I’m fairly certain that although God may seem quiet to me at times and I wonder what His plan is that He absolutely never fails to speak to me clearly when I need to hear Him. Never fails.
Yesterday was a bit rough for me. I’ve had a tension headache for three days now, yesterday being the second of those days. I’m not sure what causes it…but I notice a little painful knot throbbing just below the left side of my neck and above the left shoulder. It’ll throb and eventually the pain works its way up the left side of my neck. Soon enough it has turned in to a full blown throbbing, painful and debilitating headache that even a few Tylenol won’t touch. In an ideal world I’d be able to close my eyes during that time. However, life as it is, I can’t. So I endure the headache for several days until finally it might go away.
In dealing with that headache yesterday we approached the naptime hour. If you’ve read this blog from its beginning then you will be familiar with my second child’s inability to sleep…or perhaps she just doesn’t need that sleep. Either way, yesterday was one of those days where she wouldn’t sleep and she absolutely forbid mommy from getting any quiet time whatsoever. She spent the whole naptime hour crying, screaming, tantruming because she didn’t want to play quietly or lay there quietly for an hour or so. So, pounding head and all…I’d go up there and threaten to discipline. Take two…bring out the discipline. Take three….stuff my head in a pillow and do a little screaming myself. Take four…. and at my wits end…I reach for my devotional in desperation. Now with all that being said…why do I seek God at the very end? Why do I exasperate myself in the hopes of getting my daughter to listen and obey when I don’t first listen to Him? I suppose its an innocent enough mistake but really I think I’d have saved myself a lot of trouble had I stopped and prayed and asked for the strength to go into that little room to talk with number two little girl about why she is scared of sleeping in mommy’s room and why she won’t be quiet for mommy.
In reaching for my devotional this is what I read. It is astounding the timing of when I needed to read these words and how they touched me and how I felt renewed and given the strength to go upstairs calmly and talk with my daughter to instruct her in the ways of the LORD.
Fear and trembling have come upon me; horror and fright have overwhelmed me. And I say, Oh that I had wings like a dove! I would fly away and be at rest. Psalm 55:5-6
“David prayed that he could fly away from trouble and be at rest, but running from trouble is not always the answer. There are times we must face the enemy and defeat him in God’s power just as David defeated Goliath. God has given us ‘going through’ power. It is not God’s will for us to run or hide from challenges, but to confront them head-on, knowing we can fight a battle and remain at rest. After all, the battle is not ours, but God’s
God won’t let you run away from your troubles and keep going forward in His purpose for your life. He won’t force you to face them, but eventually you’ll realize that these same problems will keep showing up if you don’t face them. The good news is God gives us power and wisdom to deal with our situations.
Elijah tried to run and hide, but God made him go back to the place he ran from and continue the work he had been called to do. After God allowed him to rest, He confronted him about his attitude. He asked why he was hiding and what he thought he was doing. Elijah answered out of a bitter attitude and distorted thinking. He said he alone was left to serve God and people were seeking to kill him. He told God that all the Israelites had forsaken His covenant, destroyed His altars, and killed His prophets, and once again Elijah sounded as if he was filled with self-pity as He told God that he was the only one left who was faithful to God. (see 1 Kings 19:9-14). God told Elijah that, in actuality, He has seven thousand prophets left who had not bowed their knees to Baal, and He also told Elijah to get back to work.
When we are not well rested, our thinking gets distorted and we lose proper perspective. We want to run away from responsibility, but as we can see with Elijah, God will not allow us to do that because escape is never the answer to life’s challenges.
Are you able to see and relate to how God used that to speak to me? My problems aren’t life threatening but they are certainly exhausting and there are times when I want to run away from the responsibility of using disobedient moments like the one with baby girl and naptime hour and have my own quiet time instead…even if she’s up there throwing a fuss. It’s easier to ignore the fussing and not ask God for help. However….reading this devotional was like…wow. God….you are SO ALIVE!!! That in that moment He cared and loved me enough to not let me just give up (because I’m tired and sometimes I complain that I’m doing it all alone). I have a beautiful responsibility. So after reading I took a deep breath. Asked God to help me and give me strength and give me wisdom on how to love my little girl when all I felt like doing was yelling at her.
I walked in to that little room when she finally quieted down. I scooped her in my arms and I listened. I listened to her worries and told her that God is bigger. God loves you no matter what and even if you have a bad dream, sweet girl; He’s still there with you.
She came downstairs and the fussing vanished and did not show itself the rest of the day.
Praise God. God gave me rest.
So perhaps my timing for rest isn’t what I need. It’s God’s timing. And perhaps even when I’m hurting physically rest is still tangible even when I can’t stop, pause, and have a cup of tea in a quiet corner. Maybe it’s not about me at all. Maybe it really is about seizing those awful moments when you can’t seem to get through to a strong willed child and learning from them.
How about you? Is there something you want to run from and you feel isolated like there’s no one who can possibly understand? If so…seek our Beautiful Father and let Him scoop you up in His arms and let Him show you the kind of rest He can give when you feel like giving up. He might just tell you something amazing.