Several months ago, we had our water heater decide to stop working. I thought that it was an extremely rude thing for it to do. It caught us all off-guard, as it had been slowly leaking for several days before its dramatic demise.
It ruined almost our entire home—and, because of that small water heater, we have had to vacate our home for six weeks while it is being repaired!
For the past several weeks, we have been living in an efficiency-type hotel room in a historic hotel (did I mention that we have to be out of our home for six weeks?!). My wife and I work from home, and our son is home-schooled, so we inhabit this place full-time.
It would be an understatement to say that, given what this year has already dished out, this has been the thing that has thrown us over the edge.
Needless to say, we are all creatures of habit, and additionally, we all seek to find some sort of normalcy—some rhythm, some routine, some homeostasis, amid all the chaos.
Mine has been to—between client appointments–go out to the hallway and take in the amazing panoramic views of the entire glass ceiling, sun, sky, clouds, plants, fresh air, as well as the open concept floor plans of the lobby below (we are on the top floor).
I, like a flower, thirsting for the sun’s rays throughout the day, have found a schedule of where to stand and enjoy as much sun as possible.
Curiously enough, I have noticed a large swath of sunlight across most portions of my hallway throughout the day—except for about three o’clock in the afternoon. At that specific time, for some boring scientific reason that I don’t understand and won’t try to explain, the sun is only exposed on one three-to-four foot section of the hallway (see photo). So I, like the obedient sun-seeker that I am, choose to stand in that one specific sunny spot so that I can soak up my tiny slice of sun.
“Hey, Get Your Own Slice!”
When I was growing up, my mom and dad would take my two brothers and me out to eat pizza donuts and go to the mall every Thursday. I can still smell the extra-large cheese “New York” style thin-crust pizza on our table on one of those metal pizza platform thingies (yes, that’s the actual name). My father would, of course, give my mother the first and largest steaming slice of cheesy heaven! Then he would serve himself, and then it was a free all. However, I always sat furthest away from the pizza, and, every week, without fail, I would always try to sneak a hunk of cheesy sauce from my brother’s plate. He would inevitably spear the tender part between my thumb and forefinger with his fork (I swear, he must have brought his own specially sharpened fork—that sadist!). While stabbing me, he would loudly and sharply chastise me with a prideful smirk upon his pimpled puss: “Hey! Get your own slice!”
Physically and mentally, this is a healthy and wholesome practice—finding a daily schedule in the day’s chaos to get sunlight and fresh air, but it’s more than that. So much more! You see, this practice proves a powerful and healing spiritual principle, and that is that in all the messiness and chaos of what is happening right now in our world—in your world—you can do this with God. You can reach out and soak yourself in your own small slice of, not the SUN, but the SON!
The Bible has so much to say about how to do this, but the most straightforward way that I—and you (can) do it is just to remember a time in the past when God came through for you and then to talk to Him (prayer) and tell Him thanks!
Telling God, “What’s Up!”
A long time ago, a guy named David, whom God had promised to be King of Israel (kind of a big deal), but then the current king made him an enemy of the state and chased and hunted him down for many years, to kill him! David certainly didn’t expect this and felt he got a raw deal. David wrote his woes down in a journal of songs and poems called the Old Testament book of Psalms. And, frankly, given what’s happening in the world today, this is a relevant book to read.
Who Wrote Psalms?
But did you know that David isn’t the only person who wrote Psalms? In fact, the Psalms name more than seven authors, including five individuals and two families. A guy named Asaph was one of them, and I mention him because I want to highlight a Psalm he wrote that clearly illustrates this principle. Who was Asaph? Well, he and his sons were ordained by David to lead the people in worship and were recommissioned when Nehemiah rebuilt Jerusalem (1 Ch 25:1; Neh 7:44; 12:46–47).
Asaph Goes Off!
The Psalm I want to focus on is Psalm 77. Take a minute to read it over, and I think you’ll get the feel and flavor of the rawness, honesty, and emotion that Asaph powerfully expresses. I mean, he goes off!
There are only twenty verses, and the psalm is constructed in this fashion:
1. Verses 1-10: Telling God all the bad and bizarre stuff that has happened or is happening.
2. Verses 11-20: Telling God about all the amazing and awesome acts that He has done or will do.
I find it interesting that Asaph doesn’t hold back and “keep it clean” with God. No, he totally unloads on Him! At first, you may feel that he is ripping on God too much and is taking his complaints to the extreme—even bordering upon the rude (or as we say in the South: “hateful”), disrespectful, but, trust me, God knows exactly how you feel…, and He can take it. He won’t get angry or get His God’s feelings hurt. If you want more proof, there are many times in the Bible when people were just real with God. Many of the Old Testament prophets and specifically a guy named Job.
God’s not interested in you sugar-coating your experiences and feelings. Be honest with God; I promise you will feel soooo much better afterward.
If you want more examples and specific verses of remembering God’s faithfulness during crises, check out this resource: https://www.openbible.info/topics/remembering.
Making it a Habit
Admittedly, it will feel weird following your complaints with praises of God’s faithfulness, but it will become second nature as you do it more and more. Like any other practice in your life, this act needs to be a habit, and like any habit, the more you do it, the easier it becomes to do it again. So when things are tough—and even when they’re not—take time daily to secure your small slice of the Son.
If you do this daily, you will shine both inwardly and outwardly. And please pray for my family and me…we need more counter space!
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