What do you want from me God? What is your plan for me? What are you going to do in my life, Lord?
We ask God these questions daily. Or at least I do. I go through difficult times, pain and sorrow, and try to peer into the future for a glimpse of how it will all pan out. I want to skip ahead to the end of the story. Sure, I trust you Lord, but can’t I just have a little peek at how this is going to be for my eventual good?
I read a biography of Oswald Chambers once which told the story of one of the Chambers’ family friends falling ill. Oswald’s wife, Biddy, thinking out loud one day, said “I wonder what God is going to do.” To which Oswald replied, “I don’t care at all what God is going to do, I only care who God is.” If we could just wrap our minds around that concept! If God is the all-loving, all-powerful, all-knowing God we claim he is, we shouldn’t need to know the future. We should be able to wholly rest in the fact that everything is moving toward the perfect outcome.
Right now my question is “What are you asking of me now, God?” I have sat at his feet, clung desperately to his robes for a long time now. My only option the entire time has been to wait; to be still. God has trained me in stillness. It’s all I want. So accustomed am I to sitting quietly in the shade of his power, watching him act on my behalf, seeing him provide for me and my children, that now to hear his voice calling me to any action at all is astonishing. The past season has been one of receiving for me; one person after another offering me help, prayer, encouragement, friendship, food and money. At a time when I should have felt the most alone I’ve ever felt in my life instead I was feeling the boundless love of my Father over and over again. It was his provision through hundreds of willing vessels. The body of Christ coming together the way it is meant to, by his sovereign direction. And I found I was far from alone. That is humbling. That kind of blessing – completely unmerited – teaches you so quickly how gracious our God really is. And each and every time another person arrived at my door bearing gifts, I said to God “Some day, I want to be on the other side of this kind of giving”. And to that he told me “Wait. Rest. It is time for you to be taken care of. Receive. Be filled.”
But he wasn’t finished yet. And lately, I hear him calling me to give. To give a generous tithe with joy. To give time to someone who needs me. To pray for others in the body. To give counsel to someone lost and confused. To give my testimony of his providence to another woman going through the same fiery furnace. To give a warm hug to someone, even when I don’t have time to stay and talk, or even the right thing to say. These are things normally outside my comfort zone. But God is giving me joy in them right now. And he is urging and encouraging me every time I turn to his word.
“Trust in the Lord and do good” Psalm 37 tells me. It’s worth noting that Psalm 37 has had no fewer than 30 personal directives for me over the course of the past year. At one point, I could have sworn to you that the entire chapter was about not being jealous. A couple of weeks later, I went back and realized that it was a chapter of promise to godly people – that God would always take care of them. During a time of extreme duress when I was entirely unsure what to do, I turned again to Psalm 37 and was told to “Be still in the presence of the Lord, and wait patiently for him to act.” This shape-shifting chapter of scripture continued to apply to every single question I came running to the Lord with, sometimes allowing me to laugh at my problems, and other times causing me to weep for someone I loved. This chapter has become a complex, dearly loved FRIEND. That’s the Word of God for you. Quick and powerful, the King James Version calls it. Not quick as in rapid, but quick as in ALIVE. The Spirit of God is at work in every word of it, applying it to my circumstances just a tiny bit differently than to yours, causing parts of it that I’ve read ten times already to suddenly resonate within me at just the perfect moment. Its truth never fails.
So now as I return to my Bible reading, I am told to Trust in the Lord and do good; be a generous giver; give generous loans to others; offer good counsel. Amazingly, as I read those things, along with other verses throughout God’s word spurring me on to give, I find little opportunities cropping up here and there. A small ministry opens up that I’m able to fill at church. I have the chance to help a friend buy gas for her car. Time arises for me to watch the son of a single dad I know. A woman needing mentoring in God’s Word is brought to me by someone who knows we have similar backgrounds and similar experiences. I even have been asked to do favors for people who have hurt me in the past, working forgiveness in my heart as I submit. Every single one of these little ‘callings’ fills me with joy. God is letting me give.
What are you doing God? What is your plan for me? What do you want from me now, Lord? It took a year of desperation and total dependence on him for me to discover the answers to these questions.
It doesn’t matter what God is going to do. It only matters who God is.
Tasha writes very haunting poetry here. If you like this, click on over and visit her at her place for a while. She has other blogs, too: Tasha’s Blogging What-not, Tasha’s 2fer tuesdays, Tasha’s Daily Dose, and Pictures from Brueghel.