I’ve been sitting around waiting for the Lord to talk to me face-to-face.
He’s sent me messages loud and clear, through friends and wise counsel. I’ve seen Him speak to me through His word.
But I have wanted to hear Him. Directly. That strong, sure word straight to my heart that is like the breath of the Lord straight to my soul.
But instead I keep getting the roundabout word: “Do the hard thing. This is gonna cost you. Pay up.”
And if I’m honest, I’ve been ignoring the hints in an attempt at daring Him to say it to my face.
Because if He’s going to ask me for something that costs so much, I want Him to at least say it to my face. If it’s going to hurt, I want to hear straight from Him.
I want Him to look me in the eyes and say what I don’t want to hear.
I don’t think I’d say this out loud, but apparently I’m willing to type it: I think there is a part of me that has felt that God is being cowardly. Like He knows what He is asking just might set me over the edge, so He’s not going to ask me to my face – He’s just hoping I will get the picture.
But I know that is not His character. I know He is neither afraid, nor prone to hiding. I know He is always willing to ask the hard thing, the impossible thing. And He often intends to set us over the edge so that we fall on Him.
I’ve turned this whole scenario over in my mind so many times I can’t even think straight anymore. And the funny thing is, I obeyed. I obeyed without Him getting in my face about it, but I haven’t been able to stop wondering why I didn’t get the request for obedience the way I wanted to get the request.
But I was driving tonight, asking myself over and over, “Why wouldn’t He just say it? Why wouldn’t He just lay it out for me?”
And this is where I got.
It was dusk. So the sun was setting, but behind an enormous, ominous cloud. But the sun was still bright enough behind the cloud that it lit up the line between the cloud and the sky like a lightening bolt. So bright and intense it was hard to look at all. Separating what I could see from what I know is there, even though I can’t see it.
And in that moment I feel like the question went from, “Why do I have to trust the evidence of what you’re saying, instead of You just saying it?!” to “How well do I know Him?”
I think maybe this whole matter hasn’t been as much about what the Lord was asking of me, as much as it’s been about how well I know the Lord.
Do I know Him well enough that when wisdom was poured out to me from others, I knew it was a word from Him?
Do I know Him well enough to discern when a scripture is speaking directly to me and telling me to move?
Do I know Him without Him getting up in my face?
Or am I going to be the stubborn, obstinate girl who demands I only trust and obey once my conditions have been met?
I plead the fifth on those questions.
I trust the sun behind the clouds, because the evidence is so clear it’s blinding.
How come it is so difficult for me to extend that same trust to my Savior?
When the facts are laid out as plain as day and His meaning is so clear it is all but blinding, how come I get caught up by a need to see for myself?
Sometimes I forget that His shadow is just as much evidence of Him and His presence as His face. And that knowing Him by shadow is a privilege earned by trust, experience and comfort.
“Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings.” Psalm 17:8
“How priceless is your unfailing love, O God! People take refuge in the shadow of your wings.” Psalm 36:7
“Because you are my help, I will sing in the shadow of your wings.” Psalm 63:7
“He will cover you with his feathers, and under His wings you will find refuge; His faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.” Psalm 91:4
The cry of my heart is to know Him face-to-face, by feel, by sight, by sound…and by shadow.