My Beloved, You Have Been Trying to Know Too Much

I’ve written a lot of things that I haven’t done anything with.

They sit in a folder on my desktop collecting metaphorical dust, waiting to either be discarded as just my stream-of-consciousness ramblings from years ago or to be brushed off, polished up, and shared with my little world.

Today I came across something I wrote about a year and a half ago, after roughly ten months of unemployment and yet another rejection from a position I was more than qualified for. I had taken myself on a prayer retreat to shake my fists at God and say, “what the hell are you doing, and what the hell am I supposed to do?”

What I wrote that weekend is how God responded. It came out through my own pen.

As I stand at another crossroads, uncertain about what’s next, angry and confused, I find these dusted off words to be a comfort (and they leave me saying, “FINE, GOD, I’ll stop pouting and turning my back to you.”).

I’ve brushed them off and polished them up and decided to share them again with myself and with my little world.

You, my beloved, have been trying to know too much.

You have been asking to know more about your future than your small mind and heart can handle. Be obedient to what I charge you with today and that is enough. I will reveal to you only as much as is necessary for you to be faithful to me in the day-to-day. You only need me to guide you today, because today is all you have to work with.

Every day be alert and of sober mind for opportunities to serve me. Do this and your provision will undoubtedly come because I am your provider. Take opportunities to shine my light and do not be ashamed of me. People already see that you are different; they will be further intrigued (or offended) when they also discover that you are a follower of Jesus. Allow others’ respect for you draw them closer to me by shining my light and grabbing their attention.

“What‘s different about her?”

The proof of me in you will also be in others’ condemnation of you and your efforts. You will know you are serving me well when you are met with the enemy’s resistance. But remember that the enemy has no power — he roars like a lion but he isn’t The Lion, which is God the Father, God your Mother.

Regarding your service - remember that your worth is not in your productivity or earnings, and neither is that of others. Your value is not in the approval or disapproval of others. You have worth and value because I gave it to you. You are precious because you are mine.

Keep doing justice. Keep standing up for what is right and true. Don’t do only the non-offensive work so that no one thinks you’re crazy, hysterical, or aggressive and you can arrive peacefully and unruffled at death. How boring, and what an insult to the woman that I created you to be. Be the “crazy” one to do the culturally offensive work of Jesus - not to be liked but to be a coworker in bringing his Kingdom.

But remember: it’s not so much about who Jesus wants you to be as it is about you discovering who Jesus is — remove yourself from the focal point. Who is Jesus and how can you be like him? Stop asking “who am I?” and “can I get Jesus’s stamp of approval of my plans — and while he’s at it — a guarantee of love, comfort, and safety?” This is not a transaction or a rewards system; it is a relationship.

Archaeologists do not uncover ancient ruins all at once — they do so piece by piece, brush stroke by brush stroke, square inch by square inch. They would destroy the integrity of the remains if they got ahead of themselves, trying to excavate them all at once. To protect and preserve that which they are discovering, they have to be patient and proceed with great intention and care.

Stop trying to know more than what I have for you to know in this one day. You do not make yourself ready for tomorrow, I do. I cannot and will not be rushed in this process because you can only handle what I have for you one day at a time, one moment at a time. You are not ready to excavate the entire treasure, the entire ancient city, when all you worked on yesterday was brushing off one brick.

Do not be angry with me for this. I am protecting you. You are not required to know more than what I have for you to know in a day; you do not fail by only knowing what my will is for you in the present time. Your obedience is only applicable today — your intention to be obedient in the future earns you nothing — it is not a cheat code to more access to future revelation. Why worry about tomorrow’s obedience when the only obedience you have control of is the obedience of now?

I am firm about this not because I am a bully, but because you have not been called to worry or obsess over the details of your life. You waste your energy trying to get ahead of me.

As for your career, get the idea out of your head that I am playing a game of cat-and-mouse with you. I only ask you to be patient for my good plan, which I will reveal to you in due time. I have already revealed to you so much. Do you think I would stop now? I have revealed to you just enough for you to take another step of faith today — no more, no less.

I am not withholding good from you; I am protecting you and positioning you to be daily reliant on me. You know just enough to pursue the passions of your heart and the building of my Kingdom today.

Do not worry about your financial accounts or others’ accounts of your story. Your accounts do not prove whether or not I provide, and their accounts do not prove your identity, value, or worth. Am I not bigger than your debt or human opinion? Have I not parted seas and raised Jesus Christ from the dead?

Do not let yourself be paralyzed by the opinions of others; they don’t determine what’s true - even if they’re the ones speaking the loudest.

The more Jesus spoke, the more unpopular he became, because his message was not of this world. His governance blows our worldly, broken versions of governance out of the water. Jesus’s message challenged people to dethrone themselves, to make their salvation dependent on the grace of an uncontrollable God rather than their adherence to imperfectly-created rules and self-protectionism.

My will is not being withheld from you — it is being revealed to you in just the right increments, in just the right timing. How I long for you to want to know me more than you want to know my will for you. Don’t just be my servant, which amounts to nothing when pursued without me — be my daughter, be my bride. It is not your job to hastily dig up and find my will for you — it is your job to be with me and to be open to my revelation, as it comes, by my timing.

There is nothing of value in being hard on yourself during this time. It does not earn you steps closer to my will for your life. What you perceive as “failures” are not pulling you further out into the wilderness as punishment. Stop thinking you have been “wrong.” Every closed door has been redirecting you to where I want you to be going, and where I want you to be going is into my arms, into my provision. This has not been ten months of failure but ten months of being refined by fire.

You are being refined by fire and I am so pleased with you. You have been so persistent and faithful and I love you. These ten months have been the most successful months of your life by my heavenly standards. I am so proud of you. You are my beloved.

Rest into the knowledge of that today — that is all I ask of you.

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If I don’t write I can’t call myself a writer. I care about racial and gender justice, mental health, and faith. Stick around for what I have to say about it.

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