Saturday, August 4, 2012

Back to the monkeybars

I remember stretching out my hand, reaching for the next bar. With calloused palms, I'd grab it & try to hold on. Sometimes if my palms were sweaty, I'd slip off the bar. Sometimes it was hard to reach it at all if the bars were spread far apart. If I could swing my body just right, I could grab the next bar without much trouble, looking like a monkey swinging from branch to branch. But sometimes I missed the bar and would have to swing backward, gain some momentum and try again on the next swing. Sometimes I still missed the bar and in exhaustion, I'd just drop to the ground. Swinging back and forth for too long without something to hold onto and support my weight was tiring and before I knew it, my fingers would slip and I was forced to just let go.

I've kind of felt like I'm climbing the monkeybars for the last couple weeks. Like I can feel the weight of my whole body straining against my weak, sweaty fingers. Like I'm swinging back and forth over & over, reaching for the next bar, but it keeps moving out of reach.

God has reminded me to be calm & wait for Him. But I keep reaching for the bar anyway. I'm impatient. I want answers to questions now. I want clear, specific answers. I want to find a place of security & safety to rest and trust Him. I want to grip that next bar firmly.

Because after all, when I am safe & secure, I can trust Him fully. Until then, I need to take care of things.

Oh wait.

Didn't I just teach my 4 and 5 year olds something different a couple of months ago in Sunday School? I seem to recall a memory verse about trusting God in ALL things. The kids didn't know it, but that one was as much for me as it was for them. I can trust God in ALL things...even finances, jobs, bank accounts.

Haven't I written this blog post before? I keep having to learn this lesson over and over. (and over and over and over and over and over) Seriously, self....get with it! Hasn't He proved Himself enough times to recognize that He will take care of things? Enough for me to know I can rest & wait on His timing? Honestly, I get sick of hearing myself say it so I know you must get sick of reading it. But here I am, once again, relearning the same lesson.

I think the heart of the fears and doubts is a lack of control. We panic. We fret. We worry. We start seeking out ways to solve the problem ourself. We start searching for answers on our own. We start swinging furiously, arm outstretched, searching for the next bar. If we can just grab hold of it, we'll be safe.

But, God, if I don't know about this by this date, things will fall apart......
But, Father, I really need her to ......
But, Lord, I know I said I'd trust you, but.....
Jesus, have you seen the numbers in my checkbook? I know you already know this, but I really need a job......

Back & forth we swing, the weight of the world pulling against our hands as we reach & stretch & strain for the next bar. Sweat drips from our brow as we peer up at the bars, searching in the sunshine for the next spot to place our hand to get control over the situation.

All along, all He's asked is for us to let go.

Father, forgive me for doubting, for not believing, for working through my own strength, my own power. Show me how to rest in you, to quit striving, to stop reaching for solutions on my own. Show me again how to trust you.

Psalm 31:14 But I trust in you, LORD; I say, “You are my God.”

Psalm 9:10 Those who know your name trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you.

Psalm 25:1 In you, LORD my God, I put my trust.

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