Tonight my agenda, if you will, consists of only one thing: enjoy the rarely empty house to simply hang out with God. Easy enough, right? Well, no.
I’ve taught in classes about the importance of time alone with God, the need to have a relationship that transcends a two hour Sunday service. I believe completely that it’s possible to have a friendship with the Creator, to know and be known with a familiar intimacy.
It occurs to me tonight, however, that I don’t know how to simply be with God. I don’t know how to simply sit and fellowship with Him, to find Him within and without and be at peace in communion.
I’m sitting in my living room, perfectly prepared for a casual encounter of any kind. I’ve got music at the ready, my favorite book about grace, a Bible, etc., etc. I’m ready to commit to an evening with Him. Except.
Except I find myself doing anything I can to keep from just talking to God. I’m convinced I’ve got nothing to say that He wants to hear, just a list of apologies for things I’ll probably do again; if I can manage to distract myself long enough I might eek out a ‘want list’ for those I love. There’s nothing of substance.
I know how to do for God. I know how to sacrifice for God. I can study and expound upon and deliver the message of God. I can often hear the voice of God, discern the Spirit of Him, sing and pray a word for a waiting ear, but I don’t know what to say to God when we’re alone. I know how to accept God, I don’t know how to give Him me.
I’ve had a lot of revelations lately, about the shallowness of my God experience, and the difficulty it is to be genuine when the role of giant is so easy to play. To be aware of the dichotomy is disquieting, to admit it openly is humbling. I’ll gladly accept the humility if it brings me to authenticity.
I’m not having a crisis of faith, I’m having a crisis of relationship. I am absolutely convinced that there is more to life with God than what I can do for Him and what I can give up for Him. There must be more than this endless cycle of guilt for not being able to do enough, and guilt for not being able to live well enough.
I know without a doubt that there is, that there is authentic relationship and love to be found. I am intent on finding it. I believe, at times, that I’ve been there before, in love with the Creator and without concern to anything else. At other times I am convinced that I’ve never felt that depth, that I was simply parroting a lifetime of experiences cherished by those around me. Mostly, though, I’m convinced that it doesn’t matter if I’ve felt it then or if it was all a lie; the point is that I’m not feeling it now, that I haven’t been for some long amount of time, and that has got to change.
Things might get ugly, but authenticity never comes without a price. Don’t be concerned for me, but you might like to say a prayer. I’m in search of God, and I’m desperate to find him in the way He wants to be found.
Your comments, encouragements and pieces of advice are greatly welcomed as this journey progresses. PLEASE leave them here though and not on my Facebook wall. You don’t have to be a member to leave a comment. Thanks and be blessed.