No pictures today, even though I could have taken some of something that my kiddos have done. I just have been amazed at the way that God has spoken to me in the last few weeks, and how this has affected (effected? I always get these mixed up!) my mood, my spirit, my day to day living.
When Sarah and I went to Tanger earlier this week, I picked up a devotional book by Beth Moore. It was on sale...big sale...and I like Beth Moore, so I thought I would give it a try. I will admit that this is an area in which I fail many days...finding the time, the quiet, the aloneness to spend time with God. My children, all three of the big ones, each spend time in devotion and quiet time with God, and this just blows me away and humbles me that they do a better job at this than I manage to. I praise the Lord for ELCA and our church, who have instilled in them the importance of this, when I have not been able to lead by example.
I have ended up doing my devotion twice a day--once before even getting out of bed, and then the other, by flashlight, as I am going to sleep. I figured that this was a perfect way to begin and end my day... in God's word,...and get my heart and mind in the right place to begin the night/day. After my devotion on Friday, a verse just kept coming to me...a verse that wasn't even in my lesson for that day: Jeremiah 29:11. So I looked it up to read it again, and then read on. I have heard this verse so many times, but never heard what comes after:
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you a hope and a future. Then you will come to me, and pray to me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
The italicized part is the part that really spoke to me. How many times do I seek God's presence with every fiber of my being? When is the last time that I gave up my own desires, my own worries, my own need for control, and just sought God's will, God's presence, God's peace?
Then this morning, as I was getting ready for church, a song kept going through my head--it's a contemporary song called "Going Through The Motions," about someone just going through the motions of worship. I hadn't heard it on the radio that morning, nor do I particularly like it. Yet it kept running through my head. A nudge maybe to really lose myself in the study of God's word, the singing, the message, the worship?
Finally, during the special this morning, the song was all about giving up your burdens to the Lord. Leaving them at His feet. And while I feel I have done it...and have gone through the motions of doing it over and over...especially in the last two weeks, have I really?
Isn't it amazing how God will speak to you when you make it a priority to listen? Had I not been through the last 20 days of anxiety, sleeping issues, depression, worry, doubt, would I be in the position to listen to Him? Indeed, He knows the plans He has for me.