Ever just wanted to check out of life? I don’t mean end it. (Although I’m sure that has entered your mind from time to time too), I mean, just check out for a little while and distance yourself from your usual grueling schedule?
The more I try to simplify, the more complicated things seem to get. Just last week I wrote about keeping things simple, and prioritizing your family, and knowing when to say no. But in the same breath I found myself needing to read my own words. Do you ever do that? Do you ever preach to yourself?
Makes me feel a little like I’m out of my mind. Because why would I have all this knowledge and be able to share it and teach it, if I don’t actually apply it? Why advocate for something you, yourself aren’t buying? How goofy is that?
With all the hustle and bustle on my mind, I have kinda checked out for a couple weeks. Feeling very quiet and “off.”
The other day, as I was talking to Julie about what the next blog would be about, I told her that I didn’t know what to say. In the beginning, I felt like I had so much to share. And I shared it. Now, I feel as if I have been emptied out, and I’ve got nothing else to say. Like my pitcher of knowledge got poured out.
So Julie simply said…”well write about that then, when you have nothing to say.”
So often, I sit in my battle box (war room) in silence. I observe everything I have prayed about in recent months, and some days I find myself in there for an hour or more, and other days I struggle to sit there five minutes. Sometimes I even walk right past it. I don’t read my devotional, I don’t pray. I simply have nothing to say. And for some reason, I feel guilty about it. Why?
My heart will ache and my mind will race with a million thoughts at once and it’s like a marathon, but with all the runners running in different directions. It’s exhausting.
It is in those times, I immediately remember Paul’s words in Romans.
Romans 8:26-27 says…
26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.
The Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans….
Wow. Did you know our groans could be translated? As if it were a language all its own? Well it is.
God knows what we are trying to say without our saying a word.
When we cry our eyes out, or feel so hopeless, helpless and useless, He knows what we are saying.
Why? Because if we are sitting there, even with just a tiny portion of our thoughts on Him, He hears us. When all we can do is utter His name….”Jesus….” He already knows our prayers.
He doesn’t need a well-thought out, perfectly grammatical prayer outline with 3 bullet points and fancy words. In fact, when He hears those, He is probably like…
”Oh please….get over ye-self”
He wants our authenticity. He already knows you. He already knows me. Why do we feel the need to come to him in perfection?
Why do I feel guilty when I sit there and say “Lord I’ve got nothing to say?” As if my every prayer needs to be jam packed with intercessions for others. And as if He is scoring our performance.
It occurred to me that maybe He quiets our minds to prepare us to listen to His answers to our utterances.
Maybe He poured out my pitcher of knowledge to make room for something He needs to say to me.
As a kid you may remember in grade school hearing a teacher or parent tell you “We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.”
Well, that is true. If we can just shut up long enough, maybe we will hear the Lord’s whispers.
The fact that we come to Him, even in our silence, pleases Him. When we acknowledge His very presence in our lives, He is happy.
“You will keep in perfect peace
those whose minds are steadfast,
because they trust in you.”
When we have nothing to say, simply acknowledge that He is there. Trust Him to interpret your utterances. He knows your pain, He knows your stress.
Allow your silence to become an open mic for the Lord. Listen so that He can say what He needs to say. He has made you quiet for a reason.