Archive for September 28th, 2009

Lately I have found it difficult to pray. Could be that many of us have this similar experience at times. When that happens, I don’t think God suddenly gets worried or that he loses sleep. I think he’s patient. I’m glad for His patience because I certainly have none.

A recent post concerning Rich Mullins caused me to break out my worn copy of Mullins’ The Jesus Record and listen to the beautiful lyrics and music that Mullins composed shortly before his death. In the midst of some whining (my own) that I never quite hear from God as much as some others seem to, the lyrics to one of the songs stood out to me and I heard His voice loudly.

Mullins had a brilliant way of reminding the pilgrim to just pay attention to beauty, to be completely honest with the one from whom we can hide nothing, and to cry and pray and cry and pray until you have nothing left to cry and pray. I lamented to some friends, just last night, that I never thought God could feel so far away. Then, these:

Rich Mullins
You who live in heaven
Hear the prayers of those of us who live on earth
Who are afraid of being left by those we love
And who get hardened by the hurt
Do you remember when You lived down here where we all scrape
To find the faith to ask for daily bread
Did You forget about us after You had flown away
Well I memorized every word You said
Still I’m so scared, I’m holding my breath
While You’re up there just playing hard to get
You who live in radiance
Hear the prayers of those of us who live in skin
We have a love that’s not as patient as Yours was
Still we do love now and then
Did You ever know loneliness
Did You ever know need
Do You remember just how long a night can get?
When You were barely holding on
And Your friends fall asleep
And don’t see the blood that’s running in Your sweat
Will those who mourn be left uncomforted
While You’re up there just playing hard to get?
And I know you bore our sorrows
And I know you feel our pain
And I know it would not hurt any less
Even if it could be explained
And I know that I am only lashing out
At the One who loves me most
And after I figured this, somehow
All I really need to know
Is if You who live in eternity
Hear the prayers of those of us who live in time
We can’t see what’s ahead
And we can not get free of what we’ve left behind
I’m reeling from these voices that keep screaming in my ears
All the words of shame and doubt, blame and regret
I can’t see how You’re leading me unless You’ve led me here
Where I’m lost enough to let myself be led

And so You’ve been here all along I guess
It’s just Your ways and You are just plain hard to get

(Rich Mullins, Hard to Get, from the Jesus Record, my emphasis)

These lyrics came along at the right time. I’m glad that when I can’t pray my own words, there are the words of others that I can pray. I’m glad when I can’t pray, or won’t, that the Spirit never quits; that Jesus never stops interceding.

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