I forget if it was college or the latter years of high school. Whenever it was, I prayed something really stupid. You see I looked around at many of my friends that were able to do whatever they wanted to do and it seemed they were able to do it without even a tinge of guilt. Not me. I had what seemed like an angry bear of conviction that would pummel my soul and emotions whenever I would engage in sinful activities. My prayer in that day was that the Lord would simply leave me alone and let me do what I wanted to do without feeling so badly.
Stupid…stupid…stupid prayer. I was basically praying the Lord’s judgment on myself and I did not know it. I was acting like the Lord’s vineyard in Isaiah 5 and praying that the Lord would treat me the same:
I will make it a waste;
it shall not be pruned or hoed,
and briers and thorns shall grow up;
I will also command the clouds
that they rain no rain upon it.
(Isaiah 5:6 ESV)
As I read through Isaiah 5 this morning I was reminded of my ignorance. I was painfully reminded that Isaiah 5 ought to be my story. There is absolutely nothing within me that does not deserve to be carried off and banished just as these Israelites were. I deserve for the Lord to not prune me, to lay me to waste, and to have His anger stretched out against me. I even prayed for it.
Thankfully the Lord in His grace disregarded my foolish prayer. He continued to hound me and prune me. He is molding me and shaping me into the creation of His desire. I am a vineyard…a stubborn vineyard…that He is radically dedicated to. Even His dry and painful seasons are meant for my redemption. May I think Him for every moment of His work.
If you are being convicted by the Lord today thank Him for it. Do not be dumb like I was years ago and pray for the Lord to remove His rod of conviction. Thank Him that He is still pruning you. And remember His uncomfortable grace is still grace.