"If you don't see the real me, you won't see what love has won..." Vota

Monday, December 6, 2010

I carry no tunes in my bucket only a salty mess!

I have come to a conclusion-- a semi-painful one at that. Well first, have you ever noticed that most people in ministry positions are multi-talented. You know I have never met a minister in about any capacity who cannot sing, play the guitar or quote scripture from memory like it it was the easiest thing to do? My conclusion is a little bit difficult. I can't sing. Um... nope not even a little. Don't play an instrument-- well not in like 20 years at least, I used to be pretty good at the clarinet and base clarinet... And I cannot quote scripture. I can remember snippets of what I have read, and generally can sum up what I remember, but I usually feel pretty foolish for I can't find it, remember where I've read it nor remember it closely enough to look it up in a concordance or on biblegateway.com.

On my way home from Birmingham I prayed so deeply for a gift I can use to bless God. You know a beautiful singing voice, the ability to write music and a new song, a poem, a talent He can enjoy... something. You know I sang at the top of my lungs to my new Travis Cotrell CD on the way home and I think my voice only got worse. If this isn't a painful answer to prayer wait till you hear the answer I got. Of course as I worshiped with my singing, as bad as is is, I truly praised God. I found myself in the midst of worship with tears streaming down my face (as is so common for me-- and is the whole reason I NEVER wear mascara to any function I expect to meet Jesus, which is pretty much everywhere. Funny enough on the off occasion I do wear it, Jesus finds me anyhow and of course my mascara runs down my face.)

This being said here is what God showed me in this instance and flat out told me. It seemed very weird to me as He said it and I am sure it will be even weirder to you for you did not hear Him say it and at least have that to cling to... He told me the way I blessed Him and my gift to Him were my tears. What? Any old baby can cry I thought. But He pointed out that my tears ran from my heart. My tears were how my soul worshiped Him. He has collected my tears in His hands for years and has cherished them. Mostly in the past my tears were kept very private, but the more I desire Jesus the more freely and unashamedly my tears flow. Now I do still try to hide them at say... staff meeting, but some of my co-workers are catching on. I try to conceal them in worship service at church, but I have a very hard time coming up with different ways to "scratch my eyes" or "fix my hair". I have even taken to chew gum and bite my tongue (believe it or not the pain helps to change the course of my emotions.)

You know what, in doing this I have been burying my talents so to speak. I have been holding back my arrows (2 Kings 13:18). I found myself thinking about this and traveling back to Deeper Still and our Saturday morning session with Priscilla Shirer. She was telling the story of how right before Elisha's death the king came terrified of how he was going to make it without the prophet there with Him. Elisha was demonstrating that as long as the king would take what little He had and had full faith, that God would fill the gaps and make him more than victorious that he would be successful in his battle against the Arameans. The king sort of used what little he had, but he saved back part of it for just in case. In return, God would only fill part of the gap. He would be victorious for the three arrows he shot into the ground. He gave three and so he would get three victories from God. Elisha pointed out that had he given more or maybe even all he had, he would have gotten more or all in return from God.

So, as I hold back the tears that fall from a heart filled with love for Jesus and ALL of His people (or animals, or the world's injustices and Satan's offenses...) as I hold these back from fear of what others will think or fear of what will happen to my make-up or fear of being exposed as a weirdo (which I am-- even my sister thinks so, but I have great scripture to share in the future on why this is a GREAT thing...) I am holding back what God gave to me to use for Him. A heart of love. I once had a friend tell me that tears come often when you love people. I mean true love-- not the "I love people" kind of resume bologna. Here is a bit of an email my old high school friend DeWayne Howard sent me: "Remember that when we love others, we make ourselves vulnerable..."

I have little to offer but a salty response to a love I feel. So I plan to give Him all I have. I expect that the Holy Spirit will fill the gaps and sing my desperately longed for song to God for me. So as my friends, please cheer me on as I use what little I have to offer without fear of it being too little or ineffective in bringing glory to God.

I plan to remember this as I step into whatever plan God is making for me that I feel otherwise inadequate to be successful in glorifying Him. I trust that He will fill the gaps as I take the baby step I know how to take, and I will know full well He will carry me (or throw me) the rest of the way. Either way, painful or not, I will get there and will bring glory to God for my obedience and full surrender of all of my with-holdings. "Not a hoof will be left behind, Exodus 10:26".

I can't wait to tell you what I learned about that scripture!

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