It’s probably one of the shortest and most honest prayers that I’ve prayed in a long time, but I wanted to do nothing else in that moment than to do nothing. It’s easier that way, isn’t it?
I had just arrived in Georgia, hot and sticky and humid Georgia. Our first adventure as a team was to get from the airport to where we were staying for the night. As we began to leave, my first thought after struggling to put my backpack on was, “Gosh, I should have packed waaaay less!” We trekked across downtown Atlanta, turning heads as we really did stand out like a sore thumb with our gigantic suitcases and over-packed backpacks. We arrived at the safehouse in downtown Atlanta, sweaty foreheads and achy backs and all! Excitement was bubbling up out of all five teams as we dropped our bags, ate some dinner, and then gathered together to worship later that evening.
“Where you go, I’ll go,
what you say, I’ll say, God
what you pray , I’ll pray.”
There was a sense of freedom in the room that was immediately present. It seemed like that freedom was everywhere but where I was standing. And that made me a little angry. Actually, quite a bit angry. You want to know why? Because I don’t like missing out on things. I want to be everywhere, doing everything, saying everything, 24/7, all the time (yes, I know that is completely unrealistic, but that’s what makes me crazy I guess!) So instead of claiming the words in the song and proclaiming them as truth over myself because I wasn’t feeling it, I sat myself right down. Now, I do know that I have some stubborn tendencies that have been passed down from my loving family, and I realized that those were manifesting themselves in that moment, but I didn’t care. I was perfectly content (or so I thought).
So I sat myself down in my selfish pride. I sat myself down in my regrets. I sat myself down in my self-pity. I sat myself down in what I thought were my rights. I sat myself right on down in what position I thought I was entitled to. I sat myself down in my past, some of the deepest darkest parts and would not move from that spot. And as I sat here in my baggage, I had absolutely no intention of rising to my feet. It’s all about me, right?
So I grumbled and sealed my lips, refusing to even give God the chance to move freely inside of me. And to be brutally honest, I have come to like sitting in my darkness. It sounds ridiculous when it is said out loud, I know, but it’s true. Yet far off I could hear God’s whisper — Beloved, you are free. LET IT GO. And my response was I DON’T WANT TO. I don’t want to choose to jump in when it’s all I want to do to sit here on my sorry butt. Dear God, no.
*** stayed tuned for Part 2!***