Friday, January 6, 2017

God, Are You There?

In my twenty-eight years of talking with God, I've never had a reason to ask Him, "Are you there?" until this past year erupted. I had been going along in life just fine. I would pray, talk with God, see answers to prayers and keep going, but this year I happened to look over my shoulder and notice that to some of my heart-to-heart prayers there was no response and in some cases it felt like God wasn't even acknowledging that I prayed at all. Before I knew it I began to see one unanswered prayer after another flying up in my face until I finally cried out, "God, are you there?"

Image result for girl looking up at the sky

I know in my heart He is, but I have shed a lake of tears as I have hoped, watched, and waited in childlike expectation on Christmas morning for my prayers to be heard, to find only that as the sands of time dropped one by one, I was left with more questions than answers.

I was at a crossroads in my walk. Do I continue to pray for the dreams in my heart or do I just abandon them on the side of the road like a flat tire, or a busted balloon? Then I felt like the Lord revealed to me a perfect, Biblical imagery of a girl who may have cried out, "God, are you there?" too.

An angel appeared to Mary and told her that she was chosen for the most wonderful calling.
Mary said, "Yes."
An angel appeared to Joseph in a dream and told him that it was good for him to marry, Mary.
Joseph said, "Yes."
They were excited. They were on an incredible journey together, until everything started to go wrong.

They received the news, by Roman decree, that they had to travel to Bethlehem in her latent stage of pregnancy. 
"Where is God? Did we hear Him right? Were we wrong? God, this was not the plan. I was supposed to have my baby at home, with my mother near by and a midwife. God, where are you? God, are you there?" 

They arrive in Bethlehem and there was no room for them in the inn.
"LORD! How can this be? I am carrying your Son. We need a bed to rest. We need a safe, clean place to deliver the baby. God, where are you?"

They are offered a stable.
"God, I'm so confused. Did we not hear you? I thought we were in your plan. How can I deliver a baby in a stable? It smells- I'm going to throw up! It's so filthy. I'm scared. Lord, please let me know that this is your plan. I feel so lost! I feel so confused. God, where are you?" 

Jesus is born. 
He is perfect.
His mere presence brings peace.

Then, strangers walk in. Dirty shepherds. They come in quietly. They take off their head coverings and bow down. Then they look at each other with lights in their eyes. Excitement swells in their hearts. They introduce themselves. Their words interrupt each other as they begin to pour out their sighting of angels! And singing! And Good News!

Mary looks to heaven and smiles as tears run down her cheek-
"You were here all along. You knew. You heard."
She leans against the wooden stable.
A sigh of relief.
Rest comes to her mind, and body.

God, you are here. YOU ARE Immanuel, God with us. You DO hear us. You DO see our tears. You do have a plan and we will see it come to fruition.

Lord, Forgive me for doubting, for loosing hope. Help my unbelief. I love you and always will.

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