Monday, May 25, 2015

What Happens On Your Knees

Whatcha doing, mama?

I opened my eyes and turned to see my four-year-old with a questioning look on his face. I was on my knees in front of my desk chair praying for a dear friend that the Lord had laid heavy on my heart.

I'm praying baby. Want to do it with me?

Yeah! His face lit up to be involved, so we kneeled down together and sought the Lord's favor in my friend's life.

And these are the moments that the Lord uses to redeem my horrible mommy moments of yelling and being impatient. Ohhh, legacy.

A lot happens when I get on my knees. It's a matter of perspective. When I am on my knees, my heart is softer, it's more humble. I'm coming to my loving and righteous Father as a tender and unassuming child.

Father, rescue me.

Father, love on me.

Father, lead me and guide me.

Father, thank you.

Kneeling is an act of lowering and humbling yourself out of massive respect and awe of the one who holds your life in His hands. And I feel that He meets me there in my state of humility. I feel that He lowers himself to me, cups my face in His nail-scarred hands and whispers, it is my pleasure, my child.

Immanuel. God with us.

Humility is the fear of the Lord; its wages are riches and honor and life.
Proverbs 22:4

He withdrew about a stone's throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed.
Luke 22:41

It's also a posture of submission. 

My God, your will be done. My dreams, plans, hopes, and priorities shine so bright they almost blind me. To kneel is to realign my heart with the will of God. To refocus my eyes on the glory that shines not from my smallness, but from the greatness that is our creator.

This submission is the acknowledgment of His all powerful and holy sovereignty. Good God Almighty! Just the brush of my knees to the ground levels me.

Lord, I need and desire and crave...but above all, your will be done.

Kneeling to pray is not necessary. But, oh, the things that happen when I do.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Religion to Relationship

Somewhere along the way, relationship shrunk into religion.  It became do's and don'ts instead of desire.  Where is the desire? Faded?

Do you know where I encounter God most often? Between the thin pages of this book. It's not about checking off a spiritual to-do. It's not about lightening the guilt for another day or two. Communication happens here. Relationship happens here. It is magnetic.

Never. Ever. Have I experienced God's presence more powerfully than when I am in consistent study of His word. I don't expect to flip open the bible at random, slap my finger on the page, and discover why my son is so strong willed or how to raise him.

But, when I intentionally set out on a course of study, the flood gates open and my feet are often knocked right out from under me.

When I set out to read and study the bible, I don't carry a mindset of what I will get out of my obedience. I come to be taught by God. Let me stop for a moment, because that very phrase paralyzes me. Taught by God.

Taught by God.

Taught by God.

I come to become better acquainted with who God is and how God is. I want to know his character from ingesting His ways with the Israelites. I want to know Jesus from soaking in the letters of the early fathers of the church. I want to catch glimpses of my eternal future by lathering up in scriptures describing the second coming.

And somewhere in the midst of me seeking Him, He meets me right where I am.

In my study of Gideon, I acquired the taste that God does give us more than we can handle, because it gives Him the opportunity to shine.

In my study of 1 and 2 Thessalonians, I connected with the madness and gladness of deep personal relationship with those you are leading and doing life with.

In my study of the ancient Israelites in general, I found relief in the truth that God has been unfathomably patient with His children from day one.

In my study of Mary and Martha, I found freedom from perfectionism and the fulfillment of right perspective.

I could write a whole book just on the sweet honey that has gushed at me out of Proverbs.

When I look at this priceless, precious book, my heart swells. So much love is contained within these tattered pages. Among the scribbled notes, the highlighted areas, a few tear stains, and one pressed flower (a gift from my son during a dark time), is the ultimate display of love.

I'm not crossing items off my religious check list here. I'm relating with my creator here.