Last week was an immensely painful week in a few ways, and it felt like my heart was in a washing machine. I still kept spending daily time in the Word, but I just didn't feel like I had anything to say. I had to sit in some of the sadness of the very real losses that many of us experienced last week, and sometimes sadness requires some silence from us. Not always, but certainly sometimes.
Perhaps, before you pour something into a glass in an effort to subdue your vexation, you have to rather pour it out before the Lord in the midst of your vexation.
I really don't like waiting. But, the Bible, and life, is full of waiting. Waiting is an essential part of knowing God, of following Him, of trusting Him. Waiting isn't a waste, hurrying to something before you should, is.
We live in a very “custom” age. We can trick anything out to bespoke levels so that we can always have something just the way we like it. From cuts of jeans, to specs on cars, everything can be made to tickle our particular desire and fancy. It has made us into quite a demanding people actually. People whose needs need to be met, because that is what we are used to. We have brought this attitude into our worship of God, and even into our general attitude toward God.
I have found myself in parts of this season just wishing that it will be over soon, rather than figuring out how to press in, in faith, in the midst of it. I have said it, and heard it said quite a lot over the last couple of weeks, "Oh, as soon as this is over." "I just can't wait for this to just be over." "Let's just get back to normal."
Some days, the Bible speaks to you in vivid pictures of deep meaning and resonance. Every line in every verse feels as if it is probing the depths of your soul and leaving you vulnerable and exposed, as well as confident and assured. Some days it is just obvious how living and active the Word of God is. On other days, your bible reading is from the first three chapters of 1st Chronicles.
You see, ultimately, the Bible tells one long story. It is the story of a God who still works in the midst of the mess of our human stories. He continues to do that today. Where can you recognize His work?
Sin leaks, and creeps, and repeats. The multi-generational narrative form of the Old Testament doesn't hide this from us, in fact, it paints it vividly in painful details of children living with the consequences of their parent's sins and, all too often, allowing those sins to form patterns that they live out themselves.