That makes three – not one

Sometimes I take dictation from God Soft Hands Jesus in the literal sense – like as in “taking dictation”.

And just as in “real life” that carries responsibility.  But unlike “real life” checking for accuracy is not as straightforward. The dictation here is a sensory thing.  And as I tap away on the keyboard I have found words appearing that describe a concept and idea not my own (and you would have to believe I am speaking the truth for this to make any sense)  

I know when these “dictated words” move beyond words in my head (words like those I am typing now).  These words I am typing now I know are expressing something in my head.  But this “dictation” … ?

I see something that is not anything I am aware of.  And that – for me – is “hearing”.  It happened last night. A post for Church Set Free and these words:
“Tell them I have no number other than one.”
No Number Other Than One

I have a thing about putting words into GSHJ’s mouth. It always seems to me to be bullying. As in “here is what you going to say GSHJ – and you can’t do a thing about it!” bullying.  So just why does that sentence seem “dictation” to me … ?

Because of the words that followed:
“For if you give you – there can never be “more”.”

They kept me awake last night.

And this morning it seems that GSHJ means this:  that no matter how many “saved souls” I “bring to the Lord, hallelujah!” … no matter how many “disciples” I make … no matter how much I “preach the good news” … no matter how hard I work for God and no matter the results of that hard work … I could always have worked harder, longer, cleverer, more effectively and more efficiently. Or to put it another way: work is not measured by how much you did, but how much more you could (or could not) have done.

And that is “conditional” upon two things: the standard of measurement, and the required jobspec.  It is a “giving of” – but not a “giving all”.

(and I have had someone “give all” several times in my working life – “enthusiastic” I call it … “they add something to the team” we label it – as they ruin yet another opportunity … a piece of machinery … another team member’s efforts … ).

Giving all is not the same as giving what is required.  Giving what is required is conditional upon what is (perceived as) needed.  Giving all is not – which is why “giving all” so often gets in the way of the job.  And then this:

“For if you give you – there can never be “more”.”

That is what GSHJ values above all else – imagine that … !

My “enthusiasm” – my “adding something (not) to the team” – my “ruining someone’s opportunity” … “that” is what my God Soft Hands Jesus desires!  And the weirdest bit of all for me?

I have found that “my all” is perfect for whoever he brings my way.  That my imperfections fit theirs in ways I could never have expected. That their “now” so often turns out to have been my “now” (that I have just been explaining / apologising for / thinking I am waffling on too much).  That the times of life when I thought I was weak are times of strength to them.  The times that they are still in – or still facing – and here I am waffling on about coming out of “it” and moving on.  Because when they speak I hear me in their words.  A part of me and my living that has connections to them without either of us thinking we could or might. And “that” is weird!

So I think our (Christian) fixation with “How many did you bring me?” is wrong – that “getting it right” before acting is wrong – that “that” is not giving all.

That is being conditional.

And if I live conditionally I love conditionally and I hear conditionally.  And then “taking dictation” is not.

It is me deciding which bit of God Soft Hands Jesus I think will work best for you so I can save you and add to my tally.  And that makes three –

Not “one”.




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