I don’t want this blog to be about me. It has everything to do with Him because I can’t do anything on my own, nor do I have anything good to offer anyone. But because I have given myself completely to Jesus Christ, I am a vessel to understand and reflect His love in the weakness of my humanity. I have nothing more to give to anyone except that which He has first given me (1 John 4:19).
So here I want to explain why the blog is called “The Landing.” I named it after the most personal gift God has ever given me. If you read my testimony in my first post, you know that the storm within me was only calmed by pronouncing His name over it. Prior to that, I didn’t know that I could have a personal relationship with the maker of the universe. Yes, I realize that sounds insane to some. It used to sound insane to me. I grew up attending church and commonly feeling like one lost among the masses. Nothing about religion was personal except the shame that seemed to follow me around as I didn’t measure up.
Since then, I have learned differently. And now, I am always amazed at how intentionally personal God is with us. This is one of the things that made me fall in love with Him. And as I said in my testimony, if you ask God to show up personally to you — expect that He will. Discovering “the landing” was one of those for me.
In January of this year, I was reading my devotional One-Year Bible and I was beginning the year in Genesis. As I re-read the story of the Ark, the Holy Spirit brought something out in the text that somehow I had completely missed in prior readings. I had never before seen that the Ark comes to rest on the mountain of Ararat on a very specific day. My mouth went dry as I read the date carefully a few times over. It is the same day as my birthday. Quickly, I checked the other major translations to ensure I wasn’t looking into something more than was appropriate. Sure enough, it was referenced the same way in four of the five major translations that I regularly read (KJV, NASB, NIV and NKJV).
Prior to my personal landing when I found Christ, much like the earth in those days, I drowned in a sea of sin and emotion that seemed without reprieve. I was consistently tossed by the waves that were over my head, trying to understand why my decisions weren’t working out well. With my heart as the navigator, the storm couldn’t die down on its own.
Yet, as we see in Genesis, even in the midst of God’s wrath, He made a provision ahead of time for those whom He loved. I was one of them. While yet in my sin (Romans 5:8), I was in my own invisible ark that God had prepared ahead of time for my provision. And after months and months of the earth being flooded with God’s wrath (in my case, years of faulty decision making), God finally allowed the tip of the mountain to appear like dawn breaking on the horizon. And He landed the Ark on the 17th day of the seventh month. Despite the flood that I myself had caused, He landed me to give me new life.
A Call to Steward My New Life
As my landing approached, it wasn’t graceful. But when I stepped out of the grand boat that I didn’t even know I was on, the view was entirely that of something washed, something new. What had been withered and dead had also been washed away. And what remained were the beginnings of a previously seeded life just now pushing through the damp soil. I stepped out into the lush environment, now with a great call of responsibility to tend to the new life that had been brought forth within my sight.
The landing was all about me, but the boat was never mine. The new land wasn’t mine. The new life sprouting wasn’t mine. It was His, in me. And each day still, I consider the call to step out and tend to the seeds in front of me with reverence, awe, and the realization that every little bit of it — as the pure reflection of His love — is entirely personal. Thanks be to my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, alone.
Joanna Sanders is a graduate of Villanova University and Moody Theological Seminary. She’s also the founder and head writer of Colossians46.com, which provides biblical content support, writing, and editing. Most importantly, she is wife to Geoff and mom to three godly men-in-training. Her blog name “The Landing” comes from the account of the Ark resting on the mountain, creating a settled place — a landing — for man to start over, which echoes her new life in Christ.