GODWINKS of NATURE
I PRAYED for God to give me a connection to him through a butterfly.
In moments a beautiful MONARCH butterfly ...
A Godwink is what some people would call a coincidence, an answered prayer, or simply an experience where you'd say, "Wow, what are the odds of that!"
What do Godwinks mean? Think about when you were a kid and someone you loved gave you a little wink across the dining room table ... Mom or Dad or Grandma. You didn't say, "What do you mean by that?" You knew. It meant: "Hey kid, I'm thinking about you right now." That's what a Godwink is too: a message of reassurance from above, directly to you, out of seven billion people on the planet, saying "Hey kid ... I'm thinking of you! Keep the faith! You're never alone."
In times of UNCERTAINTY what we desire more than anything else is CERTAINTY; certainty that our families are safe; certainty that we won't lose our jobs and that we'll have enough in the checkbook to make it through the month. We crave certainty when we get a scary medical report and we long for certainty in our relationships.
It's during times of uncertainty that we especially need to get connected to our faith. We need to understand that our lives are not like twigs randomly floating downstream to destinations unknown.
Instead, you need to know that each of us has a greater purpose; that someone really is up there watching over you and that you are always on an incredible GPS ... what I call God's Positioning System™.
To me, the best thing about Godwinks is that they are TANGIBLE SIGNPOSTS of HOPE and ENCOURAGEMENT along our way, replacing uncertainty with a genuine feeling of CERTAINTY that everything is going to be okay!
Raised in a God-respecting-Christian family in a small farm community in Northern New York, I was rooted in my faith right from childhood. But it fully blossomed when my son was born in cardiac arrest. His lungs had become clogged in the womb. They said if he lived, he'd be severely brain damaged and non-functioning in many ways. As he lay in a hospital incubator with 18 wires and tubes coming from his small body, I studied the gauge on the respirator. It indicated that he was breathing only 5% on his own and the machine was doing the remaining 95%. I pleaded with God to save my son and pledged that I would pray for him around the clock.
In an extraordinary story that I shared in my first book, I witnessed a powerful Godwink! During the 39th hour of my child’s life, at 5:30 am, his body began to shake. It was a seizure, said the nurse, rushing to get a doctor. I then watched in amazement as the seizure created a miracle … his tiny quivering body began to cast off the blockage in his lungs, sending a dark substance through a transparent tube coming from his lungs. God was doing what the doctors could not.
I gazed at the respirator gauge. It was dropping. My son was breathing more and more on his own! By the time he was 48 hours old the respirator gauge had dropped to 50%, meaning that he was breathing 50% by himself! Doctors confirmed he would survive, calling him "the miracle baby".
My son Grant was subsequently diagnosed with brain damage, unable to read or write, yet in many other ways he can function normally. Today he's a sweet, engaging young man with a wonderful singing voice and an unusual musical memory. He's a joy. Works at a horticultural center. And says his “job for God” is making people happy with his singing.
From the day of my son's birth, I truly began a deeper relationship with God. And my walk with the Lord has only grown stronger since I met and married my wonderful wife Louise DuArt.
Getting into the habit of praying together, every single day, has produced so many incredible blessings and Godwinks in our lives that we felt compelled to share that gift with others in books we’ve co-authored, Couples Who Pray and the 40 Day Prayer Challenge.
But Louise also taught me the treasure that can be uncovered through daily reading of a far more important book, the Bible. For us ... and for anyone seeking proof of God's existence ... the ancient scriptures reveal a remarkably harmonious blueprint for our lives, all the more astonishing when you consider that it was written down over thousands of years by dozens of different writers.
In a small way I can identify with those writers as I now look back on my own work on the Godwinks books, four of which have been co-authored by Louise. I tend to be the storyteller while her unique skills relate the scriptural messaging. But, as I stand back, I realize that God has led me to every astonishing story in every one of those ten books. It would therefore be more honest for me to say that I didn't really write the stories in those books. I just wrote them down.
While working at ABC for 20 years, I always signed my name, in personal notes, as simply "SQ". One summer my daughter, home from college, replaced my vacationing secretary for a week. While typing letters, Hilary observed a distinction from the way she'd always seen my name. So, she marched into my office and said, "Hey Dad, this little "q" looks funny. Why don't we make it a capital ‘Q' … then you'll have a logo!"
I replied in the manner of any self-respecting father: "Whatever you want honey." And, ever since, SQuire has been spelled with a capital "Q."
Think of "Godwink mapping" as taking an archeological expedition into your own life, digging up Godwinks that you’ve overlooked, forgotten, or ignored.
One of the best ways to uncover past Godwinks is to focus on your turning points … those moments when your life's path headed into a whole new direction; perhaps you lost someone you love, got a new job, a new relationship or a new home. I suspect that there was always a signpost at every turning point. It was there to provide you reassurance, to let you know that everything was going to be okay, that you're never alone.
Of course, like most, you probably brushed off that sign of hope and never registered that it was Godwink of comfort that was sent directly to you, out of seven billion people on the planet.
When you take the time to excavate buried Godwinks, you’ll come to the awareness that there has been a map of signposts all along your way, saying, "Hey kid ... hang in there. You're on track."
And the best news? A trail of Godwinks will continue to unfold, long into your future. Just open your eyes and acknowledge them as concrete signs of encouragement, directly from above, especially for you.
We've all had the experience of getting a call from someone out of the blue, that we had just been talking about. Or ... we've run into someone on the street who said something, or introduced us to someone, who completely changed the direction of our life.
You may have said, "Wow ... what a Godwink."
Yet rarely do we ask, "What caused that person to call me at that moment?" Or, "What caused that person to be at the very same place I was, at precisely the right time?"
I call these people "Godwink Links." They are the unwitting messengers of a Godwink to others. But, come to think of it, we are ALL unwitting messengers of Godwinks to others, aren't we?
That proves, of course, that we indeed are on a glorious GPS … God's Positioning SystemTM … and through awesome, mysterious connections, we are being nudged through our lives by the Divine Alignment of Godwinks.
Wishes and dreams were placed in your heart by a powerful force⎯your Maker. When you were a child, unfettered by human reasoning, you believed that every dream and prayer you uttered into a star-filled sky would come true. You said: "I wish I may, I wish I might..." and believed it would happen.
Then, someone said, "grow up" … called you a "dreamer" … and made it sound like a bad word. Little by little your childlike faith was eroded.
But, it's never too late to rekindle the wishes, dreams, and prayers that were placed on your heart. You must not sit by the side of the road on your baggage and expect your destiny to come to you. You need to get up, leave your baggage behind, and start heading for what you believe to be your destiny.
When you step out in faith, God can then divinely align you, by unfolding Godwinks along your path. He expects you to use your free will to aim for your destiny. Those are your hands on the steering wheel. So, just just ask your Navigator for directions and look for the signs⎯just as you would on the interstate highway⎯reassuring you that you're on the right path.
No author should whine about his books being in a bookstore, particularly when they've reached that coveted "auto re-order" status. But, I want you to know that, unfortunately, authors have no control over bookstore placement of their books.
My pleadings to Barnes & Noble and other bookstores that Godwinks books really belong in “Inspiration” have, regrettably, failed to muster much attention. So, as you enter a bookstore, I hope you'll take a deep breath, close your eyes, and resist judging our books by where they have been placed on the shelf.
Imagine me handing you a box ... a jigsaw puzzle. Your picture is on it, under the words "My Life."
You dump it out on the dining room table, paw through the pieces, and invariably exclaim, "This life will never fit together!"
But here's the thing about jigsaw puzzles. You innately know that if you keep at it, the puzzle will eventually come together, right? And why do you believe that? Because you saw the picture on the box.
By the same token, when the puzzle of your life is all put together and seen from above ... God’s perspective … it will all make sense. It will all fit.
Remember, the closer we get to His perspective, the more our faith grows in the promise that there is a grand plan for each of our lives, and that each piece fits perfectly.
It gives me great delight to know that the word "Godwinks"⎯divinely placed into my consciousness⎯has now entered our language. Like most people, I had always sensed that there was no coincidence to coincidence. And if that was so, I had asked, what do you call it?
Subsequently, it was you, my readers, who led us to an awareness of a second meaning for Godwinks; that there is no word in the English language for answered prayer. You demonstrated that by exclaiming, "I just had a Godwink" whenever a prayer was answered.
Yet, the best thing I've come to understand on this wondrous journey, is that Godwinks help each of us to feel a tangible connection to God, like a handrail on a scary slippery slope. Godwinks provide concrete stepping stones to a lasting relationship with our Heavenly Father.
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