Tuesday, January 15, 2013

A Mystery I Don't Have to Solve...

Prayer is such a mystery! Sometimes you pray and get an answer right away. Other times you pray and get nothing… no, “yes”… no, “no”… or in the silence, “just wait.” I had an experience recently of a promise God had given me a couple years ago, what I thought was being fulfilled, in just the way I wanted it to be.  I just knew it… I had it all worked out in my mind how I felt God was doing this thing He had promised!  I built myself up believing that this was it… God is going to give me just what I want, how I thought I wanted it!  I was acting like God needed my help to figure this out!  Wrong! Don’t throw stones… you know we’ve all done that!

Whose promise was this anyway?  I was not the one who asked God for His promise… He gave it to me and along with that I had to remember that He will fulfill it in His time, how He knows is best, in a way I could NEVER imagine!  Knowing that is all good and dandy being on this side of it looking back, but it was a very hard, I mean very hard (who’s stubborn?), few days getting over my feelings of disappointment!

I can admit it now, I acted like a spoiled brat, don’t get me wrong my heart was hurting and I know God knew that, but my reaction to my devastation was not pretty!  It went something like this… “I don’t feel like You are hearing me”… “I don’t feel like You care that this is what I want”… “I don’t feel You see what an opportunity this is to bring You glory?”… “I just feel like taking my “marbles” and going home! What does any of it matter anyway?”  Like I said, not a bit of beauty in my attitude.

So I spent a few days wallowing in my mud… then God sent someone to reach out to me… just that act of caring helped some of the clouds to be pushed away.  I knew my time of “mourning” had to be finished.  I started asking God to show me what was causing me to react in such a way.  I asked Him to reveal to me what that black blob was in my heart.  Holy Spirit shined His light on it so I could see it was a blob of my tangled up feelings!  I let my feelings and emotions, something God created me with for good, to be used as a weapon against myself.  He also showed me that it is not about my feelings, but it is about God’s Truth! What an ugly mess we can easily get ourselves in when we live by our feelings and not God’s Truth.

So why am I sharing all of my spiritual ugliness?  I don’t really know… I would just as soon forget it and move on, but God showed me in James 5:16 – “Confess your faults to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.”  I know that it is only in my helplessness God will be glorified!

Maybe someone reading this is going through a similar struggle.  Maybe God wants to use my experience to bring Him glory… without a test you will never have a testimony. Maybe we need to start praying more for each other.  All I know is it is really not about me, but about what Christ is doing through me and through each one of you.  Someone said to me recently, that this is the year for boldness… boldness for Christ.  Are we ready to be bold?

“He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height—to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.  Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” Ephesians 3:16-21

“Prayer works because God is in control. The basis of all miracles is God's sovereignty. Why does He do one and not another? Because God is in control. We have to trust His wisdom and His goodness.” – Rick Warren

So yes, prayer is a mystery, but God’s Truth is not… He is our Provider (Genesis 22:14), our Healer (Exodus 15:26), our Protector (Exodus 17:15), our Peace (Judges 6:24), our Shepherd (Psalms 23:1), He is good (Psalms 86:5), He is just (Isaiah 30:18), He is faithful (1 Corinthians 1:9)… just a few.

Rejoicing in Truth!