Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Wall: and when to cease praying.

I had a vision.

Yes, one of those crazy-christian-lady (as I like to call myself on occasion) visions.

I was standing in front of a wall, holding a piece of paper.  I was turning the piece of paper over and over, staring at it, worrying over it, thinking about it.  God said, "stick the paper in the wall, and walk away."  So I did.

This happened to me last week when I was very upset about something.  Heartbroken, in fact.  And I was doing just what the Bible tells me to do..I was praying without ceasing.  Yep, when I woke up and I thought about this burden on my heart, I would pray.  And then all day that burden was on my heart and I would pray some more.  And then as I was getting ready for bed, that burden was on my heart some more and I would pray.  In fact, at church last week we forced (ahem, gave the opportunity to...) our discipleship class to pray for 30 minutes on their own, in silence, without writing one grocery list or checking their fb status on their phones (not that I have ever done this at church..).  I took my 30 minutes and prayed without ceasing for this same burden that was on my heart.

In that 30 minutes, we were also supposed to listen for God to speak to us.  We made it clear that this was not a forced exercise and no one fails if they don't happen to hear God speak.  That's silly.  But I was praying so fervently without ceasing, that I doubt I gave God the chance to get in a word edgewise.  But literally, God threw one of those 11th hour, hail-mary (is God allowed to do that?) type God-is-speaking-now passes my way the very last minute of our 30 minutes.

And it was in a vision.

I was in front of the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem.  Which I have been there before many times.  The wailing wall is part of the ancient temple that once stood in Jerusalem, which was destroyed almost entirely by the Romans in AD 70.  The temple housed the "Holy of Holies" or basically, this is where God lived, where He was present.  The wall today stands as a reminder to the Jewish people that one day the temple will be rebuilt, but it also is the closest thing they have to coming into God's presence.  It is a Holy place for them.

I was holding a piece of paper.  Pilgrims come from all over to the wailing wall and bring their prayers, written on paper.  They roll the paper up into little wads and stuff them into the cracks of the wall.  It's as close as one can get to sticking a prayer into the hand of God.

I was turning the paper over and over.  I was praying without ceasing.  But I wasn't actually putting my concerns into God's hands.  And that is what He wanted me to do.

God's voice in my vision wasn't a gentle one.  It was an admonishment.  It was a bit annoyed.  (of course, that might have just been my take on it).  "Sara, stick the paper in the wall, and walk away."

So, in the vision I saw myself do just that.  I put my prayer into the hands of God and therefore put it out of my hands.  Then I turned and walked away, trusting that He cares more than me and is far more capable than me.  

The real me (not the vision-me) let go of my burden right then.  And I walked away from it.  Every once in a while I can look over at the wall just to check..."you still got this, right God?"  And He does.

1 Peter 5:7 "Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares for you."


Beady Blossom said...

Know how that feels. One time I was praying very hard and felt so overburdened. I was able to share this burden with a great friend/mentor. When I went to pray again, there was no heavy burden and it was like God was saying, Stop praying, it is already taken care of. Wow, months later when it became public, I realized the date and was amazed that God could also tell me to stop praying and I didn't even know why. Some missionaries have stories to tell like that of a prayer warrior praying for them (before internet)and can trace back to a certain date.

Sara Rosenbaum said...

B- thanks for stopping by and for sharing your story! I love to hear how God is working in other people's lives!