Talking to God: How to Speak the Unspeakable
I have something I want to share with you, but I am having trouble finding the right words. Actually, I have been struggling to find the right words in a variety of settings lately. I’m a writer. Words are my passion and vocation. Finding the “right words” is what I do. I have devoted entire afternoons to sampling and shuffling words and phrases around in ways that might fully encapsulate one scene or concept. When someone reads it, I want them caught up and transported, beautifully consumed with its imagery, emotion and comprehension.
Words have never been a barrier for me... until now.
Words are like chunky, savory morsels that hold the possibility of being entirely assimilated into our being. Some words are like a delicious caramel that once placed inside the cheek, melts into a fully satisfying two-minute episode of palatable bliss. Some words are like a generous nugget of broiled steak; meaty and juicy, equally satisfying but in a more carnal way. Some words are like biting into the glass of a broken light bulb or sucking on a lemon. But, no matter how creative the use of words can be, they are radically limited by our own association to them. Words will move you only in the way you understand them. And, if words are all you’re using to participate in your relationship with God, you are missing out on an endless landscape of experience and knowledge that can only be understood by silence.
Words will move you only in the way you understand them. And, if words are all you’re using to participate in your relationship with God, you are missing out on an endless landscape of experience and knowledge that can only be understood by silence.
Let me unpack this a bit. Several months ago during my prayer time, I started to realize that my words were a drastically inadequate venue for expressing the level of praise in my heart that I wanted to offer to the Lord. I would enter into worship, begin to use language to express it outwardly, and would be left frustrated that what I wanted to “say” simply did not adequately convey what was inside me. There were no words to describe what I was feeling or what I wanted to offer. It isn't that my heart wasn't involved, because it was. But, words were getting in the way and killing the whole thing.
I would use words to express my lack of words in my prayer in the hopes that maybe God would teach me how to find the right words to properly speak to Him. I would stay vigilant and hopeful for Him to bring that answer to me through a scripture, or ironically, through the words of a Christian article or the words of a trusted friend. “The answer would come,” I would say to myself. I just had to watch and wait.
The time would come during my prayer to lift up petitions for the people on my prayer list and the various issues at hand. I felt like I was barking orders and praying for things that my faith and knowledge of scripture taught me the Lord foreknew and already has formulated a plan. He had this worked out long before anyone could stand in the gap for another, and stringing together mere words to somehow persuade or fortify His will just seemed wrong. My words were messing up the whole vibe and I came away from each prayer session feeling like I had just disrespected the Lord for the last twenty minutes.
No matter how many “please” and “thank you” and “praise You, Father” phrases I would throw at Him, I still felt like the words I was using were just awkward, weak, watered down versions of what I really wanted to say. I became increasingly frustrated and stunted during my precious time with God
So, eventually, I stopped talking to Him.
[Queue record needle scratch]
Wait… what? You stopped praying??
No. That’s not what I said. And may I point out how very limited the phrase above expressed what I was trying to say.
I stopped talking. I shut my flapping, pretentious mouth. I stopped trying to string together contrived attempts at meaningful speech which sounded more like tossed word salad than substantive, heart-felt communication. I entered into praise and worship with my whole heart, not words formed by my brain. I lifted up my prayers with my entire being, not convoluted spoken language dressed up as pretty little packages. I simply positioned my whole self before the throne, exactly as I was in that moment, with head bowed, my heart in outstretched hands, lifting it up in its nakedness as an offering. I was asking Him, without words, to please know its contents and to do with it what He will.
Immediately I was transformed to a level of worship that I am currently unable to describe. I think you get my point.
My words do not transform Him, His words transform me. God speaks to us thru His Word. And, what is His Word, exactly?
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. ~John 1:1-3
The Bible is not simply ink and paper. It isn’t an inert substance that only comes alive when the reader is engaged. It is eternally alive, in spite of us. It is multi-dimensional, speaking from every linguistic, scientific and mathematical discipline, a divine expression of Himself to all creation. Reading the words of God brings forward His penetrating physical, emotional, spiritual and supernatural intent for the individual person and creation as a whole. It has direction and purpose.
For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. ~Hebrews 4:12
God has the ability to speak the entire universe and everything in it into existence with the utterance of His words to bring it forth. From the very first photon onward, God spoke it, then it “was” and there is nothing that can reverse it or return it void.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.
For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it. ~Isaiah 55:8-11
Then there’s me, lying face down on the carpet of my bedroom, trying to string together words that can wholly encapsulate a worthy praise to the Most High God.
In my meager, limited-in-human-capabilities, a good-sized catalog of vocabulary words at my avail, and a full plate of heart-felt emotion, there was nothing suitable enough to say to Him. This is when it was time to be silent. Just present myself to Him and keep language out of it. The only language to be “spoken” here is purely spiritual. Words are only pollution at this point.
“Language is a virus from outer space.” ~William S. Burroughs
Well, not according to a film titled Arrival (Paramount, 2016). In this film, aliens from outer space come to earth and park their ships (twelve in number) over several points on the globe. The US government hires two experts to assist with communication efforts with the alien beings parked on our turf – a physicist (Ian) and a linguistics professor (Louise).
As the story unfolds, the two experts have repeated sessions in the presence of the aliens in an effort to communicate. This proves challenging in the extreme, obviously, because of the language barrier. Long story short, the aliens begin to communicate using their complex written language and the linguist begins to understand.
What is interesting about the language of these aliens is that according to the story, they do not speak in linear terms like humans. In other words, they use complex circular symbols to convey a whole concept, not from start to finish one word at a time. But instead, they convey an entire concept in one circular symbol. The more Louise understands, the more she begins to think like the aliens. And, according to the story, the aliens think in eternal terms not constrained by time or space. Louise now has the ability to see everything backward and forward, including what happens in the future.
The aliens convey the message that humans need to “use weapon.” Of course, the military of the other eleven countries that are also attempting to communicate with the aliens see this as an act of aggression. Louise, however, understands that their use of the word “weapon” could be misinterpreted and that the likely meaning is “tool.” Use "tool." The aliens wanted humans to use the gift of their language for which they give to Louise personally, in its entirety, as a tool to advance our civilization. The aliens leave, Louise goes on to become the famous author of a book titled “The Universal Language” and she now has a "super power" - the ability to see the future.
Why I continue to subject myself to this blasphemous, Luciferian tripe, I have no idea.
This movie is yet another Luciferian attempt to claim vital technological advancements in civilization, even to levels of divinity, come from alien creatures (aka demons). In Arrival, this advancement comes in the gift of a universal language that when understood, offers the transcendence of human limits and supernatural abilities and saves mankind. Typical Luciferian propaganda with an agenda designed to subtly indoctrinate the minds of the younger generation.
Don't get me started.
The truth is, the more we immerse ourselves in God’s Holy Word and follow Jesus, we begin to think, understand and behave like Him. God’s word is The Gift. Jesus is God’s word manifested, and when we receive Him, we are made into a new creature.
Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
~2 Corinthians 5:17
When Jesus was teaching about God and the kingdom during His ministry years on earth, He often spoke in parables. “The kingdom of heaven is like…” and then, parable. The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed (Matt 13:24-32), like a mustard seed (Matt 13:31-32), like a hidden treasure (Matt 13.44), like leaven (Matt 13.33), like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls (Matt 13:45-46), like a dragnet (Matt 13:47-50), like a certain king (Matt 18:23-35), likened to ten virgins (Matt 25:1-13), a man traveling to a far country (Matt 25:14-32) and on and on. Jesus would paint complete word pictures that would wholly encapsulate the concept of the kingdom in ways that allowed us to comprehend the incomprehensible. Jesus taught divine concepts in earthly terms, using word associations that we could easily understand.
Even with that, humans struggled to wrap their head around it. For those who resisted or were unwilling to receive Jesus’ message of the kingdom, the parable would not be understood. When we open our heart, the parable makes sense. And if we truly want it, anything not understood now will be fully understood when He returns and we are glorified.
Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. ~Romans 8:26
While we may struggle to find the right words to express our praise to the Lord, He understands our heart and knows us better than we can ever comprehend. We do not need to flower our prayers with fancy language. We can just bring our whole heart and present it to Him. He will provide the words in His own way and in His own timing.
Here’s a "gold nugget" to leave with you for now. May God bless you and keep you as you continue your walk with Him.
Advance to 6:40 to get the "gold nugget", but the worship song is awesome, too.