Tuesday, June 05, 2007

What are you willing to do?

Suppose God said to you "Do xyz and you will step deeper into My presence."

What if it's out of your comfort zone like shouting "GLORY!" in the middle of Wal-mart?
What if it puts you out, and you have to crawl out of bed at 2am, get dressed and go somewhere?
What if it's 10pm and you're exhausted, and He's telling you to keep praying?

Are you really willing? Willing to do anything? What if at 10pm you've already been praying for 3 hours and didn't feel a thing?
What if you just crawled into bed at 1am, after having just returned from the place that God wants you to go back to at 2am?
What if people you know are right down the aisle at Wal-mart?

Are you really willing?

It was probably the most fluent two-way conversation I've had with God ever. I had gone to bed and was talking to God when He showed me something that I could have done, something that I overlooked and then we talked it over. And then as I waited for sleep, I had the distinct feeling that He was trying to draw me into His presence. But I was tired, and knew it would take work and I wanted to roll over and asked Him to make it easier.
We went back and forth a moment before He told me to get up and get dressed and go.
I told God what time it was, and He didn't respond... I told God that going somewhere at this time of night isn't safe, parents everywhere cringe at things like this, still nothing.
I sighed repeatedly.
Then I got up and went.

And I had the best spiritual time that I've had all year long. Twice I felt I had reached the apex of what was happening and could go home, when God said press on, so I did, and He was there each time. I found myself speaking in tongues in the presence of Almighty Jehovah and then laughing as His Spirit covered me in joy.

It didn't happen though, till I got out of bed.

A commenter, SLW recently debated the point in comments with One-Sided and me about whether you should expect something more, just because you've gotten "serious". He argued that grace doesn't depend on our proving something to God. But I believe, sometimes, He just wants us to get out of bed.

Has God ever pulled you out of your comfort zone for something deeper?


SLW said...

Hello flyawaynet,
Didn't know we had a debate. ;-) At least it was a friendly one!

I like this post a lot, because it does highlight something I was trying to communicate in that "debate". It's not our efforts per se that produce results, but with whom those efforts are made. Efforts need to be made in partnership with the Holy Spirit. It's the old, "Unless the Lord builds the house" (Psalm 127:1) thing. When we're sensitive to his proddings, and them obedient to his direction, the efforts pay off big time. It sounds like you just experienced that firsthand.

flyawaynet said...

I cannot tell you, I literally could spend all day TRYING to tell you, and yet never fully tell you, how MUCH I love to debate.
I've always loved debate. Unfortunately, the very biggest obstacle to my being able to debate is that others seem to believe debating is wrong. They equate debating with arguing, and I stick it in an entirely separate catagory somewhere right underneath education and eye-opening, and right directly next to "strengthening".
I love to debate because if I step into one, I'm forced to know why I believe what I believe, not just that I believe it.

I would have loved to have gone back and forth in comments in that other post concerning grace/works. I would have absolutely loved it.

I instinctively want to question things I don't understand or that don't line up with my way of thinking, and that easily sparks a debate... but to others I'm afraid I only come across as argumentative or disrespectful. I've felt beaten down by Christian friends requiring that I not debate them, until I just became tired. Because of that I've stepped away from a very true passion... debate, questions, and most importantly, answers.

I hope I didn't offend you by calling the comments a debate or make you feel that I thought you were being argumentative. I would give up blogging just to be able to enjoy a life full of debate, and challenges to my way of thinking; to be required to defend my positions, rather than just lazily trust in them.
Those two comments you made simply made my day. You have no idea.
And One_Sided joining in as well... it's better than caffeine to get me going.

Thank you SLW.

SLW said...

Cool! I was not offended, especially since you've explained where you're coming from. I too love to press through to understanding in the give and take of discussion. As long as brothers and sisters are respectful, there shouldn't be anything we can't talk about, and sharpen each other in. So my sister, I'm glad to be of service. God bless.

One Sided said...

I am an early riser. THe alarm is set to go off at 5am. There are times I wake before the alarm goes off. It God, He wants to talk and He seems to get up earlier than I do.
God likes to wipe out our comfort zones. The ones we create we do so for safety. Now I have not been asked to shout Glory in the middle of Kroger.
But God has lead me to give when I was broke. He showed me how to pray past my daily request and get to where He and I could have an open discussion. I have grown to know his voice and I am learning to do as he request. God has asked that I serve when my heart was not in it, only to find I did not know my own heart. My constant concern is that I act out of my own accord for my glory and claim it to be God's. But God is quick to let me know I am not in His will, as long as I choose to not ignore Him, we are okay.
And it sounds like you, SLW adn I need to find a nice topic to toss around.

flyawaynet said...

Larry - I loved your line "God has asked that I serve when my heart was not in it, only to find I did not know my own heart."

It's so true.

SLW said...

Great comment! It's all about learning to hear his voice, isn't it? It's one of the characteristics of sheep, but one that's not stressed too much; however, I don't know if there is another "skill" we need to master more in order to walk with God.

flyawaynet said...

slw - I choked on my Dr. Pepper as I tried to picture some stressed out sheep. Thanks for a morning laugh.

I've watched a lot of people, including myself sometimes, overwhelmed and wearing down as they try and face the burdens of life. They/I know God can handle the problems, but it's so hard to let go and stop trying to handle it on my own. It's during those times when I'm refusing to trust God with my familys care, or other situations, that I simply try and block from my mind that it's SIN to hold on and not trust Him.

I'd love to be able to simply call it a flaw, an "issue I'm working on", anything but what it really is... sin.