My favorite thing about writing “Autism’s Hidden Blessings,” was that I felt so close to God during the process. So often, I would read Scripture and the perfect verse would be there, one that was exactly what I needed for the chapter I was working on. In fact, I have never felt so close to God as when I wrote that book. It was an awesome and amazing experience. The afternoon I was struggling to finish the first draft so that I could drive it to Fed-Ex to make my deadline, I was so exhausted. But I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that God was there strengthening me. I could tell you more, but I’ll leave it at that.
But I finished that book, and immediately it felt like I had been cut off from that marvelous, awesome connection. Now I know that I was not cut off in truth, but it felt that way. For the previous three years I had been given such a strong vision that I could not deny that God was behind it. And then, God prepared the way for it to become a reality. God provided in every circumstance in wondrously bizarre ways. So it was very difficult for me to come off of that mountain, so to speak. I wanted to stay there forever!
But we can’t, can we? Authentic Christianity means going back into the valleys. The following year after the book was released, I was ready to jump back into writing again. I asked God, “What next?” and was eager to go back to the computer to keep writing.
But God was silent.
I would sit down and hear nothing. The flow of words had stopped. I would sit there dumbfounded and frustrated. Surely God had more! Surely He wasn’t done with me yet!
But God was silent.
Except once. Once in July of 2008, God whispered that He was going to do some “leveling.” Of course then, things were pretty good for us financially. I thought, Great! It’s about time to level the playing field! There is so much corruption in the world, God, go ahead and bring down those who are taking so much advantage of the poor and the needy!
It took me about 6 months, after we saw the bottom fall out in terms of Matt’s work load that I finally got it. God wasn’t going to level OTHERS. He was gently warning me that He was about to level ME.
In this past year we have given up so many things that we once took for granted: medicines, haircuts, dental care, clothing budgets, vacations, weekend trips…I could go on. But in this same year GOD HAS PROVIDED. Every day.
The financial leveling was bad, but worse was God’s silence. It was as if He was saying, “BE STILL.” No book to write. No cool consulting work. Nothing new or out of the ordinary. “JUST BE STILL.”
Listen, that directive is one of the most difficult ones for me to obey. Be still? You mean, God, like sit here and wait? For a year? Possibly longer? God, you realize that we are wasting time? (Silence.) God, You ignited a fire and passion and set it to motion, and now You are telling me to “Be Still?” (Silence.)
I have struggled with this all year. But deep in my soul I know that God does have a plan and that it is going as He intended it to. This is my time to sit and wait. It’s my time to “Be Still.”
I read an article about Christian meditation. It involves focusing on ONE aspect o God. Because I have been so desiring to know what God is up to, I chose to spend 5 minutes focusing only on GOD’S WILL. I set the timer and focused. I thought about ways in which God shared His will with man: through the Bible, through the Spirit, etc. Over and over again, I focused on those two words and only what related to God’s Will.
Suddenly, this verse popped into my mind:
“Be still and know that I am God.”
The verse popped into my mind and quickly faded out, then immediately the timer went off.
What am I saying? I’m saying that it is still my time to stay put. To “Be Still.” And this is hard to do.
I have experienced enough to know that I do not want to go anywhere without God. He is Jehovah Jirah, the Lord Who Provides. I don’t want to take the reins into my own hands. I would just waste my time. No, I’m staying put. For how long?
Only He knows.