I was driving alone one night after dinner with friends. I wasn’t happy. I’d been waiting so long for God to answer my prayers and he just wasn’t coming through. He kept saying things like; ‘have faith’.
But there were so many disappointments – so many unfulfilled promises. Did he have any idea how slow he was? I started telling him what I really thought. I got angry. Why aren’t you doing something? When are you going to come through? And don’t you tell me to have faith! Do something! Answer me now!
I wondered if God was offended by my irreverent ranting. Maybe a lightning bolt would strike and put me out of my misery.
Just as I had finished yelling at God there was a ‘beep beep’ from my phone. Who would be texting me so late? I pressed they keypad and there on the screen in big bold capitals were the words: “ONLY BELIEVE, ONLY BELIEVE, ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE; ONLY BELIEVE!”
What? God sent me a text message?
It was surprising. No, not what he said. That was consistent. God doesn’t usually change his mind – even when we shout at him.
No, I was mostly surprised that he answered me at all. After all this was not some euphoric moment in church singing “Holy is the Lord”. He spoke to me at my lowest point… when my faith was worn thin and worship was the last thing on my lips.
Too often we forget that many of the saints in history demonstrated that same sort of openness with God. Think of the rawness of Job’s cries, the spiteful prayers of David and the complaints of the prophet Jeremiah. Honesty is not so much a sign of irreverence as it is a sign of trust. We become upset with those we love the most. That’s why with God we need to remove the masks completely. Vulnerability lies at the heart of intimacy and it is key to hearing from him.
This teaching is an excerpt from Episode 4 of The Other Side of the Conversation Course. The series is also available for use in small group studies and is available for purchase with Guidebook here! Watch a segment below: