“It matters where you stand.”
Ironically enough, I remember exactly where I was standing when God said that to me. I was about to go into a meeting that had me wringing my hands and fidgeting with loose threads.
I had no idea that meeting would alter the course of my life. I was also entirely unaware of how that one sentence from God would continuously save me over and over again.
“You are a person who gets what you pray for, but not without a cost.”
When a friend said those words to me, I knew they were the truth. I’m always asking for bold things, for specifics, and many times God grants them. But then He shows me what all the things that I’ll have to say “no” to in order for Him to say “yes” to that thing.
There’s a price for big prayers. It isn’t because God is punishing us, or because His love isn’t free. Answered prayers aren’t proof of God’s love or affirmation, they’re just a door that leads our heart to see how much we have always been loved.
I wish I’d understood that when I asked Him for that one thing. He gave it to me, but only for a season. He didn’t give it to me because it was the best thing for me, but because it would break my heart in a way that would cause me to become the best version of myself I’d ever been.
It was never about the thing, it was about the process that led to a permanent and beautiful change.
It’s not about the thing.
We want all these things, all these blessings, but it’s not about the thing.
It’s about who we are when we get the thing, while we have the thing, and when we lose the thing.
Believe me when I tell you, it can never about the thing. Because things are just things, they aren’t stable, they aren’t constant. They can be right in the winter and wrong for the spring.
The way a heart beats, the weather, the strength of your bones… they all change. Nothing stays the same here on earth. The thing you’re so desperately begging God for, if it’s a thing, it won’t last.
Maybe you’ll have it for eighty years. Maybe you’ll have it for a day. But at the end of it all, the thing was and can never be the point.
What it points you toward, how you grow, the person you start to become, your focus: those are the point. The thing is just the door that takes you to those rooms, that shows you why God ever gave you breath to start with.
How that thing builds love in you, and the truth it helps you echo, that was always the point.
I don’t always get what I pray for, but either way, I’m learning to pray less for things and more for processes, for truths, for God to make me who I need to be. As far as the things, well it seems best to let God choose the ones most suited for the process.
It matters where you stand. Maybe you’ll get some cool shoes while you stand there. Maybe you’ll have good stories about what passes by. But those things will never be the point. It matters where you stand simply because of who you’ll be if and when God asks you to stand somewhere else.