I've been thinking a great deal in the last day about why I write this blog, about my purpose in these almost daily musings about life and God. I know that there is, of course, the pulsing need to write as a way to make sense of how God speaks in my own life. Blog as journa, one might say.l But there is also a correlating desire to point others toward the Kingdom. Blog as pulpit, I suppose, one might also say. The first, perhaps, is better left to my own blue notebooks, meant only for my private consumption. And without question there is much in those notebooks that far too private to work out before an unknown audience. It is meant, as with Jacob and the angel, as a wrestling through the dark of night. We know it happens, but we don't precisely know what passed between them as they grappled together at 3AM.
But the blog as pulpit, blog as ministry has become a calling. One I gladly answer. In fact, when I think about how He sometimes reveals Himself, it is so far beyond my small abilities only the Holy Spirit could write these words (though the typos are all mine!).
What He has called me to, I think, is a deep-down-to-my-marrow-of-my-bones attentiveness. Though, now that I think about it, bones aren't the deepest things in a body. They may be the structure of arms, legs, fingers, toes, ribs and backbone, but they merely encapsulate the depths of our bodies. Under their protective armor lie all the vital life-giving and sustaining parts-- from heart, brain, lungs, kidneys. Without such protection we would be lost. But bones are the only things that survive death. Only the armor remains. What life is truly about, blood and what it travels through, heart and how it pumps, cannot outlast a human soul.
OK, a long segue attentiveness. But when I close my eyes and let surrender wash over me, and listen to the throb of heart, electricity in the nerves of a lame leg, I am reminded that He speaks distinctly and profoundly in my body most often in pain. Pain itself reminds me of life. Reminds me to pay attention to Him.
And pain strips away the protective armor I try to put on--like human bones--to keep me from being fragile. Without that armor--of physical strength, bodily abilities to run and move and keep up and do and be and look the way the world says it's right to look--there is nowhere else to look but to Him to be my protective armor. The question is, am I attentive enough to His voice? Am I able to say with Job, "Though He slay me, still I will trust Him." ? Though people don't understand how I live, or why, or question my motives or revile me or judge me unfairly, do I still trust Him? I pray so. I pray that I trust Him no matter what comes.
It's easy enough when the day is fair and I can sit in the sun and the wind blows gently (both literally and figuratively), when I am not tried beyond my powers to endure. But winds can whip, storms can blow in. And I confess I don't always want to know what He might ask of me. I want to live attentively, to live as a Christ-one, extending His Kingdom in every arena He sets before me. But I want to be strong. Even in my weakness. I want to lean into your protection, to be as strong as the truest trust in You. When all around me is storm, when even my heart is failing, may I be yours.
And may I be faithful to do what you've called me to do.