“Wait! “Don’t look…it’s not done yet!”
“No, you can’t listen…I haven’t finished.”
“Thank you, but I will have to wait because I’m not ready yet.”
As a recovering perfectionist, I can’t tell you the number of times that I have said those words.
I have always been “in process.” When everything is in the right place, then you can come in…look…let me show you…,etc.
Unfortunately I have sometimes been that way with God and I’ve almost missed the joy of His companionship. No, God never leaves…it was me that turned away. I turned away so that I could get myself cleaned up to be in His presence. What I mean by that is that I thought He would be pleased with me when my ducks were in a row and I could present them to Him with great joy. Then, He would be pleased.
But, I wasn’t sensing God’s pleasure.
I felt like I was missing out, missing Him, missing the God that wanted to be a part of my every minute – my process.
I recently enlisted a good friend of mine, Doc Sara, to help me to exercise and get healthy. Along the way, one of my friends encouraged me to take a leap of faith and train for a 5K. It was divine intervention that had me say “yes.” Looking back at the invitation now I don’t know why on earth I said I would do that when I had never made it around the track in High School one time!
On the day of the race, Sara said she would meet me there. I knew she would be running and I thought she would be there to encourage me on at the finish line. Upon arriving she said, “I am really looking forward to running with you.”
What? My heart just sunk. Running is a loose term for what I do. It’s a glorified jog, very slow. Sara trained Olympic Athletes. I was SO embarrassed!!
But Sara knew something I didn’t. I had never run outside.
Sara knew how difficult it would be for me and she purposed to pace herself with me. I was mortified, but soon I knew why she was there. When I hit the 2.5 mile mark I hit a wall and my breathing became very labored. (The 33 degree temps and 25mph winds didn’t help either.) Sara started to speak to me and calm me down. Every word she spoke somehow kept my feet moving when I thought I was going to collapse. We finished together – not in record time but I ran the whole thing without stopping and that was the goal I was aiming for.
Sara was the representation of “God with Us” to me. She wouldn’t let me push her away at the starting line because she knew what was ahead. Even though I was so embarrassed to be so slow, she couldn’t have been happier with my effort to try!
Sweet friends, don’t close the door to a loving God who wants be there for every part of your life. You are never going to be “cleaned up enough” for Him anyway. It says in Isaiah that our “righteous works are like filthy rags” compared to the holiness of our redeeming God. He doesn’t want to see my “ducks in a row.” He wants to see a humble heart that acknowledges a need for Him to come in and be Lord.
So I’ve started inviting not only God in, but other people in to my “undone” state as well. Like I said, I’m not perfect at it – I’m a work in process. But I would hate to have missed the sweet, sweet friendships that I would not have cultivated if I held everyone off until I or my task was perfect.
Maybe today, you realized that you have been pushing God off. Perhaps in surrendering your whole life to Him…perhaps in just part of it.
God is so loving that He won’t force Himself on you, but I can guarantee you that you want His presence in your imperfection. You need to hear His voice at the 2.5 mile mark. You can’t cross the finish line without Him.
Are you ready yet?
(more at: www.agreeingwithgod.wordpress.com)