by Susan Sorenson, STS National Trainer
“I had heard from the Lord.” What a statement. The audacity, the certainty, the flagrant courage it takes to utter such a phrase.
We were sitting in a charming deli at the foot of the mountain in whose shadow I was raised. Colorado Springs, Colorado was a magnificent place to grow up. The culture, the history, the magnificence of the city- the absolute beauty of Pikes Peak was a constant in my life.
A few short weeks ago I came home from an evening with my kids to learn that the very mountain range that was a picture of God’s majesty to me was on fire. Literally, thousands of acres of the Waldo Canyon fire was pressing in on some of the most beloved places in the city- in my life. A local favorite, the Flying W Ranch, had been burned to the ground. Glyn Eerie, the Navigator’s prized castle that had housed countless ministers and trained even more for ministry was evacuated, along with their headquarters. Garden of the Gods was evacuated, and many beautiful neighborhoods were being deserted for safer ground. I sat in disbelief- it was unimaginable.
Less than a month later I sat at a restaurant nestled in the community with a friend who had lived through this unimaginable event- still reeling, the sights and smells of fire still visible. I savored my salmon salad as I delicately tried to ask the questions I wasn’t sure I should. “How are you, really?” “How is your home?” “How are your neighbors?”
While there weren’t answers to all the questions we have what I did take from our conversation was a reminder. She told me how she had heard from the Lord to take the warnings seriously. Some friends had shared their opinions that the fire would never jump the ridge into the city. She found comfort in that, and perhaps it drowned out the still, small voice. She was able to evacuate in time, her home was safe, and in reflection she shared that she “knew”.
This brave Certified Leader for Surrendering the Secret, who has led women for years through the healing journey from abortion, had heard from God. I’m not sure she ever doubted it but she shared that hearing how the fire was likened to a horizontal tornado coming at 65 miles per hour reminded her that the unimaginable happens. Even while fleeing for their lives, residents could not believe what was happening.
This story reminds me of all of the times my heart is healed. It reminds me of all the times I have witnessed other’s hearts be healed. The unimaginable - the spiritual limp I’ve finally decided to prop on a cane and get used to - healed when I believed. My friend told me that she has realized that as unimaginable devastation can happen- she has learned that unimaginable goodness from God can happen also.
Ephesians 3:20- “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! Amen.”
As my current Surrendering the Secret group and I grappled with the topic of forgiveness and hoped for freedom we can scarcely imagine, I pressed in and encouraged us all to believe God. In that moment, I remembered the burn and the heartache I felt as I drove through the neighborhood - and in the midst of the red-black earth I saw a bright green blade of grass and I heard from the Lord.
His restoration is unimaginable! It is worth the work, and worth the surrender.