Friday, February 27, 2015

Shut up and pray some more.


 "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." Romans 8:28

I was driving home yesterday and discussing with  God a why thing. It doesn't so much matter the topic, but it was a typical Maryellen-type-of-why thing...I have this habit of not actually asking God to explain Himself to me but rather letting Him know that I understand the why and He, therefore, doesn't have to come up with an answer. Nice right? I liked to think so. 

I don't like to question God's motives. Being God and all, I just assume He knows what He is all about and so I am suppose to just trust that unknown future to a known God (Yes, I combined a bunch of quotes there so I don't have to remember who said them.) and for the most part, it has worked out for me.  There was no challenge in believing Romans 8:28 because I did, for sure, believe Him.

Here in lies my newly discovered problem: I was getting antsy. I have waited a long time for Him to use those "all things" for the good. I had a definition of what "the good" is and He was not cooperating. I was patient, sometimes. But more often, I was Dad.
 
Don't just stand there...do something...even if it's the wrong thing...do something! (Eddie Brennan)
 If an opportunity was in front of me, I should jump in at it. If I know something, I should say so. If I can help....I should.  I lived out "The do something, even if it is the wrong thing"...not as recklessly as in my youth but still did quite a bit of the wrong things.

But what if, what if, my life was  just a gift for me? What if all of the good, the bad and the ugly, was just for me? What if, "the good" was just mine. Well that can't be it. That would be selfish! God allows things to happen to me so I can use them to help someone else! No way he wants me to just shut up and it keep it all for me....

          Here is the rest of what my heart KNEW for sure:

"Keeping it just for my good alone means it was pointless. If my life was just meant for me, just meant for me, it makes my life a waste. No way You would have let me survive what I have survived if it was just meant for me. Surely my life has more meaning than just for me! IF all of my life was just for me....what a waste of time, what a waste of pain, what a waste of....me."

                                                                       OR

Maybe, just maybe, it means that my doing something is in the shutting up, standing still, kneeling before the God of all. Maybe "shut up and pray" is my doing something, everything after all. Maybe being able to understand the pain someone is in, while in prayer for them is the only "do something" I am suppose to do. Maybe, the more I shut up to the world, the more useful I am in prayer....lets be honest, I gotta' talk to somebody about my day! Maybe, because He knows all the details of me, I can just come and intercede for so and so and the more I pray for so and so or such and such....the more I am blessed.  Maybe that is "the good" he has had waiting for me all along. 

I really did try to figure it all out for a very long time. I did want to serve Him....but mostly because it served me.  I sought out what made me feel most comfortable and doing something, not "just praying" has been my MO....no, it became who I am. But somewhere in the midst of a good marinade of pain, I began to pray...not the usual "help me to use this pain" but rather just asking Him to pour out His blessings on so and so or such and such. The more I prayed for people I honestly don't like, the more I loved them...even if I still didn't like them very much.  Sometimes though, the silence needs to go deeper and so the saga of "shut up and pray" goes deeper as well.

He promises to make us a new creation. In so many, many, many, many (you get the point?) ways, I am. Surely, the old has passed away and God is doing something new. When a  ghiacchieron (Italian for never shuts up) like me, can't help but shut up, He is up to something, so much so, I had to write about it...Oxymoron anyone?

Be blessed and shhhhhh.......