When God’s instructions don’t make sense

Upon waking this morning, a strange thought ran through my head. “Instead of asking today, I will start thanking God for what He’s doing”.

This is weird.  I’m not awake enough for this to be my own thought, and while asking God if that’s what He wanted, my mind and heart began to obey.

Thank you, Lord

…for moving us here

…for your protection

…for your provision

…for your people

…for whatever it is you are doing

I’m starting to wake up now, and my habit of asking for things is starting to kick in;

How much longer, Lord?

Will you deliver us today?

Show us your will

Guide us, give us peace, help us…

And He gently reminded my heart of my first waking resolve; “I will thank Him”, so I started again.

Thank you, Lord

…for seeing and knowing the beginning from the end

…for my kids, for what you are doing in them through this trial

…for the wonderful time we had yesterday with family

…for laughter, and good memories

Again, my mind wandered, and settled on things that I have no control over—things I habitually pray about; money, unemployment, disappointments and stress.  Again, habit took over and I began calling out to God, “deliver us, fulfill your promises, help us, Lord.  We’re at the middle of the month, and then what?”  Again and again, I have been stopped short and reminded “Thank me.”

I remembered the daily readings from earlier in the week, how God directed Joshua to claim victory at Jericho.  It wasn’t by military might, or strength.  It was a strange order; “March around the walls seven times, then blow your musical instruments, and the walls will come down.”  The Israelites must have thought Joshua was off his nut.  March and blow?  Really?  But they obeyed, and they got the victory, just like He said.

I remembered yesterday’s reading, and a conversation with my husband that occurred concerning it.  When God healed Naaman of his leprosy, Elijah instructed him to do a weird thing.  He could have laid his hand on Naaman, or waved his staff over him, or just said a prayer over him, but instead, he instructs Naaman to go dunk seven times in the dirty Jordan river.  Even Namaan is disenchanted, the Word says he was angry.  His expectation was met with disappointment and a seemingly absurd directive.  I can hear his heart “How will a dirty river heal me?”  Nevertheless, he obeyed, and he was healed. 

Kevin and I talked about these two stories, scratching our heads trying to make sense of them regarding our situation.  We both have had numerous confirmations that we have done what God has asked of us so far, we are waiting in expectation for His promised deliverance, and by all accounts of what we see, we are running out of time.  But God sees above and beyond what we see, and He asks us to trust Him.  And He asks us to wait on Him.  And I thought yesterday, maybe He was asking us to rest in what He was accomplishing.  I thought that was the “weird request” He was making for our victory, I mean, really.  How do you rest?  And how do you explain to someone who asks for the umpteenth time what our plan is.  When the money is gone, and the time is up on the rent, the landlady is not going to understand “we are resting”.  But I think that’s what I heard Him speak to my heart yesterday, so I asked “How in the world do I rest at this time?  My faith has been stretched beyond it’s capacity, and now not only am I asked to believe what He says, I have another directive, “rest”.

I’m starting to see today’s resolve to thank Him instead of asking Him, as His answer to yesterday’s prayer “how”?  And so, I continue, and will continue to look for ways to practice this strange request today.

Thank you, Lord

…for Gracie, for your healing, for your hand that will guide the doctors today in her surgery

…for Kaitlyn, for her Momma heart, and her quiet trust in you

…for Josh and his family, for your hand on his life

…for Briana, for her sweet, generous spirit, for providing her with an income that she needs for the desires of her heart

…for Kristin, for the mighty work we see being accomplished in her

…for your comfort

…for your mercy

…for your plan

…for everything you are.  Father, thank you.