For When You Don’t Ask For What You Want


photo : flickr cc/ shoothead


“Don’t bargain with God. Be direct. Ask for what you need.” – ‭Matthew‬ ‭7‬:‭7 The Message 

I shuffled the kids into the park just before dusk. It was a little too late in the day and a little too cool to stay long but we went anyway. It’s beautifully designed – big enough for all my children to enjoy and small enough so I can see the entire park.

I took a well deserved seat on the bench. And off they ran. Tire swings, for the moment friends and structures to climb. I’ll remember this summer as the first in a long while that I’ve actually been able to sit at the playground.

I pulled out a book and tried to distract myself. It’s taking me entirely too long to read Anne Lamotts’ Bird by Bird. It’s good. Really good. But I’m not here. And so I’m shoving the words down my throat like good for you medicine. It’ll do it’s job but I want to savor it like my favorite mud cake. One decadent bite at a time. This, I haven’t tasted.

I’m in a funk.

I’m processing a perceived rejection and haven’t been able to forgive myself and move on. The rejection is implied. I haven’t received a yes or no. And it’s been awhile. A long while. And not knowing or perhaps knowing is making me crazy.

The change in my mood began with this question. “How’s the writing going?”my husband asked. The past few weeks have found me quieter than usual. He’s noticed I haven’t shared the happenings in my online world. Not like I usually do.

It’s been a great year. I had opportunities to share my words/work with 3 times as many people as I did when I started a year and a half ago. I travelled to Ferguson for my first blogging trip, and got paid for an article I wrote. I’ll say that again. I got paid for something I wrote. It’s been good. I can’t complain. But…

I started the year with a few goals. And now the apple fresh chill of September reminds me of the one I wanted most.

I do a lot of talking around here about jumping out of the boat and going for what you want and right now I’m disappointed. With myself.

I had the chance to go after what I wanted and instead went with what was safe. What I know. What I can do in my sleep. I didn’t jump out of the boat. I relied on the safety of a fall back set of skills. Which of itself, isn’t a bad thing, just not helpful in pushing myself to do something new.

I didn’t ask for what I wanted.

Still I trust His timing and know everything is working as it should. This painful lesson is part of it. I didn’t go for what I wanted so that next time I’d be sure to be clear about my goals. Especially when asked.

But before that comes the work. And it’s all tied to the development of my manifesto for a midlife mama. I have to unlearn  lies I’ve told myself about personal evolution. You know the ones about not being able to change or grow. The ones about being too old for anything new.

So now I’m sitting on the bench, heart to heaven with all the questions. Why am I so insecure? Why don’t I believe in myself enough to chase my dream? Why don’t I feel qualified? Why don’t I trust God enough to ask?

The only approval I need comes from God. I know that. And that’s where I’ll start. So we’ll wrestle this thing to the ground. We’ll stomp out any doubt that keeps me from walking in His will for my life.

Answering these questions is soul deep work, and may take time. For now, I’m happy a cool wind blows in across the meer, and from the sprinklers mist, the perfect camouflage for tears.

Has the question been posed? What do you want? Did you tell the truth? Are you in the middle of a jump and need reassurance to keep going? Have you ever felt you missed an opportunity and the only one to blame is you?

4 Responses to For When You Don’t Ask For What You Want
  1. Chelle
    September 12, 2014 | 8:09 am

    Thank you, Lisha, for calling yourself out, and me with you. The Word teaches us that we have not because we ask not. We need to be real with God (and ourselves) if we want our faith to move ahead-if we genuinely want to draw nearer to Him.
    Thanks, Lisha. Your words always bless me.
    In Peace,

  2. Lisha Epperson
    September 12, 2014 | 8:22 pm

    I’m working on obedience by starting first with truth – to my God and myself. I’m all Florida Evans over here Chelle. But next time, and I will get the chance to redeem myself in the class “Ask For What You want 101” … I will show faith in god and myself by at least asking.

  3. Marcy Hanson
    September 12, 2014 | 9:30 pm

    It is soul deep work. Amen. I feel the opposite-like I’m missing all the opportunities by not being in the right place at the right time. But I’m here with you all the same, mid jump in Montana. I’ve got all the faith in you, friend. Faith that when he moves you to jump it will feel just right. Maybe scary, but just right none the less. And I’m so proud of you!! I can’t wait to see where this journey leads you, because I know how powerful the words he gives you are.

  4. Lisha Epperson
    September 14, 2014 | 10:11 pm

    The journey continues doesn’t it Marcy? I’m encouraged by the lesson I learned in this. Ask for what you want. I’m so grateful for the doors he’s opened and know I’ll never truly miss anything He has for me. I hope you’re encouraged to keep pressing in Marcy. You’re a beautiful writer with the confidence to put your work out there. Many are inspired by you. I know I am.