Friday, July 5, 2013

Honesty With God

The other day we had the privilege of catching up with a good friend who has had a profound impact on my life and ministry.  She was speaking truth to me in regards to my calling long before I was in youth ministry.  We were catching up with each other, sharing struggles as well as to what God has been up to in our lives.  At one point we talked about journaling as it is something she always encouraged me to do.  I shared that for the past year and a half I have been more committed to journaling and how it has been a blessing in my life.  I like to write about what God is showing me through Scriptures, and ways that He is inspiring me as well as correcting me.  However, there are also plenty of days where I am venting.  It often is about a circumstance or situation that I did not bring on, but am suffering from.  Our friend's response to that was that it is ok to vent.  We need to let out our emotions.  I believe it is then we can place our focus back on God and go forward.

The day after this conversation I was reading Psalm 55.  Verses 16-17 say:
16 As for me, I shall call upon God,And the Lord will save me.17 Evening and morning and at noon, I will complain and murmur,And He will hear my voice.
If you read on further, the often quoted verse 22 says:
Cast your burden upon the Lord and He will sustain you;He will never allow the righteous to be shaken.
I believe there is beauty in being honest with God.  We must definitely be honest in our confession to Him.  Though God is omniscient, knowing everything including our thoughts and feelings, we must still be honest with Him.  While I often vent in my journal, I had never thought about making my complaints known to Him in a way that is positive.  Hear me out on this.  I believe that there is a HUGE difference in making your complaint known to God, and whining to Him.  I believe that if you make known to Him what is on your heart without whining about it, it then leaves more room for Him to work in the situation.  

Complaining to Him is not the end of it.  As we see in verse 22 we are to cast our burdens at His feet and allow Him to sustain and strengthen us.  When we do this, we do not pick the burden back up.  Instead we turn our complaint into action.  We first must pray about the situation, asking for guidance and for God's provision.  Then we need to work toward the solution.

I think we sometimes hold inside what we are feeling and are not completely honest with God.  I tend to do this in my own life.  While God knows the deepest thoughts within me, He still desires for my honesty.  The relationship is a 2-way conversation.  As I grow closer to God, I want and need to be honest with Him.  I want to do this in a way that is not whining, and in a way that leads me to further growth in Him.

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