Friday, December 04, 2009

I Must Turn To God

I sit in my office trying to work up the desire to finish the sermon for Sunday, but the saddness of my heart is overwhelming. This is not a feeling that I can lower my head and fight my way through, it is to deep to overcome by sheer will power So, I am forced to pause and consider "why is my heart sad?"

I reflect on my life and I see God's hand guiding me, even more so the last few days. Truth be told, I have more reason to trust God with my life now than I have ever had before. The strange thing is that these reasons have nothing to do with God arranging the life I always wanted to live, in fact, it has been the opposite. The further away the life I have always wanted has moved from my grasp, the more confident I have become of God's good desire for my life.

As I examine my heart I realize the problem is one of addiction. For far too long the hope and joy for my life have come from fantasy, and the result has been that I became addicted to the false promise it had to offer. The saddness of my heart is part of the withdrawal pains of that addiction. It is difficult to give up the source of hope that I have relied on for so long.

What can I do about this saddness? I know something I cannot do, and that is to reason with my heart with logic. Trust me, I have telling myself all the reasons why I should trust God and all the reasons why the fantasy is a lie, and yet my heart continues to ache and cry out for the happiness inducing fantasy. Logic is not going to win this fight.

What am I left with? Prayer. I know this is a Sunday School answer, but that doesn't make it wrong (though it is incomplete). When I say all I have left is prayer I am not refering to the wimpy ineffective prayers most of us throw up in order to fulfill our religious obligation. I am talking about honest and heartfelt communication with God. Communication in which I admit my desire, my difficulty in trusting, my lack of patience, and my fear that I will miss our on the good life. Communication in which I thank God for His guidance, His love, His Spirit, and His Word. Communication in which I plead for His mercy, His help, His strength, and His Spirit. Communication that is not done silently, but aloud and in private.

For much of the past year I have ignored prayer, and I only prayed when I felt obligated to pray. I freely confess that this past year I have gone days without praying, because I didn't see the point. Now God had brought me to the point that prayer is absolutely crucial to my life as a follower of Christ. The prayer of a faithful follower is effective and powerful. It has the power to change things.

For that reason, I pause to cry out to God, for only He can change my heart. It is God who has the medicine my sick heart needs, and it is to Him that I must turn.

Sent from my iPod

2 comments:

Ruth said...

Hey, Paul. Thanks for sharing your heart this way. I think I can relate to some of what you describe - the addiction to fantasy, the difficulty in realizing that the goodness and beauty of what God has to offer is so much better than any happiness I could possibly work up in a fantasy, and finally being drawn to the point where prayer is crucial to my life.

Knowing God is all about communing with Him through reading His word, listening to His Spirit, and praying to Him. However we do it, whenever we do it, it's absolutely necessary...and it's beautiful!

Paul said...

Ruth, thanks for the comment. I always appreciate a word of encouragement.

Our Identity

{Philippians 1:1-2; NLT}   This letter is from Paul and Timothy, slaves of Christ Jesus. I am writing to all of God's holy people i...