2009/02/04

Look. My Amaryllis is about to bloom. It won't be long now. It has been eager to grow. The directions said I should plant in February. But, a couple weeks ago, it sprouted so I figured I'd better get it in some dirt. Now here it is, grown all straight and tall, about to burst forth.

My dogs and my plants all seem to know what to do. My pig did too. Even the occasional cow, wandered over from the neighbors, seemed to do just what I wanted. -- There was this one incident but it's not relevant.

Overall, it seems like nature knows what to do. Dogs bark, pigs oink, flowers grow. There's something in their DNA that tells them what to do. Even cows stomping through the garden are only doing what comes naturally to them.

For me, it's not so easy. Even if I had magic DNA that directed my every move, there's still the constant thinking about it. What to do next, where to live, how to spend my time. Does my own life, this little thing called me, even have any meaning? And, if it does, how do I know? Can I be sure that it's not all, well, a mere puff?

So self-important. I am so longing to matter. I am afraid that when I die no one will know that I have been here. And, yet, isn't that kind of the point? We know that this world was never meant to be more than a Ferris Wheel ride. But, we want to matter. I mean, I do.

Thy will be done, we plead in the Our Father. For we know that the will of God is to save, the plan is that none of us should perish. But, we are perishing, and weak, and dumb. And, really, what are our little lives for? So, we plead, Thy will be done, don't let it be for nothing that I am here working and trying, failing and trying again. Don't let it be for nothing, don't let me live in vain. Do your will and save me.

Blessedly, the last word of this famous prayer is Amen. We tend not to think about that word too much. Laziness, I imagine. But, we don't have to do all the thinking ourselves. I like what the Heidelberg Catechism says about it. Amen, it says, has more to do with the assurance that God will respond, even though our praying has been inadequate.

Well, if I weren't such a lazy blogger, I'd look it up for you.

Here you go:

It's Question 129
. What doth the word "Amen" signify?:

"Amen" signifies, it shall truly and certainly be: for my prayer is more assuredly heard of God, than I feel in my heart that I desire these things of him.
It's never really about the praying. It's in knowing that we have been heard, that we are in relationship, that we do have a place and it is right here because this is the place where God listens.

It's really astounding when you think about it. God listens to... other gods?...angels? ...saints? ...Abraham? No. God listens to us. When I think on this, I sometimes think that Amen, all by itself, is a pretty near perfect prayer.

It's reaching out, without prescribing answers.

It says that I know your will has been done, that it is being done now, that that it shall forever be done in increasing perfection. It is implied that because I am here, that is God's will. Otherwise, I wouldn't be.

The Reformers may think I am taking liberties. And I am. Be sure of that, I am taking liberties. But, the Reformers are not here and you knew what to expect when you clicked over.

Amen takes all the insecurities, doubts, unconfessed sin, and general blabbedy-ness that I come to God with and says, "Even in in all this inadequacy, I know, I know for sure, even without evidence, that I belong. That my life, though small and hard and short, is not in vain. I know for sure, because You listened."

Amen.

An actually good article about "Amen."

10 comments:

FranIAm said...

Oh Lindy... I am so deeply grateful that this is the first post I have read today.

Amen indeed.

Diane said...

thank you Lindy, wonderful!

As you say, Amen.

Presbyterian Gal said...

My mom, at 82, is pondering what the meaning of her life has been.

I have been thinking on those in the Bible who were God's collateral damage - like the Egyptian plague victims when he was trying to get the pharoah's attention. Because I've lately been feeling like collateral damage.

All in all, I've come to still having no answers as to what's it all about. But I have the best excuse for distraction -I have a wonderful son to raise to adulthood and for me, it does not get better than that. Still and all, I'll need some work for myself.

I think the question of whether or not we matter is a zen one. Of course we don't. Because we do. Thy will be done, indeed.

Thanks for the ride on the Think-Mobile. You come up with the best ones.

Amen.

Jan said...

Amen. Amen. Beautiful words and picture.

Ann said...

We are back in the land of ice and snow - but it has been in the 50s - so who knows! As to mattering - making a difference. It is like the butterfly effect - the very fact of your being here in the time and this place makes a difference - the world would not be as it is without your presence - that's it. The bonus is that you live a faithful life and add immeasurable to each of ours and I am sure more than this merry and not so merry band of heretics!!

Ann said...

And then of course there is Rowan -- who adds to my joy - as I cannot have a dog at this time - I even dreamed about playing with Rowan.

Elizabeth said...

As always you manage to block out all the "noise" and cut straight to the heart of the matter. In the grand scheme, everything else will pass away and in the end all that matters is that God the creator knows who we are.

Let nothing upset you,
let nothing startle you.
All things pass;
God does not change.
Patience wins
all it seeks.
Whoever has God
lacks nothing:
God alone is enough

- St Teresa Avila

I miss you dear friend and your presence has touched my life in ways that you will never know.

Blessings,
Elizabeth

Lindy said...

Elizabeth (above) is my real life friend, the one who goes down to Startbucks with me and hears all my deep thoughts and wacked out theological musings. And she went with me to the doctor when I had to get rabies shots. What a pal!

Catherine + said...

You matter oh so much. I have often mused or asked the same questions about myself, not quite too late but in time, I was told I did matter, and to a good many people. I had NO idea. I just found this blog of yours; I thought the only one you had up was Rowan's. I am so glad to know that this one is hear. I need to put you in my new discoveries widget on Come to the Table, my blog, but you probably already knew that.

Night, Lindy. Sleep well. Guard her well, Rowan...its your job.

Anonymous said...

Lindy,

What a blessing you are! Beba sent me an email and your blog address was attached. Since I am a curious cat, I had to see what you had to say. WOW! Your inspired musings were the Lord's gentle reminder to me that He is there and in control in my sometimes chaotic life.
Please know that you have touched so many people and the Lord truly works through you. I look forward to hearing more.
Your friend in Christ,
Paula(Beba's mom)