Being real with God. It just makes sense. He can read every thought and knows every emotion. He created our beings and knows the inner workings of our heart, mind and soul. He knows we are finite and He is infinite, yet why do we feel like we have got to have all the right theological answers and responses when calamity comes our way?
Over the last year I've been faced with two major trials in my life. God has been revealing to me more and more that I need to break down all the barriers and come to Him broken and without answers. It's okay to be really real! I'm allowed to ask hard questions and be frustrated and confused by the answer or lack of answers. In fact, I am supposed to be. The last year has taken a lot of my theology and tested it and broken it (see previous entry Broken Theology). I've experienced a lot of pain and heartache and for sometime I thought I needed to have it all together. I wanted to understand everything biblically and accurately. I was encouraged and even positively reinforced to have a positive attitude and look on the bright side of the things. People from all over praised me for my amazing faith during my struggle. Although these are all good things, it was making me push past the true pain and hurt that I felt, as I was looking for wise spiritual answers. I began to think that if I were to expose the intense pain I was experiencing, that I would be failing God and those around me. Even if my prayer times, I felt it wrong to be angry or upset at God. I wanted to hold on to his sovereignty and just accept it as truth.. I feel like only recently I have discovered how to just come to him broken and desperate. I feel like for the first time I'm being really real with God.
I heard a sermon recently about the difference between wrestling with God and wrestling against God. He said wrestling with God is coming to him out pain and grief and fighting it out but all the while clinging to him through it and never letting go. Wrestling against God is when you give up, get angry at God and walk away from Him. I think we can see the best picture of wrestling with God in Job. Job definitely wrestles with God. While his friends are trying to spiritually explain the reasons of his suffering through the lenses of their theology, Job goes to God with his questions and frustrations. He says things to God, that I would be fearful to say, but God is so gracious. Throughout all the words that Job spoke to God through his anguish, God never counts them as sinful. God praises him for his earnest desire to be before Him and come to Him with his suffering. I think God expects us to come running to him during a time of suffering, but not necessarily to just praise Him and repeat scriptures back to him, but to express our anguish and sorrow in a REAL way.
As for me, I've been wrestling with God a bit lately. My prayers times are intense, emotional and sweet all at the same time. I have been nervous to even utter some of the thoughts I've been keeping inside for months, until I realize God knew the very moment it crept up and has been waiting for me to bring it before him. Why do I try to be spiritual before a holy God who knows the deepest part of my heart and understands me infinitely better than I do? As I have begun to get real, I can feel his love engulfing me more than ever and in return I want nothing more than to cling to Him. I think this is when true healing can begin.