Have you ever gone on a God Hunt? A God Hunt begins when you teach yourself to look for God’s hand at work in the every day occurrences of your life. Here’s one of my personal God Hunt Sightings:
Last week, I spent my birthday with our Phoenix family. Our eldest son, Randall, his wife Carmel and their two sons, Landis age 16 and Nathanael age 15, have lived away from the Chicago area long enough for the boys not to remember what it was like living through a Midwestern season of snow. They do remember, however, and love to reiterate all the memories they have of spending time with my husband and myself, with Papa and Nina.
It surprises me a little—though I don’t know why it should—how many of our conversations begin with the question, “Nina, do you remember when we…?” Actually, this has been one of our major goals. We have sought to build a rich memory infrastructure for the architecture that is becoming their lives.
So we talk about the time in Boston when Pap got navigating a roundabout and the GPS kept telling him to turn just a fraction later than he needed the information: “Wrong turn. Recalibrating.” We drove round and round about seven times with Papa getting more frustrated and the two grandkids on that trip giggling in the back seat.
We’ve hauled them up to the Shakespeare Festival in Stratford, Ontario, parceled them out on cruises to pick up the extra-guest fee—$99 per person if they will sleep in your stateroom—two grandkids on the Alaska cruise, two more on the Maritime Provinces cruise. We took a quick, quick tour through the Niagara Falls area, did a short vacation to Branson (and endured one of those awful timeshare sales lectures), stayed at my sister’s cabin in North Carolina for gem-mining, trout fishing, and whitewater rafting.
We replace the memory stones that have fallen (No, no, no. That was in Paris and the lady’s name was…). What one forgets (usually me being the one), the other remembers.
This little exercise, which happens whenever we have time to be together, reminds me of how frequently God tells his people to remember. “This day shall be a day of remembrance for you.” Piles of stones were stacked in the wilderness. Solemn assemblies commemorated events. A yearly cycle of festivals ensured that special days and remarkable divine interventions were enthroned in the memory of the Hebrew people. “You shall celebrate it as a festival to the Lord; throughout your generations you shall observe it as a perpetual ordinance” (Exodus 12:14).
God, in case some of you don’t know, is a good-memory-maker. Like my grandsons, He says to me over and over,Karen, do you remember when I made you laugh, when you had just enough money to meet the payment deadline, the day I protected or loved or enfolded you? Of course, my human aptitude for forgetting (how is your aptitude for forgetting?) is more the default mode than the one for remembering and rejoicing. As an aid, some 40 years ago, I began to keep a record of all the times God has intervened for the good in my life.
I make a habit of going over those notebooks, looking back through the pages and the years and saying, “God, do You remember when we…” And consequently, though inclined to forget, because of this tall, tall stack of journals, I too remember.
“Yes, I remember when…”
I spy God!
Award-winning author Karen Mains has long had an interest in spiritual formation and the obedient Christian walk. She has written about the God Hunt in her book by the same name, The God Hunt: The Delightful Chase and the Wonder of Being Found. A hardback copy can be ordered from Mainstay Ministries for $10.00 plus $4.95 shipping and handling. Contact Karen at firstname.lastname@example.org and she will be happy to autograph a copy for you.
Karen continues to write content for her Christian blog, “Thoughts-by-Karen-Mains.” In so doing, she desires to touch the lives of Christian women and men and help them find ways to walk closer with the Lord Jesus Christ. In addition, through silent retreats, spiritual teaching, women’s retreats, Christian vacation opportunities, and other ministry activities, Karen helps each Christian woman and man receive vital spiritual food.
Through her Hungry Souls ministry, Karen serves as a spiritual coach to many Christian women and men, and teaches a mentor-writing class. And, through the Global Bag Project, she is working to develop a network of African women who sew exquisite cloth reusable shopping bags, Africa bags. This micro-finance women opportunity helps provide a much-needed sustainable income for struggling African families. For more information on this critically important project, please click here.
For decades, Karen and her husband, David, have served God through religious communications—radio, television, and print publication. They are the co-authors of the Kingdom Tales Trilogy: Tales of the Kingdom, Tales of the Resistance, and Tales of the Restoration. To find many valuable resources for pastors and congregations at the Mainstay Ministries main website, please click here.
Likewise, pastors will find special resources to help them prepare effective, life-transforming Sunday sermons by visiting David Mains’ website by clicking here.