Thursday, June 16, 2011

Drawing Near

We've had some rough times this year. We've also had some amazing blessings. I think in the fullness of time, we'll see that even the rough things were amazing blessings.

Dealing with Nate's cancer isn't as hard as it was the first two weeks after I found out. I think not just because we've been given such a good prognosis, but because he's just so healthy! He's more active than ever.

So my struggle in the last month hasn't been with fits of tears, or thoughts that I'll be in my mid-thirties living with my daughter in my mother's spare room. Instead, my main struggle has been spiritual apathy. It is embarrassingly ridiculous to admit that in the midst of all the good things God is doing for us, that I am in a funk of apathy. Maybe in trying to "keep a grip" on things (and myself) I have neglected going to the One who holds all things in His hands. Instead of filling my mind with Scripture, prayer, and spiritual songs, I have filled it with trivia.
There is a way out of apathetic funks though. There is forgiveness in Christ. "If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself." (2 Timothy 2:13) God is here, whether we pay attention or not.

I cannot say that I am completely, or even mostly, out of the funk. But I am in the process of coming out of it. Here are a few things that have helped me.

1. God gave me growing dissatisfaction with the very things with which I wasted my time. I began to feel vaguely unhappy about spending an evening reading articles about deadly organic bean sprouts in Germany and outbreaks of chlamydia in koalas. (Who knew?)

2. God gave me a sense of alarm about my spiritual state. I didn't focus my mind when praying, I didn't desire to read Scripture more than what I thought I "had to", and I couldn't follow sermons without my mind wandering. All this troubled me, and my spirit was restless.

3. God provided means of grace. There is probably a precise theological meaning to that phrase - and I'm pretty sure I'm not using it in that sense. What I mean by means of grace are things outside of the mental aspects of points #1 and #2 that God has used to draw me back to Him. Things like family Bible time. In the evenings, we all sit on the loveseat, and Nate leads us in a time of worship. It may be a Bible story, memory verses, catechism questions, singing, prayer, reading the children's version of Pilgrim's Progress. Not usually all of those elements at the same time, but three or four. Also, Nate has begun this past few days to wake me up (he is just about always up before me) with a Bible and devotional book ready. He didn't even know I was in a funk, he just wanted to do it! Another huge help had been a free audio Bible app called That has been so useful. I can listen to Scripture as I wash dishes or fold laundry. This continual hearing of Scripture has been a huge boon to my soul. Suzy likes it as well. She has listened to the book of Esther four times this week, Ruth once, and passages from Daniel and Genesis.

I have this verse on the inside cover of my prayer journal: "Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you." I am full of hope that God will continually draw "my mind's attention and heart's affection" back to Him. Here's to the death of spiritual apathy!


  1. Thanks for being so transparent---really helps me.

    So thankful you are being encouraged!

  2. So glad to hear Nate is doing better! I love to read your posts!