Agonizomai: Doing Nothing Unders Skies of Brass

Monday, March 10, 2008

Doing Nothing Unders Skies of Brass

Recent changes in my life circumstances left me feeling more exhausted than I had given them credit for. I thought I had learned to ride this bicycle of believing and fellowshipping with God pretty well these last months. I was sure that nothing would interfere with my sense of peace and Gods grace. How wrong I was.

I am mentally and physically spent. My sense of the presence of God has disappeared into thin air and my prayers seem to fall upon skies of brass. The Bible is opaque to me. I read it and I see only words. The rhema has fled. I can almost feel my old “friend” depression creeping back into my experience.

But God’s timing is always perfect. If I need this drought then it is for my good and I must receive it cheerfully from my Master’s hand. Praise God! Thank you, God, for stopping me in my tracks – for withholding what I crave the most in order to make me crave it the more. That is Yourself. Your excellent and glorious Being. The beauty of your holiness. Your sanctifying presence. I miss it all and I am grateful that I do.

I am reminded in all of this that it was not I who worked up, or created, or otherwise invented the earlier experience of your graces that I now miss so much. They were graces, after all – and not things to be expected. You elected to reveal Christ to and in me – through the written word, through times of prayer, through the witness of Your Holy Spirit both in me and in those around me.

I didn’t grasp You, but You lifted me. And, if You choose to relax Your grip a little, I will sink as naturally as a stone in water. Apart from You I can do nothing, for I am nothing and I know nothing. I must wait upon You. I must hope in You and You alone. I must hunger and thirst after the righteousness that comes from You. I am content.

I will mortify the incessant tendencies of my flesh to grasp at You, to take from You what your love and wisdom has not given. I will not rise up in my own strength. By Your grace alone will I be found waiting upon Your grace.

You have stopped me short of rank arrogance. You have called a halt to my musings, my self-aggrandizing, my haughty criticisms. I was in danger of thinking myself better than others and worth something in and of myself, until Your love constrained and disciplined me.

Help me to bow under Your mighty hand contentedly, knowing that a servant is not greater than his Master, and realizing that Christ Himself knew utter separation from His Father. Yes, He knew it so that I would never need to experience it myself – and I never shall. What I am feeling now is only a degree of loving discipline. What Christ experienced was the chastisement of wrath.

And so I will continue to do nothing, which is what I am eminently suited to – so that You can be all in all to me by doing everything in and to and through and for me. What You do not bring to pass I will labour not to want – for to want what You have not ordained is covetousness. I regret that such obedience must be called “labour” – for it ought to come as naturally as trees budding in the spring.

I wait upon You, my God, until the fullness of Your pleasure ordains that I once more experience the delight of my soul. And if You never grant me more – then I beg only for the grace to rest joyful and content in mercies already received.

God bless you – Jesus loves you

My moniker - that's John Hancock to Americans


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