Daily Pointers for Connecting with God
This microscopic menace labeled COVID-19, which very much resembles the types of plague frequently mentioned in Bible prophecies as one of the sudden and unexpected “shakings” God brings to get mankind’s attention, has caused just about the entire world to grind to a halt. Church included. And now more and more Christian leaders are beginning to see it as a “reset” or a “forced Sabbath.” A time to reflect on our doings as the people of God.
Perhaps because the pace of our lives was spinning out of control?
Perhaps because our treasured idols of financial success, entertainment, sports and creature comforts were crowding out His daily presence in our lives?
There are no doubt a lot more reasons why God brought about this unprecedented shaking, but I mention these for a reason.
A couple of months ago Jennifer and I read a book by a millennial mega-church pastor from Oregon, John Mark Comer – who burned out on being a mega-church pastor, re-evaluated his life, resigned his job and wrote a book about his experiences called “The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry.”
In it he makes a couple of crucial observations that spoke deeply to us.
The first: the greatest enemy in our relationship with God is not unbelief, it is hurry. Why? Because God is never in a hurry. God is love, and you can’t hurry love (does that remind you of an old Diana Ross song?). Love is based on deep connection, and deep connection takes time.
The second: Jesus modeled how we should relate to the Father, and it doesn’t look anything like what we have become used to. We’ll unpack some of that over the next few days.
Everything we have talked about so far – coming, being still, listening, delighting, Spirit-directed praying, blessing (in short, loving God, loving people) – requires generous daily helpings of our time. Ever noticed how God would sometimes call His prophets to a desert retreat (remember eremos?) because He wanted to speak to them, and He made them wait for 40 days?
The principle at work there: before we can truly hear God, we must empty our minds from hurry, distraction and busy-ness. For a busy prophet or spiritual leader, that apparently took 40 days of sitting in the desert doing absolutely nothing else. What would it take for us?
So take the first step today in the ruthless elimination of hurry from your life. Think about what you can do today to slow down. Ask God to help you. Remind yourself that God is never in a hurry because He loves us, and you can’t hurry love.
Meditate on Psalm 123: 2: “Behold the eyes of the servants look to the hand of their master, as the eyes of the maidservant to the hands of her mistress, so our eyes look to the Lord our God, till He has mercy on us.”
And Isaiah 40:31: “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength.”
Wait, look, seek – till He speaks, directs, refreshes, strengthens, loves.
And tune in tomorrow for some practical ways to eliminate hurry from your life so you can truly put God first in the use of your time and attention.