In the writing process I often hit one revelation from twenty different angles. In the editing process I often have to pull out entire sections so as not to lose the reader. Below is one of the sections that was edited out, a B-side if you will, from my forthcoming book, Prone To Love
Tell Her How I See Her
I was just about to pack up to leave Starbucks. I had been writing. Anthony Skinners song, Wide Open, was playing through my headphones.
“Lord we come to you, with hearts wide open…”
“Hey Jason!” A friend was walking in the door.
“How are ya?” I smiled as I pulled the phones away from my ears.
“I’m good,” she said, as she made her way to where I was standing. She is one of my coffee shop friends; a young, hip, always-encouraged believer.
But she wasn’t good. I could see it in every line on her face and every shift of her shoulders.
“Really?” I asked with a clear question.
“No, I guess not” Her distress slipped past her attempt at a smile. She began to share. She was facing some serious life challenges, sickness in her family, a financial hardship, and a relationship question. It was altogether overwhelming.
Anthony’s song was running through my spirit, “Lord we come to you, with hearts wide open…”
“Can I pray for you?” I asked.
“Please.” She said.
I took a breath and was about to pray for all the needs she had just brought to my attention when God interrupted me. Speaking to my heart in a strong commanding way He asked, “Jason, what are you doing?”
I was a little confused. I thought it was obvious. She had made it pretty clear, she had some serious needs…” Gods question seemed odd.
While the young woman stood with her eyes closed waiting for me to pray, I spoke to God in my heart. "I am praying for her needs, You know, Thy Kingdom come.”
God responded immediately, “Your relationship with others can’t be determined by their needs.”
Wow, “that’s profound” I thought. He continued. “Tell her how I see her.”
I began to laugh. "Thats a great idea God!" I thought.
So I changed course and while she stood waiting, I asked our Father how He saw her. It was good and I laughed again. At this point about a minute had passed. When I started laughing the second time my hipster friend opened her eyes and looked at me strangely.
As I began to pray out loud her expression became confused. Probably because she had been expecting a prayer that would cover her needs but instead I was telling her that our Father saw her as pure and righteous and all together lovely. While I’m sure it was a nice thing to hear, at first it seemed out place - odd.
As I faithfully relayed our Fathers perspective she began to cry. And when I told her how God saw her as faithful and trustworthy with the greater longings of His heart, she began to weep.
I smiled to tears. There is no greater privilege than revealing to another person how the Father loves them.
After about twenty minutes she was able to talk. Her whole persona was different, she was bright eyed, cheerful, and filled with expectation. That was when our Father invited us to pray for her needs. I listened as she prayed powerful prayers, the kind of prayers that spiritual giants pray.
“All our love wide open, open for you…”
Anthony sang heaven over us while we reveled in the goodness of God.