I told you that I spent some time alone in Scotland recently. What I didn’t tell you was about the night I laid in bed in the middle of nowhere while 110-120 mph winds tore at the cabin so ferociously that I was prompted to lean over and grab my phone to ask google:”Do cabin roofs blow off in 120 mph winds”- which is when I learned that I had lost power and with it any connection I had to the outside world. No cell phone. No internet. No electricity. No water. Just Fabs and God and some sheep on a hill (if they survived the storm).
If you’ve ever trained for a marathon: sorry.
If you haven’t: don’t.
Actually ,you know what? The training for the marathon definetly wasn’t the worst part. I learned a lot about discipline and perseverance and such. I remember my first run over 15 miles. I learned a lesson that I promised myself I would never forget. I was SO done and close to the end of my run, so I thought: if I walk for just a minute, it will help me run faster and be done sooner. Big mistake. HUGE.
This verse made me cry this morning:
All the kings of the earth shall give you thanks, O LORD, for they have heard the words of your mouth, (Psalm 138:4 ESV)
Psalm 138 is a psalm about thanking God with your whole heart. That feeling of heart-fullness that you experience when deep gratitude overwhelms you – that feeling is one of my favorite feelings in the world.
And this morning, I cried when I read verse 4 because it isn’t crazy to me. I totally get why kings would feel their hearts full to the brim with gratitude because of the gracious gift of God letting them hear the words of His mouth. And that is crazy.
I had coffee with a friend a few weeks ago who is feeling a little failed by God. She’s been praying for God to do something (a super awesome glorifying thing) for awhile, and He hasn’t done it. She knows the right answers, but the question is quivering in her heart: why has Jesus refused this request?
I just wrapped up a class on singleness, and I could hear the whisper of a similar cry threaded through the comments we received: why has Jesus done this? Why has He given us desires He won’t satisfy? Why does it feel like He set us up to fail?
In late July I spent time with a friend of mine, (who we will call Joe Smith). ‘Joe’ can only characterized as strangely steady and joyful in all circumstances. He’s not Jesus. He’s not perfect, but he definitely has a unique undivided focus and obsession for the kingdom of God. He has an appetite for God that leaves me feeling inspired and convicted.
I walked away from our time together with a renewed passion to spend more of my life submerged in God’s word. But, as with most things, a lack discipline meant that when the first wave of distraction broke over me, that desire got washed away.