I’ve been silently watching while God does this thing

Quiet for me can become a habit that’s hard to break and lately  I’ve retreated into the semi-safety of silence.

And once I choose silence, I generally like to linger there for a while.

Maybe you’ve noticed or maybe it’s slipped by unrecognized.  I’ve posted less these past few weeks and shared old devotionals rather than penning new ones.

Instead of writing, I’ve been watching with a hushed anticipation of what God will do.

But here I am today sharing a little of the story and my voice feels rusty from disuse.

This is part of our family testimony, though, and truly God has indeed been at work, so it’s time to tell you what God has done!

Our family has squeezed into our tiny home for years, adding children (4!!!) without adding bedrooms or square footage.

We’ve talked often about moving, but the timing was never right for this reason or that reason.  Maybe we weren’t sure about a job issue or where we should move to.  So we waited.

But in January, the very day I put away the Christmas decorations, I started working on Project “Move Our Family.”

It’s been a process, that’s for sure!  We have purged and organized and moved boxes into storage.  We have painted walls neutral colors, taken down family photos, and replaced flooring and trim.  We have fixed and spruced up, cleaned and donated endless bags of “extras”  to the thrift store.

We felt God’s “go” and “go”we did.

Then, like the crazy people we sometimes are, we put our house on the market just before performance week in our latest community theater production, which is pretty much as busy as busy people can get.

And it sold.

That first day we put it on the market, there were torrential rains and three couples braved the mud and the downpour to come see our house.

I told my kids, “No one who sees our house in this horrid wet is going to want to buy it.”

I was wrong.

A few days later, we had a contract on our house and we had to find a new place  to live.

And we did, that very day, and we are excited about the blessing of this new home.

It’s been this huge, potentially overwhelming, certainly life-changing adventure that has rolled along in simplicity.  One need taken care of, and then another, and then another.

I can’t say exactly why I guarded this as some sacred secret, not daring to write it down just yet, but maybe it’s  because when God is on the move you just stand back and watch.  It’s not something you’re ready to talk about right away.

The prophet Habakkuk said it this way:

*The LORD is in his holy temple; let all the earth be silent before him” (Habakkuk 2:20)

The glory of God defies description.

I haven’t been writing maybe, but I’ve been cleaning the oven and scrubbing showers.  I’ve been packing boxes and wiping up every spot I can find on every surface in the house.

I feel a little like Peter may have felt in Luke 9 during the transfiguration when he saw the full glory of Christ:

Now Peter and those who were with him were heavy with sleep, but when they became fully awake they saw his glory and the two men who stood with him. 33 And as the men were parting from him, Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good that we are here. Let us make three tents, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah”—not knowing what he said  (Luke 9:32-33 ESV).

Peter had no clue what he was saying or doing.  It didn’t make perfect sense.  He was simply overcome and thrown into restless movement because he was stirred to respond somehow!

I have been overcome, as well, and it’s hard some days to sit still.

Here’s the truth, my friends, God’s calling isn’t always like this.

You hear Him say “Go” or “Come” and it’s the beginning of a battle.  The wait is long and wearying.  Obstacles loom.  Sometimes houses take forever to sell even when God is indeed in the moving.

Don’t give up if you know God is in this.

I’ve been there.  In this past year, every blessing has felt like promised land ground I had to fight my heart out to win.  There have been disappointments and there has been discouragement.

It’s been exhausting.

But there are also times when you take one tiny step of obedience and God takes care of every detail, every need, and you’re stunned into the silence of awe at God’s gracious care and mercy.

And the silence becomes a holy place where we rest in God’s goodness and marvel at who He is and what He has done.


Bible Verses About Awe


  • Exodus 15:11 ESV
  • “Who is like you, O Lord, among the gods? Who is like you, majestic in holiness, awesome in glorious deeds, doing wonders?
  • Deuteronomy 7:21 ESV
    You shall not be in dread of them, for the Lord your God is in your midst, a great and awesome God.
  • Deuteronomy 10:17 ESV
    For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God, who is not partial and takes no bribe.
  • Nehemiah 1:5 ESV
    And I said, “O Lord God of heaven, the great and awesome God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments
  • Job 37:22 ESV
    Out of the north comes golden splendor; God is clothed with awesome majesty.
  • Psalm 22:23 ESV
    You who fear the Lord, praise him!
        All you offspring of Jacob, glorify him,
        and stand in awe of him, all you offspring of Israel!
  • Psalm 33:8 ESV
    Let all the earth fear the Lord;
        let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him!
  • Psalm 65:8 ESV
    so that those who dwell at the ends of the earth are in awe at your signs.
    You make the going out of the morning and the evening to shout for joy.
  • Psalm 66:3 ESV
    Say to God, “How awesome are your deeds! So great is your power that your enemies come cringing to you.
  • Psalm 68:35 ESV
    Awesome is God from his sanctuary; the God of Israel—he is the one who gives power and strength to his people. Blessed be God!
  • Acts 2:43 ESV
    And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles.

Living the “Real”

Her “Other-Grandma” had a purple house.

That’s what my three-year-old told me, not just once, but all through the day.  Her Grandma had a purple house and her Grandma’s cat had shimmied up a tree and needed firefighters to rescue her.

My preschooler’s imaginary friends expanded over time to include an imaginary “other” family and that “other” family now includes grandparents…and their pets.

I just nodded and “mmm-hmmmed” and let her create.  No need really to dispute the existence of the purple house.

But then, as we drove along a winding road with scattered houses, she saw “it.”

The house.

Yes, the purple house…more like mauve, perhaps.  Close enough.

My daughter erupted, pointing and practically trying to leap out of her five-point harness seat.  “There it is!  My grandma’s purple house!  It’s there!  I see it!!”

There in that moment, nothing could be more exciting, not a circus or Disney World or the largest ice cream sundae, than her imaginary creation becoming “real.”

I wanted that.  Not a purple house or a cat awaiting rescue.  I wanted “real” and the excitement of discovery, that total awareness of this moment and God at work and how it’s not just words on a page or another’s testimony or a video, or a Facebook post, or a Pinterest pin, or a blog.

Real in me, real in my life, so real I sense it in every way, so real I’d be jumping out of my seat to share with others.

Living in the “real,” though, that’s so hard, that takes effort to fight for it, to insist on it, to discipline ourselves for it.

So much more tempting to live in a world of “what-if’s” and worry, hypothetical tragedies and made-up fears that paralyze us in this moment.

So much easier to pin 50 Pinterest activities to do with our kids than live in the simple and the now, push a swing, swash a paintbrush of watercolors on a white paper, bake the cookies.

So much more inspiring to rejoice in the testimonies of others and what God is doing in them than open our eyes wide to what God is doing here in us.

So much less effort to read someone else’s thoughts on the Bible than turn its pages ourselves to read those God-breathed words and pray, “God, speak truth to me.”

So much more fun (less depressing?) to read the blog posts of Mom-tips, wifely-advice, decorating and fashion pointers than look at our own carpets and curtains and push through the clothes in our own wardrobes.

Truly, how did our moms do this?  Do life without online advice and helps?

I love it; I do. I find so many activities I do with my kids, so many teaching tools and home strategies, recipes, and spiritual object lessons online.  I’m a better mom for it…..as long as I do them, as long as I really take the time with my family, not just immerse myself in someone else’s perfect mom moments.

But all those online people with all that online expertise have to live out the Real, too.  They have to wash the dirty dishes, vacuum the stained carpet, break up sibling spats, and yes, surely their lives have mundane and ordinary.  We might only read their highlights and see the pictures of their successes.  Yet, bad days and stress happen to all of us.

So much potential for good here.

And so much potential for discouragement, dissatisfaction, insecurity, uncertainty, jealousy, laziness, and for missing out.

When the captives returned to Jerusalem in the book of Ezra, they personally rebuilt the crumbled remains of the temple and one day they stood before the finished work, amazed:

But many of the older priests, Levites, and family leaders, who had seen the first temple, wept loudly when they saw the foundation of this house, but many others shouted joyfully. The people could not distinguish the sound of the joyful shouting from that of the weeping, because the people were shouting so loudly. And the sound was heard far away (Ezra 3:12-13).

The way those shouts of joy mixed in with the weeping, that’s the power of the Real.  All those years of talking about the temple, telling stories about the temple, and imagining the temple transformed in that moment when they saw it with their very own eyes.

They saw God’s glory, His mercy, His capacity to redeem and restore His people.  They knew for themselves that God had chosen them, loved them, and wanted to be among them.

It was Real and Real overcame them.

I want to be overcome.

This husband, these children, this home, this garden, this day with this weather, this God at work in this very life, this Real is where I can be amazed by God at work if I will open my eyes to see Him right here in my own Real life.

Heather King is a wife, mom, Bible Study teacher, writer and worship leader.  Most importantly, she is a Christ follower with a desire to help others apply the Bible to everyday life with all its mess, noise, and busyness.  Her upcoming book, Ask Me Anything, Lord: Opening Our Hearts to God’s Questions, will be released in the Fall of 2013!  To read more devotionals by Heather King, click here.

Copyright © 2013 Heather King