beg the question


(written for Moody Bible Institute’s Day of Prayer, March 1, 2017)

Join me in the questions.

Where are you?

We are reaching in the dark,
Grasping for Your reality,
For some light and hope in this chaos.
Does Your Spirit hover over these troubled waters?

Where were You?

Where were You when?
Why didn’t You?
What are You doing?
Or are You even?
And the world around us asks:
Where is your God?

So it begs the questions,
Are You sleeping?

You are Your own defense,
And it seems circular,
Like the cycles of oppression and death
That assault us every time we open our newsfeeds.
Like the circles that we spin in
Round and round and round in our minds
Mistrusting ourselves, mistrusting others, mistrusting You.

We aren’t even looking for meaning in ourselves or others,
But we are looking for You.

So we beg in question,
Do You care?

“You are Lord.”
And we say it like a mantra or a meditation
In hopes that our words would have You at beck and call, but
You are not tame,
Though we’d like to leash you and parade you before our peers,
Our performing big-game god,
One night only, tickets available at the door
In exchange for prayers and Scripture memorization.

What fools we are.
You are an alarming, searing, unspeakable
Word for which we have no words.

So we need to know,
Why don’t You speak?

When you called us to the chase,
When you asked us to obey,
Maybe we thought – was it wrong to think? –
That You would be with us always to the end of the age.
But perhaps our definition of presence is different from Yours.
Like our minds are.
Our whole lives may be in asking,
And the gradual collapse of our souls into You.

Terrify us,
Burn us alive,
Bring something good from this mess.
And we will yet praise You, our Savior and our God,
Wherever You are.

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