“Heeeeeeelp!”

“Mama, heeeeeeeeeelp!”

My reaction? Depends on the tone of voice. Parents know. Some cries, you come running. Others, you calmly stroll, because perhaps your little one can resolve his problem by the time you get there. And yet even others – you roll your eyes. Maybe even stop to take a picture! The predicaments that kid gets into! He’s too quick to ask for help – he could totally handle it himself. Or couldn’t he just have the better judgment not to get into that mess in the first place?

And then, as what often happens, the parenting predicament causes my mind to flash to my father. My heavenly Father.

How quick am I to yell, “Abba, heeeeeeelp!” Probably not quick enough.

What do you suppose his reaction is? Quick to run? Waiting for me to solve it on my own? Rolling his eyes? Sighing because I landed myself in trouble…. AGAIN.

The book of Jonah has come up in various ways in my life this summer. And I think of it again. It really cracks me up that Jonah – after being called as a prophet to go to Ninevah – basically whined to God, telling him he didn’t want to go, because he KNEW God was gracious and compassionate, and there was NO WAY ON EARTH Jonah wanted to see God relent and not give Ninevah the big shove-off they deserved. So he ran.

Do I run? Do I whine? (Ha!)

And when I run, do I run TO God, or FROM him?

And when I whine, do I stop and listen for the gentle rebuke, or do I pridefully ignore him, not wanting my Father’s help, even though I desperately need it.

Praise be to God! Who as my Father, graciously gives me all good things. Who listens to my cries for help, and does not turn a deaf ear (or roll his eyes) but helps and disciplines me with patience.

He is God my Helper.


Writing with the fantastic Five Minute Friday community, who spend 5 minutes writing once a week (when we can!) on a one-word prompt. This week’s prompt: “help.”

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dreaming…

Lately I have been sensing a call, a change in direction for my life. So I have been asking God a lot of questions, doing a lot of pondering, and attempting to listen best I can. Here are some of my ramblings, and then God’s answer to me, inspired by the Five Minute Friday prompt, “protect.”

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I try to sit in contentment, which is hard, because my heart is a dreamer, made for a longer journey – eyes on the final prize and never completely comfortable in a world that is not my home.

I love the Church. It is beautiful. God’s people are beautiful. And yet we are so broken. God’s kingdom is so much greater, his vision so much beyond what the church looks like in America in 2016. My dreams for it are so much bigger. So great that trying to make a chip in that iceberg seems like an effort in futility. Foolish. Not worth my time, money, energy. I am just one person, and the cynicism (wisdom?) of my 32 years has left some naivety (optimism?) of youth behind.

Can I dream again? Can my heart stay whole, knowing now that “chasing a dream” of obedience to God is right and good, though it may be hard, difficult, confusing, and still leaving me feeling incomplete in this world? Knowing I will still be broken, still dealing with anger, depression, jealousy, pride & selfishness, because I’m human and those things in me won’t completely die until I’m resurrected?

Can I rest in Christ and run his race at the same time?

He says to me,

I will protect you my child. I am your strong tower. You may run to me and be saved. I give you the shield of faith, to extinguish the flaming arrows of the enemy. I give you my Word, to be your weapon and sword. I give you the gospel of peace, which lets you rest in the middle of war. I have fitted you with what you need – my Spirit, a helper. I am your shepherd, so you have everything you need. You can run your race. The path will include some still waters. You can climb mountains, because I will make them low for you. I will straighten your path, not let your foot stumble. You will fly on eagle’s wings, just as I shelter you with mine. In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart – I have overcome the world.

Amen.

I pray you may know God’s protection as you let him fashion your dreams.