The fourth entry in my journey towards a deeper relationship with God:
“what would be the reason why He would ask you to delete everything youve kept for so long?”
This… is hard.
A couple hours ago, God asks me to do something that is a hoarder’s worst nightmare – to delete a considerable amount of very meaningful stuff off of my computer…
It’s stuff that I look back on. I haven’t in a long while, but knowing that I still can look at it provides me with some odd sort of comfort. I justify it in my head, saying But God, I wanna look back and see how much I’ve grown! Can’t I just keep it… please?
But I hear no response when asking that question.
It is hard, but I follow through with it. I sense it’s what God wants me to do. I can feel some tears welling up in my eyes. I go to the folders he is telling me to get rid of.. and before I can think twice, I get rid of it.
The things I deleted were saved conversations, videos, pictures, etc., with various former flames in my past love life. I knew God was tugging on my heart to stop dwelling on those relationships, especially since I have reconciled my love story and have given him the pen, making him the author and giving him the authority to write the relationships he wants in my life.
Now, this story would be all fine and dandy if it ended there. But it didn’t.
God then asked me to delete the same things from my backup hard drive… permanently.
That’s when the tears started to flow out of nowhere. NOOOOOOOO!!! I begged God. He saw right through me. He knew that I knew I could just re-upload it to my computer whenever I felt like viewing them again. He wanted me to exterminate that which distracted me from him.. by destroying the source.
Ten minutes of crying. Ten minutes of pleading. Ten minutes of soaking my Walking with God book, which by me reading sparked this entire thing. This is the passage that God used to speak to me:
In learning to hear the voice of God, one thing is certain – if you cannot hear a “no,” you will have a hard time hearing God at all or believing what you think you’ve heard is in fact from God. This is crucial – hearing Godrequires surrender, giving all things over into his hands. Notabandoning your desires, but yielding them to God. (p.123)
See, I’m only learning to listen to God’s voice now. So his voice lies buried underneath all my self-talk and inner thinking, which in many cases sound very similar to what God is saying. So for me it is very difficult to discern God’s true voice right now.
I know this is a test.
I know God wants me to do this. And the more I ask for confirmation, the more the words “delete them” appears in my head. I read the passage again. My eyes fix upon the words, “requires surrender,” … and I get it. How can I expect myself to trust God fully on a day-to-day basis when I can’t even get over a hump like this? How can I fail the first test he is giving me in our newfound relationship?
So I open my external hard drive, highlight the files, right click, hover my mouse over delete… and I get a tingling sensation through my arms, head, and heart, followed by a clear and direct prompting that says, “No.”
I begin to think that this is the enemy. So I renounce the spirit of Deception and the spirit of Disobedience, commanding it to leave this place in Jesus’ name.
Nothing really happens. I reflect on the tingling sensation, and I realize that I have felt it before, almost a year ago in fact, when I drew close to God at the ending of a very tumultuous relationship.. it was not the result of oppression by an unclean spirit, but God’s holy love stopping me in my tracks.
Now I’m confused. Wait God, first you want me to delete all this permanently, and now you’re stopping me? What are you up to?
I look one last time at what I’m now potentially deleting. And I wonder to myself, Why is it really so hard to let this go in the first place? What are you trying to reveal to me, God?
There is a person who I was once involved with in the past but, by the grace and beauty of God, has now become one of my closest friends. What I’m looking at right now are old conversations and videos we had back when we liked each other. She is currently on a missions trip, riding camels and changing the world, off in a far distant land with no internet connection.
So I talk to God and say, God, this stuff with her that you’re asking to delete still means a lot to me. if you really want me to get rid of it, I will. But could I at least wait till I get a chance to talk to her about it? She comes home in a few more weeks.
And guess what? I kid you not – less than one minute later, she signs onto facebook! She caught a cab into town, went to an internet café, and signed onto facebook. Talk about divine!
So I tell her what I’m going through. She asks me the question located at the top of this entry. I tell her it is because I dwell on things of the past too much.
Whoa, did I just type that? I didn’t even realize it until just now. I do dwell. I’ve been dwelling. The past. How things once were. All the while I don’t even realize how much people has changed (and for the better) since then. Reminiscing about how people were before is preventing me from seeing the growth they have achieved now. Reminiscing about how I was before is preventing me from the growth God has in store for me.
She gives me her blessing, saying that she is at peace with whatever I decide to do with our history. It’s buried under the blood of Christ anyway. There will always be new and better memories to make as God’s new creations.
I’m at peace too. I still couldn’t believe how she signed on, and how God totally planned it out to help heal and change my heart.
So after talking with her, I’m even more okay with parting with our history. So I open up my external hard drive, go to those files, and I tell God, Just say the word, and I will get rid of this.
But God doesn’t answer. In all honesty, I receive the same mixed responses. It feels right when I ask, God, I should delete this? And it feels right when I ask, God, I shouldn’t delete this?
God instead reminds me of what I read earlier today. In Romans 2, Paul talks about circumcision of the heart. That it is not about having a physical, anatomical evidence, but rather it is about submitting oneself to the total lordship of Christ through one’s heart. In Romans 4, he talks about Abraham’s faith being credited to him for righteousness.
Could this entire episode have been an Abraham and Isaac experience?
I wondered why I cried so much tonight. I felt him tell me that I was being healed. I also felt him say that whatever I chose to do with those files were okay. I feel him telling me that he has already mended my heart, and has changed the way I view my past, thus nullifying the longing effects created whenever I see it. I feel he trusts me with my decision, knowing that my heart has been circumcised before him tonight. They are at least gone from my computer, and I have no intentions of re-uploading them. I don’t even have enough space anymore.
So I decided to keep those files. For now.
I still am not too clear what God wanted from me tonight, whether I did the right thing or not. But what I am learning at this moment is that no matter what I do, whether I succeed or fail God’s tests, it does not disqualify me from saying that I belong to him. I am his no matter what, whether I hear from him or not. I am 100% sure that God is happy with me and how much I am growing in him, and it excites me that I am slowly getting the hang of this ‘talking to God’ thing.