It's like I'm standing in the rain and you offer me a raincoat
But I would rather stand there wringing wet than take the handout.
What's wrong with me? You said you've always got your hands out
And I cannot continue on my own so take my hands now.
I give you everything, God, not just a little bit.
Take it from me, I am nothing but a hypocrite.
I hate sin, but I built a house and I still live in it
Afraid to open up the door to you and let you into it.
My soul is lost and what it needs is your direction
I know, I've told you I do not need your protection
but I lied to you. This thing is tiring
A man was not created for it.
God, please retire me now.
This prayer comes from the song "I'll Keep on" by NF, and for me, it couldn't be more true. There is never any end to the events, there is never any end to the schedules. There are always commitments. Favours. Chores. So, when I get a spare moment, I lie to myself and convince myself that all I need is food, Netflix, and sleep. I close my door, and tune out the craziness of life that surrounds me every waking moment of every day.
So I curl up on my bed, sigh with exhaustion, and try to think about nothing. And He is always standing there, watching me get drenched in the downpour of responsibilities, holding out a raincoat. And what do I tell Him? "Not now, God... I am in the middle of my five minutes of relaxation. Don't bother me with that raincoat now- I need to rest and recover before the next thing."
So I lie back down, cover myself in a blanket, and rest. While the rain continues to pour. And I'm shivering, trembling, freezing, numb, and soaked. But I'm resting. I'm lying there, trying to get a bit of shuteye before I have to go back to work, or school, or wherever else, and the rain is still coming down in buckets.
And He stands there offering me an umbrella. And what do I say to Him? "I don't have time, God. I have to be at work in 30 minutes. What I need right now is to just lie here and forget about everything for just a second." So I roll over, shut my eyes, and try not to drown in the flood that's filling my room and filling my bed.
And He is there, right beside me, holding out his hand to pull me into his boat. But no, little blue, shaky, waterlogged, sick me folds her arms and says, "God, I want to watch another episode. I never get time to myself. I'm always busy- just let me have a little bit of time to veg out and watch my show." So I stare at my phone and enjoy my little moment of peace, even though I can't breathe anymore.
And suddenly, I'm drowning. And I know I'm drowning because I start praying angry prayers. "God, where are you?" "God, do you even care?" "God, why can't I ever stay close to you?"
And then, every single time, He's my lifeguard. Coughing and sputtering and barely breathing, He pulls me out from the waves. He resuscitates me with His breath of life. He revives me with His Spirit. He renews me with His promises. He comforts me with His hope of salvation. And the tender strength of His infallible embrace makes me ask myself... Why didn't I just put on the raincoat?
The devil is really good at convincing me that spending time with God will be tiring. The devil is a genius when he tells me that doing absolutely nothing will make me feel better. I listen to him all the time. And therefore, I am mentally fatigued... all the time. But when I finally see my Bible sitting at the edge of my bed after a week of neglect and I am wracked with guilt, and when I finally pick it up to read even a few verses while my eyes are drooping... the rain lets up. Every precious second I spend with God keeps the stress at bay. With every burden that I mention to Him, He dries me off and warms me up.
It shouldn't have to come to the point of drowning for me to finally realize that I need Jesus. I'm learning that as soon as the skies start to drizzle, the raincoat is in my best interest. I need to start taking full advantage of what God offers me... Because what He offers is to MY full advantage. Talking to God right then and there, opening up my Bible and catching a glimpse of His perspective... that's where He lifts my Spirits.
Philippians 4:6-7 - Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.