Bangin' On God's Door
I’ve received several e-mails asking where I got the idea to launch The Seed of Hope, and why I did it. I guess it’s time for me to tell you this story…
This past September I was in a bit of a funk. Business in our hair salon was a bit off, we’d just found out that our son Brian and his wife Christina wouldn’t be making the trip from Virginia to be at home for Christmas, and I hadn’t received any invitations to do presentations for Redken (the hair care people). And most importantly, I was passing up opportunities to share my faith with others (which I rarely do). I remember thinking “This must be what quicksand is like; the more I try to get out, the deeper I get.” I wasn’t depressed, but the spirit and passion that are my constant companions were nowhere to be found.
Jackie and I planned on spending a long weekend at our lake house (about forty-five minutes from our home in Birmingham), and I hoped that the time away would get me back on track. Before leaving, I quickly scanned my collection of books, looking for one that may give me some insight. My eyes settled on Don’t Leave God Alone, a book that a friend had given me months earlier. I’d never taken the time to read it, because I spend time with God every day in prayer, so I didn’t really think that I needed it.
We were at the lake house from Friday evening through Sunday evening, and I had a lot of time for prayer, meditation, and soul searching. Unfortunately, none of it worked, and I came home as bad, if not worse, than before we left.
Our salon is closed on Mondays, so I was able to spend the next morning and a majority of that day in my “prayer chair”, still searching for answers. Late in the afternoon my thoughts turned to the book, the one that I still hadn’t read; it was still in my travel bag. I retrieved it, sat down, offered a quick prayer asking for clarity, and began reading…
Thirty pages in, and I had already gotten the message (actually two of them) that this book held for me:
God wants to have a daily relationship with us.
No, I’m not talking about daily prayer, which I think is essential in keeping us connected to God. I’m talking about the kind of relationship that you have with a friend, which includes conversation, fellowship, sharing, and laughter (yes, laughter). It is through that kind of relationship with Him that we come to understand who He is, what He is, and what He can do for us; we come to know Him.
There are times when you just have to tell God the way it is!
Okay, stay with me on this one. The book cited the instance of Moses on Mount Sinai with the burning bush waiting to get his copy of the Ten Commandments. From this point on I’m gonna use the movie (of the same name, which I’m going to assume that you have seen) as a reference point. And I’ll warn you that I’m going to paraphrase a bit.
So Moses (Charleston Heston) is on this mountain, and those following him (the Israelites) were at the base of the mountain having a party…I mean, they were par-ty-ing…a false idol (a golden calf), drunkenness, and adultery…all the wrong stuff!
God gets really mad! And He tells Moses, “I’m going to destroy these people and build you a fine city.”
To which Moses responds, “Come on God, You can’t do that. These people love You. They’re Your followers. They’ve been wandering through the desert waiting for You to show them the Promised Land. They just got a little off course. Have mercy on them.”
Well, we know the rest of the story; God did indeed have mercy on the Israelites, and they did indeed eventually reach the Promised Land. Moses pretty much changed God’s mind about the fate of the Israelites. Or was that part of God’s plan?
Tuesday morning; 5:00
I rolled out of bed and headed straight for the kitchen and my “prayer chair.” I don’t know how long I had been in prayer when I thought about Don’t Leave God Alone.
The next thing I know I pacing in the kitchen, having one of those conversations with God. It went something like this:
“Look God, two and a half years ago I made a commitment to being a soldier of Christ, to do Your bidding, to boldly share what You have done in my life with others, and to walk through any door that You open for me. Well, You’ve opened some doors, and I’ve walked through them, and I appreciate what You’ve done, but I tell You, they’re not opening fast enough, and I’m tired of waiting! I’ve been knockin’ on Your door every day for over two years, and I’m not gonna knock anymore! I’m gonna BANG on Your door! Everyday! I’m not goin’ away! I’m gonna be the fly in Your ointment, a pain in Your side! You put this fire in me, and I can’t control it! So would you give me some clarity as to what I should do, or would You teach me what else I need to learn, or give me a platform from which to speak, or would You point me in the direction of another door, or would You just drop a car on my head and let me forget this silly notion of taking Your message to all nations?”
I realized that I had been on a rant, that it had been directed at God, and that I had actually lost my temper…with God!
Embarrassed and ashamed, I lowered my head and went back to my prayer chair. Just before I sat down I raised my eyes to the heavens and added “I’m sorry I lost my temper, but I meant every word of it.”
Tuesday morning; 11:00
I had an appointment with Jason Fill, the guy that designed and set up the website for our salon. I wanted to get his opinion on some ideas that I had for making the site more attractive and user friendly.
I opened the document folder in my laptop…this laptop…positioned the cursor (arrow) over my proposed changes, and tapped the Enter key.
Oops…wrong document! I had mistakenly opened a journal that I began when this spiritual journey began. I turned to Jason with a look of amazement and said “Dude, I need a website!” Looking at me as if I had lost it, Jason replied “You already have a website.” Shaking my head in disagreement, I explained, “No, I need a website for God.”
Wednesday morning; 6:00
The first thing I did on Wednesday was go to my laptop, log on to the Internet, and with trembling fingers, typed www.theseedofhope.com . Lo and behold, there was a temporary banner announcing The Seed of Hope! Less than 24 hours after my rant, God had opened a door!
How about you?
Is there something that you’ve been asking God for, something that you’re still asking for? Keep asking Him…consistently…persistently…and boldly! If it’s consistent with what He has planned for you, and you keep on bangin’, who knows? He may just be waiting to be sure that it’s what you really want! Maybe that’s part of His plan for you.
The Seed of Hope launched on October 31, 2008. I haven’t checked in a couple of months, but the last time I did there had been close to 2,000 visitors from all over the world. And you know what? I’m still bangin’ on God’s door every morning, asking Him to open new doors for me! Not gonna stop either; not while there are people who don’t know Him.
See you next Monday!