My soul lately has been like a wrung out washcloth. All of the endurance and hope squeezed out of it by the hands of circumstance and most of all pain (as is evidenced by the last post here). While I have not lost my faith...it has become one of altogether too much grim effort. Clinging to it with a white knuckled grip, I have not had the experience much lately of resting in Jesus' arms and receiving his comfort. While in times past, of equal suffering, I DID have that sweet communion, lately it's been absent...And concurrently, the joy has very much left my life. I've become tight-lipped and grim. And my language has often erupted into angry expletives and this has been a great source of sadness to me. As the Bible says, "Can both blessing and cursing come from the same mouth? Can good and bad water flow from a single source?"
MAY IT NEVER BE! And sadly, it HAS been.
I am reading a book by Richard Foster (another one of my favorite authors and Christians) called "Prayer; Finding the Heart's True Home." And I just was reading about various types of prayer...and the things I've been thinking and learning would make this post WAY too long and probably boring to a lot of you, so I won't go into detail...but will simply say that I enjoyed a long period of prayer today...sweet, soul-healing prayer....of the type that my soul has been missing and for which it has been longing for a long time. But as Foster often points out...."Prayer is all of God and none of you." One cannot enjoy satisfying or powerful prayer simply because they WANT to. True , we must first want. Then we must ASK, and third we must WAIT. And fifth OBEY ....
As Oswald Chambers said today in my reading, "Whatever He says to you, do it" And in this case it was to repent and confess my hardened heart and to ask him to give me the new heart he's promised me: A soft, penitent, broken heart. ...One that will hear and respond to his Spirit and not be so determined to HANG ON, but one that is willing to LET GO.