Elijah stepped forward and prayed: "LORD, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known today that you are God in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command. Answer me, LORD, answer me, so these people will know that you, LORD are God and that you are turning their hearts back again."
Then the fire of the LORD fell and burned up the sacrifice, the wood, the stones and the soil, and also licked up the water in the trench.
When all the people saw this, they fell prostrate and cried, "The LORD - he is God! The LORD - he is God!"
1 Kings 18: 36-39
What does it take for Your people, the ones You have already chosen and love, to believe in You? What great acts must they see? What impossible things must happen?
Why do I believe? What have been the fires in my life? The ones that cause me to fall and cry, "Lord, You are God!"
Looking back, though, my moments of true belief haven't come from God starting a huge bonfire on a soggy mountain top. My moments were smaller.
It was an impromptu worship session chilling on a screen porch as a storm rolled in over the mountains. It was the moment of silence before an afternoon nap, laying on the tile floor, a sleeping Vivi's tiny hand clutching mine. It was two calm and pleasant boat rides over normally choppy seas to a friend's isolated village.
Knowing the Lord is God is eating fresh caught crabs by the flickering glow of a single light bulb, as member of a family you just met. Its heartbreak, pain and joy shared in close friendship. Its meeting people in unexpected places.
I've never had a single fire moment that brought me to my knees in awe of the majesty of God. Instead, I am continually humbled by the places and the people standing in my path. The people who have walked with me around the globe, constantly showing me the LORD is God.
Some days its hard to be here, in another new place, trying to find another new community. Searching for connections, while remaining at the appropriate distance for new friendships. Its hard to not belong here among such similar people, when I belonged so completely in a place where I was so different.
And most of those hard days, there's a moment, a whisper. A hopeless experiment finally gone right, a surprise deep conversation with a lab mate, an afternoon phone call with a close friend reminding me that its never easy at the beginning. And though sometimes I wish for a fire of instantaneous connections and community, the little whispers bring me peace and hope. The LORD, he is God! What else could I possibly need?