I am writing this on Thanksgiving Night. I am perfectly lonely (as John Mayer sang). My sons got a holiday gig and my ‘biologicals’ are at odds with me right now, over an exorbitant amount of money, so I don’t exactly crave their association. My ex-husband stopped by before the boys headed out and wished us all a happy holiday. And I have been at joyful rest ALL DAY. It has been a wonderfully quiet holiday.
I have not taken much thought to what I need to be thankful for. I am a notorious celebrator of Thanksgiving whenever the mood strikes me. It just so happens that today, I am thankful for all the things I do not know, that God is already working out for my good. Things I have already had a hand in without knowing the details. How, you ask? In ways that every child of God can play a part, with, “plausible deniability.”
I am grateful for a God who knows me well enough to involve me in my own deliverance and provision without actually involving me…too much.
We are all given a couple of magnificent gifts when we accept Jesus as Lord of our lives. These are gifts many of us take advantage of, without realizing scope of their benefits.
There is a passage in Romans 8 that talks about how the things we suffer here on earth are nothing compared to the glory that will be revealed in us. It says that we, much like all of creation, yearn and groan for these things in ways that we cannot even utter. You’ve made those groanings…I’ve made them, too…in situations and circumstances too overwhelming for words. Sometimes, it seemed that everything was going great, but somewhere on the inside of you, you just felt this yearning…this aching that you could not explain. Like a belly ache that hurt all the way down to your soul. Did it ever occur to you that in that instance, you were praying on behalf of things you could not understand?
Let’s take it one step further. It has been said that praying in an unknown language is like talking in code to God. Praying in tongues, as the Spirit of God gives utterance, is like praying in a language that neither you, nor the enemy of our souls can understand. And yet, there are times when there is a sense of urgency attached to those prayers that can make one feel like this is something that I must do RIGHT NOW.
It’s actually a good thing that we don’t know what it is that we are praying for sometimes. It’s also good to experience that ‘groaning’ without understanding exactly what it is we are groaning about. This is one of those instances where God, being all knowing, and us NOT knowing is the best thing in the world that can happen.
Often, God wants us to pray a specific prayer, knowing what we need and He knows that the need must come expressly from us; otherwise it would be in violation of His own divine order. This is exactly why He gave us the gift of the Holy Spirit, not just as a comforter but an intercessor. When we pray in an unknown language, it enables us to pray the specific will of God without being party to what that might be.
Why? Because, what God has for us is sometimes so much bigger than we can comprehend. If we saw what He wants to do in us and through us from our limited perspective, we would be the first ones to opt out. “His thoughts are higher than ours.” We know that what God wants for us is best, but sometimes what we need to get through the day will deter us from going for His best and just settle for what would comfort us right now.
I have had to deal with that…especially right now in my current state of affairs. I am in a really good place. But this is NOT the place I would have chosen for myself. While I can clearly see where God is taking me, I would have picked a completely different path to get from Point A to Point B, if given the choice. God, knowing that about me has enabled me to pray for His perfect will in ways that I could not understand, with joy and fervency, just to keep myself from monkeying up the program.
And so, I will pray in the spirit. I will also pray with understanding (1 Corinthians 14). I will cry out with groaning that cannot be uttered. I will also cry out to God in my pain and despair for answers that I may not get in this life. I have learned to accept that this is just the way it is.
God knows our whole hearts, and He has given us a part to play in the construction of our future. As far as it goes with the details…sometimes it’s just better not to know