God, You’re Wasting My
By Paul Dailey
Have you ever felt like saying, “God, you’re
wasting my time”? Unknowingly, I had developed this attitude
toward the Lord in prayer. It happened very subtly and quite unintentionally,
but nevertheless, it was there.
For some time I had felt the prompting of the Spirit of God to
just slow down in prayer. You could probably quote Psalm
46:10 if I started it for you. “Be still ...”—and
you know the rest — “…and know that I am God.”
Yet, when it came to my prayer time, I was all about charging
ahead, doing spiritual warfare, binding and loosing, shouting
down the powers of darkness, and declaring the will of God into
the earth. Now, don’t get me wrong. There is most certainly
a place for this type of prayer. And, personally, that is part
of my character because I really identify with the warrior mentality.
But I had begun to neglect those times of real intimacy and quietness
with the Lord.
My pastor recently returned from a week of services at the Toronto
Airport Christian Fellowship, home to that great move of God that
has reached around the globe and affected millions. The most profound
thing he brought back was the concept of “soaking in the
presence of God.” He began to describe how the Lord had
used this trip to introduce him to a new level of prayer. It’s
a place in God where we just shut down and listen to the Spirit.
Rather than filling his time before God with all sorts of words,
he would simply put on some quiet “soaking music”
and lay at God’s feet.
I think at first I laughed him off. “Well, that’s
all well and good for him but blah, blah, blah …”
You know how we get when someone tries to introduce something
new. We dismiss them as nutty and keep on with our old way of
doing things. But I watched as his relationship with God went
to a whole new level and his passion for God grew by the day while
mine faded like an old pair of jeans.
That’s when life hit me. There I was, naked and broken
before God. Where was my shouting? Where was my binding and loosing?
Where was my charging toward the frontline? I had the wind knocked
out of me, and my only recourse was to crawl to God on my hands
and knees and plead for His mercy. I thought to myself, This
soaking thing isn’t such a bad idea after all. I didn’t
have the strength anymore to swing that sword even one more time.
So it was there on a Sunday night, while I lay on the floor at
church, that I began to learn the value of just shutting up before
God. And the most amazing thing happened! When I stopped talking,
it became so much easier to hear God talk. “This is not
wasted time,” He said. Over and over again, He kept telling
me that. “This is not wasted time.” It was uncomfortable
at first because I felt like I should be doing or saying something.
But I couldn’t deny that after just an hour or so on my
face before God, simply listening and soaking, I was changed.
Something real and significant had taken place in my Spirit. I
couldn’t put my finger on it, but neither could I deny it.
Then yesterday, while soaking in the presence of God again, the
Spirit directed me to Mark chapter four. Jesus had just spent
the afternoon speaking to the crowds in parables. The Word tells
us that He didn’t say anything to them without using parables.
But when He was alone with His disciples, He explained everything.
That was it! That’s why God was drawing me into these times
of soaking. Without that intimate and quiet time alone with Jesus,
the secrets of the kingdom of heaven remain a hazy mystery. So,
this idea of soaking in God’s presence, a time that I viewed
as unproductive, was actually the very thing I needed.
If you’ve been sensing a lack of power in your walk with
God, or if you feel like you’re stuck in the mud, spinning
your wheels but going nowhere, just get before God and soak a
while. Don’t pray, don’t sing, don’t shout,
march, declare, or proclaim. Put on some quiet worship music,
and just lay there and listen to God.
Sure, you’ll be a little uncomfortable at first and your
mind will wander, as mine did. But soon you’ll find yourself
hearing God much more clearly. You’ll find that He will
begin to explain things to you that before were mysteries. God
is not wasting your time.
Paul Dailey was raised in Smithton, Mo., and
moved to Virginia in 1999. He has served in the U.S. Navy since
1997 and is currently in training for a future of full-time ministry.
At present he is the Youth Director at Revival Life Church in
Virginia Beach, Va.
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