It’s just not there. I’ve looked so many times.
What do you say to your son when he gets cut from the team?
How should you respond when the full trash-can keeps getting forgotten?
Is it a sin to eat Oreos?
So many times, I’ve wished the Bible would speak more to the specifics of my life. I’ve often thought, “If God would just tell me what to say/do right now, I would obey.”
But He doesn’t. He doesn’t give us a script, action plan, or a menu.
I know, I hear you, reader. You’re saying if I’m “walking in the Spirit” and “abiding in Him” …I’ll just know.
But honestly, I don’t.
Okay, there have been some moments when I’ve felt Him nudging me to act, or to pursue a relationship. And other times, I’ve heard His heart-whispers of conviction or assurance. But those are so rare that I get excited, and they become blog posts.
But in the rough, day-to-day, kitchen-to-living room, school-to-work times… not so much. Mostly, I’m just trying not to cry or lose my temper.
My son’s eyes fill with disappointment and self-doubt, and all I can say is, “I love you. I’m so sorry.” And still he’s devastated. Just tell me what to do, Lord.
The trash can is overflowing even after three reminders: two sweet, one not. And all I can think is, “Be slow to anger.” And I slow, but the trash and anger remain. Just tell me what to feel, God.
The plate of Oreos are at the party. I’m hungry. And I tell myself, “Thus he declared all foods clean.” So I eat, and I feel judged. Just tell me what’s right and wrong.
But He doesn’t. And I get angry.
Because wouldn’t it be so much easier if, on my birthday, He gave me a book entitled “What To Expect When Your 45“? And every other year, another one like it with detailed instructions for the days to come? I mean, I don’t want to be a robot. I don’t need exact wording or anything … but it would be so much simpler and easier if I could read instructions like this each day:
She isn’t quite ready to get her driver’s license. She needs more practice. Wait another two weeks…
Or when I was twenty-five:
He’s not crying because he’s hungry or needs a diaper change. He’s teething. So just give him a little Tylenol and comfort…
God could have done that, you know. So why not?!
I could just carry my playbook around, and rock this Christan lifestyle.
But I’ve read the Bible enough to know that God isn’t interested in making my life easy:
But still, I imagine what my life would be like…
With every problem, I would search the chapters of my playbook, and know.
With every decision, I would turn its pages, and never doubt.
With each emotion, I’d bend its binding, and be sure.
And I would have all the answers, but nothing to hope for. I would know that book, but never know Him.
It would be as if I sent my own kids off, on their own, with detailed lists of all they need to know. How sad if they never needed to come to me for my oatmeal pancake recipe, advice about relationships, or help with raising their babies. How many lessons would they miss because some things just don’t translate on paper?
And I start to get it.
Yes, God wants obedience, but He wants me more. And He wants more for me.
So, for now, I have problems and no plan. I have intense emotions, but no clue. I’ve got lots of questions without answers.
And He does.
He uses each moment that I spend seeking, leaning, and venting to rewire my heart, soul, and mind.
And In His presence, He shows me that knowing Him is more important than knowing it all.
But until then, I’ll know that I don’t know. I’ll stand paralyzed in my emotions, and I won’t pretend to always see right from wrong.
But I’ll hope.