more restless than rested
nervous about upcoming summer internship
lots of time wasted, I think
little breakthroughs (like spontaneous and candid conversations with my sister)
frustrations with self and questions
what’s He teaching me? am I learning anything?
inbred feedback loop and spiraling thoughts
must hold on
He’s holding me
31 “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat,32 but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers.”
I’m asking for longevity. Lately the place of prayer feels dry; my well of tears is quick to crack open but quicker to run out. I bend my knees before the King of the universe and sing out of my heart…communion is bliss and I know He knows the words that’ll come out before they depart from my lips…and then, and then…
then I turn to tweeze my brows.
TWEEZE MY BROWS?! Really? of all things…but this is what I mean. Why is it I can spend fruitless hours scanning through photos and reliving the past or imagining/comparing realities when I could be communing with the greatest Reality and working to change others’ ?!! If this prayerlessness is not just my own sleepiness but a means of teaching me something, Lord, please open my ears, my eyes, my heart, and make me receptive to what you have for me. I want to know what it means to worship you in spirit and in truth. I want to know what it means to pray in the Spirit! Surely not only praying in tongues, surely not only “easy prayer” that comes without striving, that’s easy on my flesh, too. But teach me perseverance; for it is in the desert, the wilderness, that you choose to allure even the adulteress. Jesus, please, sustain me and keep my faith — you founded it and you will finish it.
“Okay”: the beginnings of my relent. Okay if I am not “on fire” or a “super Christian” as others would perceive it, okay (please, okay!) if there’s no vision or revelation to share in the sanctuaries…only make me to love you, that is my greatest good. Make me fall deeply in love with you and keep you first forever. Please, or else my life is wasted. Please, or else I lack true joy, true peace, true hope. Please, or else I’ll wander. Please, unless you grip me tightly, jealously, ferociously, please.
You’re really good, and you teach me good things even in the midst of anxiety, sorrow, and confusion. I know you count my tears as precious and store them in your bottle, that even now you’re readying a dwelling place for me, a place I will live in for all eternity, gazing upon your beauty, your splendor, knowing ever joyfully that this knowledge of your glory will cover the earth even as the waters cover the sea. As the waters cover the sea! While I wait, you make me more beautiful, taking what scattered dust I am, what ashes, and making it fully yours. I confess I’m so easily distracted and look for joy outside of you, but still you are kind to me, and your gaze follows me into the darkest of places where no one is looking.
And I love to be seen by you. You see me differently; you teach me worth in the inmost place. I am unafraid, even my shyness slips away, for your eyes shine a tender light and my heart feels quieted by your sure and steadfast love. Strong you are to carry me when I’m stooped low, heavy-shouldered. Mighty is your hand, and your arm, ever outstretched towards me. No one can pursue me like you do, oh God, and I pray these words not come so easily, but resonate in the hardest parts of my heart. I pray they become truths engraved into the flesh, I pray you keep telling me what I need to hear, not just what I want. I love your words–they are never empty or exaggerated; I can trust them fully, they even set me free. They set me free from the paralysis of self, from the strife of tongues, from misperceptions and the plots of men, from delusions so dark and deep.
You are the only one for me, the only one who’s always been and always will be. You lead me by gentle streams and have me eat from the palm of your own hands. Gentle and kind you are. So pure-hearted you are. Satisfying you are, my king. So faithful in your devotion to me. So generous in your grace, so everlasting in love. I can’t wait to be reunited and made wholly one with you. I can’t wait to know you even as I am fully known. Oh! Come quickly please. I long for you in the night season, in the waiting season when my heart must take courage. I long for you, Lord. I do.
teach me it doesn’t matter, what they say or think or don’t think about me. teach me it doesn’t. I struggle to believe it. teach me it doesn’t matter who considers me friend, who considers me foe. teach me to love you more! please teach me, my heart not to wander, it is prone to sway other ways. teach me you’re better! teach me. teach me it doesn’t matter what I look like, teach me it doesn’t matter what’s devalued, teach me to place my worth in you or else my worth will crumble and change and cry tears perpetually I’m that weak. teach me you love weakness and smallness and that you’ve turned the world upside down, that I don’t need one thing or another, that I’ve gained your approval, your trust, your spirit, your crown. a crown of thorns! teach me to love that. teach me surrender. teach me sweet surrender. teach me to bleed and to bless those who bruise me. teach me I can’t take care of myself but that you promised you always will. teach me the truth! I can’t find it in the hashtags and the mottos and life sayings of yesterday or today. teach me your wisdom, the one that won’t fade! yes, it sounds foolish, and looks foolish-er still, what with you on a tree, being spat at and scorned, singing softly that you love the least of these. but teach me what it means to be less. teach me not to trample on others for my own gain, even if it feels so good! teach me to love others before myself. teach me not to save face. teach me to be a fool, teach me radical love, tenderness, compassion– teach me how to die so that I might live.