This morning I got up and had coffee with a friend…my best friend, really. THE friend.
I had quiet time with God.
Today, unlike most mornings, by the time I was wrapping up with prayer, I was completely alone in the house (except for the dog, but you know…no other people folks were about). So instead of my normally silent prayer, I prayed right out loud. I talked to Him like I would any other friend…but with far more reverence and respect probably…cuz He’s God and all.
It felt great. I wasn’t limited by time or space at all. I could pray for as long as I liked. I prayed while I finished my coffee. I prayed while I walked to the bedroom. I prayed in the shower. Out loud…Him and Me. Mono e mono (which, I’ve just learned via the internet, is not an actual phrase but a misheard Spanish expression, “mano a mano,” which means “hand-to-hand” but I’m totally using it anyway…so there). Mono e mono. Don’t get me wrong, you can pray constantly like that anyway, even silently. However, there’s something that comes with the ability to do it out loud…it increased the constancy, the fluidity.
I learned something by that this morning…I love that time, and now that I’ve really started having it, I don’t ever want to let it go. I never want to let anything get in the way of that time again.
I have before. I’ve started having time with my God each day, letting Him fill me, and then…then I let life get in the way.
In retrospect, I think that’s what the Obey Me post was about. Certainly, it was about obedience to Him, but in the grander picture, it was about not letting Him get away. Or, in reality, about Him not letting me get away.
Last week I got sick again. I stopped having quiet times in the morning for a while because I truly and genuinely needed the time to recuperate. My body needed all the rest it could get.
This week, though, I was better…and Monday, I just didn’t get up to do my quiet time. I forgot. I let life get in the way, and I got out of my pattern, out of the habit.
So Tuesday, He said “Obey Me,” and He said it insistently enough to make me drag my silly behind out of bed and do what I needed to do. I’m grateful He did.
As I said, I’ve had times in my life where I’ve gone too far, gotten out of the habit, all of the above. It’s like forgetting to call an old friend for a long time. At some point, you’re almost embarrassed to reach out to them because it’s been so long. Maybe they’ve even tried to call you a couple times, and you meant to call back, but now what will you say? Those apologies are always so awkward. And what will they say about the person you’ve become while you’ve been off living your life?
That’s been one of the biggest challenges for me when I’ve let myself drift too far…the shame of where I’ve been, the things I’ve been doing, the way I’ve been living my life. Sometimes, I’ve even been defiant. I knew what I was doing wouldn’t be okay, so I’ve stayed away spiritually…far, far away. I’ve even told Him that I knew I was far away because I was doing something I knew was wrong, but I wasn’t ready to stop yet.
That takes nerve, folks, and not in a good way.
In this case, though, the scenario isn’t quite the same as an old friend in our world because, our earthly friends, they go on living, too. Instead, our Heavenly Father is still with us, waiting for us to come back to Him…calling to us while we turn a deaf ear, or pretend to. He is omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent. Not waiting for any of us in turn, but waiting for all of us in one way or another.
He waits for me. He waits for you.
If you’re not already doing so, I would challenge you to meet with Him today. Have a chat and maybe spend some time in the Word. Like the father welcomed the prodigal son (Luke 15:11-32), He waits to welcome us with open arms and overwhelming grace and mercy.
You’ll be glad you did. I know I am.