"Lord, I've Got the Sandal!"
by Steve Trullinger
Abba’s perspective concerning land “ownership” can be quite distinct from our (limited!) view!
I encountered a fascinating example of the distinction in early 2001. The prelude to this adventure begins in 1995 and has several fascinating features, but I will save those for another time. The main “ingredient” is that the Lord declared that he intended to give me “the land I had cried for.” This land comprises about a square mile in a wonderful and desirable section of Southern California.
A small piece of that land is a double-lot in a commercial zone on a main thoroughfare passing through the larger region and this “gateway” became the focus of a prayer assignment from the Lord in late 2000, just before the turn of the year. I was with a group of intercessors praying together for revival in our region, and during that meeting the Lord instructed me to walk around that double-lot once per day for six days and then seven times on the seventh day. Shades of Jericho (see Joshua, Chapter 6)! ☺
This particular double-lot was occupied by a building (and associated parking area) that had been shared by two businesses that had suffered some fire damage many years before. One-half of the structure was now empty and a bit of an eye-sore for passers-by (its fenced-off parking area was weed-infested). The other half was still usable and served as a headquarters office for a business needing room for a few employees. Some churches and businesses had their sights on that lot because of its prime location, but the neglected half was presumably a problem for potential buyers.
Concerning my prayer-walking assignment from the Lord to circumnavigate the lot several times I thought it would be appropriate to begin my walk on the first day of 2001, which would be 01/01/01. However, the Lord said, “No, begin your walks on January 2.” I was tempted to accuse the Lord of not recognizing the significance of 01/01/01 as the start date but thought the better of that and instead simply postponed pressing him for understanding until the third day of my prayer walk around the double-lot, on January 4.
When I asked the Lord (during my third walk) why he had me begin on January 2 instead of my preferred date of January 1, he asked me, “When will you finish your assignment?” That was an easy question to answer so I said, “On January 8.” Then I instantly realized why he had delayed my start date by one day. I would be finishing my assignment on the 8th day of the new millennium, and the 8th day (the day of circumcision for baby males) would signify that this land was being “circumcised” for use in the Kingdom! Now I was encouraged even more by the significance of this prayer-walking assignment. I had been walking around the double-lot once per day, praying strongly for this land to come into Kingdom use.
On the sixth day (January 7) of my assignment, I ended my walk in the usual spot at a corner of the abandoned and fenced parking lot. I noticed that on the top of the chain-link fence was hanging a woman’s plastic beach sandal that had not been there the day before. I began to feel an overwhelming sense of awe and declared to the Lord: “If that sandal is still here on the fence at the end of my seven circuits tomorrow (the seventh and last day of the assignment), I will take the sandal and hence possession of this land for Kingdom use.”
I knew that the Lord knew that I knew the significance of the sandal, according to Ruth, Chapter 4. When a particular piece of land in ancient Israel was being transferred to a new owner, the previous owner would take off one of his sandals and present it to the new owner as proof of the transfer. In essence, the sandal served as a “deed” to the land. The possessor of the sandal was recognized as the rightful new owner.
Sure enough, at the end of my seventh circuit around the lot on the seventh day (January 8), I took possession of the sandal and claimed the land for the Kingdom of God! I was so overwhelmed by the power of the Holy Spirit upon me that I nearly fell over. I took the sandal home, washed it off, and placed it on a shelf in my home office. (By the way, on the instep of the sandal was a word embedded in the plastic: “SWEET”)
Just a few days later, I was shocked to notice that the abandoned portion of the building on “my lot” had been bulldozed – the walls had come down, a la Jericho (again, see Joshua Chapter 6)! My “Jericho-walk” had a very tangible consequence. The timing was not a “coincidence” – the abandoned half of the building had stood unattended for many years up to that time.
There are several more chapters to this story, but I can summarize by saying the eventual developers of the scraped lot erected a commercial building a few years after my Jericho-walk, but the meager occupancy of the new retail space has been a disappointment to them, I’m sure. During the more than 20 years that have passed until this writing, I have often smiled as I view the sandal on my office shelf and have unwavering confidence that the land will eventually come into my physical possession, or that of my grandsons perhaps. With boldness I often issue a reminder to myself and the heavenly realm by declaring:
“Lord, I’ve got the sandal!”
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