There is one thing in life that I am absolutely sure of. Okay, there’s probably more, but this one’s like, really, really important.
We need friends.
We need friends who who make us laugh; who we can dance with. Friends that we go to the movies with and splurge on milkshakes and coffee. But we also desperately need friends who challenge us. Friends who will listen and commiserate, but will help us stand back up and walk forward.
Friends who will as us, “Have you asked Jesus about it?”
I have this, and I don’t take it for granted. It stops me in my tracks every time. The thing is, on the outside, my life is constantly about Jesus. Our church is our family, and we love serving. I write blogs about how we can get closer to Jesus. I talk about Him a lot.
And sometimes that’s the problem. I talk about Him.
Getting words out of me is literally how God made me. I talk about how I’m feeling and why I must be feeling that way. I process out what God says about it and why He must be allowing this to happen in my life. I talk about what He maybe thinks I should do.
And yet every time, as I word vomit all of the feelings and thoughts and questions, my person listens, and then asks me, “Well, have you asked Jesus?” And I realize that more often than not, the answer is no.
I sure feel like I have. God’s been in my conversation a lot. Doesn’t that count?
And don’t get me wrong, that piece of the process is valuable. Talking with my people about how I feel and how God may feel is important. But I’ve grown tired of assuming what God thinks.
The truth is that God is active, alive, and ever-present. Most of us want more than anything to just do the right thing. We want to make the right decision, and follow God where He’s leading. But be honest: Have you actually asked Him?
Here’s what I think we need to hear:
“Trust in the Lord completely, and do not rely on your own opinions. With all your heart rely on Him to guide you, and He will lead you in every decision you make. Become intimate with Him in whatever you do, and He will lead you wherever you go.”
[Proverbs 3:5-6 TPT]
Did you catch it?
Don’t rely on what you think you know. Don’t hang onto your friends’ advice. Intimacy comes from vulnerability and communication. It comes from true relationship. You can’t know the voice of someone you simply talk to others about. Relationships are intended to grow deeper, not to be static. Our relationship with Jesus is not only meant to be based on what He’s already done. He’s past, present, and future. He has more for us than just what He’s proven Himself to be in our past.
I don’t want to get stuck. I don’t want to focus so much on who God used to be to me that I miss how He’s guiding me right now. It’s constant. It’s fluid. It’s flexible. It’s not about making the right decision or choosing the right path. It’s about walking with Him wherever the path leads.
I don’t want to just give off the vibe that I know God. I don’t want to simply make others feel like I’m close to Him.
My prayer is that what I would be known for is that I’ve been with Jesus. So that even if I’m not sure what to do or the right thing to say, I’m not worried because He’s leading me. That as I talk about Him with others, it’s been clear that I’ve already talked to Him. God gave us people to walk with us, but we’ve got to be careful not to idolize their support or advice.
So, I didn’t really mean what I said. Let’s talk about God, but let’s talk to Him first. He’s listening.
“But praises rise to God, for He paid attention to my prayer and answered my cry to Him! I will forever praise this God who didn’t close His heart when I prayed and never said no when I asked for help. He never once refused to show me His tender love.” [Psalm 66:19-20]