This morning I read a young missionary’s story that ended with this prayer:
“So my prayer is that you have the eyes to see the new thing that God is doing and the courage to take a step. And then maybe a couple more.”
Be alert, be present. I’m about to do something brand new. It’s bursting out! Don’t you see it? (Isaiah 43:18, MSG)
As I continually work Step Eleven, seeking in prayer and meditation to improve my conscious contact with God, praying for knowledge of His will for me and the power to carry it out, I hope for this very thing: that I might not miss it.
The urgency of this translation reminds me of the times when I was a kid and, playing catch with my dad, I would sometimes get distracted. My own son, who has A.D.D., calls this “A.D.O.S. – Attention Deficit … Ooooh, Shiny!” My dad would say to me, “Son, pay attention. Here it comes!” Occasionally, the distraction would come near the same time as the ball, which would then hit me instead of my glove. I knew I was playing catch! So why didn’t I keep my eye on the ball? In the mornings when I spend time in prayer and meditation, seeking God’s will for me, I often do the same thing. I take my eye off the ball. Sometimes, I confess, I even get disappointed when God’s will for me doesn’t come immediately in my quiet time, or I don’t get that sense of connection that sometimes draws tears it’s so beautiful. So I get up and go about the duties and responsibilities of the day, convinced that buying groceries, paying bills, doing laundry and going to work are all He’s got for me that day. Then something wonderful happens! It bursts forth like a new spring in my face, and I am caught by the suddenness of it.
I have spent the last several days completely distracted in the busywork of the mundane, necessary tasks of life, and I have allowed a few disappointments to turn my head away from the new things God is doing. Even when I participated in a couple, I missed the joy of it, and sort of just let them bounce off me and fall. I don’t want to be a recess zombie, missing the game for my deep stare into space, and I don’t want to be the one playing with crickets in the outfield when the long high pop-up comes my way.
Dear Father, today, keep me in the game. Give me eyes of faith to faithfully anticipate Your next thing, and to be ready with a heart of eager submission that capitalizes the opportunity to do Your will and not just grudgingly comply. Give me the power and courage to carry out Your will when it is revealed to me. Help me, Lord Jesus! I want to do Your will, not mine.