The Thing

I love the part where I get to love Jesus and we hold hands and skip together down a very sunny road lined with the most beautiful wildflowers ever.

Then we stop skipping and He asks me to do something gut-wrenching. He promises that after I have done the gut-wrenching thing, we will resume our skipping. He’ll hold my hand the entire time, He promises. And I really do believe Him. But what He’s asking my to do has me standing there on the sunshine covered road, holding Jesus’ hand, frozen in fear. Have you ever experienced anything like that? Something you really don’t want to do, but you know you have to do it – so you keep delaying it and the longer you delay it the more petrified you become until that fearful feeling creeps into other areas of your body/life until you cannot function normally?

And I keep looking up at Jesus’ beautiful face hoping that He’ll say, “It’s okay. You don’t have to do it”, and we’ll laugh and smile and resume our skipping, but instead He just stands there looking at me, lovingly, oh yes, but expectantly as well. Death to the old self. He’s asking me to obedient. And we’ve been standing there for a long time now. And we haven’t really talked because He’s just waiting for me to step out and do it.

But I begin to loosen my hand from His – the very touch of His skin makes me feel uneasy. He doesn’t stop me because He doesn’t work that way, but He keeps looking at me, waiting patiently. I can’t look at Him anymore. I feel too ashamed. And then, because I haven’t looked at Him in so long, I begin to wonder if He’s really still there. And I start to forget what it was He wanted me to do. And for a little while I’m just glad that the fear is gone, but then a certain discontentment sinks in. I feel so useless, worthless, and wimpy.

So I look all around me. Everywhere, hoping to find a glimmer of hope. The road looks kinda cloudy now and the wildflowers are beginning to wilt and I’m not even sure that I remember how to skip. Then I catch the smallest movement out of the corner of my eye, and I look up. He’s still standing there in all His bright and shining joy-inducing glory, looking at me so sweetly. Waiting for me to be obedient because He has so many great things to show me further down the road. And I remember the thing He wanted me to do. And the petrified feeling comes back. I know that I have to make a choice. I miss holding His hand so much, but if I reach up to grab it, I will HAVE to do the thing. Because I can’t reclaim that intimacy and not do the thing. His love beckons me to obedience. So I try to hold my hand as close to His as I possibly can without actually touching Him, hoping that this will be enough.

It’s not enough.

I have to do the thing.

I wrote this almost a year ago, and I’m still wrestling with “the thing”. So, if you’re wrestling with something, know that you are not alone. Your “thing” could fall into a multitude of categories, but anything that’s keeping you for going deeper with your Savior qualifies as a “thing”. He may be asking you to get rid of something in your life or He may be asking you to add something to it. Know, though, that we must keep wrestling until we have done what God has asked us to do. He will richly reward those who obey Him.

Keep on keepin’ it down and dirty real.

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