When was the last time you invited Jesus into your crazy? Like actually invited him. "Jesus, this is crazy. Come into this."
Also, when was the last time you simply sat quietly with Jesus? I think sometimes we talk a lot about needing to improve our “prayer lives” and we make prayer into something more intense than it necessarily needs to be. Yes...sometimes prayer is intense. Elijah prayed earnestly for God to bring down fire to his water-soaked bonfire, and flames erupted. That was pretty intense. Sometimes prayer needs to be flat-faced beseeching of our holy God. Absolutely.
But sometimes, and maybe even more often, prayer can be in simply sitting quietly with Jesus. Even in a world (or a house) of chaos, Jesus can sit quietly with you. He has time for you, my friend. He has time to sit with you in the early morning before your kids fill the house with talking and laughing (or fighting and bickering….right?). He has time to sit quietly with you before your feet hit the ground running in the busy-ness of whatever is coming your way that day. In fact, what a better way to start a day than to sit quietly with Jesus.
One of the women I love in the Bible is the woman in Mark 5:21-34. (READ IT!) She'd been bleeding for 12 years, spent all her money on docs yet grew worse, and likely had lost her marriage and her family and her friends since she was "unclean" under Jewish law. Lonely, sick, in pain, and desperate. When she heard Jesus was passing through, even though a huge mob of people surrounded him, she knew she need to only touch his cloak to be made well. Oh, her faith and her humility! I love her.
But Jesus stoppe. She didn't want to take his time, yet Jesus stopped for her. He turned toward and the Bible tells us she fell at his feet and told him the whole truth.
The whole truth about what? Her disease? Her lost marriage? Her lost friendships? Her pain? Her doctors that took all her money but didn't heal her? How many hours did this whole truth take? After twelve years of loss and pain in her life, I would imagine the whole truth took a long time. But Jesus had time for her. And he has time for you...to sit quietly or to be invited into your crazy.
When I think about this dear woman who told “the whole truth” to Jesus, I imagine her aching for the opportunity to sit quietly with Jesus. We only know of this one time she had the opportunity to be in the presence of Jesus, and oh my did she ever boldly and adamantly take hold of that one opportunity. She was not going to miss it.
And now, because Jesus has made access to God immediate and possible through this death on the cross, it’s available all the time to us. To me. To this woman who yelled at her children last night during family devotion time and had to finish devotions later because her frustration level was too much to handle it. I could have pulled up my big girl panties and remained calm. But no. I got angry. And yet, even to me, God says I can come to him anytime. And friends, do you think that since we can come to Him anytime, we take that so for granted that we instead just don’t?
I know I do. Because sometimes prayer sounds hard. Prayer sounds like it would take energy that I don’t have. Prayer sounds like it would require me to focus a train of thought on one thing for longer than three seconds and I don’t know if I can do that.
But sitting quietly with Jesus? Well that sounds life-giving. Letting Jesus permeate my thoughts, and inviting him into my day. Telling him my “whole truth” about the day before, the night before, how many times my kids woke me up during the night that has made me too tired today, the stress I have for what’s facing me at work today….whatever “whole truth” is on my plate for today…I can sit quietly with Jesus and share it with him. What a remarkable treasure.
Just keeping it real...I don't like to get out of bed any earlier than I have to. But today I'm starting a new thing of getting up to sit with Jesus and write. So, right now I’m sitting quietly with Jesus in the early hours of morning as I write about sitting quietly with Jesus. Except not really because now my two-year-old is screaming “Maaaammmmmaaaaa!” from his room and banging on his door for about the fourth time since 11pm last night. My “sitting quietly” time is no longer “quiet.” Ahhh....real life. Isn't it blissful?
Jesus understands the reality of our lives. Whether it’s a house full of children or a work schedule that exhausts you daily, Jesus understands. He’s given you your children and he’s given you your vocation. It doesn’t help us at all when we shovel guilt upon ourselves about not finding enough quiet time or space in our days to spend with Jesus. Spending time quietly with Jesus is a life-giving treasure that we ought to say “yes” to more often. But that doesn’t mean that Jesus doesn't want to be our crazy to.
We don't have to always create a separate space for Jesus if we invite in into our every single moment. Let him be the foundation and the leader of every single second, not just a 30 minute segment of your day.
Jesus is all up in my crazy every day. I need Jesus to be in my crazy. Much of my prayer time happens in the heat of the moment of disciplining a child or making hard decisions, or even the little decisions of parenthood that I’m too tired to make…”Jesus, come into this very minute and direct me. Show me. Tell me. Lead me. This very moment.
When we let Jesus permeate our entire days, it takes pressure off of us to create a separate "prayer time" in the midst of a stage of life when the only time we have to ourselves ought to be spent sleeping. (Remember, Jesus invented sleep too. It's a good thing).
We still ought to take time to sit quietly with him...it's a great treasure. But let's no heap guilt on ourselves about it. Let's also not think that our little lives are too little for Jesus.
It’s easy to fall into a lie of Satan that tells us that our little issues and even our big issues are too little for the Lord of Creation to waste his time attending to. This is a lie…Satan doesn’t want us talking to Jesus because as we talk to him, we become more like Him. (It does us well to remember that Jesus calls Satan the great deceiver and the father of lies.)
The Lord of Creation really does have time to be invited into your crazy and to sit quietly with you…to lead you beside still waters before the crazy begins.
Invite him in today.
"Jesus, come into my crazy today. Amen."