Scotland was not on my radar. It was hardly on my map. Braveheart, Nessie, bagpipes, and men wearing skirts would have been first on my list if asked what I thought of when I heard the word “Scotland.” And St. Andrews. Now that’s a part of Scotland any golfer could be interested in.
When Rebecca decided she was going with West Ridge to Scotland I was like, “Cool! I bet that will be a great trip.” And when I heard they would be visiting St. Andrews, I was a little jealous. But I gave her my blessing, and --as expected-- the trip was great.
But for her it was more. And I could tell. And it made me nervous. Nervous enough that I started to avoid conversations about Scotland. I didn’t even watch the Open that year. So when our pastor invited us to visit with West Ridge on a pastor vision trip, I was like, “We’d love to go!”
What I meant by that is that we’d love to visit. You know, sightsee, visit some cool castles, maybe even hit the Links at St. Andrews. And, of course, we would prayer walk (or in Scotland prayer “hike”) and meet with some local churches. But no way would I consider moving to Scotland. Thank goodness no one had mentioned that…yet.
The vision trip turned out to be great. Scotland was beautiful. Even the urban setting of Edinburgh (pronounced EH DIN BERG by me) was quite an experience. The scenery was breathtaking. Well, most of it. As we drove by the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, we couldn’t help but notice a large sign affixed to scaffolding framework and composed of light bulbs depicting the declaration “THERE WILL BE NO MIRACLES HERE.”
Wow. Did I see that correctly? What exactly did that mean? I certainly believe in miracles. Don’t most people? Despite the beauty Scotland had offered for the week, there was a feeling of heaviness everywhere we went. The Scots were great and for the most part had accepted us with open arms. But there was something going on, something that to this day is hard to describe. But whatever it was, it didn’t feel right.
As a matter fact, coming home to our “nice little life” didn’t feel right anymore either. What is going on, Lord? What are you asking? For months, I wasn’t sure. But one thing, I did know, is that He does still do miracles. I’d seen it in my own life. I’d seen in it the lives of those I love. So to read those words, “THERE WILL BE NO MIRACLES HERE,” and to just do nothing…well…that just wouldn’t work.
We still don’t know how our journey will end. To be honest, we’re not one hundred percent agreed on our next step. But we know that it has started, and Philippians 1:6 says “He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” I’m not sure what the “end” looks like for our time in Scotland, but I hope somewhere in the story God uses our talents to declare “THERE WILL BE NO MIRACLES HERE!”