God grabbed my attention this morning. I was on the bus, just entering downtown Dallas, when the all too familiar “ding” echoed throughout the vessel’s PA system, followed by a techie female voice declaring “Stop Requested.” It was in this “ding” moment that I felt God prompting me to listen to what He was placing in my heart.
Sometimes, I wish that His still, small voice was amplified by this loud “Ding! Stop Requested” declaration. You know, those times when your thoughts and emotions are running rampant, causing you to lose focus on what’s truly important in this life…”Ding! Stop Requested!” Reminding you to breathe in, regain your godly focus, and do whatever it is you need to do in this moment according to how God would have your respond/react. Pray, praise, release, receive, acknowledge, accept, forgive, or just plain let it go and give it to God.
Or, what about in those moments of judgment? When you’re looking upon someone (a child of God) and criticizing or condemning them for not being what YOU feel they should be, wear, do, say, act, believe, befriend, etc. Wouldn’t a “Ding! Stop Requested” be incredible to receive from Him in these moments?! A “Stop Requested” from God, allowing you to realize the path of hatred and self-righteousness you are about to choose, not only for yourself, but for those around you participating in, and increasing the momentum of, the downward spiral.
What about a “Stop Requested” for those times when you’ve allowed your own foolish pride to keep you from having a relationship with someone? A reminder to humble yourself, ask for forgiveness for the things you are responsible for, and then releasing them for the things they are responsible for, regardless of whether or not they have asked for such forgiveness. This “Stop Requested” would save so many relationships, be it marital, friendship, or in any other relationship in our lives. But instead, some choose (yes it is a choice) to allow bitterness, resentment, pride and selfishness to overpower the “Ding! Stop Requested” call of Christ, and allow that relationship to dissolve and die. Sometimes we think it’s easier to walk away from, avoid, or hit “delete,” rather than to heed the “Ding! Stop Requested” call of Christ to restore or heal.
We think by divulging our disapproval of someone to those who are willing to listen to us (those who won’t listen to that “Ding!” either), to those who justify our own feelings, that they will somehow overpower the “Ding!” resonating in our heart. All the while knowing, full well in our hearts, that it won’t, which in turn develops, cultivates and breeds bitterness, resentment and self-righteousness. Brutal cycle to endure.
It has always amazed me how easy it is for some people to just walk away from another. And over what? A misunderstanding? A difference of opinion? Hurt feelings? A judgment by YOU? People in committed relationships, friendships or families that have the ability to just flip an emotional switch within them and just be done. Like it never happened. No loss, no gain. Pride seeded so deeply in their heart that they would rather just disappear or move on, rather than humble themselves, soften their heart, and offer an explanation and ask for forgiveness. A life of hurt will do this to a person. A life of perpetual disappointment, fear, and loss. A life of abuse by those who have had a life of the same.
I used to be this person. I am thankful I no longer have that “off switch,” but it sure is hurtful to know those that do, and to have those that have it use it against me. Once upon a time, I could just “chalk it up” or “write it off” to experience sake. Well, I’ve experienced all of that in my lifetime that I ever want to, and I’m truly grateful that “experience” has been replaced with God’s “Ding! Stop Requested.”
Children of God recognize His “Ding! Stop Requested” admonitions. He just leaves it up to us to make the choice to listen, or to disregard them. It’s your choice. Choose wisely.
When you choose your choice, you choose your consequence. I choose God, and I choose to continually pray and ask for all the “Ding! Stop Requested” moments He will afford me.
Father God, thank You for sending me Your “Ding! Stop Requested” and I pray I will get off at each and every one of Your stops!! In Christ’s Name I pray. Amen.
Deanna Clardy. February 13, 2013