If my people who are called by my name humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. ~ 2 Chronicles 7:14
This landed heavily on my heart. I had been praying for quite some time for specific relief from God. I am called by His name. I was humble before Him and desperate for his favor. But day after day, and week after week, and month after month, and year after year the situation remained unchanged. I was left with one desperate prayer.
Fix this. Please.
Blind to my disobedience, I struggled to understand why God’s answer was slow to come. Why did it feel like He wasn’t answering at all?
Seeing myself in my child
My child ran to my side. “Mom, can I go outside?” He eagerly shifted his weight from foot to foot.
“Clean your room first.” I smiled to soften the gentle reminder that he had to complete his chores before he could reap the rewards of playing.
“Can I go outside?” he repeated a little louder.
“Clean your room,” I spoke in a firmer tone.
“MOM, I want to go outside!” He accentuated his frustration with flailing appendages.
“And I want you to clean your room.”
We cycled for quite some time. My frustration rose with each repeat. He wanted to know why I refused to answer him, and I wanted to know why he wasn’t listening to the answer I gave.
Bang. Just like that, I saw my sin.
I am just like my child
All those times I pleaded with the Lord for an answer, He WAS answering. It just wasn’t the answer I wanted.
Please, fix this.
Please, God. I need you to fix this.
Turn from your wicked ways.
God, why aren’t you answering me?
Pray and seek my face.
Acknowledging my struggles and frustration while waiting for God’s perfect provision is not the same as repenting of my sin. It is not the same as being broken before the Lord and owning the nails I drove into His palms and owning my part in this present trial.
God does hear my prayers. He has told me what to do. Humble myself and pray. Seek His face. Turn from my wickedness. Then, He hears from heaven, forgives my sin and heals this land. He has told me to clean the rooms of my heart.
Lord, I have sinned greatly. You have called me to more than this. You have called me to be more than I am and promised it can be accompished by the power of your Spirit. I have, in many ways, hindered your work in my family by refusing to seek You in this hardship, by refusing to turn from my wickedness that contributes to this problem. Today that ends. Your loving kindness had led me to repentance.
The greatest obstacle to your working in my family is me. The greatest obstacle to your answering my prayers is my lack of obedience. I repent. By your power, I deliberately turn from this pattern of disobedience and choose to walk in a new direction toward new life in You. You are my God. I am your daughter.
I understand you might not radically step in and change my circumstances. But as the pain in the moment comes, I will choose to believe that you are supernaturally working out your perfect plan for my family and me. I don’t know how it will come together, I don’t know when it will come together, but You are writing our story and You have already told me it ends in victory.