I am staring at a blank screen. I have just spent the entire day laboring over the sermon for this coming Sunday (today). I say "laboring" because, as is sometimes the case, it was an arduous task. It never quite came together and even though I prayed and prayed and prayed I wound up with 1,556 words that seemed shallow at best. Once I finished, I decided to go ahead and write the blog for today. I simply got a cup of "half caff" coffee, I sat down, and then I started writing the words that came fairly easy, as in, things just came to me that made sense and so I just wrote whatever came to mind. I didn't try to manage it or to manipulate it. I just started writing. When I looked at what I wrote I thought, "now, that would make a good sermon". So, the blog became the sermon that you will hear today. And the blog? Not sure just yet.
I wrote that paragraph two hours ago. Blinking cursor has become my constant companion. They call it writer's block. I call it mind-numbing frustration. Didn't I JUST say that, earlier in the day, I started writing what was on my heart and then the words just came and yet now, here I am, trying to over think and manage and control? When will I learn? When will I stop trying to make things the way that I want them and just pray, trust and write?
Because, that's not my nature, that's why. When it comes to control, call me a "freak". When it comes to trying to adjust outcomes, call me the master. When it comes to trying to control the future (and actually believing that I can do it) then you can call me the President of the Club. Am I alone in this? If so, you can stop right here and go have a "half caff" or "full caff" and enjoy the rest of your day. If I am not alone in this, or to be more precise, if this sounds like I am describing you, well then let's state the obvious shall we? It would be good for us, you know what I mean? I think I will do it in the context of a prayer. See if what I am about to say/pray makes you the least bit uncomfortable. Imagine this. Imagine getting down on your knees and praying to God:
"Hey God, look, I am going to say, with all honesty, that I am tired of things being the way they are. It's not that everything is bad because I'm blessed no doubt. It's just that there are some things that frustrate me, things I wish could change, things that I know should change. I've been just egotistical enough to think that if I just keep on trying to change things that they will change for change's sake. I keep thinking that there is a tipping point, where, if I just keep giving enough of 'me' then that will be enough. Things will change. Well, that's not happening. So, here's the deal God. I hear you. I get it. I am going to pray for you to start sending up those signs, no, those billboards. I want you to speak in my heart, you know, that 'gut feeling' I get about things sometimes. I want you to speak through other people. OK, maybe I'll read some verses in the bible but you better speak there too! I am telling you God that I am ready to trust you. I am going to do whatever; nothing is off the table. Hey God, can I say that again just to convince myself. Nothing is off the table. You say it and I'll do it. I will not try to control it. I will not try to manage it. I will not try to manipulate it. I am going to get myself out of the way. What I want? Irrelevant. It's all about you sir. I know. Me not controlling it or manipulating it or managing it? Who am I kidding? I t's what I do. You'll have to help me there and you'll have to remind me that this is all about you. Now, I know what's coming if I do that. You are going to present me with stuff that might be risky. It might, no, OK, it WILL cause a change in my life. People are going to notice. I don't care. Let's just say that I am ready to see about that "brand new creation" thing that I keep hearing about. I am scared because I do know how you work. I know that when things come to my spirit in regards to what you want me to do that it is totally up to me to say yes or no and that my fears are going to creep in. You will have to deal with those because if you don't you know what I will do. Control. Manipulate. Manage. One more thing please sir. Take the world "impossible" or even the word "improbable" right out of my vocabulary."
Uncomfortable? Eerie? Feel like you're falling off of a cliff? You are, in a sense. You won't hit the ground. You'll fall into the arms of God. It's not painful. It's actually more comfortable than the ground you are standing on right now. It will be the moment when the words "I want to change", "I want to do God's will", and, "I want to know what it's like to do all of the amazing things that God has in store for me" all begin to have teeth. Pray that prayer again, only now in your own words. Mean it. Own it. I am. Will you?
Oh, I almost forgot the MOST important thing. Um, OK, gut check time. Do you really want it? I mean, the words of the prayer. Do you really want it? Think before you answer because if you want to manage and control and manipulate the prayer cannot be answered. It cannot. Things will be impossible for you. God can't get in all the way because you, or should I say, I am clearly getting in the way. I have to back away. Totally.
I am willing. Are you?