".....pray continually;" -1 Thessalonians 4:17
Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.
God and I weren't talking today. I suppose I should clarify that statement. I was talking but God wasn't. You see, I've had some important things on my heart so I prayed about them. In fact, I've prayed for months. What do I hear from God? Nothing, nadda, zippo! Not a peep.
As a child, my mother knew the best way to punish me was the silent treatment. It drives me nuts. I can't stand being shunned. God knows that, too. He and my mother must have been in cahoots, because, I've talked and talked, but God is simply not speaking.
So, tonight I shrugged, slapped my legs, and plopped down on a rock. Resting my elbows on my knees, I tinkered with a blade of grass. Out of the corner of my eye I saw the Father, down on all fours, work gloves on, pulling a few weeds. I watched as He inched His way along the cobblestone walkway.
My stomach grew tight and I could hear my heart pounding. I said nothing. I was talked out. I wanted to ask Him if He was mad at me, and I resisted for a long time. My jaws ached from gritting my teeth. Picking up a pebble, I tossed it in the pond, the ripples rolled across the water jumbling my reflection.
Several minutes passed and I finally spoke, "You mad at me?" The Father sat to one side of the sidewalk then brushed his forehead with the top of his hand. He went back to His work.
"Great! Another one-sided conversation. Father, why are you ignoring me? I don't get it. We've talked about everything in the past. You tell me to pray continually. So, what have I done wrong?"
He sighed and pulled off His muddy gloves. "Here's the thing. You keep talking and I'm done discussing. I hear every word you say. I listen. Honest. I know about the plotline in the novel, about the kids, about your friends. I know all that. And yes, I tell you to pray continually. This is not an issue of praying. It's an issue of listening."
My heart sank and tears filled my eyes. I rolled to my stomach and touched my finger to the water, gently drawing circles on the surface. A leaf dropped from the tree and a breeze carried it across the pond like a ship on the sea. The tears that filled my eyes dripped into the water like rain from the heavens. I was hurt-really hurt.
"So, are You saying I'm being pushy?"
"No. I'm saying You're preaching to the choir and I've already got the music worked out. Just listen to it play. For the time being, until you listen, I'm finished discussing."
Sometimes it hurts when the Father makes a point. None of us like to admit we have a hard time hearing, but we do. We're so busy talking, we don't hear His music. And failing to listen, blinds us as well. A double whammy! God hears our every word, but sometimes we never hear His. So I guess tonight, I'll hush.