My spiritual DNA — the way God put me together — makes me instinctively encourage others to give away what God has given them. Sharing God’s blessings is a key component to spiritual growth, I’ve found.
I often teach and minister in a faith-based dorm at the local jail. Rather than me “leading” this Friday, however, I took a seat among them and let the men bless each other by sharing what God is showing them and doing in their lives.
Some rose to sing songs they wrote to the Lord, some read and commented on short passages of scripture that had become alive to them, while others gave testimony to how God is now healing and making them whole men.
One brother read a poem he wrote about dealing with the issues of his heart and finding healing through confession, repentance and forgiveness. I’ve seen tremendous peace and maturity emerge over the last couple of months as he’s been totally transparent with the Lord — even though it’s sometimes hard and painful to expose those secret and hidden places to Him.
I’ve also seen him mature as he learns that prayer is not simply pouring out our angst, our insecurities, our hurts and wants to God — as important and valid as that is — but learning to then shut up and listen. Only then can we come to the place of saying, “nevertheless, not my will but your will be done” and walk forward in total peace — no matter what the journey may be.
He gave me permission to share his poem with you:
My wounded heart has been exposed to air,
It saps my strength to leave it there revealed.
The arrow shots and thoughts seek to impair,
But I will trust in God that I’ll be healed.
To stay exposed it takes an act of will,
To yield myself into the Potter’s Hand.
The enemy tries to destroy and kill,
In Christ alone I will endure and stand.
No strength of mine is left to carry on,
To stay the narrow way and not the broad.
But when I’m urged to act without the Son,
I will be still and know that He is God.
– by Chris I.