Wednesday, 22 February 2012

I give myself away

Hello, God.

I was wondering what to say. Whether to say nothing, or whether to draw to your attention (not that you'd have missed anything so momentous, ha ha) that this will be the two-hundredth time that I've sent you a little letter/prayer/bit of waffle while sitting here at this computer.

I have let it all out two hundred times, or will have when I've finished here today.

I have giggled and wondered and complained and sighed and grumbled and cried and even on occasion I've SHOUTED. I have come to you in every mood that I have experienced and you have always been here next to me. You've never told me that you're too tired to listen to me, or that I'm annoying you, or that I bore you. You've never been anything but supportive and interested and even if now and again I amuse you, I've always felt loved.

Made from smiley stones
from the beach
I know that this milestone doesn't mean anything to anyone but me, who wondered if I could stick at this writing thing. There's no reason why it should.

The thing is, I want to make sure that I don't wander too far from the path with this.

I want to make sure that I don't begin to think that this is mine, my thing. That I'm actually quite good at it, and wasn't that a good idea? And how nicely I put that. And that was quite a cool photograph, wasn't it? And all those sort of self-congratulatory things.

I want to say here at two hundred just as I said at one hundred, and when I first started out, that this is yours. I'm not quite sure how, but this is my little offering and I want to bring glory to you.

I know that you wanted me to do it.

I know that I can't do it without you. I know that I wouldn't experience a single moment's insight, or have a solitary idea without you. I know that it is only because of you that I can make sense of things that I read, or express myself to explore what it is that I think, or feel, or believe. I know that it's you that gives me the words and I have long understood that the reason that I quite often start out in one frame of mind while writing this and then finish feeling so completely different is because of you.

I know that you know me better than I know myself and I understand that my meanderings don't benefit you in any way and yet you are generous enough to bless me through them.  I have made new friends, I have learned from other people and I have learned so very much about myself. Better than any of that I have learned so much about you. I have grown enormously because of your hand on me as I sit here and tap tap away.

I wanted to say thank you but I wasn't sure how to say it and then in church on Sunday we sang this lovely lovely song that I haven't come across before. It says exactly what I wanted to say to you and it seems like a good song to sing to you right now.

I Give Myself Away - William McDowell

Here I am
Here I stand
Lord, my life is in your hands
Lord I'm longing to see
Your desires revealed in me
I give myself away

I give myself away
I give myself away
So you can use me
I give myself away
I give myself away
So you can use me.

Take my heart
Take my life
As a living sacrifice
All my dreams, all my plans
Lord I place them in your hands.

My life is not my own
To you I belong
I give myself, I give myself to you

I give myself away.

Lord God, thank you for all that you give me, all that you teach me, all that you are. Thankyou for the glimpses I see of you, the things you want to show me. I pray now that I might never be so wrapped up in words and ideas or too inward looking to gaze up at you.

I give you all my dreams and plans. The delicate, fragile hopes that don't often get brought out into the daylight; you know them. I lay them down in front of you, because they are yours already. You gave me my life, Lord, and I want to give it back to you. I give you all that I am, the good bits and the bad bits. The bits that I'm proud of and the bits that I'm ashamed of. If I wait until it's all clean and polished to a high shine than I'd wait forever. Also if I wait until I'm willingly surrendering every last bit of my life then I would still be hanging back when I breathe my last. You know the parts that are hard to let go of, Father, there are no surprises for you; you know what I'm like.

And you love me anyway.

You know what I hope for, what I long for, what I'm afraid of. You made me this way. I'm a work in progress. I know that I'm not finished yet, but I also know that you can use me just as I am. I don't have to attain heights of holiness to do something for you and that's why I can echo the words of this song - 'I'm longing to see your desires revealed in me.'

Lord, show me new things. Teach me to find you in everything. To see things as you would have me see them. To hear your voice in the commonplace and the extraordinary alike. To praise you, to show your glory to other people. If ever I'm starting to think that it's because of me, remind me who you are again. I want to be useful to you.

It's all for you, Father God.

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