The road less travelled
While I was looking out of the airplane window on my way back home late on Sunday evening, I saw a road winding up the mountain slope. When you look at this nearly forgotten pathway you can immediately sense it is the road less travelled. I kept on looking at the pathway until it disappeared from my view. At certain sections, the bushes and undergrowth crept over the path to conceal where previous travellers had walked before. Only if a new explorer on the road kept going forward in faith, would he have found the way to the top.
What happened that made me end up in this place in my life? Would I have chosen this road for myself if I had a say in the matter? How does one explain the rocky and difficult stretches of my road to someone else who is still travelling on a tarred highway? Should I try to explain to them how much it hurts when I hit my foot against a rock while persevering and struggling towards the mountaintop finish of a road that I am walking by faith and nothing else? Would they understand the heartache I encounter almost every day?
At the airport on our way home, someone from “Moab” came to greet us. Her blouse was so low she left nothing to the imagination as she hung over Aldo. Her eyes beamed with expectation while she asked Aldo: “Don’t you have a word for me?” Everything inside me jerked, and I felt the familiar sting of heartache again. What makes people think Aldo is some kind of godly fortune-teller? There is such a big difference between someone who hears from God’s Spirit and then writes it down according to God’s seasons and timing, and someone who is used for selfish reasons as some sort of “fortune-teller”. I stood frozen, and stepped in when I saw Aldo struggling for words, “Sorry to disappoint you Ma’am, my child struggles to even talk about day to day things (he talks slowly and with difficulty) or verbalize what God speaks to him; he can’t tell you your future!”
What is it that makes people put their eyes on men and not on God? Can you think at how it must make God feel when we run to people and not to Him for answers that only He can give?
As we flew out of Cape Town all four of us were quiet. Josh and Aldo laid with their heads upon each other, resting; and Tinus has his arms around them. I sat quietly doing my web-letter while I had a few spare moments, so I wouldn’t have to do it that evening, but could rather help Josh prepare for his exam the next day.
My thoughts kept on returning to the roads criss-crossing beneath me. There are many different roads to choose from, going anywhere you want to go; but hidden in there somewhere is “the road less travelled”. It is a lonely, long, and trying road and just from the look of it you will know that few have ventured on it before you. You will also see it is not a road where many words are spoken. It is a road that only has space for you and God.
The road less travelled with a child with a head-injury is even more unknown than other road’s less travelled. People expect too much from him because he has a prophetic gift, and they are disappointed if he doesn’t deliver on these expectations of being perfect in his body and soul. Aldo is far from perfect. He still becomes tired easily and sometimes he is confused and disorientated. He is impulsive and he talks and walks with difficulty, with and ataxic hand and a drooping eye. He is very sensitive to the spiritual realm, and he doesn’t always know how to interact with people. I wish I could put all his faults and shortcomings on paper, so no one would ever look at Aldo again as if he is some kind of wonder-child who never makes mistakes; maybe that will spare us some criticism if he doesn’t live up to their expectations.
Wisdom says that you have asked Him to protect me. He says I am only His child, and that He will use me just the way I am. Why did you cry so much, Mom?
In our second book I tried to explain that he is just a normal teenager, trying his best to fit in with society; but still people expect perfection from the imperfect.
The road less travelled with my injured child will never be the same as the road most parents walk with their healthy children. As a family we have learned to bare the arrows of criticism shot at us and to take them out one by one in the presence of our Abba – so He can heal us.
I walked into Aldo’s room while we were at the sea and found him covered under his tallit. “Aldo.... Aldo?” I asked when he didn’t respond. “What’s wrong?” I asked when he still didn’t come out from under his tallit.
“Mom, I know you are heartbroken. I won’t be able to make you proud of me, no matter how hard I try.”
“No, Aldo – you don’t understand. Nothing, and I mean nothing, people say can make me love you less. That is how our Abba loves us. Don’t you remember that He always tells us that nothing we can do can make Him love us more, and nothing we can do can make Him love us less? I love you unconditionally, not matter how many mistakes you make in the eyes of the world.”
That evening he wrote me a letter and shared his heart: “It is so difficult to be like this, Mom. I can’t do what other people can do, no matter how hard I try. I experience things that happen in the spirit so intensely, and I can see how people scrutinize me; and then I make mistakes.”
“God sent you back to write down the things He reveals to you, Aldo” I replied. “And until the day you are healed completely, that’s what you are going to do. That’s all – nothing more, nothing less. You don’t have to please men.”
So many times he is put on the spot when people confront him with questions they don’t have the answers to themselves; about their future, or what is going to happen to the world – and most of the times he can’t answer them, or tell them what they want to hear; or he just plainly says the wrong things at the wrong time.
“I honour God that He protects you from this, Aldo; otherwise the world would have taken advantage of your gifting and made of you some kind of fortunetelling spiritualist. God has His hand on you, and He is protecting you from danger – even if it sometimes leaves you vulnerable to the world’s opinions.”
As I think about our road, and I can hear myself saying: “Ouch! This hurts so much! ... Lord, I can’t take it anymore... Please help us Lord.... Thank You for Your grace on us Lord ... Thank You for Your love ...” and then again – “Ouch! This hurts so much ...!”
How do you have such an intimate relationship with Jesus, Mom? He says He loves you so very much, because you trust Him completely. He says your heart is hurting now. He says He will comfort you in the throne room.
My tears often run freely, and then I have to blink them back and get up on stage and preach. The moment I get off stage I run to the bathroom and start crying again, just to repeat the whole process over and over. This is what our road less travelled looks like. It is a constant holding on to the One who is our ROCK. Yehovah Nissi is our banner, and His banner over us is LOVE. In my one hand I hold on to faith, and in the other hand I clench hope. And for the rest, I just try to smile and appear the same as you. The difference between me and someone walking on a highway will only be known by our inner rooms – there where I often have to take out my broken heart before Abba, and ask Jesus for His healing. I often come before His throne with four broken hearts in my hands, and faithfully Jesus always pours down His blood on our (mine, Tinus, Aldo and Josh’s) hearts.
Even if our family seems weird to you, and not at all what you expected – believe me, inside of us there is an amazing LOVE that drives us on. A love that pushes me forward, and keeps me going when I don’t think I can go on. A love greater than any disappointment, any hurtful words, any arrows in our backs, any attack, any hardship or rocky road – the LOVE of our King makes up for all of this.
Probably the biggest blessing of this road less travelled is that there is no-one else to put our trust in except the King. The road is a lonely road, and when something bad happens I don’t run to people for comfort or prayers – I look up, and I run to my Abba’s arms. Our hope is in God, and God alone. With this I am not saying that I don’t appreciate or need prayer, but I know where I am walking now is a quiet and alone place – all who I can hear and feel next to me is Holy Spirit.
“Why are you crying, Retah?” I hear the Holy Spirit whispering to my heart. “You have to learn not to allow just anyone to walk along with you on this road of faith you are walking, because not everyone understands. The road is full of rocky places and thorns and difficulty, and not everyone will be willing to walk it with you. Most people are only looking for roads that are comfortable and easy to travel on. I am using you to establish a road where there wasn’t one before. It might be a lonely road, but you will make a way for others to follow you to the mountain top.”
I wondered to myself how I should explain the sound of the eagle, the look in it’s eyes and it’s majestic flight (that can only be seen from the road less travelled), to someone who doesn’t want to venture on this difficult road full of hidden treasures.
The Holy Spirit then took me into His eyes, and showed me how wide, and deep His love is for us.
Set yourselves apart for Me, Retah. Cover yourselves here on the mountain top. Send My word down with letters like I planned, until I instruct you otherwise. Aldo was sent back to scribe down what I tell him, not to please men and their itching ears. You and I know how serious his injury is, and that it is only because of My grace that he is still here with you. Others might expect him to be perfect, but you just hold on to what I entrusted you with. Everyone is going to stand before me one day and give account of what they had been entrusted with. Bless Retah. Bless whoever hurts you so I can release My love and grace.
God says: FREE. He says bless, bless. He says bless me now. His blood is in my veins. Will you tell everybody who tries to use me as a fortune teller that He says Aldo can only write what I reveal to him through My spirit. Will you please understand, Auntie?
“Why is it that this road less travelled seems almost deserted?” I wondered to myself. Countless individuals choose not to life a life of dominion on the road less travelled, because they are unable to relate to the love of God. The love the Father has lavished on us is so great, that it enables us to endure anything for Him. By this love we are also called His children. It is this abundance of love (a feast of love) that makes you go on, even if you are the only one on the road less travelled. It is an extravagant love that has no end, and in this love God’s deepest love and His nature is captured – for, GOD IS LOVE. His love brings freedom, and I have received this freedom because of what my Jesus did for me on the cross. I experienced this freedom anew when I listened to a CD that a friend blessed me with this week ... the song sounds like this: “He loves us, He loves us – Oh how He loves us, He loves us – Oh how He loves us ...!” I was spinning and twirling in our beach house and singing with the music: “He loves me, He loves me – Oh how He loves me ...” When I opened my eyes I saw Aldo and Josh standing in the doorway just looking at their mom. As I stopped they chorused “No mom, please go on!” Josh went on to say, “Mom please go on, I think Jesus loves it so so much when you dance for Him like that!”
“Abba, I want to say thank you for the road less travelled. Thank You that You send people on our road to keep our hands held high – people that love us, even in our imperfections. My prayer to You today is, Abba, that no one will put their eyes on us for their hope, but only on You.
“Lord, I ask forgiveness for people who look to us, instead of to You. On this road less travelled you have taught me that no one will be blessed if they trust in men, but only if they trust in You.
“We love You so much, Lord – You are our Alpha and Omega. You are our life. Thank You that there is so much love in the midst of all these tears. Please, Lord, cover and hide Aldo more than ever, so that people’s eyes won’t be on him – but only on You.
“Thanks You for so clearly confirming to us that next year will be Aldo’s “year of serving”. Where he will serve others so that people can experience Jesus’ hands and feet under Your anointing. Thank You that we can protect from prying eyes that want to measure him according to the world’s standard. Because You don’t measure Lord, You weigh. Lord, You weigh our hearts – that’s all that is important to You.”
This is what the Lord says: “Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who draws strength from mere flesh and whose heart turns away from the LORD. That person will be like a bush in the wastelands; they will not see prosperity when it comes. They will dwell in the parched places of the desert, in a salt land where no one lives.
But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit”(Jer. 17:5-8).
We had the privilege of having friends from America here to visit us this week. It was a blessing to have them with us for our Spirit School in Cape Town. Their love touched many people’s lives. We enjoyed sharing South-Africa with them. Their teenage daughter received the most beautiful prophetic word from Abba – He came to give her a kiss from heaven. My tears flowed when I saw a glimpse of how much He loves her, and how He was stretching His arms out towards her.
I just want to say thank you to them – thank you for all your love! We feel so blessed to know you. May the King bless you for everything that you have meant to us!
To the people from Destiny Image (also from America) who came to visits us – it was so good to have you at our office. It is always a humbling experience for me to see how God connects us to the world, and to see Him doing what He said He would do.
May the King bless us all on our different roads. May we learn not to look at anyone other than GOD, AND GOD ALONE – Yeshua our Messiah.
Love from Retah and a sleepy family next to me in the plane.
(We are leaving for Israel this week, please keep us in your prayers)
(It is now Monday night – today was just so busy that I didn’t have time to hand in the web letter even though it was finished. But what a wonderful experience we had tonight at the dinner table. As Tinus finished praying, the kids lifted their hands in the air and started singing “He loves us, he loves us - Oh how He loves us, he love us....” I just smiled, and Josh said “Mom, don’t be shy – you can dance when you want to for Jesus”. Time to go to bed in Africa – God bless you all. Don’t ever forget: He loves us!)