A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. They woke him and said to him, "Don't you care if we drown?" He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, "Quiet! Be still!" Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to them, "Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?"
~ Mark 4: 37-40
This afternoon I spent time with a lovely woman who suffers from dementia who watches the news throughout the entire day, while asking the same set of questions that she asks every time that I visit her. Today there was a moment of clarity and she looked at me and said, "I bet you get tired of me asking you the same questions all the time? I am tired of asking them, but I just can't stop."
She then returned to the baseline I am used to and she began again.
Sometimes I have to ask if God listens to us over and over and begins to wonder, "Here comes those questions again, when will he ever stop?"
I've learned over the years to be especially careful about what I pray for. What I haven't learned is asking God questions that I already know the answer to.
You know what I am referring to. The times that we ask for blessings when we don't recognize the blessing before us. The times that we hope to conquer knowledge, try to prove a point, grow in wisdom, or need to have a "sign."
When we ponder the answers before asking our questions, we may discover that we need less time and energy for our questions. Perhaps we already have the information. Perhaps we don't need to show that someone is wrong. For many questions we may learn that we already have the answers, at least if we listen carefully to our own hearts.
For all the times that we "ponder," let us allow God to respond before we move on to our next question.
Stay in God's grip!
G. Todd Williams (c) 2020
Rev. G. Todd Williams lives in the Houston metro area and is a Hospice Chaplain and ordained Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) pastor.