Every now again I sit down to write and I have no ideas, no starting point, no words rattling around in my heart that just have to come out. The genesis of this article was one of those times. I always pray before I write. Nothing long or drawn out, just a few simple words along the lines of “Lord, what do your people need to hear today?” Silence. So I poked around in the Bible, looking for that seed of an idea that would blossom into an encouragement. While there was plenty to write about there was no stirring, no Holy Spirit laser pointer around a verse or topic. I opened up my ideas folder, snippets of thoughts, seeds that have not yet sprouted, but none of those were ready yet either. I looked around the house, searching for inspiration – nothing. So, now what?
I don’t think my dilemma is all that unusual. We all have questions and needs that we really really want God to answer right now. In order to “help” God out, we do things. Some of them are good and sound in and of themselves. Others are actions born of desperation, of needing to do something, anything that might help us receive the answer to our prayer. Since we do not see, feel, or hear the answers to our questions and needs we run. We dash about trying to find that “magic” missing piece that will open the floodgates of heaven. But what if we’ve got if we have it all wrong?
Perhaps the answer is not in doing but in stopping. You see, that’s what happened today as I prepared to write this article. I was running around trying to find the answer, hunting so hard for what God wanted these words to say that they were having a hard time catching up with me. David wrote, “Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life.” (Psalm 23:6a, NLT) Other translations use the word follow or pursue, the word in Hebrew seems to have a sense of hunting something or someone down. Sometimes, perhaps more than we realize, God is like a parent chasing after a toddler in a poopy diaper. All He wants is for us to stop our frantic efforts to find an answer or fix it ourselves and rest in Him.
So that is my encouragement for today, stop, rest, wait, hold up, relax, just sit for a moment or two or three. You’ve prayed, you’ve put your need before God, you’ve thrown your cares, stresses, and anxiety on Jesus. (1 Peter 5:7) So give time for God’s answers to catch up with you. How much time? I don’t know. It could be just a few moments, enough time to realize that God is on the throne of our life and not us. It could take a while, years in fact, but if we are constantly on the move trying to make something happen God’s goodness and lovingkindness may have a hard time catching us. The answers to your prayers just might be chasing you, maybe it’s time to stop “helping” God and let them catch you while you rest in Him.