Crafting A Heart For Jesus - Being Ignored By God {Waiting}


Another week, another post from Ryan.  I hope you'll enjoy this feature, a fresh perspective from someone who isn't me. :) Feel free to leave comments with questions, Ryan is great to answer them.

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Jesus is just the best.  He surpasses our expectations.  But sometimes…it doesn’t seem like that’s the case.  Sometimes we look at our lives and we see pain.  We see regret.  We see hurt.  Last week we discussed how God’s ability is so far beyond us that Paul had to slap four prepositions on the front of a word just to begin to describe it.  But sometimes it seems as though that ability isn’t being put into practice.  It seems like God is ignoring us.

That isn’t true.  It just isn’t.  Don’t give a place to that thought for even a second.1


 What should we do instead?  I’m glad you asked, but you won’t like the answer.

Wait.

Yeah, that’s not a fun one, huh?  That isn’t going to get a re-tweet, or a cute Instagram post.  Hashtag blessed!  Hashtag patience!  Nope.  But it is precisely what we need.  If you survey some of the greatest prayers in scripture, they focus on God’s reputation.  In other words, they say, “God don’t do this because I deserve it.  Do it for your glory, for your name, for your reputation.”  With that in mind, I’d like to take a look at a verse from the Psalms.

Psalm 46:10 - Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!

Pause for a second.  Recognize that the thing you want to change in your life might not need to change.  Maybe it does, maybe it doesn’t.  Maybe you need to change.  Ultimately, God needs to be exalted in everything.  And guess whose job that is.  His.  So think about that in context of our prayers.  If we follow that format I mentioned before, our focus is on God’s exaltation.  And ultimately he is responsible for that.  He shows up and he gets exalted.  If he doesn’t seem to be showing up…wait.  Wait for him to show up.  Wait for him to speak.  Wait for him to do something that will result in exaltation.

I know that isn’t easy.  But what does he say in Psalm 46:10?  Be still.  That word (רָפָה) literally means to sink.  Here are its primary definitions: sink down; sink, drop; sink, relax, abate; relax, withdraw.  Now, as my Hebrew professor used to say, words aren’t buckets of meaning carrying all their definitions to every sentence.  So we can’t just grab all those definitions and cram them into this verse.  But we can recognize that the general focus of this word is to utterly cease action, and that sometimes that cessation is for the purpose of relaxation.  That’s God’s command to you.

So when it doesn’t look like he’s going to come through, sink.  Abate.  Relax.  Withdraw. 

Recognize that it is not your responsibility to secure God’s reputation in the universe.  That’s on him.  So be still, and watch him be awesome.

1To be clear, I’m not saying we should paper over our grief.  If you are grieving over something, you need to process that.  Part of that process might be dealing with anger towards God.  I’m not advocating that you should bypass that process.



Ryan blogs over at Home Cooked Jesus {the Jesus you need for the day to day and not just Sundays}.  He is also what I consider a Bible scholar, though he would disagree on technicality.  He studies Hebrew and teaches at a local bible college while pursuing a masters degree in the biblical field.   

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