On my nightstand you will find a copy ofThe Power of a Praying Wife and The Power of a Praying Parent. I highly recommend them both to every wife and mother who may end up reading this. (confession: my nightstand for this season of life happens to be the changing table attachment of the Pack ‘n Play that is set up next to my side of the bed…but hey, you use what you can, right?)
I have been praying through one topic from each book every night as a way to make spiritual deposits for my family. Ironically, as I have been praying for my husband and children I find myself deeply convicted each night as I realize how desperately I need to be praying these truths over myself as well.
A few nights ago I prayed these words over Jesse… “May Your presence be like a delicacy he never ceases to crave.” And for the past several days I have not been able to get them out of my mind. Something about those words have been touching a very raw part of my heart, but it wasn’t until today that I understood why they have been causing me to ache inside.
I realized this morning that amidst the bustle of diaper-changing, leader-training, small-group-leading, costume-making life I have pushed aside the delicacy of Christ’s presence and have settled for feasting on all sorts of waste—maintaining a chaotic schedule, keeping up with endless piles of laundry, nurturing our avocado tree (that I am oddly attached to), keeping the amount of stray cheerios under our furniture to a minimum—anything and everything but Jesus.
Far too often during these past few weeks I have approached my time with God with an attitude of duty rather than delight, or have been tempted to neglect these moments with God all together in order to give that time to the subordinate idols of organization, creativity, personal achievement, entertainment….
But regardless of my countless distractions and half-hearted approach, every time I come to Him—whether I come hungry for Him or hurriedly so I can get on with the rest of my day—He graciously, lovingly meets me. In the depth of my brokenness He meets me. In the pit of my selfishness He meets me. And all the while He patiently holds out the feast of His presence for me, waiting for me to stop stuffing myself with the table scraps of my own effort. Time and time again I choose to overlook, ignore, reject the delicacies He has placed before me and discount all evidence of spiritual starvation in order to run on the weak battery of my own power. …but as that quickly runs dry and my performance is increasingly feeble I wonder: Why do I allow myself to go hungry? Why do I keep turning back to this life of incessant emptiness?
Surely I don’t have to run on empty when I can be running in the very presence of my Savior…the Trustworthy One who intimately and passionately meets me even in my lowest moments.
But God, in His marvelous grace, takes it one
step giant leap further. He goes beyond meeting us and chose to send His Son to become like us. The King of Kings leaving His thrown to become a defenseless, humble human in order to take me in His arms and carry me to His table…to open up the door that leads to the feast of His Father’s presence.
Not only does God meet me, He ceaselessly involves Himself in the messy reality of my life and wrestles with me until I no longer resist Him. He longs to give me a taste of His goodness, joy, hope, and peace, knowing full well that when I finally choose to be satisfied in the food He has to offer I would quit running back to the garbage I have been wallowing in.
And so I sit here, my heart hungry to be filled by God, and take the time to really notice all that He has here before me….and it. is. good.
And for the first time in too long I am full.
What a gift!