It occurred to me recently that one of the wisest women I know, rarely answers my questions.
Let me back up.
I was part of miscommunication yesterday. I cannot stand miscommunication. CAN NOT STAND. It keeps me up at night. It makes me queasy and nauseous and downright sick.
I am borderline obsessive about what is said and how it is said – and what is left unsaid and how it is left unsaid. I turn words over and over and over and analyze them until they no longer sound like words.
I am prayerfully cautious of who I go to for advice, and I try to steer clear of offering advice – unless I am explicitly asked.
And more than any of that, I get all tied up in knots when I am in a situation where I am accountable for someone else’s words.
Scripture talks about the value of words in no uncertain terms.
“For by your words you will be justified and by your words you will condemned.” Matthew 12:37
So back to the wisest lady I know.
I often go to her when I am mulling something over in my heart. When I need someone to speak truth into my situation – someone to point me in a Godly direction – she is my go-to.
But I realized after my most recent time of asking her for her hard-earned, God-honoring wisdom, that she had talked it through with me, but had not answered me. She listened carefully, and shared some bits of pieces of her experience, pointed out some scripture, shared how she had prayed through a similar situation.
But. She had not said “This is what to do…”
Yet I left knowing exactly what to do.
As I replayed the situation over and over and over again, I realized the genius of her no-answer: She pointed me to Christ, but did not answer my question. She left a void, and in the void, the Lord gave me my answer.
The Lord alone could provide the perfect answer to my dilemma. He alone could offer the solution perfectly tailored to my circumstances.
As I was processing yesterdays miscommunication and my Go-To Woman of Wisdom, I could not help but wonder if our ability to talk it out is robbing us of our ability to work it out. Is the fact that I can talk it out til I am blue in the face, making me blind to the fact that I could walk it out with Him.
I can’t help but wonder if the fact that we can chat about it, text about it, email about it, tweet about it, ask for opinions on Facebook, G Chat about it, is robbing us of the direct text with the One who holds the answer are looking for.
When I ask a million people before, during or after I have asked the Lord, am I not clouding His voice? Am I not mudding the waters?
Please, please please, know I so deeply respect and admire and believe there is a place for asking for wisdom, and for taking cold, hard advice from others. Please know that I am a firm believer in taking God-honoring wisdom and running with it.
But after my conversation with the wisest lady I know, I’m trying to practice the art of pointing to the Lord.
I’m trying not to jump in and give and answer, or reply with what my gut says, or even reply with what I’ve learned to be true. I am trying to point to the One who is True, so that He can answer in the way only He can.
I’m trying to run to Him, before I run to anyone else.
Or crawl to Him, before crawling to anyone else, as the case may be.
And when someone asks me what I have to say, I’m trying to give Him the space to answer first.