What a friend we have in Jesus
All our sins and griefs to bear
What a privilege to carry
Everything to God in prayer
Oh, what peace we often forfeit
Oh, what needless pain we bear
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer
Have we trials and temptations?
Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged
Take it to the Lord in prayer
Can we find a friend so faithful
Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness
Take it to the Lord in prayer
Most people that have been in the faith for a while may have heard this song before. Recently, it has come back to memory after watching a worship service, and for the first time, I really listened to the lyrics. I swear, when you’re an adult, things just hit different.
The sermon I watched talked about coming to Jesus like he is your friend because he is. In John 15:15 Jesus called disciples friends. Showing us that he has let us into how to grow and get closer to God. In doing so, we are able to find who we really are, how to go about life, and how to deal with those mundane daily moments.
It got me thinking though, do I go to God and talk to him like I would if I were talking to my best friend? Like, do I talk to him like I talk to my husband?
Many of you know that I’ve given birth to a beautiful baby girl we named Nova. After having her, I had a lot of healing to do because I had a C-section. But in that, I also had to learn how to care for a child, and it was really challenging at times. On top of that, my body began to change, and my hormones began to fluctuate so I spiraled in and out of emotional rollercoasters which put me in such a fog. Sometimes I didn’t know whether I was coming or going.
In all of that fog, I felt like I wasn’t connecting to God like I used to. I couldn’t figure out how to get back to my time with God anymore and it was really hindering me. I kept asking myself, “what did I do before when I spent time with God.” And those things I used to do weren’t helping me this time.
My days now consist of me taking care of Nova and learning how to balance my free time to choose between taking a shower, eating, cooking, napping, editing a video for my family channel, praying, journaling, cleaning, washing my hair (and hopefully enough time to do my hair), reading scripture, or to go for a walk.
I have had a hard time trying to balance because my lovely Nova is so affectionate that she does not sleep very long by herself. She feels more comfortable, and safe, nestled on me. And although I love it, it puts my choices on the things I can do to a minimum.
So no, I wasn’t waking up at 7am to journal and pray like I used to. No I’m not able to drop everything I’m doing to take however long to read scripture (or so I thought).
I had to learn, but I had to have God show me.
That sermon I mentioned earlier really penetrated. If I see God as my friend, I should be really spending time with him as if I truly believed it, right? So, I sat there, as the worship leader sang the song above, and I followed the minister’s instructions to sit in silence, solitude, and stillness so that I could allow God to move.
As I sat in silence, I realized how limited I made God in my own mind which translated to my behavior. I made it so that God couldn’t move because I was holding onto control of things that were hindering me from being able to see him move in my life. And at that moment, I finally did see. Not with my eyes, with my spirit.
My soul was convicted because he made aware to me that I’d been searching everywhere but to him for friendship. And because of that, I was always left disappointed. He reminded me of something I wrote to my readers some time ago, “your relationship with God is reflective of the relationships you have with people around you.” But I should’ve been saying that to myself.
When I look around, I realize that I wasn’t always a good friend. I could be selfish and controlling sometimes, or I’d be jealous that my friends had other friends. Sometimes I would have friendships I poured my heart into and it wasn’t reciprocated, so I tried to find approval and acceptance so that I could finally be seen.
But God sees me. He’s never lost me or forgotten me (read Isaiah 49:15-16), but for some reason, I treated God like I do the people I deal with often. I wasn’t putting all my trust in Him, I was trying to control certain outcomes believing I was “helping”, I sometimes feel like I’m still seeking approval from God and my behavior would sometimes slide into “duty” mode instead of “relational” mode.
But God doesn’t care about what I can do for him as much as he cares about reaching my heart and communing with Him. He wants me to love Him as much as I claim, He wants what’s truly best for me, and He wants me to learn what it’s like to have a friend that won’t leave me high and dry. He wants me to know that I will never have to worry about where I stand with Him, I’ll never have to feel like it’s a one-sided friendship, and I’ll never have to hide parts of myself from Him because He knows it all anyway.
And He wants the same for you too.
I mentioned that I needed to commune more with God earlier. Although prayer consists of just talking to God, there is another part to it. Talking to God is not a conversation when you’re not opening yourself up to listen to what He may want to say. That makes it one-sided. Imagine having a friend (or being a friend) like that. They dump all their crap on you, and when they’re done the conversation is over. That’s not a very good friend, is it?
Communing with God, with my current understanding is this:
- Sitting, in silence, in His presence thinking about Him.
- Opening yourself up to receive Him in any capacity.
- Listening with your whole being
I never understood why I would come out of devotional time still irritated at the world, and I realized that I was just doing a duty and I wasn’t really communing with God. I was dumping and then moving on. But now, I invite God into every moment. I talk to Him whenever I can, whether that’s while I’m showering, changing diapers, taking the dogs out, whatever. I also have my moments where I just invite Him in to speak and move, and I make sure that I expect to hear God’s voice.
Although it’s only been about a week of intentional communion with God, He has given me such revelation about so many things. Things I’m learning to let go of, and people I’m learning to deal with. Because I still have some people in my life that I take the initiative to reach out more often than not, and I don’t get the same in return. So I’m still a student in this area, especially the area of forgiveness and letting go.
So ya’ll pray for me.
With that, I know that this blog post is all over the place, but I hope you were able to follow along and hopefully it motivated you to start communing with God on a personal level.
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