*Words can say so much, but words + an image + music can say more.I suggest listening to Faded Memory by Planéte.
“Lord, my heart is not proud; my eyes are not haughty. I don’t involve myself with matters too great or too awesome for me to grasp. Instead, I have calmed and quieted myself, like a weaned child who no longer cries for its mothers’ milk. Yes, like a weaned child is my soul within me. O Israel, put your hope in the Lord-now and always.” -King David, (Psalm 131)
In the past month, my conversations with God have resulted in little more than the same repetitive image burned into my mind. It is that of a parent with their child resting across their heart as they rock their baby back and forth and back and forth. I saw an old wooden rocking chair, a cozy room, and just the parent and child. I knew that in this illustration, I was the tiny newborn in the arms of the infinite Father, Yahweh. Over and over again the image would replay whenever I sat down to pray until I became a little offended with what I was seeing.
Are you saying that I am infantile, Lord? Are you suggesting that after these many years of life with You that I am not even a child that can walk yet? I mean, I enjoy the nearness to You, but am I still so immature in my faith?
He didn’t respond. He just smiled an almost smug smile and kept rocking me still. Back and forth and back and forth. For weeks this was my prayer life. I’d want to talk about something—anything—but there was only this. Back and forth and back and forth. Over the course of a few days I began to settle into the vision; what else was I to do? Once I humbly accepted my position in His arms I began to sense His great enjoyment. His singing, humming, over me. Nearly giddy, and definitely not in a hurry.
Unlike us, He enjoys the process because He can see the greatness of something to come even while it’s in its premature state. He knows the omega of our lives and therefore knows to not despise the day of small beginnings. He is filled with wonder over every inch of our journey. It is us who discount ourselves because of our weaknesses.
Back and forth and back and forth. As we rocked, my spirit was impressed with the above scripture of Psalm 131. The more I meditated on this passage the more I felt a rising blush on my cheeks. He wasn’t calling me immature at all. To be, as David writes, a weaned child is no elementary thing. The child has no great aspirations other than to satisfy their very natural hunger. They have known no other way but by the milk of their mother to keep their life sustained and desires eased. The babe had come to expect the routine and the nurturing. Then, when the time for nursing had come to an end, the child has to face one of its first hardships: he must learn to redirect his appetite towards a greater means of infilling.
David is speaking of those cravings of the soul that come so strong and so great and so naturally. It is the natural hunger for self-will, pleasures, worldly gains, and entitled aspirations. David wrote this psalm because he had learned to be content with where he was in the process. He had learned to trust God enough to provide sustenance for him—even if it looked like an entirely different way than what he was used to. He’d learn to deny himself comfort, knowing that the weaning of one appetite would only transpose his desires into a more lustrous feast, beyond what he could think or imagine.Now, all that he had once suckled on seemed dry, insufficient, and childish. No longer was there a cry for his ‘mothers milk,’ but a hope to sit at the banquet table with family and dine on the meats and wine reserved for those who have learned the secret of just being able to rest on the chest of their Father. Back and forth and back and forth.
Sometimes our greatest compliments may come in what looks like criticism. He was showing me that I was actually maturing in a mighty way, not “stuck” as a baby. Instead, I’m living out the product of coming from a formless-womb place and into a position of rested royalty. A new set of thirsts have taken over me. I love how Spurgeon puts it,
“ He is no longer angry with his mother, but buries his head in that very bosom after which he pined so grievously: he is weaned on his mother rather than from her…It is a blessed mark of growth out of spiritual infancy when we can forego the joys which once appeared to be essential, and can find our solace in Him who denies them to us…”
Sometimes our royal thrones are rocking chairs. You may feel like you aren’t getting anywhere, but really there is a growth happening that is truly miraculous if you’ll have the mind to see it as He does. If you find yourself being the child that is anxious and fretful of the change and process of where your life circumstances are, I dare you to look again. He’s hidden a compliment in what seems like criticism. There’s a miracle in the impossible. There’s a gem in the dirt. There’s an invitation to try a bite of something you’ve never before tasted. He isn’t annoyed at our baby steps of maturity and isn’t sighing wondering why we aren’t further along. He is our joyous Father making every day a celebration.
Abba Father, I thank You that Your voice is always one of encouragement and joy. May we have ears to hear the delight in your voice as you sing lullabies over the timeline of our lives. May our perspectives and perceptions align with Your worldview—where all is well and becoming more well. I thank you that, when we are a child at rest on your heart, then we are closer to inheriting kingdom vision than we ever were playing dress up in pharisee robes<. Grace us to celebrate the little things. May we no longer desire after the things that are natural, carnal, or earthly, but may our palates become refined towards that which is supernatural and otherworldly. May our souls be like a weaned child within us. We put our hope in You Lord, now and always.
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