It was my first morning in Israel, when Dr. James Martin was teaching us quietly beneath the trees on the Temple Mount, when I first heard him say something along these lines…
“Whenever the Rescuer does something great, the adversary always has a response.”
It is a daunting truth, isn’t it? I have seen this not only illustrated in the testimony of scripture, but in my own life over and again. Seven years ago, God moved heaven and earth to bring my precious daughters home from Haiti and it seems like I have been buffeted by one storm after another ever since. Just recently, by God’s grace, I signed a dream-come-true book deal, and the adversary has pretty much given up on subtlety in his efforts to keep me from finishing it.
A couple of weeks ago, I went away to get some writing done and was hit from every angle- physical illness, anxiety, spiritual doubt, you name it. Breaking through it all felt like wading through mud.
But the really great news is though the adversary may have a response, God always gets the last word. In the end, the writing was accomplished anyway and this weekend I’m back giving it another shot.
When I arrived, there was a gift waiting for me from my father. He wanted to pass down to me a couple of books from his library. There was a beautiful old Bible dictionary, and an antique, illustrated copy of Josephus’s works!
Even better, there was a lovely 8th edition of “The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah” by my favorite theologian, Alfred Edersheim (expert on all things Jewish as they relate to the time of Christ).
Josephus and Edersheim. It was like Christmas morning I tell you.
Then, I flipped open the cover of Josephus’ works to find my father’s name and the date he was given the books. It was 1969, the year I was born. So many years have passed. My Dad has moved multiple times, and given many books away but he kept these two by authors so influential in my life and placed them in my hands at the very moment I most needed to be reminded that I am on the right track, and that God goes with me as I take each step. It was beautiful confirmation from God.
The adversary may insist on always having a response, but he never has the last word. I am so very thankful…