“I don’t want to get out of bed,” I grumbled, as the birds chirped loudly outside my bedroom window. I rolled over with a loud groan, pulling the covers over my head.
“It’s time to get out of bed. It’s a new day,” said the voice I am so accustomed to hearing every morning.
I smiled under my covers. I could never escape his voice, even as hard as I try.
“Well, too bad. It’s not going to happen,” I joked.
“Katie, you know you’re going to get out of bed eventually. So why not just do it now?” he responded, laughing at my attempts of fighting him, because we both know he would win in my stubbornness.
“Okay, okay…I’m getting up,” I said, throwing the covers off of me. I sat up, putting my feet on the floor and wiggled my toes into the carpet. “But,” I said, stretching, “I will get out of bed just for you. Today better be a great day, ya know, if you’re forcing me to get out of bed! I was enjoying a great dream!”
“Of course it’s going to be a great day!” he exclaimed, acting as if I should know better, “I created it! I made it for you to enjoy!” I could picture Him sweeping His hand across the span of creation, showing it off to me, getting excited because He wanted to see if I would get excited, too. It reminded me of a child who did something for his parents in art class and wanted to show off his creation to his Mom and Dad. I could sense His excitement and His desire to show off the day to me, just like the kid in art class. He seemed so energetic over something I take for granted on a regular basis.
“God, can I ask You a question?” I said, with bold confidence, knowing He wouldn’t strike me down with lightening just because I was wondering.
“Katie, why ask when you already know my answer?” He replied, and I heard a smile in His voice.
“Why get so excited for the day?” I peeked out of the blinds to see what the weather was like and it was disappointing. “It’s raining for crying out loud, God! Why get so excited for something so horrible?” (I was being a bit over-dramatic…..)
“Because there’s purpose for the rain for other people. I’m blessing others in order for them to see the fruits. There may be a farm out somewhere needing the rain. There’s purpose. There’s hope after troubles, and there’s hope for people after the rain. There’s purpose in everything I do. I am an intentional God. Why look at the negatives when there are so many positives in the rain, in the troubles? Now, why aren’t you excited?”
“Because I just want the sunshine,” I muttered under my breath, as I grabbed my hoody from my dresser and put it on. “And it’s cold,” I said, with feigned snappiness, as I walked around my room getting ready for the day. Personally, I like the rain. But I wasn’t going to admit that to God (even though He knew).
“So, let me get this straight. You would rather be in your bed, and be complacent, instead of going forward and experiencing the plans I have for you today?”
“If it means I can sleep, then yes!” I said joking, but felt a little bit uneasy because I knew what He said was true.
“Why miss out?” He whispered, and I stopped dead in my tracks. I know when God’s voice becomes nothing but a whisper, He means business and He’s about to deliver a live-changing message to me.
“God, I’m trying,” as I picked up a coffee mug from my dresser about to fill it up with some tea. “I’m just getting tired of trying all the time and getting nowhere. You know I’m a fighter. I’ve been a fighter my whole life. But now, I’m tired and I just want to give up.”
“You know why, okay? Why ask me when You already know the answer?” I retorted.
“Yes, I do know. However it’s not for Me to know, but for you to examine why you feel like this. And maybe I just want to talk to you.”
“You sound like a counselor….”I grumbled.
“Well, they don’t call me Counselor for no reason. Now, tell Me. Why give up?”
“Because it’s hard to keep going,” I said, my voice cracking with emotion.
“Katie,” He said gently, “When you give up, you miss out. When you give up, you lose. It’s only when you keep going, you will win. Because you have Me fighting your battles.”
“Then why is it so hard if you’re fighting for me? I would think if you were fighting my battles, it’d be much easier.”
“’If’ I’m fighting your battles? Let me make something clear: I AM fighting your battles. There’s no ‘if’ to it. Life can be difficult. There’s going to be problems. But the reason why it’s very difficult for you is because you aren’t letting Me fight. You’re fighting all on your own.”
“I know, God. I’ve just been hurting lately. I just don’t want to get out and do things, because I’m exhausted. Emotionally, physically, and even spiritually. I love you so much, God, and I don’t know why I’m not surrendering this area to You. I surrender so much to You, but for some reason, this is a real struggle.”
“Oh, I know why it’s a real struggle with you,” he said affectionately. “ I know you would gladly die for Me; I know when I ask you to do something, you will do it joyfully. You would do anything to please Me and I see your heart. But…you are human and there are still things in your life you don’t want to give up on. You would rather be in control and would rather trust in yourself than in Me.”
“Ouch,” I said, a bit embarrassed, “But…” I paused, “…you are right….” I said weakly.
“And,” God continued, “The reason you want to stay in bed is because you would rather take control of the day on your own and not have to ‘deal’ with hurts from others. You’d rather be complacent. So it’s not even about being too tired to get out of bed. You stay in bed and you remain in hiding because you don’t want to deal. When you stay in hiding, you don’t see what I have planned for you. You miss out. You think that if you stay in hiding, I will bring my plans to you. And yes, I can, but what if I have appointed you to be someplace else (not in darkness) on this certain day and you decide to stay in hiding? I’m not going to change my plans to please you. When I call you to move out, I mean, ‘MOVE OUT!’ Don’t remain. Get up. Get going because there is purpose beyond the rain, beyond the pain. You will never see a rainbow until you get out to see it. You will never see the rainbow when you’re inside, because it’s outside. I have called you to walk in the light, I have brought you out of the darkness. Why stay in it any longer? And the reason you don’t experience my plans for you during the day is because you don’t ask. If you just looked, opened up your eyes, and ask Me to show you, you will see all the surprises I have for you. But you get too distracted during the day and you miss out. Don’t live a life of complacency, but live a life of expectancy.”
Silence. God dumbfounded me. For the first time in a while, God left my breathless, with no words and no thoughts. I knew He was right.
“God,” I sighed, “I’m so sorry. I’m sorry for living a life of complacency. I want to give my all to You and I realize when I don’t give my all to You, I enter the door of complacency and it overflows to my daily life. I want to change. I need to change. Forgive me for not giving You my whole life and for holding onto things. I will no longer stay in darkness and be complacent, but I will fight for You.”
“I created this day for you. I forgive you. Remember that I am your strength in your complacency. When you’re weak, I am strong and I give you the strength. You’re not alone in this for I am with you. Wanna come out and take a walk with Me and see what I have for you today? Let’s journey on this thing called life together?”
“I would love to!” I said, with a huge smile on my face, as I left my bedroom and walked outside.
Behind the Scenes:
I wrote this after reading a Scripture that really spoke to me. It’s found in Acts and it was when Peter and John continued to proclaim the name of Jesus. They became successful with their ministry and led many people to Christ. Even Peter’s shadow was healing people! Unfortunately, the Sadducees (the people who didn’t believe in resurrection…so were totally against Jesus since He did resurrect from the dead) and the high priest became irate and arrested the apostles. They pretty much told them, “Well, I told you NOT to talk about Jesus so if you’re going to continue, we WILL arrest you.” But, they kept fighting, saying, “We need to obey God and not you.” What caught my attention was that they fought, even through the battles. They weren’t complacent. They didn’t’ stay in “bed” but chose to go forth and still do ministry, even if there were troubles. The conversation that you just read wasn’t just a one-time thing. It was tid-bits of conversations that I had with God. So they all happened, but over the span of a few weeks. It wasn’t until I read this passage that I felt led to write up a blog about it.