Prophecy & Water
I wonder if you’re like me on this: growing up listening to sermons, I heard a decent amount about prophecy. Enough, certainly, to know that a lot of Old Testament prophecies foretold certain things about Jesus and the church.
What I didn’t hear too much about was how most of those same prophecies also had meaning at the time they were spoken—a more literal, immediate application that was in many cases observed during the lifetime of the prophet.
Then, centuries later, the same prophecy would be more fully fulfilled in some larger event. If you’ve read the Bible much, you’ve seen this kind of language: “This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet…” (Mt. 21:4-5). Those New Testament passages are great examples of the final/ultimate fulfillment of prophecies that were partially and initially tied to events hundreds of years before.
It helps for me to think of prophecy like a cup, and the foretold events like water. Most prophecies were “half-filled" within a relatively short time. Only later, when the larger meaning came to fruition, was the prophecy "full-filled.”
Prophecy or otherwise, I love how God layers his words—just when you think you’ve exhausted the meaning/significance of something He’s said, you realize there’s another layer to be discovered and explored.
How I’m Like A Cute Miniature African Antelope (Manly? No. True? Yes.)
Saw a new animal at the Memphis Zoo last weekend. (Not newly created; just new to me.) It was a klipspringer—a miniature antelope that looks like sort of like a lilliputian deer.
London and I walked up to its enclosure, admired the small-cartoon-animal-with-big-brown-eyes vibe the little guy was giving off, and began reading its information placard.
Thanks to the placard we discovered this mountain-dwelling creature is known for its ability to perch with surprising stability on small rocky surfaces. One description reads, “The klipspringer is as surefooted as a mountain goat, and when it is pursued it leaps from crag to crag and seems to bound up the side of a steep cliff as if it were flying.”
No sooner had we read this than one of them decided to demonstrate. It deftly launched itself through the air in our direction, landing on the concrete ledge supporting the enclosure’s fence. Impressive, seeing as though the ledge was only about 5 inches wide.
It never faltered, navigating the thin strip of real estate as if it were strolling across a giant plateau.
Then Daniel mentioned this text in his sermon the very next night:
"The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights.”
Immediately, the image of the little Klipspringer came to mind. I love that God can enable me that way—give me stability when stability seems impossible, keep me from falling even when falling seems inevitable, allow me to operate with confidence that defies my circumstances.
Money gets tight and I don’t worry, continuing to give as if I had a lot more than I do. People I love disappoint me and I smile in spite of it, operating on a surplus of joy. Certain changes make my formerly-predictable future unclear and I don’t freak out, remaining calm and hopeful.
Satan pursues me but I climb higher and higher, sure-footed all the way.
Almost as if I’m flying.