3:30am – Monday March 18th, 2012
Well it finally happened… it’s 3:30am and I can’t escape the voice of God. I knew it would happen, because I kept asking for it. And when you want what God wants, namely glory for His name’s sake, and you ask for it, He will give you the desires of your heart.
“God what’s all this seeking you in the morning stuff about? Can you help me do that?”
Should have kept my big mouth shut.
But all joking aside, I am so thankful that I am not sleeping right now, and that I am not cursed but blessed… in the most afflicted way… a blessing I can’t escape.
And technically it wasn’t God who woke me up, that was my daughter, but it was definitely God who has kept me wide-eyed awake for the last 2 hours until I finally said,
“Ok I’m getting out of bed.”
Or was that my bladder, that just needed to be emptied?
But now that it is empty, and I still can’t sleep, is that finally God?
Or is it just the fact that once you have been rolling around awake for 2 hours and it’s cold in the house because the furnace has been timed to be off in the middle of the night and then my son cried and needed comfort so I had to sit with him for a few minutes and….
We could do this all night couldn’t we?
And maybe that is the point I am trying to make. We can keep saying…
God is this you?
Nope, just my daughter.
God is this you?
Nope, just my bladder.
God is this you?
Nope, just a cold house.
God is this you?
Nope, just my son.
And we live our lives like God just doesn’t care. Like He doesn’t do anything and it’s all just atoms and molecules. That everything happens by chance.
And like Samuel we keep going into Eli’s room thinking that it must be something NATURAL…
And like Balaam we keep bonking our donkey on the head trying to get it go the other way…
Finally Eli says…
“Samuel, leave me alone! I am trying to sleep! Maybe God is talking to you, so when you hear the call, stop explaining everything away as natural…. because when you just keep explaining away EVERYTHING all you are left with is NOTHING! So when you hear the voice, even though it sounds like me, just answer ‘Yes Lord, here I am’… so that, for the love of God, I can finally sleep!” (ok maybe some of that was CS Lewis and not Eli… you caught me)
But back to the point, was that just a grouchy old man who wants to sleep?
Or was that a wise old man who realized something that Samuel couldn’t?
Well let’s look at scripture:
Then Eli realized that the Lord was calling the boy. – 1 Samuel 3:8b
Ok then we get back into chicken and egg discussion, did Eli know it was God because He was such a good person? Or did God reveal to Eli that He was trying to speak to Samuel?
And we go back and forth, chicken or egg, literal 6-day creation or deistic-evolution, multiple universes of random free choice or one plan and pre-destination, choosers or chosen, Calvin or Arminius…
Finally the donkey speaks.
And that’s not even the point. Talking donkey’s are not the point. We have to go farther up and further in. And I am in no way implying that there is a connection between Puzzle from Lewis’s the Last Battle and Balaam’s Donkey. But if God can use a donkey he can use CS Lewis, or Mumford and Sons. And the point is not even that God can use a beast, or a mason, or a band that swears, or even that Aslan can pardon a fictional donkey.
I hope by now (If I am doing my job, and God is doing His) that you are screaming…
Then what Richard? What is the point? Why are you writing this at now 4:20 in the morning!
And now that you are fired up I can scream back at you and hopefully it will hit your heart!
ASLAN IS ON THE MOVE!!!!!!!
Who cares about Eli and Samuel and Balaam and a Donkey and Puzzle and CS Lewis?
GOD IS SPEAKING!!!!!
And that my dear friends… is the point.
It doesn’t make a difference whether Samuel and Eli figured it out on the 1st, 2nd or 3rd try, or if Balaam, figured it out on the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd time the donkey acted weird. The point is…
GOD IS TRYING TO GET OUR ATTENTION!!!!!
And when God is trying to get your attention, one thing I know, HE will. Either in this life or the next, He will get your attention, and then you will be THANKFUL that HE did.
Or maybe you won’t. Jesus gave us one picture of a person in the next life in Luke 16, and if there was one thing that person was not, it was thankful. Ungrateful just about describes him. Ungrateful… hmmmm… I have heard that word a few times in the Bible. Sounds like Numbers 21:4 territory to me.
But again, I really don’t think the ungratefulness is even the point. I think Jesus told us what the point of Numbers 21:4 is…
Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up – John 3:14
The point was not to punish us, but to give us a chance for Salvation. And that’s how you read the Bible! You look for Christ on EVERY page! And He is there! And how do I know that?
In the beginning was the WORD.
And that is the point.
For the love of God and for the love of his people and for the love of the lost, knowing Jesus is the point.
Aslan is on the move, let’s go join his army, because I know the end of the story, and I want to be on the winning side.
Join me, I promise you, this adventure is better than any video game I have ever played, and for those who know me, you know that means something. And of course it does… because everything means something.
And now I’m tired… and I’m thankful for that, because hopefully I can sleep now. And if I can’t, then I will be thankful for that, because that means I get to see more of Christ tonight… Praise God.
One last thought… and if this isn’t the point of the Bible, someone help me please.
God gave himself (we could stop there couldn’t we)…
God gave himself one job in this world:
God gave you and me one job in this world:
And that is what Romans 12:1 means.