I woke up this morning, and everything felt a little bit different. Typically my REM cycle far surpasses my alarm, but this morning, my mind was triumphant over the snooze button, and I was ready to go. It was this overwhelming sense of alertness and readiness. It was like someone reached into the fog of my sleepiness, and inserted an IV of caffeine, before I was even awake.
As I continued my morning, I found myself slipping into the motions of sleepiness. It was almost as though because the people around me were tired I subconsciously thought that I needed to be tired too. I gathered together all of my “fight the yawning” supplies- my coffee, my naps, my music, and I waited until I felt “rested enough” to continue with my day. The funny thing is, I wasn’t actually tired. I just forgot what it felt like to be awakened.
I kind of feel like Jesus gave me a morning like today to remind me of spiritual awakening, and how easy it is for me to forget what He’s opened my eyes to and the vision He’s given me.
In His faithfulness, He awakens me- he opens my eyes, gives me breath, and then reminds me what I am called to. There’s not much that compares to the first few moments when you know that God’s awakened something in your heart for the first time. The clarity and discernment of calling is on your fingertips like driving a car for the first time, you could drive and drive for hours, until you run out of gas. You’re refueled, reminded, and ready to walk forward.
However, as days and weeks, and months pass- it’s easy to forget the feeling of that awakening. It’s easy for that awakening to get blurry- it gets lost in the midst of your social calendar, the business of life, a media saturated society, and the desire to be everything to everyone. And eventually, you find yourself weary, restless, and seeking purpose again. You find yourself needing to be reawakened.
The beauty is that in the midst of the blurriness of our distractedness, God speaks with His voice of clarity and wisdom. He whispers, reminds, and redirects with words of love and truth. He desires awakening for us, in fact, He fights for it for us. He desires for us to go deeper with him, and recognizes that depth begins with awakening, and He knows that awakening is often somewhat muted in our chaos.
So even when we’re tired and distracted and weary, He faithfully, wake us up, again, and ask us to walk deeper with Him.
One of God’s greatest ways of depicting awakening in scripture is through the use of water. In the Old Testament, we are given the prophetic image of a River flowing from the Holy temple. In his vision, Ezekiel is walking through the temple of God. He first sees a small trickle of water, and as He continues to walk through the temple, the water goes from a trickle, to ankle high, to knee deep, to reaching his waist, and then eventually the water led to a river that was deep enough to swim in. In this river were fish of every kind because the water that flows in it makes the salt water fresh. Even the fruit on either side of the bank was plentiful.
“Fruit trees of all kinds will grow on both banks of the river. Their leaves will not wither, nor will their fruit fail. Every month they will bear fruit, because they water from the sanctuary flows to them.”
I love this image because it’s easy to forget about the small trickle of water. It’s easy to be distracted by the end result, and forget about how every body of water starts with just a few drops of water.
God typically awakens us with just a few simple words, that come often enough to make the hairs stand up on the back of your neck. But, after that, He asks us to walk forward. He asks us to walk through the deep water, and seek His awakening in the midst of it. The end result of leaning into awakening and pushing through the distractions of spiritual sleepiness is always rushing living water, God’s faithfulness, and trees that bear fruit in every season.
So, allow that awakening to truly wake you up. Throw aside the distractions, and in the midst of spiritual weariness, look for the trickle - it always leads to depth.