Thursday, November 19, 2009

Those Who Fear Him

"The LORD confides in those who fear him;
he makes his covenant known to them." Psalm 25:14

This verse came to me yesterday afternoon in a most unusual way. If you've been reading this blog for awhile, you may remember back in July I had an experience where God showed me what I should read in the Bible through the word "see". Well, yesterday's experience was along the same kind of lines. I was cooking dinner and enjoying a mug of chai. I was also back and forth at the computer to look up a few things, and of course the kids were around- they were upstairs watching TV, so I was back and forth a bit. At one point, I was looking something up online, and thinking about some "God thoughts" I was having, and I remembered my mug of chai. So I walked back to the kitchen to get the mug, and there, sitting on the rim of my mug was a sticker.

It was a very small sticker that read 2514- it actually is the sticker from Abigail's bike lock. She hasn't used that bike lock since the last day of third grade. The sticker... well, I have no idea where it's been hiding, but when we bought the lock, I took the sticker off and wrote the combination on our calendar so that we'd know what it is. Anyway, I picked the sticker off my mug, looked at it, and instantly knew that I needed to read Psalms 25:14. I read it a few times, and honestly, all I could think was "wow, this is big." I walked away from reading the verse, and pretty much have just been reciting it to myself ever since then. And last night, on the way home from dance class, I was thinking about this mysterious sticker and making myself laugh by thinking about the angel digging around in who-knows-where to find this specific sticker and stick it to my mug.

I just find it so incredibly fun and exciting when God speaks. Whether it's through a dream, a person, or some strange physical experience, God is always talking. In October we'd had our big church conference, and we stayed away from home for a few days. When we got back home, there on my porch was a lone blossom on my clematis plant. The plant that had already met it's fate with killing frost for the year. I saw that blossom and saw that even when it seems like there is nothing there to enjoy or salvage, there is always beauty. A few weeks ago, driving home from a Sunday night church service, the kids and I had to stop for deer twice. Andy followed behind us a few minutes later and had to stop for deer four times- and sometimes in places you don't expect deer- in cities and neighborhoods. Do you know what a deer is? It's provision. And it's not just provision- it's provision fit for royalty. For the Native Americans a deer was something they would gift to royalty. I saw that night that God would provide greatly for us, and that sometimes that provision would come in the unexpected.

But this verse yesterday is really something.

"The LORD confides in those who fear him;
he makes his covenant known to them"

As I thought about this verse last night, I wondered if I really fear God? I mean, lately, I've been so enraptured with His Goodness and His Mercy and His Provision, I've been getting to know the God who loves all His children. That God, the loving God, is the Daddy God, the one who wraps His arms around us and tells us everything will be all right. That got me thinking about my own earthly daddy, and then I got it. I think I do fear God. When I was young and growing up, the one thing I feared more than anything was getting Daddy mad at me- or making him disappointed in me. I always wanted Daddy's approval. Punishment always was painful because it cut right to the heart. The punishment may not have even been a physical one, but it hurt all the same, and I would feel ashamed of my mistakes. That fear of my Daddy I think helped keep me on a straighter and narrower path while I grew and learned from my mistakes.

But what about my Godly Daddy? Do I fear His punishment and His retribution? Oh yes. I really do think about that sometimes. I think about the day I stand before Him, and I so fear that He will look at me and shake his head and say "not good enough." I almost get tears just thinking about that-thinking about disappointing the One who calls me beloved. I also think about how He is the giver and taker of life, and at any moment, He could decide to call me home. Or could decide to call someone precious to me home. And He could do that, because He's God and He has the final say in everything. And I fear God because even though I have been drawing closer to Him, there is still that part of me that is afraid of more. The part of me that is afraid to totally let go, because what if He doesn't like what He finds there? What if He tells me things I don't really want to hear. I am so afraid of that sometimes, even though I know there is nothing to fear really.

So now that I've reconciled that yes, indeed, I do fear God. What about this verse.

"The LORD confides in those who fear him;
he makes his covenant known to them"

All I have to do is ask. All I have to do is wait on Him and spend time in His presence, and He will confide in me His plans for me. His plans for my family. He makes His covenant known to those who fear him. The Lord confides in them! He confides! He tells His secrets and shares the intimate details of what is to come, and what will be.

And yet there is that part of me that fears God so much that I don't know if I want to know.

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

And there it is. Plans to prosper and not harm me. Plans for hope and a future.

I still don't really know why I was led to this verse. I have to spend more time with it. Maybe look it up in other translations, and meditate on it to see what God is really trying to tell me. But I do know this. God wanted to talk to me, and so I will listen. I do want to know, and I can't wait to see what He has in store for us. I am so, so thankful that God does speak to me, and I am thankful for whatever it is He has to tell me. Who am I that He would notice me and speak to me?

"what is man that you are mindful of him,
the son of man that you care for him?" Psalm 8:4

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