"How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I take counsel in my soul and have sorrow in my heart all the day? How long shall my enemy be exalted over me? Consider and answer me, O Lord my God; light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death..." Psalm 13
I often laugh when the subject comes up about how difficult it is to share feelings when it comes to a relationship. Something about opening up can make you feel so vulnerable, so open. I think this is why if someone asks me about my past history of relationships it can be characterized by the phrase “When the going gets tough, Keith gets going.” Running away was always the “safer” option for me because there was no chance of getting hurt or having to share feelings and get real. The interesting thing is, as much as I was avoiding it, I always felt that something was missing due to my inability to get close to anyone. I’m not surprised that this defined my experience and relationship with God too. Is it even possible to have a real relationship with God? Who was I to question God or to tell Him what was on my heart? If I couldn’t open up with others easily then opening up to God surely wasn’t going to happen either since my relationship with God was not about relating to Him but just following rules and doing as I’m told. I’ll never forget reading the words of David in Psalm 13 as someone who is speaking to God in ways that I’ve never heard or seen before. How could someone speak to God like this let alone get away with it? I think the key thing to remember is that God not only didn’t rebuke David but thought highly of it enough to include it in scripture! David was being real with God because he was sharing his real feelings. Could it be this easy? One of the most important prayers I ever asked God was to help me fall in love with Him. I always say be careful what you ask for because you just might get it. God granted my prayer but not in the way I imagined. God changed me and showed me how to love Him even more through the things He allowed in my life. Like conflict we avoid anything that feels uncomfortable. But it’s these very things that allow us to draw to Him even closer. You see, God was granting me the desires of my heart just not in the way I imagined. He was drawing me even closer through these events. Death of loved ones drove me to Him to cry. Loss of job drove me to Him because of fear. Uncertainty of the future drove me to Him because of no sense of direction. The very things I often thought of as uncomfortable were the very things He was using to open my eyes to a real relationship. And it’s in that real relationship that I now realize that I can go to my Father with whatever is on my heart. I can tell Him my fears, my doubts, my hopes and even my frustrations. And how do I know this? Because that’s exactly what Jesus did with His Father and He’s given me the ability to do the same. The more I spend time and share with Him, the more I know Him and knowing Him is the real relationship.