One of the first psalms I memorized (many years ago now) was Psalm 25. I was struck then and now by David's passionate cry in verses 4-5 to know God.
Interesting, eh, that the Bible never suggests that we ask God to teach us principles, or show us His doctrines? And this morning as I reflected again on what was happening in my life one year ago (battling for Jettie's life) I realized that I am more convinced than ever that we head in the wrong direction when we think of the Jesus walk as mostly about theology, doctrine, principles, etc.
Papa again confirmed this to me today in His words to me as I wrestled with some more grief, triggered by only He knows what. I once again allow you to listen in on my conversation with Him. From my journal this morning.
Ah, Father. I will trust in you!
“Child, I have been showing you these past few days how trustworthy I am, how generous and kind I am... I am gracious and generous and wanting to show you my ways, the riches of my kindness, so that you can enter into this next season. And I will succeed in my intentions, little one. Yes, even now you can glimpse (if but barely) what will be radiantly apparent for you in just a little while. My goodness is coming upon you, child, more than you can imagine or bear. I will smother you with grace and shower you with kindness over and over until you get it. Then, yes, then, you will trust me in an unprecedented manner! Taste and see, indeed, little one, that I am good—very, very, very good!”
Ah, Papa. I do indeed glimpse things, if but barely, but I seem unable at this point to hold onto what I see. But you will change that, I know. Open my eyes! Show me your ways!
Isn't Papa kind to us? And this persistent kindness is how it must be for us to learn what "faith" really looks like. Even human relationships teach us this. It isn’t just knowing that a friend might help that causes me to trust her/him. And it isn’t knowing about a friend’s supportiveness to other people that invites me to trust him/her. No, it’s the actual experiences of that friend’s help that invites and then increases my trust. It is no different for us in learning to trust Papa God. And that's why David (and others) cried out to God to know His ways, learn His paths. They weren't asking this in order to have something to do or an example to copy. They wanted to know by experience the One who invites us to trust Him because of His loving kindness.
Yet much of "Christianity" seems to get lost in complicated and convoluted facts, principles and proof texts. So I am once again beating the drum of intimacy as I so often do (I was writing something similar to this last year on this date, even in the midst of the battle!). Maybe some who didn't hear the drum beat yet will join me in marching to the beat of a different Drummer! How about you? Does your heart crave for facts or for a Father's embrace, for more principles or for more of His truth (His faithfulness, not facts about Him)?
Crying out to know Him.
Tom, one of Abba's little boys