What I’m really looking for is a sign.
There’s been a facebook meme recently among believers. Yes, Christian memes. They’re like dad jokes that exist in the self deprecating realm. It expresses some dissatisfaction with the fact that we have to wait and discern from the way that God speaks to us about what to do. Sometimes you just want orders. Anyone who has ever done a military move will laugh. Even in a life governed by pieces of paper issued officially from some personnel office, some amount of discernment is needed. Sometimes, “Go to Ft Livingroom” doesn’t always mean what it says. Sometimes it gets replaced last second by a different move. Sometimes it means the whole family. Sometimes it means for just a year, while saying three (I’m looking at you, Ft Stewart assignment freshman year of high school… totally over it…)
So maybe we don’t want military orders.
Maybe we want something written with compassion and love. And maybe a spot of insight into how people work too…
The signs are there, though. We have to look. Sometimes we have to pull our faces out of where they are buried in our grief. Sometimes we have to quiet the noise of our distress to hear His voice. Sometimes we have to pull our fingers out of our ears because we suspect what He will say and direct, but we just don’t wanna…
We walked into the church service yesterday. Each greeter wished me a happy Father’s Day. In my heart, I congratulated them for their courage. Wishing someone a Happy Father’s Day is a crap shoot for some men. But they did it with a straight face and love exuding from their eyes. Their handshakes were soft. Just ending was a Hillsong Young and Free song on the sound system. It’s the same one that has become a studying song for me. I don’t study with the upbeat millennial worship music. I listen to a version played by Dan Musselman. If you’re looking for some good music to give you the feels and the daydreams, give the guy a listen.
There’s something about hearing your music in a place where you’re guaranteed to sit in someone’s regular spot. You feel a little more confident. A little more home…
Then we started singing. I don’t really know what that first song was. But it was pretty. I was a little distracted. Leo needed a redo with the whole coming in thing. So we got a redo.
After our redo, we sang “King of my Heart.” Leo had that song stuck in his head for the rest of the day, just by the way. Thanks Nick Daniels.
After that, it was “Reckless Love.”
I was home. There was nothing in the way of worshipping my God with these people whose names are largely foreign to me.
Then the preacher started preaching.
I remember two phrases.
While ramping up to address the fathers in the congregation, the pastor said that he had repented from his earlier days in Father’s Day messages and was no longer interested in delivering “do better sermons.” 
I was home. There was nothing in the way of hearing the truth God would give me through this man.
I remember him saying of advice given him some years back, “you will never learn how to say ‘no’ until you learn what your compelling ‘yes’ is.” 
I was home. There was nothing in the way of me being harassed by the truth of God being spoken by this man.
We finished the service with “Good, Good Father.” I smiled the whole way. I wrote about this and was happy to participate in it. John Crist trolled his social media followers about it. They played along.
I was home. There was no way I wasn’t supposed to be here today.
After Father’s Day with much more family than we’ve enjoyed in a long time, we drove home. When we walked into home, it smelled like home.
I was home. There was nothing in the way of me taking a completely awesome nap!
I’ve spent so much time wondering which direction I’m supposed to go now that I’m here, I have forgotten to ask a much more fundamental question. It’s a scary one with its implications, but it boils down to much to much less than “where should I go now?” In navigation, you must first discern where you are in order to figure out how to get where you’re going. I never thought I would be in this place again… feeling slightly lost. Before yesterday, I didn’t even know where I was.
More directly and importantly, I’m in His will, and in His sight.
He is leaving signs that we’re where we’re supposed to be. The rest will come. But our hearts can be so uncertain, we still need the signs.
I went running this morning. Two miles can feel like fifteen when you haven’t run in a long time. No matter how cold the shower afterwards, I still sweat myself through one change of clothes. While running, I saw the mountainous clouds of the flat lands of Texas, spiraling into the sky, backlit by the coming dawn. As I ran, I saw them slowly move. I saw them shift position. It was like watching mountains actually being moved.
I realized as I ran, I’ve been here before, waiting for God’s will. That moment has always preceded great turns in my life. It saw me put on the uniform of the U.S. Army and deploy with it. It saw me start a career in youth ministry, another in music ministry, and even begin study about worship. The mountain of my doubt has always been moved by the undeniable truth of His goodness.
I’ve seen You move. You move the mountains. And I believe I’ll see You do it again. You made a way, when there was no way, and I believe I’ll see You do it again. 
Last night, as he was going to bed, Leo sang in His little sing song voice, when he idly sings without knowing he’s singing. “You’re never gonna let, never gonna let me down. You are good, good, oh, You are good, good, oh” 
If my children can go to bed confident that the sun will rise tomorrow on adventure and a new message from the Father, so will I.
When the night is holding onto me, God is holding on. 
 Toby Slough, “June 17, 2018,” Sermon. Cross Timbers Church, Argyle, TX 9:15AM service. June 17, 2018.
3] Chris Brown, Matt Brock, Matt Redman, and Steven Furtick, “Do It Again,” (Elevation Worship Publishing, admin by Essential Music Publishing, LLC., 2017) CCLI# 7067555
 John Mark McMillan and Sarah McMillan, “King of My Heart,” (Meaux Jeaux Music, admin by Capitol CMG Publishing and Raucous Ruckus Publishing, admin by Capitol CMG Publishing, 2015) CCLI# 7046145