So today’s chapter talks about Developing Your Friendship with God and the chapter starts out saying this, “You are as close to God as you choose to be.” And that short sentence stuck with me while reading this whole chapter. I love that God gives us choice but sometimes its hard to deal with, because its with things like this that I know that I am my only hindrance to the relationship with God that I want. It’s kinda like that quote that declares, “you are your own worst enemy.” However, the chapter is also clear to share that though God wants to be our friend and that God wants us to be honest and open with Him this open friendship does not make us equal with God.
Rev. Warren shares
Can God handle that kind of frank, intense honesty from you? Absolutely! Genuine friendship is built on disclosure. What may appear as audacity God views as authenticity. God listens to the passionate words of his friends; he is bored with predictable, pious clichés. To be God’s friend, you must be honest to God, sharing your true feeling, not what you think you ought to feel or say.
This is something that I can understand but at the same time I feel that it is a balance. I want to be able to be honest with God and say, “I don’t like this.” But I also feel that if I don’t say those pious clichés that I won’t be able to move from one trial to the next. In college, a woman in Student Affairs had this phrase she would share with incoming Freshwomen, “Fake it Till You Make It.” And this stuck with me in school, it helped that she created a tune to go with the phrase :), but I have used this with my walk with God. If I didn’t feel God’s presence all the time…I “faked it till I made it.” Over time, my ability to “feel” His presence increased and the time it takes to get there faster. When I felt weird about praying more often or about a certain topic, I “faked it till I made it.” Again, over time the prayers sounded less “weird” and I got more comfortable in it…well until I challenged myself to go to the next level (One of my favorite quotes ever is, “comfort is the enemy of achievement.”So I try not to get too comfortable in these things).
Well one, I actually added prayer alarms (something I said to myself yesterday that I wanted to do). Two, I need to push myself to express “what’s wrong” with God. Like I said yesterday, I view God by default as this all mighty being up high putting out his wrath if you step out of line and I know that this view that I grew up with hinders my ability to completely embrace God as a friend. It also hinders my ability to share not just the good and how much I appreciate God and what he does but to also say, “why isn’t this happening?” “why do I have to go through this?” or even “I don’t like when…” If I could move towards doing this even once a month it would be progress.
One song that I have had “stuck” in my head while reading recent chapters is “I am a Friend of God.” I really like this song and the nice reminder that God is our friend as well as our Lord. I really do hope and pray that someday I become more comfortable within my friendship with God.