One of the speakers at The Influence Conference this past weekend talked about the importance of the spoken word. Sure, writing or blogging or emailing or texting or journaling or praying are all ways of conversing and can still hold sweet, strong, important exchanges, but there is something about the words actually being spoken.
It should come as no surprise to you by now that I love meeting new people and I love truly getting to know them. I was so excited to meet other women at the conference and hoped to have lots of conversations exchanged with one-time strangers, now new friends. At some point, I may go into detail on those conversations, but it’s important that you know right now – this past weekend was full of them, and it was so incredibly special. It was a lot of energy being exchanged, as talking often does that, but I was soaking all of it up completely – learning as much as I could about each person I met.
On Saturday evening, after a full day of conversing, I drove to my parents house by myself and was caught off guard by the silence. With no one to talk to, I almost didn’t know what to do with myself. The sun was setting in the sky, beautiful colors splashed here and there, and it occurred to me that while I’d been carrying on meaningful and important conversations with others, there was one conversation with someone I hadn’t had in a long, long time…. and He had been patiently waiting. I smiled as tears welled up in my eyes and then quickly blinked them out so I could keep driving, and I simply spoke the words, “Hi, God.”
This whole time I’d been praying, praying, praying – about everything and anything, thinking ‘oh, I’m communicating with God on a daily basis. I’ve got this whole “routine” down and I give Him praise as quickly as I can between all of the other important things going on in my life. He and I are likethis.’ But to actually have a spoken conversation with Him? One where I’m present and still enough to hear His reply? (Because He will reply. It is a conversation, two sided.) It had been way. too. long. And so, I just drove and shared with Him my favorite parts of the day, slowly speaking the words as I pictured Him intently listening – like a friend you haven’t talked to in forever, who genuinely cares what you think about and have to say. I asked Him for things I’d been too afraid to ask for, for fear I didn’t deserve any of them. He told me: no, you don’t deserve them and there’s nothing you could ever do to deserve them, but through my Grace I delight in gifting them to you, because I think you’re worth everything, and for My glory. I smiled and felt like jumping up and down – it was like a friend who’s just excitedly handed you a gift, and for no reason other than “because you’re loved.”
I told Him ways I’d felt let down – by Him, by others, by myself. I apologized for things He’d given me that I’d been taking for granted. I apologized for the things He’d tried to give me that I straight up pushed away because it didn’t fit “my plan.” I told Him of the things that were important in my life, and then asked Him to show me what things He thinks are important in my life. And His answers? Came instantly, with a promise that He would continue to show me. Our conversation lasted 45 minutes, and filled gaps in my heart that had been unknowingly present for well over a year. All because of a simple hello… to say, I’m back. I’m here. Let’s talk. Like, real talk.
We will have many different conversations with many different people each and every day, all day. Even on the quiet days, when have little conversations with ourselves in our heads. But the most important one we’ll have all day, every day, for the rest of our life on this earth, is the conversation we have with Jesus. Make time for that conversation. If you need to have it right now, He’s already sitting in front of you, with a kind smile, waiting, and truly cannot wait to hear what you have to say. And just remember, it’s as simple as saying, “Hi.” He will answer, with a sweet, “Hello. I’ve been waiting for this with you!” After all, it’s His most important conversation of the day too.