I’m sorry it’s been such a long time since I last shared on “Whole Life Worship.” I just stopped writing. I’m trying to figure out why I stopped. Some of it had to do with more responsibilities at church; I was asked to do more preaching and leading, and I just couldn’t find the time to write. But I think a lot had to do with the fact that I had simply “run out of things to write about.”
The “well” had run dry. The till was empty.
So I stopped. Kind of like how Forrest Gump stopped “run-ning” after crossing the country several times, I just stopped “write-ing.” Nothing left in the tank. No more words to say.
Today I find myself on the first day of a new season. What marks this new season is actually something not so good: my kidneys are failing. I have 5% kidney function (a casualty of my diabetic condition of 25 years) and I’m on dialysis. Today I was scheduled to get a kidney transplant, but it was delayed (more on that later). I was very disappointed for the postponement and I wrestled with God about it. I mean, dialysis sucks! (pardon my French – but it really is pretty sucky, like other hard things in life). I hate feeling bloated with 2 liters of fluid in my body 8 hours a day. I’m gaining weight like a blimp and I’ve had allergic reactions to the fluid, leaving my legs and torso raw with scratch marks.
But it was in the midst of this disappointment and confusion and anger that God met me. On the night after I found out that my transplant surgery was postponed, I found myself awake at 3:30am. I was itchy all over and I couldn’t get back to sleep. I was feeling so sorry for myself, and that’s God said to me, “Doug, get up! I’m giving you a restart.” And what happened to me in the next hour was remarkable, insightful and amazing.
So much so, that it was enough to get me back into blog writing! At least, I have enough material to get me started again. And we’ll see where that leads us.
The message for today is that God is a God of “restarts.” We have seasons where we’re humming along, everything is fine and dandy, and then … wham! We get slammed. We get locked up. We stall out. The well goes dry. Our expectations get dashed. We experience “suckiness!”
But the story doesn’t end there. God is still with us. And if we’re open to him, we might hear his small, still voice in the wee hours of the morning saying, “Hey, Dear One! Don’t worry. I’m going to give you a restart. Just listen carefully to what I have to tell you.”
Are you ready for a restart?
“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up, do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” (Isaiah 43:19)