28 Apr

The Eternal Significance of a Turtle


(Journal Entry: 6-12-2010)  A Turtle’s Journey Across the Road

Yesterday I prayed for an eternal opportunity for the day. I got through much of the day without seeing the opportunity, and was praying about it in the car driving to pick up the pizza.  Then I noticed a little turtle crossing the street.  It was trying with all its might but it was very slow and didn’t have much of a chance.  I drove past with a strange notion that maybe that was my opportunity that I had been praying for; maybe God wanted me to save that turtle.  It seemed a bit impractical because I was suppose to be picking up the pizza, not saving turtles, so I hesitated and drove by it. 

Though I drove past, I continued to feel compelled to go save the poor thing so I turned the car around.  I was too late.  After finding it smashed on the road, I had the sinking feeling that God had prompted me to save it in the first place, and if I had been more careful to listen to Him, right now the little turtle would be happily continuing his little turtle journey to the pond on the other side of the road. 

The Lord graciously reminded me that my hesitations can bring much bigger consequences than smashed turtles.  I must learn to respond immediately when prompted by the Spirit. 

(Journal Entry: 6-13-2010)  Do Not Ignore It

Update: I opened to Deuteronomy 22 today, and God used verse 4 to speak plainly regarding yesterday’s lesson.  “If you see your brother’s donkey or his ox fallen on the road, do not ignore it.  Help him get it to its feet.”  I believe I was suppose to get that turtle.  Maybe not so much because its wrong to let a turtle die, but because I felt a nudge of the Spirit, and ignored it until it was too late.  Seems the Lord is training me to recognize what that nudge feels like, so that in the future I can respond immediately.

(4-28-2013, Almost 3 Years Later)  To The Street Corners

This morning during prayer I became grieved over my own lack of vision and joy.  Christ suffered so severely in my place and my life is hidden in Him for all of eternity, and I lack vision and joy?  I considered various times recently I could have become dead to myself and alive in Christ, but chose to be dull instead.   

On Friday the 26th I was picking up the pizza and saw a woman wandering down the street, not trying to get any place quickly.   I had the notion to stop to speak to her about the things of eternity.  Though it would have only been a 5 minute stop, I was concerned the pizza might get cold and so went on my way. 

This morning I felt strongly that I had ignored the Spirit’s nudge that Friday, and so asked for grace.  God, in His mercy and kindness, chose to respond to my prayer by providing Matthew 22:9 & 10.  When I read “Go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.  So the servants went out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find…”, I knew Christ was speaking plainly to me regarding that woman on the road.  I believe I was suppose to have stopped, as the Spirit had prompted.  

This whispering of the Spirit in Mat 22 “go to the street and invite to the banquet anyone you find”, reminded me of three years earlier, when He confirmed His prompting to save the turtle by providing Deuteronomy 22, “If you see your brother’s donkey or his ox fallen on the road, do not ignore it.” 

I marvel at how He cares.  Why are You mindful of me, Lord?  You.  Infinite and Almighty, you are there with me while I pick up pizza, prompting me to stop for both turtles and souls.  Who am I that You should care and see and record each deed, each word, each thought, “a scroll of remembrance was written in His presence”  Malachi 3:16.  Because of your love and grace, You are mindful of me, God Almighty; Oh, that I would more mindful of You.

So, what do you think?