The fire flies



June 21, 2107

Dear Friends:


This evening-Wednesday- is mine to be alone each week. The campers go camping with their cabin-mates, a pastor friend offers the vespers message after supper, and I retreat to my home to rest and refresh a bit. I’ve been taking this midweek break for many years now and it helps me pace myself for the entire summer.


Tonight was special simply because of the special, almost unnoticed things He brings about when I am all alone. I almost did not write this blog tonight, but the events of the evening captured my heart and imagination so much that I felt that I should share.


Nothing I relate here is profound or particularly noteworthy I suppose, but tonight as I drove the old jeep up to the site where the new “Eight Gables” (our new home) is being built, I felt a bit lonely and despondent for no apparent reason. Within seconds I received a phone call from a close friend—he was just checking up on me and offered the precise amount of encouragement to get me out of my melancholy spirit.  I thanked God for that call and for that friend listening to the Holy Spirit when He whispered to him to call me.


On the way down the hill the sun had just set, but I could still see the grass on the sides of the road…light green and lush from all the rain…and then out of nowhere the fire flies began to gently shine their soft lights… hovering all over the grass and mountainside. How can a person behold such the unexplainable pleasure one gets from seeing something as inspiring as the silhouette of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the background and the green grass and hundreds of floating fire flies in the foreground?  The God that made these creatures and these settings did it for a purpose. They speak of His peace, His glory, His unspeakable beauty—-and His presence when people like me feel alone.


But I had to venture out of my home tonight to see those flies and I must remember that it was not simply a friend, but God Himself on the end of that phone call tonight.  He is sovereign. These good things happen for a good purpose. I was encouraged tonight….. I sat in awe of the kind of beauty that one cannot create or orchestrate, but simply see and experience.


God reveals Himself to me every day; but sometimes I need to be alone to hear Him and see Him.




  dean  barley

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