Saturday, December 4, 2010

When God opens a window

I love the little moments when God opens my mind up to something new that I didn't understand before. That "Oh, this clicks" moment. In the last two days, He's done this for me twice.

I think He blesses us in two ways with these moments. The first is, of course, whatever wisdom He allows us to understand. Spiritual growth is an absolutely incredible feeling when you realize it's happening.

The second way is that we're reminded just how far we are from having things all figured out. From knowing everything. We have that sensation of a window opening in our minds, and then realize the excitement of all the windows God can still open.

Yesterday, God opened this window for me: At the church, I am surrounded daily by people with more wisdom, knowledge and experience than me. People who can teach me so much about not only the work I am doing, but also about the way I know and serve God. Instead of trying to impress these people all the time, why not humbly learn from them? The first option preserves my pride, but the second option makes me a person who serves God and others better. And isn't that more impressive in the ways that matter anyway?

Today, I went with Josh and Joyce to the Operation Christmas Child processing center to inspect and package shoeboxes. Now, here's a fact about me, even though admitting it makes me feel like a bad person. Mercy is not one of my spiritual gifts. When I hear a sad story, I am not the first person to cry. It's not that I don't care. I do. It doesn't come naturally to me to emotionally step into others' shoes, especially if it's an experience that's completely foreign to me.

So, window number 2. As I was working with the shoeboxes today, I got so excited about the big picture of what was going on. The 650,000 kids who would get presents and hopefully the message of Christ just from the Denver processing center alone.

As I was filling cartons with shoeboxes according to gender and age, I started praying over them. The more I prayed, the more connected I felt to the whole purpose of what was going on. It was so cool to think about the 5-year-old boys and 12-year-old girls whose lives God will change.

Ephesians 6:18 says, And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

God is showing me, through this experience and other recent ones, that it's not just about serving in the areas where I'm gifted. Maybe He doesn't want me to always be comfortable. Maybe it's not as simple as doing what you're naturally good at. Yes, I can sing and communicate without that much effort, but when He pushes me to pray for people who I would typically never think about, my heart feels so overflowing with God's love!

So, if I had to describe this window more succinctly, I would say this: Don't limit God based on what you have to offer. Realize that He has everything to offer and can grow you in whatever area He wants to.

There's a song by Chris Taylor called Symphony, and this part of the song describes so well the moment of getting a glimpse of God's wisdom:

When I finally see what you see
There's a symphony
I hear a symphony
Words cannot describe
What it means to be
In your symphony
In your symphony