Guest writer: Nick Stead, theprayerplace.net
Five days in the forest – each day a walk of discovery. The forest floor yielding like a sponge beneath our feet. Conifers high above our heads, stretching towards the sun. Russets, browns, golds, greens, light and shade, all under a sky of azure blue. The children learnt to identify Scots pine, beech, sweet chestnut and English oak. We found owl pellets and badgers’ setts, dragonflies and red campion. Despite shepherding a group of thirty excitable children through a precious and fragile environment, there was a sense of awe. The loftiness of the trees, the beauty of the flowers, the intricacy of the eco-system, the wonder of life – all combined to give a sense that we weren’t alone. Surrounded by His handiwork, I spent five days walking in the presence of my Creator.
Back in the hustle and bustle of the Twentieth Century, I never forgot that experience, but I let it slip to the back of my mind. Life carried on, waking and sleeping – and dreaming. One morning I woke, having dreamt that I was folding sheets with my mother in a bedroom with apple-green walls, which were brightened by light coming in through a glass door.
Months went by, and we were fortunate enough to be offered the use of a Welsh cottage for two weeks in the summer. Hidden in the hills, the rugged yet gentle village was totally new to us. On the last morning of our stay, I helped my mother fold sheets in an apple-green bedroom with a glass door!
Who is this, whose knowledge of me is so intimate that He knows what I’m going to do before I do it? And even shows me in a dream to prove it! My search for Him began to grow. I learnt to talk to Him in the night, but I didn’t know Him. I wanted more.
A few years later, I was given a job in a brand-new furniture store. A young man was sent to join me. He had a peace and a joy that I didn’t have, and he spoke as though he knew God personally. Here at last was someone who had the answers I longed for. His arrival helped me to discover that it’s not religion that God is looking for, but a relationship; that He is knocking at the door of my life and yours, and as I surrender myself and my future to Him, turning from my selfish ways, He is willing to wipe the slate clean and fill my life with His presence, His power and His love.
Maybe you too have had fleeting glimpses of your Creator; times when He has been trying to catch your attention? Don’t ignore Him; He is calling you. Seek Him in the night; seek Him in the Scriptures, (especially in the pages of the New Testament). Open the door and allow Him in.
“Listen! I am standing and knocking at your door. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in …”
Revelation 3:20 (CEV)