Thursday, April 19, 2007

Experiencing God

This post is running late today, because I spent the day at my church helping to set up for the garage sale we'll be having tomorrow and Saturday.
This post is being written at all, because I spent the day at my church helping to set up for the garage sale we'll be having tomorrow and Saturday.

If you asked me, I'd easily, without even thinking about it, tell you that I don't know my pastor very well. I know him, I could tell you some basics about him. I know enough to know that I am blessed to know him, and that getting to know him better, learning more about how he handles situations, is a specifically God-sent gift in my life. But, when it comes right down to it, I don't know him all that well yet.

But, he has taken the time to let me know him some. He's shared some of his desires for the church, some of his plans and goals. He's shared his hopes, just a few of his struggles, and even a tiny portion of his deviousness.

Because of the things he's allowed me to see in him, during all the garage sale decisions of keep this/sell this, move this/trash this, I was able to make decisions without asking him his desire for each thing. In a lot of instances I knew what he'd want done. Several times I was even asked what he would want done, and I was able to confidently tell others what I believed he would say.

Like I said earlier, I wouldn't say I know my pastor very well. But, I've learned his will on some things. I've learned his heart on some things. And today, that made me a better worker. It made me a faster worker because I didn't have to stop and ask him a thousand questions and was even able to verbally speak his will to other people so that their work too went just a little bit faster.
Should the Lord and my pastor allow it, with time I will get to know him better still. And as that happens I'll become even more productive, I'll have to stop and ask questions less and less, and ultimately I'll become even more confident and reliable about answering other peoples questions concerning his will.

The spiritual lesson I learned today?

The same goes with God.

Getting to know God better, means knowing His will concerning things without having to stop and pray every time something comes along. I can tell others His will, and I can carry out His will, all without stopping to pray or fast for an answer concerning His will. Because I may not know God as well as I'd like to, but I do know Him. There's a confidence, and an assurance that comes with being an able worker. It's slow and tiring when you have to stop and ask so many questions. It's little wonder so many Christians just... stop... trying.

I can only imagine that my pastor couldn't wait to go home and hopefully not be asked one more question just for a few hours so he could have some peace. And while my God doesn't get tired, He does get weary of the ineffectiveness of all His children walking around that can't tell you His will or His desires for hardly anything. I doubt my pastor sits around hoping he can teach me more about his character and his will, but I know that God does. God wants me to know Him, more than I want to know Him. And I've gotta tell you, I desire to know Him. Yet, He's longing for the same thing too. He longs for me to know His plans for my life, the directions that He'd have me go, and the paths He weeps for me to stay away from. He wants me to be able to point others in the right directions, and He desires not to just use me - but to use me effectively.

I found a quiet place in the church to quickly piece together the spiritual lesson I was learning today. I'd been chanting "more, more, more" of God in my life, and that isn't how I've ever gotten to know anyone. Today was hours of labor, and I got to know my pastor just a little bit better. Today was hours of labor, and I got to know God just a little bit better. You learn about people while sitting and eating and fellowshipping with them, but often you learn people by working side by side with them.

I want to know God better, but I see now that I was hoping for some sudden, shocking and blinding revelation of "who God is". But, it's not going to happen that way. It's going to happen when I read His word. And then that knowledge of His Word will teach me boundless things as I work for Him. It's going to happen as I spend time in prayer, asking those questions, and seeing what He has to say about some of the things I have to say. And then those precious moments will teach me even more boundless things, as I work for Him.

If you ever experience me playing the piano, you'll know my playing. You'd be able to pick my playing out of a line up of different musicians. You'd be confident enough to wager money on your choice. Because you've experienced my playing. And even if you aren't familiar with the song, maybe you'd never heard me play that particular song before, you'd still know who the musician is.
But if you've only been told about my playing, you wouldn't be able to pick my playing out of a lineup if your life depended on it.

I didn't get to know my pastor by being told about him, but by experiencing him.

The same goes with God.

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