February's Mid-Month Moment
Today I read something that brought back a memory of when I was 14 or 15. My parents bought a lot in our small prairie town, moved in an old house, basically gutted it (except for two joining rooms with a beautiful pristine wooden staircase in the center), and built a house from there for a family of eight. Most of the spring, summer, and fall for my older sister and I were spent bringing into fruition my dad's plan. (He had taken a blueprint course by correspondence just so he could draw up his own plans correctly--he was, and still is, amazing.) Pretty much every school day we'd drop off our books, walk to the new lot, and ask the same two questions, "What are you doing, Dad?" and "What do you want me/us to do?"
This memory came as a result of reading these words in Paul E. Miller's book, A Praying Life,: "When Jesus tells us to become like little children, he isn't telling us to do anything he isn't already doing. Jesus is, without question, the most dependent human being who ever lived. Because he can't do life on his own, he prays. And he prays. And he prays."
Here are the Scripture verses that corroborate Miller's thoughts:
John 5:19. " Jesus gave them this answer: “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does."
John 8:28. "...I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me."
John 12:49. "For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken."
To the Western mindset, dependency goes against everything we believe in. Right from a young age, we are taught independence - to stop being children. To grow up! But that's not how Jesus lived. (Funny, even as I write this, I want to argue for independence.) Jesus gave up His heavenly home to take on our human form. He had to depend on His Father. Jesus knew humanity's independent spirit. That's why on more than one occasion He calls us to be like children. In Mark 10: 14,15 He says:
“Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 15 Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”
Dependency. Jesus calls us to dependency. Jesus calls us to follow His example. He calls us to pray. And to pray. And to pray. He calls us to ask two questions of our heavenly Father, like a child:
1. What are you doing, Dad?
2. What do you want me to do?
Are you seeking to know what God wants for you? In prayer? Maybe, just maybe, He wants to teach you (and definitely me) to depend on Him more. To understand prayer more. From Jesus' example, I know He wants us to look around--to pay attention--to see what He is doing. And in that, He wants us to ask Him in complete dependency, "Okay, so in what You're doing, God, what do you want me to do? How do you want me to be involved? How can I help build Your house, LORD God?"
How good that sounds on paper - how difficult to bring to fruition on a daily basis.
My prayer for us this week is that we will learn dependency. That in some small way we will learn to run to God in prayer. And even if it is only in one small way, may we not be discouraged. God sees that one small way. And like the good Father that He is, He smiles back, delights in us and sings over us, His children. (Zeph. 3:17)
Learning to depend,
Feb 7, 2018
Mid-Month Moments are past devotionals written by Connie Inglis that she shared each week when she was InScribe's spiritual advisor. (Originally called 'Mid-Week Moments') They are shared from her archives, with permission, in the middle of each month.