Praise Interlude

The road is long and rocky and dusty and dry. You have been on it for so long, going. First you were young, but it wasn’t easy even then. Now you are not so young, and you thought, by now, it would have gotten a little easier, or you would be stronger, or at least wiser. But it doesn’t seem like all the years and miles and struggles have made you something better, more useful.

Some people seem to be made of sterner stuff, and made for bigger things. That’s ok. Everybody is not a beautiful voice. Everyone can’t be a strong arm for heavy lifting, or a sturdy back to lean on. Some parts of the body are internal and some are very obscure, and wouldn’t have it any other way.

We are designated for a certain time, and born wherever in this world that God so deems, into which family He determines proper. For some that means poverty, and many things to endure and perhaps overcome. For some it looks like privilege, but to whom much is given, much will be required.

Likewise, some are born with a strong physical constitution, or with strength and resiliancy of spirit, or a certain fierce innate sense of justice. Some people seem to exist for the purpose of intuiting acknowledging.

We can look at some folks and readily see the purpose for which they were made, and they find their role and place in the world easily as breathing. Not everyone has such an obvious destiny in life. In fact, perhaps those who seem the least obviousely purposeful, are more useful to and used of God.

Today, maybe you are one who wonders, is still not sure what God had in mind when He put you here. You know He has His reasons. He is God, after all. Is it possible to be too conscientious? Is there any such thing as to “just be” and let God be concerned with what part you play in His plan? If we were created for His purposes, and created also to enjoy Him, do we enjoy Him? How does obe enjoy God?

I’m not sure I know, but the closest way of understanding how a relationship with the Lord is “supposed” to be, the nearest I can come to fathoming that, is to consider it in light of a parent and a child.

When we are children, we don’t even know the word ” role”, much less do we consider the “role of parent” or “role of childhood”. Children don’t think about themselves. They don’t analyze and contemplate. They just “are”. The are sponges, curious, carefree, playful, unselfconscious.

They don’t, under the ideal circumstances of God’s design of family, have to wonder how Mom or Dad feel about them, whether they are loved or approved. An infant doesn’t fret about measuring up to anything. Parents of little ones, ideally, know not to expect a 5 year old to understand certain things, or be capable of things an adult can handle. And so sometimes I manage to put my relationship with the Lord into that context and it is usually only then that I can achieve perspective that allows me to have some grace with myself.

Sure there is such a thing as running the race, striving to win the victory crown, but that’s a seperate thing from trying to merit God’s approval. Die to self, take up your cross daily.

If these things enter our daily consideration at all, then probably that indicates a desire to be in His will and right standing.

I guess what I am trying to say, is that it is possible even in spiritual things, to overthink. The world sometimes accuses Christians of irrationality. But in truth, the Bible says that spiritual things can only be spiritually discerned. We aren’t to disengage our minds, but the spiritual transcends the physical, and sometimes it takes something freer than facts and measurements to commune with God.

I think that’s why God created music. I have never studied music. Those who have, probably understand and know this way better than anything I could possibly articulate, but music and particularly music set with words of praise, has power that is way underappreciated, and lost these days. That’s probably why Satan is so active a d invested in the music industry. It was God who created music. When we indulge in it from that perspective, it can be very powerful. It can heal, soothe, uplift. I think when we get to heaven, we are going to find out things about music that no one understood here. For now, the fallen version of things is the best we can get, but all of God’s creation is beautiful, even in it’s damaged (for now) version. I don’t know about you, but I need the power of music and praise of God today.

 

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