, beautiful and thriving!

Standing there, I felt a nudge. It was a moment in time when I felt like I was supposed to do something. I received an invitation to participate.

“Tell the priests who carry the ark of the covenant: ‘When you reach the edge of the Jordan’s waters, go and stand in the river.’ ””
‭‭Joshua‬ ‭3‬:‭8‬ ‭NIV‬‬

I thought I should remove my sandals. I did. I had an idea to put my feet into the water like the priests of Joshua’s day. I did it. Just at the very edge. The water was as hot as bathtub water. Sulfurous. Smelly.

My dear man said, “ I will wait for you in the car.”

Who could blame him? Not I.

I was compelled to stand there. I was gripped by the idea that I was standing on holy ground. This was God’s created earth and water.

I stood and prayed for reclamation. I asked God to come and do what only He can do. I asked Him to restore the clear clean waters of this once beautiful lake and bird sanctuary.

It lasted just moments. There was no long flowery prayer because my senses were constantly assaulted. I had to wonder if I was breathing in toxins, but birds were with me.

It seemed to me that I was asking the impossible like “move this mountain”, but I believed God wanted me to ask. I wonder how many others have received this invitation to stand at the edge of devastation and ask Him to do what only He can do.

I still ask. I still believe it is part of our mission as residents here in this desert valley. It is part of our mission to believe God can do the impossible. We get to pray big, audacious prayers over this land and it’s people. God’s creation. It is part of our mission, or maybe the whole, to declare His delight over His creation with our voices.

We’ve already seen the drought squelched in a year. God is proclaiming His good news in this land. The famine is over. The harvest is coming.

The harvest is coming!

Every day, I hear people in California say that so many things are impossible. Like drought. Like ruined water ways. Like laws. Like evil. But God delights in shaking the impossible. Like preparing mud to cleanse blind eyes, and ultimately restoring sight to a blind man.

Like revealing Himself to a land of people so dry, hungry and thirsty. So unbelieving.

I’m watching. 

Believing friend, watch with me.

And might I be bold to ask, “Over what ruined circumstance is God inviting you to stand and ask an audacious prayer?”

Eyes on Jesus and Shine,