The terror that stalks me is to have lived a life that didn't matter. Too safe, too soft, too boring. An innocuous existence without power. Will words leave my lips, drip from my fingers, into oblivion? Or will they, like blood, pump through the hearts of lovers who have heard and listened? Will their alphabet be infused by power from the One true Word?
Will passion flame up only to flicker and die out unspent, never having warmed another heart? Will good intentions become crusted over regrets, ugly like a scab?
This following God thing isn't easy. My ears twitch and pick up every discordant sound. The tv hawking it's pleasures, my body fighting death, opinions casting doubt. Through it all the voice that's sweeter, and never silent, sings His song.
I'm still praying for my neighbors to come to Jesus but that first excitement of witnessing truth into their lives has turned into the heavy plod of everyday love. Church life with all of it's complexities and baggage of real life people grinds on. I will always love my Savior's bride, but I wonder if I will ever get over the sorrow that she acts more like a toddler pitching a fit than a gracious young woman destined for greatness.
And Serbia, oh Serbia. She haunts me and I can't get her out of my mind. News of her is like the heart jump of a father, pacing the delivery room, waiting for the birth of a child. Why do I love Serbia? I can't fully know. One day I asked God to give me a love for the things he loves, I can only imagine such an obsession was born from that prayer, I could never dream such craziness up on my own.
Behind the scenes God is working and I'm listening. I received the name and contact information of an institution in Serbia with children needing love. I also heard good news, the most notorious institution in Serbia is moving children out of it's old buildings, only immobile people over 18 will remain. But they remain. Even though I've seen their names, and feel the river sweeping me along, at moments I still pause.
Have I heard right? Where will the money come from? Am I really needed? Why a task so large? Yet I'm so hungry for touching the greatness of God. I want to know his power can overshadow a need I can't meet on my own. I want to smell the smoke of His presence as it singes away selfishness and leaves holy love.
I remind myself I'm in good company. Moses stood at a bush that burned with holy fire, God's very presence, and stammered a whiny excuse. Good intentions melted in the heat of reality. But he obeyed and God provided. On the long dessert journey, with sand in his beard and a troublesome people trailing behind him, he became the friend of God.
The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend...Then the Lord came down in the cloud and stood there with him and proclaimed his name, the Lord. And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.” Moses bowed to the ground at once and worshiped. “Lord,” he said, “if I have found favor in your eyes, then let the Lord go with us. Although this is a stiff-necked people, forgive our wickedness and our sin, and take us as your inheritance.” Exodus 33:11 and 34:5-9
The God who loved Moses loves me. Certainly the circumstances are different, the need pales in comparison, but the love is identical. I pray on my journey that I become the friend of God, I'm certainly his child, but I want to become his friend.
What about you? Have you been singed?