July 12, 2015
How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! If I would count them, they are more than the sand. I awake, and I am still with you. (Psalm 139:17-18 ESV)
Precious. Lately I feel like I don’t want to waste myself on what isn’t precious. But when I’m honest, are my thoughts and motivations as righteous as those of the psalmist? No. Not close. I have a life, and laundry, and groceries, and a family, and Krispy Kreme distractions, and salamanders, and play dates, and stuff to do. I don’t have time to meditate on God the way I know God meditates on me. The whole Psalm 139 is about acknowledging that God is all-consumed with me. You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. (Psalm 139:3 ESV). Every thought I have sprouts from my mind only after being crafted by God. I don’t have a thought aside from what God inspires in me. He knows every place I go and authors every calendar I keep. He loves me more than a helicopter-mom. That’s precious!
And what was once precious to me in my darkest days, the comfort of being caught in His grip, bubbles above again as I swing in the hammock listening to Emily, Isabella, and Ava laugh in the creek. Right now the darkest days are nothing more than a memory I can visit. If I want to. I have the comfort of knowing The Comforter was with me then pounding the floor through tears and is with me now in the hammock.
And what was precious to me during my confusion, the clarity of His Word, is even clearer to me now. Resting on His assurances that He will never leave me or lead me out of His will, I am confident that the choices I made were Spirit led. For God is not a God of
confusion but of peace, (1 Corinthians 14:33 ESV). And His peace is the assurance of right choices meant for my good.
And what was precious to me during times of painful pruning, His constant presence, feels soothing to me now. The bleeding and trauma and loss from cutting away old dead growth can feel like death itself until the new has a chance to grow. And it does grow. I’ve seen it. But being part of the pruning process means allowing the shears to do their job. And it usually for me doesn’t seem like a good idea until after its done.
And in the midst of the darkness and confusion and pain, there are choices to be made. Follow God or not. Light a candle or stay blind. Follow His Word or do it my own way. Have surgery or let infection fester. Sounds like a no-brainier, but to follow God in faith, uugghh! I don’t always know if I am choosing right. God will have His glory no matter what, and I know love is always right over hate, but there are a thousand ways to show love. Which do I chose? But maybe, just maybe, the precious isn’t in making the right choice, maybe the precious is in learning from the choice. What if in choosing to show love, there are no wrong choices, but just right lessons. If I have a patient with a new baby, I can love them with a home cooked meal or free babysitting or running errands for them or tons of other ways, but I can’t realistically love them in all those ways. I just can’t. But I can learn more about the way God lovingly obsesses over me if I choose one way to love my neighbor. And maybe tomato pie and brownies is how I learn more about God.
And the precious comes from the process and the discipline of obsessing over God. Imperfectly and incompletely. Not knowing if it’s enough, but being pretty sure it isn’t, and trusting that He makes up for all the precious I am lacking.
The precious came for me today typing away in the hammock, in the shade under a canopy of branches, swatting buzzy thingies, listening to silly girls catch salamanders, watching neighbor boys ride past on bikes. I know there were probably a dozen other choices I could have made for my time today. I could have shown love to my family by finishing the laundry or going to the Food Lion. But instead…