Sand Dollars– by Parris Bailey (Frank is driving)
“Who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner’s fire, and like fullers’ soap: and he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; and shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the Lord an offering in righteousness.” Mal.3:2
The trip to Destin in mid-winter was perfect timing. I loved the solitary walks on the beach listening to my headphones to worship music. The year was 1997 and I had just recovered from a biopsy from a bad mammogram. I had other things on my mind, sure the ordeal of the cancer scare was crazy but deep inside I knew something was wrong. I was angry, the kind of anger that comes from focusing on all the negatives and “who did me wrongs”. Name it and we probably had the problem– all of them going on at once. The biggest one of all screamed inside of me- it’s name was betrayal. We all have had that one, certainly even I knew I wasn’t being singled out, but it had to be dealt with plain and simple.
I can still remember the song that day on the beach, it was Rita Springer singing “Ask of me, and I will give the nations for your inheritance”. Yes I was crying because I had gotten so off course from His precious presence.
The waves begin to crash upon my scribbling on the sand and also tearing away the sand castles in my head. I found myself rededicating my commitment back to Him. Our lives were meant for the nations and our quest is souls. Funny how we always ask for a sign of His love and how sweetly He must laugh and go along with our childish requests.
As I walked along I was seeing the usual broken shells and sand dollars. Then out of nowhere I saw a rather large broken sand dollar. At first I passed it up, but soon noticed that this sand dollar was broken exactly in half. Somehow I knew that this sand dollar represented my life in Christ. Yes it was broken and making a sweet smelling sacrifice to him. He would keep the other half in heaven where He would give me the assurance that the work he started, He would certainly finish. By now I knew that it was operation time in the Holy Spirit. I asked Him to get this anger out and He came to do just that.
Back to the feelings of betrayal. We had been in revival a few years and as much as it brought life, healing and joy in the Holy Ghost, well let’s just keep it nice and say not everybody was happy. I found myself holding that silly broken sand dollar that day and crying-” please take this anger and betrayal out of me for I simply cannot do it.” In one instantaneous moment I felt a fire shoot through my belly and purge out all the voices and scenes of the people who, in my world, had done me wrong. I cannot recall any other time in my life that I literally felt something leave me. His peace and presence returned, and I had experienced a supernatural work!
I still have that sand dollar. In fact it sits on my mantle in my office forever reminding me of the power of the love of God. He upholds all things by the word of His power. He is holding on to the other half of me. It is not unusual for me to find broken sand dollars for other wayfarers on God’s highway.
What a great way to live! I believe Joseph, while living in that dungeon for so many many years, went through a major soul cleansing transformation. He even named one of his children Manassah expressing the thought “forgotten”.
What about you? How long will you allow the root of bitterness to corrode the very life of God out of you? Take the walk, face your brokenness and release it back to God. Allow the Holy Spirit to bring refiner’s fire and the fuller’s soap (CHECK OUT YESTERDAY’S BLOG ).
Sand Dollars anyone?