Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Bedtime reading

Before I settle in for a night's sleep (I was going to say "long" nights sleep... but let's face it, it's NEVER long!) I usually grab a book and read a chapter or two. Right now I'm reading "Ordinary MOM Extraordinary GOD" by Mary DeMuth.

It's full of short, easy to read chapters... yet packed with powerful words that get your heart thinking at the end of the day. The other night I read her chapter titled "The Secret of Secrets". Mary, writes about how secrets are often intimate details, saved for the closest few in your life. Often secrets are shared between no more than 2 people. They are private, intimate conversations that include vulnerability and honesty.

Mary went on to talk about 4 aspects of secrets. I'll briefly summarize them b/c they really made me go .. "Hmmm".

1. God confides in those who fear him.
Not the kind of fear that makes us quake in our boots, immobilized by terror. But the kind of the fear that causes us to stop, revere, be in awe of, and respect! I picked a key phrase from her passage and it was this; "It's important to choose intimacy with Him over busyness." Which means, if it means leaving dishes overnight, or NOT working out this afternoon, or saying "no" to what would only be an obligation and not a joy to do.... DO it. God delights in our presence and he cares most about the condition of our hearts. And if our hearts are not beating as one with His... there's WAY too much chance for us to wander.

2. God's secrets are His delight.
Do you know what delights His heart? Really know? Or just "think" you know from what you've learned about God all these years?! Do you really know His heart. I know I'm still getting to know His heart. I want to feel directly how his heart feels. I want to embrace the joy, feel the sorrow ... truly have my "eyes" opened and discover his delights. To do this, I can't simply "check -in" ever so briefly and then "check out" and "check OFF" my "God time" for the day. God isn't something to be crossed off my list, "yup, got time with the Big Man in, now i'm good til tomorrow...". No way. That is false intimacy.

3. God see's in secret.
God sees the condition of our heart. Psalm 139:23-24 "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting." I have this posted in my kitchen. I long to keep my heart pure and in a way that pleases HIM. Daily I fail and then start over. I easily judge or condemn in my heart.. my actions not necessarily following, but my heart is not always in a place that shows respect for someone, which in turn shows a lack of respect for God. If I'm holding on to a grudge or having feelings that dishonor HIM, He can't come to me in an intimate manner and share His delight or His joy. If my heart is full of filth - there's no room for Him. Daily, sometimes moment to moment, I have to ask Him to clean and purge from my heart the things that don't belong. And then HE has room to come in, fill me up and just "BE"!

4. God rewards secret things.
OH, how he finds pleasure in the secret things that honor Him. How He loves a heart that doesn't flaunt or do it's "goodness" for applause. He see's all things and when a heart,set on LOVING him and Loving people, silently acts in amazing ways... His heart nearly explodes. I'm sure of it. The sacrificial acts of motherhood bring JOY to His heart. The world rarely see's... even some close to us don't often "get it" or understand... and yet God see's every boo-boo kissed, every meal cooked, ever diaper changed, every hug and smooch, and story read. He see's the mother that puts her needs to the back burner to provide, to love, to GIVE to her family and HE SEE'S it...

After I read this chapter the other night, I wrote down some questions for myself.

1. Does God save secret joys to whisper to me? When was the last time I heard one?

2. Do I give him TIME to reveal His heart?

3. Do I have the integrity of a woman bent on loving and obeying the Lord?

AND my challenge to myself: BE still and listen. LISTEN. Write down His secret JOY when he reveals it to me.


Katy said...

Sounds like a very interesting book. Clearly HE is using it to speak to you, and thus to those of us who wander through your blog as well.

I struggle with taking time to listen and just taking time for him period. Something I need to work on, no doubt!

Thanks again for sharing what has been bestowed upon your heart and mind!

God's Not Finished With Us Yet... said...

I agree with Katy; your sharing of the books you read and then imparting some of those with us is a blessing in more ways that you probably realize!

Dependant Warriors said...

Point four about God rewarding secret things was such an encouragement to my heart tonight. I have found such joy and peace lately in delighting in the roles He has given me of wife and mother of four, yet it is still so easy to grow weary of well doing and start looking for something more impressive to do or just start feeling stuck. It is such a comfort and inspiration to remember that he sees and delights in all the little things we do for those He has given us. It puts the joy back and reminds me to offer it back to Him. Thanks again!

Hadley said...

I hadn't seen this when I posted earlier...I agree, this is an awesome thought-provoking book!