Being sick turns life on its head. Nothing functions as it does when you are well, when your life has routine. Illness pulls out the stops, puts you on the couch with a stack of pillows, cough drops, gallons of water and a relentless prayer for sleep.
Outside of the norm, inside of the sickness, communication with my Healer becomes abbreviated and very one-track:
We are no longer conversing; I am demanding.
And my cup runs dry.
And I’m empty and sick.
I have forgotten who He is. I have approached Him flippantly and lobbed request after request at Him for days on end and now no longer know how to enter in to conversation.
In an effort to fix it, I begin from my most recent place—I make a list of the things, people in my life that need Him. I fail to see His majesty. I fail to see His heart for relationship. In the middle of my list, He comes.
What are you doing?
Is this it? Is this who we are? Do you remember me?
My soul knows that I have forgotten. Worse, He knows that I have forgotten. Shame rips through me.
But the shame isn’t from Him. It’s the remnant of an old pattern, an old knowing. It’s a forsaken form of communication that demands penance be paid for my reckless abandon and irreverent approach.
It’s not Him.
He’s made a way. A way for relationship, a way for fullness of life. He bridged the gap—the monstrous canyon from Death to Life.
This bridge says: Because He lives, I live.
This bridge screams: It is for FREEDOM that I have been set free.
This bridge is a new thing, a way full of crazy grace.
Why do we run from Him when we haven’t talked in so long?
Why do we continue to think that we can go one more day without the Life-giving conversation?
Why must we be so stubborn?
Our enemy hates us.
There’s no candy coating or sugar-rimmed edge. There’s no heart change on his part. When we are worthless for the kingdom, when our lives are wrecked by sin and our homes full of death, he still hates us.
Why would we believe that a moment without our Savior is a safe moment?
Why would we believe that we could do it on our own?
Why would we dare be dumb enough to think that our “spiritual” reserves from last week are good to last us through this week?
He hates us.
And he devours us, shackles us. He loves nothing so much as keeping us separated from our Beloved by pride, busy schedules, and demanding people.
Without communication, our cup is dry. Bone dry. And we choose to remain there.
We live one more day without Life-giving power; one more choice without His counsel.
And it becomes easier to stay away.
Busy lives eat the minutes that were once carved out for Him. Returning to the One who saved us becomes complicated. We wonder how we ever carved out 10, 25 minutes for Him. We wonder if our lives reflect a loss of relationship, if those around us know the wilting occurring within. We set up barriers in our own hearts because we’ve played both roles of the conversation and know what He would say. Forgiveness, restoration for the ten lost days will come at a great cost.
He sets this in my heart:
The cost was already great.
Real. Human. Death.
He’s already paid any price He would ask of me.
I stand at the edge of the gap, looking across the bridge He gave, and I understand for the tiniest of moments that I’m the one that created the space between us. I’m the one that left my life empty for days, and His sweetness waits for me. He has done the work. It is finished.
He’s not on the other side, waiting with arms open. He’s toe to toe with me, standing on the bridge, ready to step into relationship once again.
Because adoration builds a heart of awareness and worship, I choose to adore Him everyday.
Tabitha’s heart is genuine and lovely, and I miss her every time I read her words. You should know her.
Prayer is hard, and these words found me on the day I couldn’t remember how to communicate.
FOR. REAL. I just can’t even, you guys.