When he's pausing over me...over us....and spilling out all these pleas and thanksgivings....He teaches me much.
As we sat at the dining table one afternoon several weeks ago - my husband lifted up the following...
"God, please help us to grow in You and in faith - not just for fruit, but for relationship."
Not just for fruit.
But for relationship.
I wanted to spring up mid prayer and grab my sermon journal.
Because that one line....it was a thorough teaching on growth.
A lesson I struggle to grasp.
And that prayer...straight from the Spirit...barreling past my husband's lips - it was a prayer for me that I didn't even know I needed.
(A picture of the Spirit doing the Spirit's job, indeed.)
While it's true that having a deep relationship with the Lord brings about much fruit, social justice, sound teachings, and good works....
dare I say that most times....
those things shouldn't be the reason we pursue Him?
They are a result of pursuing Him. They are not the sole purpose.
The purpose of prayer, reading, studying, fellowship, fasting, etc.....is to know Him more. To be made more like Him. To bask in His presence and become new there.
And certainly the result - is that goodness spills out in every way.
Those of us who learn as teachers.....those of us who feel like we need to regurgitate everything we soak in - those of us who study out of wanting something to put out.....
.....this prayer is for us.
We should want relationship with Him - for relationship....not just reciprocation.
We should want Him....for Him.
Because when we get the Lord - we get all kinds of love to carry out.
Really, we are beings that have to hear from Him....just to go about the day. To go about it good, anyway.
To crave time with the Lord alone - means that we know...we understand....we see - that nuggets and truths and wisdom and a soaking from Him are what our souls need. Not tidbits to share on a blog, or chapters to put in a book, or points for a sermon, or jabs for a debate, or intelligent quips for a discussion.
Some of those things will come as a result - but they shouldn't be the motivation.
Those things may flow naturally out of solid time with Him - but they shouldn't be the reason we seek Him at all.
The reason we seek Him should be that we can't not seek Him and carry on content and able.
All of that being said...I shouldn't leave this post without mentioning Matthew 10:27.
'What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops.'
Ah, yes. We are called to speak, teach, write - what He speaks, teaches, and writes to us. Being watchful the whole time - to not fall into Joseph's way (Genesis 37) of sharing revelations that were really only meant for us....careful to not fall into Simon's way (Acts 8:9-24...do read it!) of desiring the power of the Holy Spirit - simply so that we can amaze crowds.
Perhaps this was only for me.
But if it wasn't - if you find yourself caught up in seeking Him yourself....simply to sale Him to others....
know that there's a glow that comes from simply growing in God.
And that glow will illuminate your heart - and the other hearts that you're called to bless.