The Surprising Discovery of Richard McChurch

by Rod Smith

Richard McChurch was very aware that God’s a communicating God. The still small voice or the thunderous call, and anything in between, (whichever God might choose to use at a given time) was not something to which he often laid claim. When Richard felt God had spoken to him, he was always particular about inserting the words “I believe God spoke to me.” This not only gave him room to be wrong but also the appearance of humility.

One day he had a very unsettling experience. It was as if everything he had ever believed about the way God treats humans was turned upside down.

“What do you really want, Richard?” he believed God asked when he was earnestly praying about a few major decisions.

The question was posed long and hard. It lodged somewhere deep in Richard. There were no voices, no unusual feelings or anything at all weird about the moment. This was a “matter-of-fact God” meeting him, face-to-face and there was no mistaking who it was as far as Richard was concerned.

“Go on, figure it out Richard. What do you really want?” he felt God say.

It was as if God was playfully saying, “Stop asking me what I want for you. I know what I want for you. I am God. I am not at all confused about what I want for you. What I require is that you demonstrate the courage and willingness to determine what you want for you. Do this, Richard, and we can do business.”

He became very nervous. In his silent negotiations, random and scary thoughts began darting across his mind. It was very disconcerting.

“What if I want to break up my family, hurt someone or steal something?” he questioned God.

“Is that what you really want? You want to go around hurting people? Do you really want to take what is not yours? Do you think damaging others is what you were cut out for?”

“No Lord.”

“Then what kind of game are you trying to play?” he felt God’s persistent voice welling up inside him. “I am asking you to evaluate, for yourself, how you would most like to use the talents I have given you. Take stock of the time you have left, the opportunities that come your way. You keep saying I will grant you the desires of your heart, Richard. But you know what? You wouldn’t recognize them if they jumped out at you from behind a bush. I am asking you to take the responsibility for your life. Develop a blueprint of what would inspire you. Discover and know yourself, Richard. Present me with a plan instead of continually asking me for my plan for you. Find my plan buried like treasure, in your strongest desires and longings. Grow up, in other words!”

Richard was shocked to hear God speak in this manner. He had always been taught that God had a plan for his life and for many years he had waited “in faith” for that plan to unfold. Now it sounded as if God expected him to do something!

“That’s the problem!” God interrupted his confusion; “you want to give me the responsibility for your life when I want you to be responsible for your own life. You think my will is something deep and mysterious when it is not. In fact my will for you is that you discover and do what you really want! It’s about passion Richard, passion. Just make sure it is what you really want.”

Richard thought long and hard and realized to his horror that he really did not like his career, chosen purely for the financial and status benefits. He realized that even his sports interests were built around promoting his career. He sat in stunned silence and realized that if he honestly answered the question he was in trouble.

“What I really want to do God, is so far from what I am doing with my life at present that it will take a miracle from you to turn it around,” he said in near desperation.

“No,” said God, “it will take one from you.”

One Comment to “The Surprising Discovery of Richard McChurch”

  1. This could be the beginning of a book, Rod. It’ll be a best-seller.

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