Monday, July 19, 2010

The Bragging Plateau

Elyse Fitzpatrick went walking with me the other day (well, her recorded voice did) and she said I have never loved God with all my heart/soul/mind/strength. Why not? Because the minute I think I'm loving God completely, I look at myself and say, "Wow! I'm pretty amazing!"

This is me. I start out growing, and end up bragging. Happens a lot. Been happening lately. I've mentioned we have to move. At first, when moving was a few months off and sounded like a fun adventure, I was surprised and pleased to discover I wasn't worried about it, God had our next house all picked out, and everything was going to be okay. I told lots of people this.

The closer we get to moving, the more gregariously I've been telling folk that I'm not worried, God has our next house all picked out, and everything is going to be okay. "Look at me! I'm trusting God!"

And truly, I think I started out trusting. Started out in awe. But I've plateaued at bragging. And underneath my boast is angst. I still believe God has our next house all picked out and everything is going to be okay, but I'm getting pretty irritated that He hasn't yet shown me the house He has picked out. I'm impatient. My impatience breeds discontent, which breeds fear, which breeds crankiness and all manner of behaviors that make my rock-solid husband sigh forlornly and run to God in prayer.

How handy that I'm helping enrich Jeff's prayer life.

Just kidding.

This morning, I woke up very restless. So much to do. No idea where to start. Sad about Dad. Impatient. Finally, I crawled back in bed and rummaged with my pillow and covers until Jeff awoke "naturally." Then I told him I was having a hard time. He drew me close and let me lay my head on his chest and listen to his heartbeat. He fell back to sleep, but he kept his arm around my shoulders, and when I tried to move, he tightened his grip. Strong. Finally, I drifted back to sleep too, totally calm.

Abba holds me like that, too, when I finally crawl into His lap and admit to Him that I'm having a hard time. What a relief to lay my bravado at the foot of the cross. To tell God I'm scared and I need Him. To stop being fine and start being real. To cry about Dad instead of having dry-eyed chest constrictions and difficulty breathing. To quit scouring craigslist for homes we can't pursue yet and wait for the process to go God's speed. To do what I know God has revealed for today. To let the Spirit fill me with His patience.

To be still.

O LORD, my heart is not proud, nor my eyes haughty;
Nor do I involve myself in great matters,
Or in things too difficult for me.

Surely I have composed and quieted my soul;
Like a weaned child rests against his mother,
My soul is like a weaned child within me.

O Israel, hope in the LORD
From this time forth and forever.

~Psalm 131