Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Confession #16 - Lord, I didn't realize I was supposed to bring a gift!

A while ago I had a dream.  I fell from the earth into a large open roofed warehouse.  Landing on my two feet I noticed that I was standing on a gravel path that extended around the perimeter of this immense space.  There were all these people running on the gravel path passing God who greeted them at the end/beginning of each lap.  In my dream God looked like James Marsden, don't ask me why cause I don't know, but that's not important.  Anyway, every runner was giving God these beautifully wrapped gifts.  He would graciously accept the present and give each runner a hug before they would continue on the in their race.  Seeing this, I approached the Lord feeling guilty because I had no gift for Him.  Apologetically, I said, "Lord forgive me but I didn't realize that I was supposed to bring you a gift."  God smiled and took my hands.  He lovingly said, "Joanne, you don't understand.  I don't expect these gifts, nor do I want them, you are my gift.  All I want is to spend time with you."  God hugged me and began to run alongside me on the gravel path.  He didn't run with the other gift giving folks, just me.

When I woke I pondered my dream.  Soon it became clear that this dream symbolized what my relationship with the Lord was like.  I thought about the gifts and questioned, had I been so busy running around trying to please God and wrapping my "works" in beautiful packages with pretty bows?  Was I forgetting to just "be" with Him?  It was as if I were saying, "Here you go, I served at church today."  "This one's for you Lord, I gave to the homeless."  "And Lord here's the biggest of them all, I am now teaching a bible study, woo!"  But God doesn't want my pretty gifts, He wants me.  He wants to spend time with me so I can get to know Him.  And He wants to be invited to run the race of life with me.

For a long time I've struggled with personal quiet time and I can tell you that nothing substitutes for it.  Not reading a Christian book or doing your weekly bible study lesson, or listening to a televangelists broadcast or going to church on Sunday.  Nothing can substitute for the time you spend alone with God.  Nothing can change you like a personal intimate relationship with our Creator.

Have you been missing out on your relationship with the Lord?  Have you forgotten to take time every day to just sit and talk with Him?  Are you running around serving, giving, and doing "Christian" things mistakenly thinking that your gifts are what God really wants from you? Are you too busy acting Christian or really being a Christian? 

Let's slow down our race and start walking with the Lord.  He doesn't want our pretty packages of "works", He just wants to spend time with us every day and He promises to run the race of life with us.

"...ask where the good way is, walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls." Jerm 6:16

"Dear Heavenly Father, draw me each day to spend time with you.  Let me never forget that my works are just empty packages and what you really want is to be with me.  And dear Lord, for my sisters that struggle in this area teach them to slow down and walk with you ask well."  AMEN!
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