A LITTLE FARTHER, AND CLOSER
Updated: Sep 9
He (Jesus) went on a little farther and fell to the ground. Mark 14:35 (NLT)
I have written about this before. In fact, the date is September 2, 2017.
I have always been intrigued by the phrase, “Going a little farther.” And today, it hit me God is calling me a little farther. Only this time it is beyond my last point of going farther.
I thought I had gone far enough. I was totally in tune to God, walking the path He has for me and living sold out for Christ. Until.
Until yesterday when I asked Coach a question.
Three years ago I showed up in his clinic and learned the fun news of my circumstances – broken feet. Dislocated cuboids. Impinged tendons and ligaments. Trauma. Damage. And more. He has called my feet broken since day one. It is not one foot, but both.
A few months into seeing Coach, twice a week (and his clinic is 40 miles away), I was complaining (disguised as asking questions), about the length of recovery, Coach had another patient chime in and share how long she had been coming to him for a foot issue. She had different problems and it was complicated, but she shouted out, “Three years!”
I was dumbfounded. Three years??? And she was happy about it? Yes, she had a smile on her face. How could this be? So, I asked her. She went on to explain she avoided surgery, was regaining full range of motion with her foot and this was the absolute best way for her to move on to healing. She was happy with her progress.
I have not seen this patient in almost 3 years.
So, yes, it worked for her.
I got the unwelcome news to an honest question. In case you haven’t figured it out, I ask questions, want to know more and won’t stop until I do. Most times I get answers, other times I don’t. Coach is cautious when he answers me, not to withhold, but to shield me. Because harsh realities can be, well, harsh.
I was asking him if he remembered that previous conversation; he did. I told him we were ‘celebrating’ three years in this together (hahaha) and how I thought it was impossible to be here, but yet here I am. Lower the boom – "how much longer for me," I asked. Mic drop. Jaw drop. Pause.
Coach only pauses when he frames his response. Usually he is pretty quick-witted. But not yesterday.
One and a half years more. 18 months longer. 6,570 days. 394,200 minutes. 23,652,000 seconds.
To say I was in shock would be an understatement. To say it went down like ice cream would be a lie. To say truthfully, I am still working through it, would be accurate.
Yes, God spoke to me this morning. “I am asking you to go a little farther, My child. Farther than you have gone before. But I am there. In fact, I am there. Trust Me.”
I began to remember the previous blog post. The musings I had when I wrote it. The thoughts I have had ever since because that one struck like no other. Jesus went a little farther. Cannot I do the same?
Pondering this question brought further meditative thoughts. Jesus went a little farther because He completely submitted to His Father. Out of love and obedience.
(Jesus said), “I do nothing on my own but only say what the Father taught me. And the one who sent me is with me – he has not deserted me. For I always do what pleases him.” John 8:28b-29 (NLT)
Jesus obeyed. We are to have the same attitude as Christ (Philippians 2:5); therefore it stands to reason, I need to obey the Father as well. Even if it means a little farther.
Noah went a little farther after he built the boat. Abram went a little farther after God called him out of Ur. Moses went a little farther after the burning bush. The desert actually with millions of people and God rewarded his obedience with His very Presence. Hannah went a little farther in praying for a child. Ruth went with Naomi back to Bethlehem. Peter left his nets, even walked on water and went a little farther. Paul left behind his Pharisee ways and went a little farther in his personal walk with Jesus and proclaimed the gospel everywhere he went.
More modern times give us examples of: Hudson Taylor. George Muller. Amy Carmichael. Billy Graham. Chuck Smith. Coptic Christians in Egypt. Christians in war-torn Ukraine. And the list goes on.
When God calls us a little farther it is because He is calling us to Himself. He desires we enter into a more intimate relationship with Him without distractions. The closer we are to Him the less room for distractions, side roads, confusion and self.
Yes, Lord. I am willing to go a little farther.
Father God, Yes, I am willing to go a little farther because You are there. I will not be alone. I want to be where You are. Not back where You found me, but where You are taking me. Because it is there I will draw in closer to You and develop an ever-increasing hunger for more of You. I am honored to be counted worthy of this calling. This walk. My relationship with a loving heavenly Father. It is in the Name of Your Son, Jesus Christ, I pray.. AMEN