My Magical Genie in a Bottle

“I will praise the Lord at all times. I will constantly speak His praises.”

Psalm 34:1 NLT

Hello friends! I know I had promised this post a few weeks ago, but it just has taken longer to develop than normal. I wanted it to read well so that my heart on the matter would really be explained. I can’t complain much about life on my end since things have been pretty good lately. I know I have said before that 2020 has really been my year of personal growth. Sounds weird, right? I know, but I am thankful in this season that despite the world around me, the Lord has walked with me and saved me from a lot of trials. In this time, though, I have found myself in a state of discovery about my relationship with the Lord, so I wanted to take some time and share that with you all. I can’t imagine that I am alone in these thoughts, so feel free to share your story in the comments below.

You know what I love, I love that I can come before my Father with anything and everything no matter how big or small the issue. He is, of course, our ever-present help in time of need, right? He has listened to me cry, watched me hurt, heard my prayers when asking for His favor and I have felt every moment of it. My encounters have truly been undeniable and un-explainable by anything else…I know He heard me, and I know He answered. If I have needed anything, I have eagerly approached Him with my request and made extra sure that I lived life to absolute perfection…that is, until the prayer was answered. I am not sure if you see the common theme here, but I, for one, only seem to really need to pray and be conscientious when I’ve needed something.

Alright, we are going to reach a new level of vulnerability here as I share some more of my journey and how I have made a few realizations about my walk with the Lord. In past posts I have talked a lot about a prior relationship and the ups and downs that it came with , but I have not shared the ending of that relationship and the mental state that it placed me in. Don’t get me wrong, there were positives to say, but for the sake of my point we will just start here. I was in a relationship with a guy who I absolutely loved and would have done anything for. I was his go to for venting about anything and everything and he knew he could ask for anything and I was there to help. If he had a problem, I was right there to fix it or offer advice. I was dedicated to the relationship to my core. It was exhausting though. You know the magic lamp from Aladdin? Yeah…that’s what I felt like. It was kind of like oh, here you need this, here ya go…oh you want that…yep, here ya go. This went on for about 2 years and it is no surprise that a person only has so much to give. When I ended the relationship, I was devastated and went into a dark place. I was mentally and emotionally exhausted from giving all I had with nothing in return. I felt so used and unappreciated and it broke me down in ways I didn’t know were possible. Recently, I realized that the same way that I was treated in that relationship is the exact way I treat my relationship with the Lord at times. He is my genie in a bottle that can give me what I want.

Ouch. That one hurt to say, but yep, I said it. I know at this point you are either totally seeing yourself in these thoughts or you have reached a level in your walk that you can no longer relate and thinking I am crazy…but I like to think we’ve all been there. Or maybe I think that way to make myself feel better. Sure, He is there in the bad times and when we are in need, but He is also the Father who is ALWAYS there. So why do we…or I…negate to just tell him about my day and praise Him for the good things that happen every day. Why do I not spend time getting to know Him by reading and communicating, yet choose to approach him with the mindset that He will continue to give me anything and everything I want regardless. Why do I feel like I only really need Him when I am in need? I know I have spent several years feeling like I was only wanted for what I did for someone else so I can’t even imagine how He feels when I only come to Him when I need something.

The truth is, He is not some genie in a bottle that we can shake up and wish upon when we need a new promotion, need a new house, or a financial breakthrough. I don’t say that to mean that He doesn’t want us to come to Him for those things, because He does, and He is faithful in caring for His children; but I say that to say He is SO MUCH MORE. A relationship takes so much more than just receiving. Imagine how your relationship with your significant other would survive if it was only based on what you could give the other person. You only spoke when they needed something from you, and they only tried to be the perfect person for you when they just wanted to manipulate you into getting what they want. I can tell you from experience, it will go nowhere and leave you feeling like used trash. Relationships take communication, spending quality time together, trusting and casting your cares and worries upon the other person. Relationships take effort in getting to know one another day in and day out.

I.Have.Failed. Ya’ll I have failed so miserably. So, today I am thankful that He forgives, and He never gives up on me. He’s still there waiting to reveal Himself to me through the pages of His book. He’s still there waiting for me to call him Father and tell Him about my day and ask for guidance and direction for His will in my life. He’s also still there waiting for me to ask for a promotion, a financial breakthrough, a healing, whatever the need may be. He wants it ALL. He wants ME and no matter where you find yourself today, He wants you too. He wants to hear, God I am just not going to come to you with a need, but I coming to you with praise and adoration for all that you have done and all that you are. There are so many layers to our Father that we haven’t even tapped into yet and we won’t be able to even touch the surface of His many wonders as long as we live in the mindset of “God, I am just going to serve you because of what you do for me”. We must invest so much more into the relationship than just being Sunday morning Christians who pick and choose what they want to live by in hopes to just escape Hell. We must approach Him with so much more respect than just a magical genie who can grant our wishes because, He IS SO MUCH MORE.

Dear Heavenly Father,

       Forgive me for the moments of approaching you with a heart that just wanted something. Forgive me for the lack of dedication I have had in learning who you are. Father, I pray for a childlike wonder of being curious of who you are. I thank you for your faithfulness, that even when I fall short, you are there and waiting for me. I thank you that you still have a will and purpose for my life even when I have tried to follow my own path and used you to try and make it happen. Thank you for your protection in the moments that I tried to do it on my own. Thank you for a fresh perspective in realizing that it is never too late to move forward despite the mistakes I have made. Thank you for being a good, good Father.

                                                                                                     -Chris

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