Upwardly Dependent » walking the delicate balance of absolute truth and overwhelming grace.

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Chasing God and Shutting Up

I’ve been chasing God for some time now.

Hey, God. Here I am. Send me. Use me. Tell me what you want me to DO.

At times in my life, perhaps I’ve had clear vision. But I feel like I’m standing at a crossroads asking yet again, What is Your purpose for me, Lord?

Am I supposed to be a teacher? A community development professional? A human trafficking abolitionist? An adoption advocate?

Am I just supposed to sit at home, create an Etsy shop, and manage my family?

It’s frustrating to be stuck between the Want To and the Unknown. Sometimes I wish I were walking through Wonderland with “Eat Me” and “Drink Me” signs marking each of my designed steps.

Last weekend, I was blessed to hear the Lord speak through some humble women at the IF:Gathering. The thoughts I’ve been wrestling with for several months could hide no longer, as vivid Gospel Truths spilled from the lips of Jennie Allen, Christine Cain, Ann Voscamp, Sarah Bessey, and Rebekah Lyons. {You can watch this event’s recording through midnight tonight!}

They pricked my heart. I’ve been chewing on them for several days. And now it’s time to confess.

I’ve done a lot of talking. I mean a WHOLE LOT of talking. I’ve designed a new blog and professed my own opinions and shared a lot of links.

Quite frankly, I’ve been the loudest in a time of my life when I seriously need to shut up.

I can feel when the Spirit is working through me, and I haven’t felt him for a while now. Ironically, I felt him leave after I posted a story about my husband praying.

A lot of people read it. A lot of people liked my Facebook page. A lot of people followed me on Instagram.

And in that week of crazy {and very humbling} dialogue with readers, my self-righteousness and pride crept back into my heart.

I wrote articles that I thought people wanted to read. Goodness, I even stooped so low as to write one of those What NOT to say to blank posts {which I have since trashed because I’m so embarrassed.}

I have focused on writing to the masses and completely neglected the audience of one right in front of me.

As Sarah Bessey reminded me on Saturday, my life as it stands right now is an altar. God isn’t only interested in USING me…He is interested in BEING WITH me.

Emmanuel:Jesus:God with us.

I find it absolutely un-ironic that the Lord is speaking to me in this moment. This particular weekend.

I am exactly forty days away from my move to Southeast Asia.

Forty days…God does big things in peoples’ hearts in forty days.

Noah on the Ark.
Moses on Mt. Sinai.
12 Spies in Canaan.
David and Goliath.
Jesus in the Wilderness.

I confess to each of you that I have lost my focus. I’ve spent too much time using Scripture to defend what I want it to say, and not enough time allowing Scripture to mold what I say.

My speech has lost its savor.

I confess that my life is incredibly hectic with little time for solitude and rest.

My heart is hungry for Greater Truth. My soul feels starved for God’s Wisdom. My heart yearns to be filled with a love so powerful it can move mountains and stir people to action.

These things can only be given as gifts from My Savior. And I’m imploring Him to move through His Word into my being.


I am committing my next forty days to greater focus on my King. Call it a ‘blogging fast’ if you will, but it’s time for me to stop talking and it’s time to start listening.

I desperately need retreat…an escape from site analytics and follower updates and comment moderation. I need a retreat from my own selfish ambition and pride.

Please don’t hear these words as my being ungrateful. I am so thankful for everyone who blesses me with a dialogue of sharing the things of my heart. I’m honored each time someone shares this blog with a friend.

Thank you for reading. Thank you following our story. You have all been so kind and have extended so much grace to me through your generous words.

We need one another, brothers and sisters. We are empowered by mutual edification.

For me, though, in this place and time, I need more of God. I need to prepare my heart and mind for the Spiritual battle that awaits in my new home. I’ve done such a poor job of allowing Him to speak through me.

I anticipate you will understand. I beg you not to leave my side, and I covet your most urgent prayers.

For the next forty days, I pledge to each of you that I will use the time I typically spend writing on this space for God to instead speak to me through His space: the Word.

I commit to be present. I commit to choose today. I commit to an audience of one.

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I hesitate publishing this post…it seems wrong to tell the world about a time of quiet and rest. I’ll pick up with you soon once we have landed in our new home!



AmberFebruary 10, 2014 - 10:34 am

My dear sweet friend, I love you so much and am so honored to be able to walk through life with you. I am so thankful I can be honest, open, and completely unguarded with you. I am so proud of you. I am praying that you reconnect with God over these 40 days(and beyond) and He fills you with peace, wisdom, guidance, and focus.

Laura Beth LambFebruary 10, 2014 - 10:42 am

God is definitely leading you. It is so nice and refreshing to sit back and listen to God. He does speak so loudly! We are praying for you guys in your move!

AprilFebruary 10, 2014 - 2:03 pm

Precious Lauren! I am so thankful that God has allowed our paths cross. I have been truly inspired by you and your amazing love for GOD! You make me want try harder, to step outside my comfort zone, to strive everyday to show God’s amazing love through my actions. God has done amazing things through you, and will continue you to do so in the years to come if only you keep your focus on Him! I love you so very much. Prayers to you and your precious family during this transition!

Konner Blake DukeFebruary 10, 2014 - 10:36 pm

Our God is powerful! I love you Lauren!

[…] a lot of thinking and planning and teaching without being close to Jesus. If there was one thing my 40-day fast taught me, it’s that I must prioritize my quiet time with Him before any other act of […]