Boy, sometimes I just love a rainy day. This afternoon has been heaven!!! I took a much needed nap and it felt sooo good to kick back and just relax. I wish I honored the work six days rest seven rule more often but between work and work at home it is hard to get a day of total relaxation. But, I sure do love these kind of days :)
This weekend has been pretty awesome. My church, St. James UMC, was a host church for the Beth Moore Living Proof Live simulcast that was broadcasted from Green Bay. Of course, I jumped at the chance to see Beth Moore! It was so much fun to see her in action and to worship with Travis Cottrell and his team of gifted musicians. Her lesson that she shared with us was based around Psalm 37:4, "Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart." She broke down her message into seven parts and each one was special in their own right, but today I want to share point #6: Nothing is passive about patiently waiting for desire to turn into delight.
The scripture that is the reference for this statement is Psalm 37:7, "Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; do not fret when men succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes." Often, in today's society, it is hard to be still. We live in a fast-paced world where we can get what we want in a click of a button. This allows us to think we have control over our lives. How much time do we actually spend waiting? Or praying for that matter? And, when we do pray, are our prayers so often focused on our needs and when we say amen we haven't taken time to listen? To really get down to it, we want it on our time not God's time.
"Be still," in this context, refers to the Hebrew word meaning to stop, to be silent. It means that when we pray we don't need to be all talk and no listening. We need to hush our mouths and just stop talking! I have a relative that loves to talk. She can carry on a conversation with a brick wall and be just tickled. We all love conversation, right? But, do we allow our conversations to be two-way streets? I can sit here and talk to you through this blog all day long but I would love for you to talk back to me so I can listen to what is going on in your lives. I want this to be an avenue of learning and growing for you and for me. More importantly, I want my time with the Lord to not be all about me. I need to stop my quick prayers and just take time out to listen. To hear His voice. To let Him take His time with me. I need to wait and be patient in His promise to give me the desires of my heart.
In Psalm 37:7, wait patiently in Hebrew is the word chiyl which means to have anxious expectation, to twist, to whirl, to rise in pain, to trust and to wait. Beth described this beautifully on Saturday and I hope I can give it justice. She demonstrated that if she were to bang her toe on something it would hurt and she would be jumping around saying "Ow, gosh this hurts!" But, what if she had anxious expectation that it would get better? What if she jumped around the room, twisting and dancing in pain, holding her foot in her hands saying, "Ow, Lord, Ow, this hurts, but Oh, Lord, you are going to make it better!" We all go through tough stuff. Stuff that hurts so much and stuff that can give us so much pain. Rather than sitting there being angry at God or praying but not taking the time to listen to how He will help us, we should have an anxious expectation that He is going to take this bad and turn it into something great and beautiful for our lives.
Prayer can move mountains, dear friends. Especially, when we take time to have a two-way conversation. I know the majority of us don't hear God speaking to us like He did with Moses, but He is there and He does speak to us. He speaks to us through others and He talks back to us through emotions. I know after I have been going through major low points in my life and I am crying out to Him, He gives me His peace to face another day. This weekend, I assisted St. James by being on the prayer team. We had alter calls both days for women to just take time to pray. It was a life-changing moment for me to be in a room praying over these women that I didn't even know. But, I knew they needed the Lord. We all have pain in our lives. We all need to cry out to Him. But, let's do it in anxious expectation that He is going to deliver us from this moment of pain. He is going to take us into a place that we long for; the place where we can delight in Him and be given the desires of our hearts.
Don't lose hope in this promise. Just wait patiently.
Till' next time, let your light shine!