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Invisible Threads

A man’s heart plans his way, but the LORD directs his steps.  

Proverbs 16:9  
Sometimes the clouds are rolled back.  Sometimes they descend. Hidden purposes are exposed. Like the webs I spotted on a foggy morning jog.  Unseen becomes seen. 

Sometimes we get to see invisible threads that lead. One thing to another. And when I am granted a glimpse, I worship. 

I caught a glimpse last Thursday night. 

It was already dark when we got home, parent-teacher conferences in the bag. My eyes lighted on a white envelope just inside the front door. 

THIS LETTER HAS BEEN 
MAILED FROM A 
WISCONSIN PRISON SYSTEM
JCI-HU STAFF

Who could this possibly be from? I wondered, lifting the envelope from the carpet.

A red rubber-stamp announced the mail was from Jackson Correctional Institute. Never heard of it. The handwritten name above the stamp was equally new. I wouldn’t know this man from Adam. 

 These girls were dropped in my lap. 

That’s exactly what I had told my girlfriends. 

A name dropped by one son led to “cold” call to Emily’s mom, which led to her and her sister, and her friend and her sister. Invisible threads. They’re not our neighbors. Honestly, they’re not really the boys’ friends. One had been a classmate. Somehow, Sam sensed she might make a good “Red Jewel 1” AWANA friend. 

She did. One year later, caravan’s full to capacity. 

I’d long dreamt, sometimes idolized, the quiver-full family. To need a van, or even a Suburban to pack all the kids in. My womb God had left empty-save one glorious nine months. But how He was filling my van. Invisible threads. His purposes will ripen fast, unfolding every hour, the bud may have a bitter taste, but sweet will be the flower. 

So with full heart, I’ve been carting the girls beside Sam and Gabe each week. To AWANA on Wednesday nights, then to Sunday school. Dropped in my lap by invisible threads. 

Now with a card from a convict, the clouds rolled. And God’s hidden purposes, invisible threads were exposed:

To Mrs. Wallace,

Thanks a million for going out of your way to take my precious grand-daughters to church for Sunday school and activities. 

Those girls have suffered a great deal of grief in the past few years. In 20–, their beloved uncle died unexpectedly. And in December of 20– I was sent to jail, and I may not be released for several years, and I maintain contact with __ and __ through phone calls and letters. They are sad that I am incarcerated because I helped raise them and they love me. 

This past J— my brother who was very close to __ and __ was tragically killed in a car crash on his way to visit them.  My whole family was shocked by the news of _’s death.

You have been a real blessing to my grand-daughters and __ during our time of grief. For whatever it’s worth, I really appreciate it immensely. 

God Bless You All 

That card is a precious gift. In it, God made His invisible threads visible. To see how my son’s hunch that-of all the kids in his class-“Emily might want to come to AWANA,” was connected to my out of the blue call to her mother and her friend’s father and all connected to a caring grandpa in jail.

Amazing how these connected threads lead; all sight unseen.  Until that card.

The card was a backstage glimpse. I cherish it as testimony to my loving, sovereign Lord. The Christ who made the blind to see, the deaf to hear is still working. He blesses the barren with a van-full and answer’s the prisoner’s prayer.

And I, too, am astonished beyond measure. With the crowds who saw him heal, I join and say, “He has done all things well.”

 Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! 
How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!
Romans 11:33