Handing God The Baton

Junctures, crossroads, and detours come in the course of many fiery trials.  Believers, followers of the Lord Jesus, have access to God’s strength, wisdom, and leadership to forge ahead.  However, God can lead even His sheep to what seems to be a dead end.

Previous posts such as  Defeat and Confusion – Lord, Press On!, Waiting on God, Praying for my Enemies, Time to Quit or Go Deeper,   ‘Defeated’ but Refocused and Refreshed describe the ongoing battle in our neighborhood to save Haven Avenue from Columbia University’s plan to close it.  Under the guise of a ‘pedestrian plaza’ they are aggressively forging through our neighborhood to expand their campus.  At the same time outside developers won their conquest to rezone an adjacent neighborhood, with the sure result of gentrification and displacement.

But the defeat of our street, Haven Avenue stung the deepest.  Over the past year, our neighbors strongly rallied together, petitioned, canvassed, and presented to the Community Board not only our opposition but the inevitable hazard and hardship street closure would bring. While we understood ‘backroom deals’, what was most grievous was the forefront of corruption, in our face.  Betrayal and deceit and finally total dismissal of the community – live streamed and undeterred!

Even worse, all this at the behest of ‘an elite institute of higher learning’, one that even quotes Biblical scripture in their mottos.  The expressions of triumph as they defeated us – their neighbors – revealed the lowest of morality.

SO, we conferred as a group and committed to take legal action, an appeal with the State Supreme Court as procedure allows.  I myself poured into this, researching and writing, to present the case pro se.  There were definite grounds to appeal.  I started with such gusto, but found myself trudging through wet cement.  It became evident that,  without an attorney, at $15,000+,  we were surely jumping into a pool of sharks.  Their team of lawyers would happily eat us for lunch.

I have now conceded that it’s over…at least my part.  I believe I’ve come to a dead end. 

dead-end-sign-brick-wall-ss-1920-1

Even deflated and defeated, “You, O Lord, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light.  With your help, I can advance against a troop; with my God I can scale a wall.”   

The Lord answered our prayers for our neighbors – we now know them enough to share our faith and pray for them.  He led us into a battle and girded us to stand and present the truth, exposing shameful and corrupt tactics, calling us to pray – not just for our victory but moreso for the depraved morality of those before us.

I believe we have run as far as we are able under God’s guidance.  Like King Jehoshaphat we cry, “O our God, will you not judge them?  For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us.  We do not know what to do, but our eyes are upon you.”

runner passing baton

The battle is totally in His hands. 

The ‘next step’ is sometimes the hardest….”Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart, and wait for the Lord.”

Yes Lord, keep my lamp burning…..

 

6 thoughts on “Handing God The Baton

  1. LIsa Beth, thank you for the update. The Lord has kept your light shining; others have seen it, if only to show the presence and power of our great, Almighty God working in you. Dead ends come after we have gone through the struggles and done all we can do. The victories are always His whether we win or not. If the events ahead are not in your favor, you will see His hand opening doors that you would not have known. In the meantime, while you wait and rest in Him, rejoice in Him; praise Him, so that your neighbors learn the difference in God’s people and the world. He will receive the glory through all you have done. Blessings as you wait and trust in Him.

  2. You certainly fought the good fight, Lisa Beth. Perhaps your battle is over, but who is to say that the Lord won’t take over. Or, as you have written, perhaps the victories Go intended for you have been accomplished and that He is pleased. The real battle is for the souls of men and women, and it appears as if this fight has allowed you to make inroads in that area. That is the far greater victory. Well done!

    • Oh David, thank you for your encouragement, I really appreciate it! I’ve actually given the Lord several suggestions for supernatural intervention ☺ but I know His ways and thoughts are higher. Thanks again brother, it’s always good to hear from you!

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