I’ve gotten pretty good at doing for God.
At going when He says go. At doing when He says do. At working when there is work He has placed in front of me.
But I’ve found myself in a season where God has been asking me to do something new. Something more challenging than I would have imagined. Something that is stretching my faith past what I thought possible.
He is asking me to do nothing.
Nothing. To wait on Him. To be still. To stop trying to do anything or even to think about doing anything.
Now hear me: He’s not asking me to lay in bed and eat chocolate. He’s not asking me to abandon my cooking or housekeeping or mothering. He’s not asking me to throw up my hands and ignore all the hard parts of life. The hard parts of my own soul. Rather, in a few key areas of life...
He is asking me to let Him be God.
He’s asking me to let the Holy Spirit work, not my mouth. He’s asking me to focus on my heart and get still and quiet and close to Him. He’s asking me to stop planning and preparing and preaching what I think is best and instead to pray. He is asking me to wait when it feels like waiting will be pointless, even harmful. He is asking me to stop planning and be still. He is asking me to stop fixing and let Him work.
He is asking me to let Him be God.
These words had been spoken into my heart and life several times already when, on an average weekday afternoon, elbow deep in hot, sudsy dishwater, I found myself facedown on my kitchen floor praying. I had been standing at that worn stainless steel sink, dumping my anxieties out on Him and scrubbing out my frustrations at the expense of my dishes. I kept going over and over the same things: begging Him to show me what to do, begging Him to move, begging for change, begging for guidance.
In the midst of that anxious, sudsy pleading, I felt an overwhelming urge to be still before Him.
So I found myself there, facedown before God during a rare moment of quiet, doing my best to just be still and listen.
I could sense His presence so deeply in that moment. And as I waited and listened and focused on opening my heart to Him, a few words came to my mind. A phrase I knew from the Bible, but couldn’t tell you the exact location. So I pulled out my phone to google it's exact location and wording. This is what I read.
“And Moses said to the people, "Fear not, stand firm, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will work for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall never see again. The Lord will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.”” Exodus 14:13-14 (ESV)
Emotion poured palpably through me. Once again, God was affirming what He had said to me.
Do nothing. Be still.
Let Me act. Let Me be God.
“You need only to be still.” (NIV)
Tears and relief and joy and gratitude followed. But only for a moment. Because it’s not easy to lay our lives in God’s hands, especially when things feel hard, desperate.
Don’t miss what I am saying. This was not the first time He had told me this. But rather…
In His kindness, He spoke to me yet again, to reaffirm the things He had already said to me.
I wish I could say I haven’t wavered since this kitchen floor meeting with God. But I have. Even five minutes later I found myself wrestling again.
But I keep coming back to this moment to remind myself of what I know is true.
To remind myself of what He has told me.
To confess and repent of my sinful tendency to take things into my own hands.
To place myself back in a posture of surrender to Him once again.
I think perhaps, God has asked this of me more times in my life than I realize. Maybe now, I am finally getting better at listening to Him when He does.