May 9, 2005

When God Shows Up

The past weekend has been enlightening for me. Mostly about myself, I think, but as I reflect on it, I can't help but learn a few things about God - and what He's really been up to. In my last post, I more or less ended on a dismal note, personally, spiritually, and emotionally worn out.

As it turns out, that's a really great place to be.

It doesn't feel so great, as you can imagine. You feel drained, not wanting to do anything but lay around and sleep or maybe eat or something. You feel abandoned, like the one thing you thought was certain - God - has left you without answers, without that sense of cohesivness you depend on to make it from day to day.

And it's funny how it's a great place to be.

Because as I reached that lowest of lows, questioning everything, I realized - my mind is now completely open. I don't think I have the Answers, I don't think that I'm sufficient, and I don't think that it'll be anybody but God that gets me out of this.

And that's when God showed up. When I finally stopped yelling and screaming and pounding my fists and shrieking in rage at Him, when I gave up fighting Him and started just listening, hoping to hear even just a whisper. And that's when I heard it - and it was a whisper, not the booming voice I'd wanted so badly.

The LORD said, "Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by." Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. Then a voice said to him, "What are you doing here, Elijah?" [1 Kings 19:11-13]

What are you doing here, Chris? Why do you question what you already know to be true? Why do you seek that which is not yours? It's ok - I've forgiven you already; My grace is sufficient for your questions, for your yearnings, and for your pain. But you already knew that.

It's amazing how moved one can be - how moved I was - when I finally heard Him speak. And it wasn't one of those music-swelling-heart-wrenching-the-sun-came-out-just-like-in-the-movies sort of moments. Rather, it was a quiet moment that seemed to last an eternity and a second all at once, a moment of peace, joy, and tranquility. While it was but a moment, it was, as He said, sufficient, and I rest in His arms assured that I am well loved.

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