You know that feeling when you have an itch somewhere and you are trying to figure out what is going on. Basically there are two possibilities. One is that something is wrong – like you have a sliver or something stuck to your skin, or the other is that something is right – you are healing, like when you have been burned and your skin is repairing itself.
Life can be like that. Sometimes we get itchy. Something might be wrong or something might be right. Let’s explore the first option first. It may be that something is wrong. It might be time to move on – maybe the grace for your situation has been lifted. David came to this place with Saul. Remember when Saul first started chucking spears at David. What did he do? He remained in the palace serving the king to whom he had sworn allegiance. (1 Samuel 18) Not me, I think I would have ran the very first time my life had been threatened. Talk about boundaries! For me, it would be easy to justify leaving any position where my boss wanted to literally kill me. But David stayed, at least for a time. Eventually though, at the Lord’s leading he did leave. (1 Samuel 19-20) When we feel itchy, we need to drill down and discern what time it is. What is God saying? David’s story tells us the circumstances may be the same but God may be saying something different from one time to another.
Now the second option. When you are itching something might be right. God may be rebuilding something just like when your skin is repairing itself. It may feel awkward at the time but God may be rebuilding a relationship, transitioning it to a new level of connectedness. Pastor Mike Cavanaugh calls this the “tunnel of chaos”. This too can be tricky and a matter of timing. On the one hand scripture tells us “Iron sharpens iron”(Pr 27:17), “Faithful are the wounds of a friend”(Pr 27:6) so we should always address differences we have with people right? But on the other hand we read “Love covers a multitude of sins” (Pro 10:12, 1 Pet 4:8) Maybe we need to press into the grace to let love cover and trust the Holy Spirit to move in the people around us. What’s a gal to do? The answer lies in relationship. God wants to walk in relationship with you, journeying through the stuff of life. He wants to be a light to your path. He wants to lead you step by step. Maybe one time you talk through things and another you cover in love. Only God knows what is right, and when.
God is not into developing policy practice for each situation so much as He is into relationship. He doesn’t want your life to be dry and dull but exciting as you engage with Him in whatever you are currently walking through. Personally I would prefer a guidebook of clear practices that had a worthy table of contents, but God is not like that. He wants to engage with us and guide us in each situation as it comes.
So, where do you itch? What does He want you to do – Something? Nothing? Wherever you are at you can know for sure He has a plan. It may be to move, it may be to rest. It may be to talk, it may be to trust. Whatever He has for you will only be known to you as you lean into Him in faith! You can trust Him! Go ahead – take your stuff to Him and ask Him for His plan! Then move confidently in what you believe He is saying. Don’t worry about being wrong, He isn’t afraid of that and will walk with you through that as well. You’ll probably get itchy!