When God is gentle...

I was 19 and living in a new city, far away from family and close friends when I accepted Christ.
I gravitated toward charismatic leaders; Pastors who commanded more than preached. Who demanded perfection and a rigorous mold I tried my very best to fit into. I figured this was what the Christian life was all about, except that it didn't seem so different from my old one.

Five years later, standing in front of the Grand Canyon with a good friend, having driven miles just to glimpse it, I realized something.

I was tired.

Tired of striving to be perfect, of putting on a facade, of trying to be something instead of just being me. I was sick of trying to fit some preconceived mold someone had once told me would fit.

I realized then, looking over the guard rails, that water had carved the scene I saw in front of me, not in a minute, but over thousands of years. 

Gentle, yet effective.

I'd heard the phrase "the Holy Spirit is a gentleman" before but never had I put it together like I did then.

How appropriate that our walk is first proclaimed in the act of baptism in water, a substance seemingly gentle and yet, looking out at the cavernous space it shaped and molded, completely transforming.

Easier to let Him do His job, ever so gently, than to keep shoving myself into something I thought I should be. Easier to let His gentle waters pour over me, refining me drop by drop, than to press and shift and wiggle my way into something that didn't quite fit.

The rock didn't have to do anything to look the way it does now, except to be. Of course rocks don't have a choice, they're rocks! But we do. We have a choice. We can fight the current, we can swim until our limbs fall off, we can try with all our own strength, or we can simply make the a choice to let the gentle waters do their job. And He is gentle.

All  that is required of us is simply our choice to surrender. Believe it or not, that choice is harder than the striving because it's counter-intuitive. Our world says strive, while God says 'be still.' Our world screams 'do' while He beckons us to 'be.' But there was never a more effective way to transformation than His way.

Just ask those rocks.  

Picture from my trip to the Grand Canyon


  1. Wow, Alex, that was beautiful. Good writing to speak to everyone. Dez


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