Last Thursday, I finished the rough draft of the manuscript, The Esther Blessing: Grace to Reign in Life. Of course, a rough draft does not a finished book make. But a completed draft is a huge step in the process and a cause for celebration. Thursday night, I celebrated. Imagine my astonishment on Friday morning to see:
God had showed up to celebrate with me.
The Esther Blessing explores a concept I’ve never heard taught: that grace flows in an amazing cycle very similar to the flow of the water cycle. Here’s a taste of chapter 8 – and a testimony to the God of all grace.
The rain comes down from heaven. As I finished drafting The Esther Blessing, I watched the rain fall, gently, persistently. Evening, morning and afternoon, it pattered against the windows and soaked into the ground.
The water flows into rivulets, streams, lakes and oceans. The day the rain just kept coming, the previously dry creek bed down the hill behind our house filled nearly to overflowing. As I concluded the first draft of a work inviting God’s people to cooperate fully in conducting his grace, I watched the newly surging creek waters flow past.
The water evaporates, rising upward to form clouds and start the process again. The morning after the all-day rain, I stepped out onto our back porch to refill our bird feeder. I gasped to see an ethereal mist rising from the ground. The sun peered through the treetops, calling the soggy land to release the water droplets skyward. The earth responded with a resounding, yes!
What a beautiful sign and wonder God had sent! Stunned, I stood silently, watching the earth itself praise the Creator. Then, I began to sing: “How can I keep from singing Your praise? How can I ever say enough how amazing is Your love? How can I keep from shouting Your name? I know I am loved by the King and it makes my heart want to sing.”
Before I started singing, a fine, translucent vapor rose about knee-high from the winter-white grass all across our back yard. As I praised the Lord, the mist visibly increased and intensified. By the end of my song, it had literally formed a cloud – a glory-cloud shimmering in the sunlight – that filled our lawn and extended far above my head. Undone, I stood in awe.
Continually, the Lord God accomplishes the wonder of the water cycle:
- “Who calls for the waters of the sea and pours them out over the face of the land – the Lord is his name” (Amos 5:8).
- “He bestows rain on the earth; he sends water on the countryside” (Job 5:10).
- “Behold, He restrains the waters, and they dry up; and He sends them out, and they inundate the earth” (Job 12:15 NASU).
- “He casts forth His ice as fragments; Who can stand before His cold? He sends forth His word and melts them; He causes His wind to blow and the waters to flow” (Ps. 147:17-18 NASU).
- “He calls for the waters of the sea and pours them out over the face of the land – the Lord is his name” (Amos 9:6).
Continually, the Lord God accomplishes the amazing cycle of grace:
“And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work … You will be made rich in every way [as grace flows down] so that you can be generous on every occasion [as grace flows out], and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God [as grace flows up!] … Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!” (2 Cor. 9:8, 11, 15 NIV).