Thursday, May 14, 2009
Here sir- can you take these rocks and give me a ticket?
I recall a time when I was on AIM in Martinique. I was there for two weeks- teaching teens how to teach other teens a youth related Bible study.
While I was there- Matthew Ritchie their MK was only 7 or 8 years old. He was always in imagination land and spent a lot of his time digging in the back yard. Each day he found his special rocks and stones and put them in his backpack. He was very careful with each one of them. He cleaned them, laid them out, cherished them, and categorized them. One day I asked him what he was saving those for and he said that he was going to turn them into Air France in exchange for a ticket to Wisconsin so he could visit his grandparents.
The day that I left I noticed that he was really excited. I was really starting to take it personally until I realized that he had his backpack in tow. He was on a mission. When we got to the "Liat" counter he asked if I would go over to the Air France counter with him. I quickly checked in and went with him. When his turn came in line he was ready to go. He pulled out his rocks, set them on the counter, and told the agent- Can you take these rocks and give me a ticket? I could see that his face was beaming with pride over his huge treasure. The man asked what his destination was. He told him that he needed to go to Wisconsin to see his grandparents. The agent was amazing and really let him down gently. He typed things into the computer, would pick up a rock or two but finally ended up telling him that they had to use only cash or credit cards for all tickets now.
I can still see his huge sad eyes that were close to tears as he left the airport with his rocks. He just could not believe that they did not see the value in those beautiful rocks.
I was reminded of those rocks this week while praying. You see I have a rock- it's a 2300 square foot , two story rock- called a house. Our home has been on the market since July of 2008. I have prayed over it, I have fasted for it to sell, I have walked around it seven times, I have declared it gone, I have cried, I have lost sleep over it- but do you know what? Today in prayer I realized it is nothing but a huge rock. It has no value. I repented heavily today before the Lord and asked his forgiveness for so much obsession, prayer, begging and pleading over something so useless. Think about it- it does not have a soul, it does not need ministering to- it is an object. An object that has kept my family safe, dry, and housed- but still an object.
Today I lifted my "rock" up to the Lord and said- I am done. This has been the silliest waist of time ever. God please forgive me- when I could have been praying for others I have prayed over this "rock".
Today I prayed as I normally do over the Willougbhys, for MKs with severe needs, for friends that are going through situations, for family members that need healing, for revival in our cities, for friends that are far from him, for situations in homes, for real needs. I refused to pray over my "rock". My rock is now just an object left squarely where it belongs- in his hands.
How many times have we neglected those in need because we are collecting our "rocks" and holding onto them. We are polishing them, admiring them, cleaning them, putting them carefully in our back backs all the while there are people around us bleeding, hurting and crying out to us. I can not take back the time squandered on my "rock" but I can redeem tomorrow.
How about you? What "rocks" are you holding onto? Have you been feeling burdened down lately? You might want to check out your backpack and see what you are toting around- you just might find some rocks!