“Listen to my words, Lord, consider my lament.” (Psalm 5:1 NIV)
Definition is key to interpretation. When you are having a conversation with someone, you have to make sure you’re talking about the same thing. For instance, I had a conversation with a friend once about a light. I was talking about a table lamp, my friend was talking about a car headlight. We didn’t realize until well into the conversation, we were talking about two different things. Miscommunications happen easily. Wrong definition equals wrong interpretation.
Wrong definition equals wrong interpretation.
When we’re talking to God, he never misunderstands. He knows exactly what we mean when we pour our heart out to Him. God understands our hearts so well, we don’t even need words to communicate with Him:
“All my longings lie open before you, Lord; my sighing is not hidden from you.” (Psalm 38:9 NIV)
I learned the reality of this verse when one of my best friend’s moved. Her and her husband were planting a church 7 hours away. We had grown very close in the few years we had known each other. Living so far apart was hard to accept as reality for both of us. The dynamic of our friendship was going to change drastically. We both knew a chapter was ending. We didn’t have words to voice our feelings, instead we sighed. God knew the definition of every sigh. No further words needed.
When we’re talking to each other, we need to work at understanding. We have to look for points of agreement from which healthy conversation can flow. When we talk to God, we don’t have to work as hard. We just need to show up, making ourselves present to Him. We can let our sighs flow heavenwardly, knowing He understands the meaning.
My mom sighed. One of the most vivid memories I have of her is sighing. Usually right after one of her imperfect children dropped some type of bombshell on her. Like the time I came home at Thanksgiving and showed her my new tattoo. She sighed then. Or when I confessed I’d flunked out of school, another sigh. Dad’s diagnosis of cancer resulted in lots of sighs. Now I know why she sighed. She didn’t have words to define her feelings.
When you don’t have words to define your feelings, just sigh. Know that the language between you and God is one that He wrote. He created a special love language only the two of you understand. Take a deep long breath, breath He gave you. Then let the soft swish of air release your cares to God. He has an answer to your unspoken question. An answer that starts with grace and ends with love.
If you don’t have words, just sigh.
Question of the Day:
When’s the last time you sighed?
Further Reading: 1 Chronicles 4:5-5:17 NIV, Acts 25:1-27 NIV, Psalm 5 NIV, Proverbs 18:19 NIV