Sunday, May 03, 2009

Tearing Can Cause Tearing

English is a funny language with many eccentricities that I am sure were put in place just to make what could have been simple appear to be more complex, and thus give the air of intellectualism. It's either that or a hodge podge of borrowed words and phrases that never really left their home languages. This leaves me with a blog title that may need some explaining, and an excuse to write that explanation, and even possibly come off as semi intellectual myself.
The first tearing in the title is referring to the inevitable, emotional letting go of things that are close to the heart. Actually 'things' is not the correct word because stuff is stuff, and it can all be replaced with more, and sometimes even better stuff. The tearing here is caused by the upcoming absence of people who are familiar, and very dear to me. The awareness of this is caused by the tearing, and the eventual tearing that happens in my eyes when I think on it for too long. You see the tearing (târng) causes the tearing (teer-ing).

Sidebar here. We just had a visit as I was writing this from our neighbours who are heading off to El Salvador and Nicaragua for 4 months, partially to do research and partially to visit family and friends. They have been absolutely wonderful people and a great addition to the nieghbourhood. Their kids have played multiplied hours with ours and their son and our oldest boy are best friends. We thought that we were not going to see them again before we leave for HK and they just showed up because they forgot something and we had the opportunity to see them and say a quick prayer with them. It is hard and yet if it wasn't such a blessing it would not be so hard. You can't have one without the other.

I realised this morning at church that I have a very large place in my heart for the church that my family goes to. It holds a place in my heart of not just familiarity and comfort, but it has the place of hopes and dreams that are not for me. This body of people is special to me and their future is very dear to me as well. We had someone come and share a message this morning that was a prophetic word for our gathering in particular. While none of what he said was new to my wife and I it was refreshing to hear it coming from the front. That doesn't mean that it has the big stamp on it or anything, but it does mean that the people heading things up are perhaps seeing what we have sen for a long time. Please don't get me wrong here, I do not think I have all the goods, just a strong sense of the piece of the picture I was meant to hold and hopefully reflect. Hearing this stuff gave me a renewed hope that is not for myself because soon we will be departing this place, but rather it stirred a deep longing for the people who have populated the seats and aisles next to me for the last ten or so years.
The leadership called for prayer meetings for the next four Monday evenings to corporately pray into what this all means for this group of people. As we sat around and worshipped our Father that first night I found a real wrestle going on inside of me. At the outset I asked the Lord what to do about the things I felt I was seeing that were awry (which things, if they were addressed, I felt may help to get some things on track). The only thing the Spirit said to me was "Shh". Most of the time I take this as a rebuke, and probably have been somewhat pouty as well, but this time I just did as I was told. As we moved into this time of preprayer worship the Lord slowly began to peel away some stuff that I cannot even identify, and my heart began to soften. I realised how easy it is to see the things that are wrong, and how desperately difficult it is to understand, from a human perspective, the way that God corrects those who are earnestly seeking Him. As He washed over me I began to see more clearly that the things He was saying were coming from a heart that is desperately in love with the people I was sitting with. This broke me afresh. I wept as I thought of leaving these people. I wept as I thought of the hope that God holds for them. I wept because of the tearing.
I thank the Father for this because it can become a simple thing to move away from people, and subtly throw up an emotional barrier to the pain we will feel if we truly desire the people of God. It is an all too common problem in the body. I thank the Father because I don't want to leave thinking I am better, rather that I am less than these that the Lord loves so much. From this place the tearing, and the tearing, will bring me to throne where we all belong together as a family.
By the way, while I was a snotty mess, and others were praying for me, someone else spoke out the truth of the word I was feeling inside. It was a word of blessing and it should have been.