When was the last time you told God how you really felt? Not the last time you spoke to Him, but the last time you bared your soul and told Him exactly how you felt? It seems every time someone is asked “How are you?”, a “I am fine” or something similar is guaranteed. We have become very good at masking our feelings, our innerselves, and unfortunately we take that into our relationship with God as well. Sure we talk to Him at different times, but how many of those prayers were petitions for things on our laundry list of needs? If we didn’t have physical and/or material needs that we have to rely on Him to meet, would we find a reason to talk to God?
These thoughts came to mind as I read David’s cry, “Have mercy upon me, O LORD; for I am weak” (Psalm 6:2a, KJV), and it occurred to me that we could just as easily substitute a number of words in place of “weak”. For starters, how about “worried”, “frustrated”, “angry”, “discouraged”, “fearful”, “troubled”, “overwhelmed”, “heartbroken”? For some of us, these are emotions that often go unacknowledged in our prayer times because we fail to realize and appreciate that God cares about how we feel. This is even more important in these challenging economic times when despite our best intentions we find ourselves troubled by life’s uncertainties. However, regardless of whatever emotions we experience, we can rest assured that “as parents feel for their children, GOD feels for those who fear Him. He knows us inside and out, keeps in mind that we’re made of mud” (Psalm 103:13-14, The Message). In other words, nothing about what we feel or the way we feel will surprise Him. Read that sentence again. How can we hide our thoughts from the One who sees, knows, and understands our every thought? (See Psalm 94:11; 139:1-3).
Someone may ask: “If nothing surprises God, why do we need to tell Him still?” One of the characteristics of functional relationships is vulnerability, the state of being vulnerable or exposed. It speaks of trust. In our natural relationships we want the people we care about to “expose” themselves to us when they are having those valley experiences that seem to sap their mental, emotional, and physical resources. Truth be told, we are hurt if they do not trust us enough to share those difficult times. It is that same kind of open relationship that God desires to have with us; one in which we trust Him enough to tell Him not only what is going on with us, but exactly how we feel.
From personal experience I can assure you that there is no greater balm for the soul than to bare our soul to the One who invites us to do so. The next time you speak with your heavenly father, why not give it a try?