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Thursday, August 5, 2021

The Unexpected God

 Yes, since the sustained 107 fever thing, I talk with God. Didn't used to, but now He just walks in, makes Himself at home, and we have these conversations.

And they don't always go the way I think they'll go.

Recently, I was thinking how grateful I am for this second chance, to not be the 'old me'.

And God said, "I like the old you."

Huh?

The day before yesterday, the cancer pain's back, especially the metastasis in my right femur, and I'm saying - out loud - "Pain is just weakness being forced from the body."

God blew a Bronx cheer, and then said, "Pain can be a warning, and it's always a byproduct. it's just pain, and being proud of how much you can tolerate is infantile...something like being proud of the smelliest bowel movement."

Oh-kay.

I don't think God likes pain. Recently I was watching the Hillsong Channel, and a preacher said that "Great things are birthed in pain." Behind me I heard a Bronx cheer (God does seem to like those).

I guess maybe He's seen more than enough hurt, and so I don't use my old favourite expressions, like "Blood makes the grass grow green."

Offending the Almighty's a bad idea.

The point of this is that in the past, I really didn't believe people talked to God. I thought they were having conversations in their own heads, perhaps informed by the Almighty, but that's as far as it went.

To be honest, I didn't really pay attention to what they said, tuning them out after "God said to me..."

No more.

Aside from the reality of His Voice (He's got a distinct Chicago accent, in case you were wondering), the deciding 'reality check' for me is that He flat out contradicts things that I say, and for a long time held dear ("Pain is merely weakness being forced from the body.")

A God who backed up my prejudices would be fun, be would also be a little-'g' god.

This dude is willing to fight me (like it's a contest, right?)...He's my Big G God.

Some folks said they talk to God,
and I thought, well, maybe true,
but it sounds to me, like, really odd;
hope I don't cross paths with you.
And then I faced my quiet death,
and I saw the Other Side;
my lungs were filled with Holy Breath,
and I learned how to abide
with a God who talked a lot,
'bout life and death and love and pain,
some things He said, well, I forgot,
but it seems enough remain
that the God I knew and formally respected,
has become Lord of the Unexpected.

The only song I could think of that was about talking is Toby Keith's I Wanna Talk About Me, so here goes. I rather doubt the video could be made in today's cultural climate, which makes it either more worth watching or a good reason to turn my metaphorical picture to the wall. (If your device doesn't play the video, please click here.)


Thanks to Carol Ashby, Blessed Are The Pure Of Heart is back on Kindle, and will be available in paperback soon.

Friends are everything. I couldn't have done it.

Below are my recent releases on Kindle -please excuse their presence in the body of the blog. I haven't the energy to get them up as 'buttons' in the sidebar. You can click on the covers to go to the Amazon links.













26 comments:

  1. The poem is fab, the video made me smile. I love that God just walks in makes himself at home and you have conversations. I don't like your pain and all your going through but I love your faith and strength and how you inspire so many. Many people who do not even know you. God bless

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    1. Loretta, please forgive the delayed reply...I'm so glad you enjoyed the poem and song!

      I am so grateful for, and honoured by, your words. Thank you.

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  2. We grow up with some stupid ideas about pain really, when you think about it? Thank God that He challenges us!
    I remember telling my youngest about an awful time when God stepped in and spoke to me and being asked how did I know it wasn't just my own thoughts in my head. An, like you, it was because God said something so different, so unexpected, and to be honest so unwanted/disappointing (!) to what I longed to hear, it couldn't have come from me.
    I kind of like that about God. Aslam is not a tame lion.
    God bless you Andrew

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    1. Liz, thank you...indeed, Aslan is not a tame lion!

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  3. Having been born and raised in the Bronx, the mention of the Bronx cheer made me smile. Now having married and moved to Massachusetts, I have lived here many years longer than where I was from. While I am not happy about your pain, I love that you are hearing God's voice. I love that you remind us how He speaks to us individually, uniquely, and preciously. And I am so grateful you are still among us to share your thoughts, your poems, and inspiration. Praying for you and Barb!

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    1. Joanne, I lived for many years in North Jersey (Hackensack)!

      I'm so grateful for your words here, and for your prayers.

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  4. Unexpected for sure! Thanks for sharing your words.

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  5. Andrew, welcome to my world! Yes, God talks and says what we don't want to hear, but what we need to hear. I tolerate the flack people give me. I try not to give God credit for His words,but hey, if I say something, I want someone to hear me! Think of the O.T. prophets! Think of Jesus, think of the disciples! Nothing better than a conversation with God! Doesn't He listen to our words? Love you, praying for you.

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  6. Yes! Conversations with him are incredible—and can be highly entertaining! Love this.

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    1. Amanda, you're so right...talking with Him can be a blast!

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  7. I often questioned those who heard from God, until like you, I heard! Each time, I hear something that doesn't sound God-like to me, and then I know. Yep, this is coming from beyond me.
    I am always sad for your pain, always thankful for your faithful and insightful posts, always holding you in prayer.
    (Karen, FMF #13)

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    1. Karen it sure is a surprise, isn't it, first time you hear from Him?

      I'm so grateful for your prayers!

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  8. Awesome as usual Andrew. Next time you talk with God put in a good word for me. On second thought, He already knows so...

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    1. Duane, sure...next time I talk to God I'll sing your praises. You're a class act.

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  9. "...the God I knew and formally respected, has become Lord of the Unexpected". I love this. Andrew, I'm so glad you have conversations with Him now. Praying for continual grace and strength for you.

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    1. Wemi, thank you so much (and please excuse my late reply)!

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  10. I love that you have begun to connect with God in a new way. Fabulous!

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    1. Barb, yeah...learning that I can converse with God is cool!

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  11. I love that song, Andrew! It's so characteristic of how we all feel down inside, if we'd be gut-level honest! Lol!

    I'm so sorry that you're suffering. I'm also sorry for not checking in on you these past few months. I've been doing some Spirit guided soul searching and have had quite a few conversations with God like yours. And I, too, feel like it can't be just in my head since God often reveals things to me (about me) that I would never want to admit or see. He truly gets us soooo much better than we get ourselves!

    I'll continue to pray for you, though I can't promise to be here as much as before. I'm pulling back in many ways. I feel God prompting me to prune parts of my life and "blog hopping" is part of that pruning--though, I'll probably still visit you as often as I can. I don't know what God is up to in my life but I'm trusting Him as He does surgery to cut out all that is not fruitful in my life.

    Sending my love to you and prayers to Him on your behalf!

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    1. Beth, I'm so glad we're on the same page re talking with God!

      No worries about not being here as often, and I'll always be grateful to see you.

      Love back, and thank you so much for the prayers!

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  12. Andrew, one thing you've taught me is that each person's relationship and interactions with God is personal and unique to them. I love that God's been talking back and talking with you, causing you to rethink some things (and I mean that in the very best way). :) I'm continuing to pray for you and for Barb, my friend.

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    1. Jeanne, I think that's so true...Barb says that God meets us where we are. I like that.

      We thank you so much for your prayers!

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  13. I love this, Andrew. And I love how the voice of God breaks through all the noise and makes a lot of sense. I pray blessings, and goodness, and joy in your life from the Giver of all three.

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    1. My dear Norma...I am so glad you enjoyed this, and so grateful for your prayers!

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