The Hard Assignments {Soaring on Wings}

The Lord gave me an unexpected assignment this year. That’s usually how He deals with me. Unexpectedly. I have trouble paying attention. So really, it’s not His fault! If I could just keep my eyes focused on Him maybe I could see things He’s tossing my way more clearly. But this was a pretty big assignment, and I didn’t see it coming at all. Those are the ones that are usually the most rewarding. The ones where he kinda just drops something in my lap so I don’t really have that much time to think about it so I don’t really have the time to be disobedient. Believe me, I really wanted to be disobedient on this one. Or at least I did after I had said yes!

I hate flying and the Lord is sending me to Asia. For those who didn’t make an A in geography class, that’s across the ocean. So, unless I am going to take 3 weeks on a cruise ship (I’d definitely say yes to that!) to get there, I gotta fly. In an airplane. For 24 hours. That’s 24 hours in an enclosed space sitting upright among strangers…over the ocean.

The thought of that alone has improved my prayer life exponentially. Did I mention that I hate flying?

I’ve been getting pretty anxious about it and trying not to think about it and honestly asking God to find a way to get me there without having to fly at all. I want to avoid the jet-lag and inevitable exhaustion that comes with getting no sleep on a plane. Again, that cruise ship sounds really nice. Or maybe he has the wrong girl. I always think he has the wrong girl when it comes to my assignments. Truth be told, I’d much rather spend my days playing games with toddlers or reading poetry. But that isn’t the calling on my life. I know it. Doesn’t mean I don’t try to deny it. But let’s face it, doing God’s work should scare us sometimes. That’s exactly how we learn to lean on him for provision, safety, trust and comfort among other things.

So, I’m a week out from boarding this plane and I have yet to find my way out of having to fly for 2 days. I am honestly, quite anxious. I started reading the Bible chronologically at the beginning of this year. Or maybe it was the middle of last year. I have done a pretty poor job of keeping up with it, so it could have even been 2 years ago.

I picked it back up this evening in what has been several futile attempts to calm my nerves lately. Just going through the motions, really. Come on. You’ve been there too.

So there I am reading in Isaiah 40. I’ve read it dozens of times before in my life. I’ve even used it to encourage others. But because God’s Word is alive, it still speaks at exactly the right time. The same words we read 2 years ago can mean something different today. My God told me that I will soar on wings like eagles–on an airplane. He will renew my strength throughout my journey. He’s already waiting for me in the skies and waiting for me when I reach my destination.  What a privilege! I will walk among the people He has sent me to serve and not grow faint.

I love when He speaks to me through Scripture. How has God used His Word to speak to you lately? Drop me a comment and let’s talk about it.

But those who hope in the Lord
    will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
    they will run and not grow weary,
    they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31

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Growing Pains: How Hurting Helps

I just don’t think I can do it, y’all. My oldest came home from school yesterday branded with her “Senior 2020” shirt. She beamed as she turned around modeling her school colors.

I literally felt like I had been punched in the gut.

She wanted me to be happy for her and get excited with her. But I just couldn’t do it. Not yet.

And since motherhood is an unrelenting profession, my youngest also came home late from being out with friends last night and wanted to ‘spill the tea.’ Y’all know that’s just slang for catching up, right? Ok. It took me a few times to catch on to that one. She sat there talking to me about things that are really hard. She’s got so much confidence, that kid. Then suddenly, it hit her. Middle School is over next week. She’ll walk out of the last 3 wonderfully awkward years of her life and into a big scary 4 years that defines who she is.

And she started crying. “Mommy! I don’t want to go! I’m not ready!”

In that moment I was faced with the decision to either cry with her, or lie and tell her it would all be ok. Let’s face it. It will not ALL be ok. High School is hard and it knocks you around a bit.

The truth is, if we all waited until we were ready for all the things we wouldn’t do any of the things.

I keep looking at all your pictures on Facebook of how brave you all are. Celebrating last days. Graduations. Moving on. Growing up. And as much confidence that I have in my girls that they can rock the Senior year and survive Freshman Academy, I just don’t think I have it in me to keep encouraging them when I want to curl up and hide myself.

So, here’s the thing. The biggest, scariest, most challenging moments in our lives are also the greatest, most wonderful, rewarding things in our lives. Facing our Giants armed with only a few tiny pebbles is what makes us stronger and more triumphant.

When Lucy was little, she suffered from growing pains.  She was six or seven years old, but it was like having a newborn again. She’d wake up in the middle of the night calling for me until I would go into her room and rub her legs to ease the pain. We would do that night after night. Until one night she didn’t need me to do that anymore.

Growing hurts.

Moving on from the comfortable little middle school or standing on the edge of the nest and stretching your Senior wings is scary. Until you finally take the leap and realize the wind resistance against you is what you needed to make you fly after all.

I’m bound to cry a lot in the next 365 days. My girls will too. I know I will ache so bad I’ll wish someone would come to rub out my growing pains. But, I’m also hoping that through it all, when it’s finally time (ok, y’all where are those tissues??) to let go of the things we have come to love so much,  my girls will look back and realize how much strength they really had. And how, really, they made me the better person.

 

 

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God at the Molecular Level {The Trinity Watered Down}

 

I will never know the answer to some of life’s little mysteries.

Where does the other sock really go?

Why can’t I run out of shampoo and conditioner at the same time? Like, ever?

Why do my kids feel like they need to wake me up to tell me when they can’t sleep? As if that helps either one of us!

And why does my little Facebook notification badge fluctuate from 11 to 5 back to 11 and then land on zero? It’s a dirty game, Facebook. Stop it.

All of those things are fun to ponder, but there’s one mystery that will never truly be answered and weighs a whole lot more than the rest. I really like to sit and think about it as if one day the answer will be revealed to me somehow. It’s foolish to believe it ever will, but I’m a deep thinker by nature and I can’t help it.

The Holy Trinity.

My family and I were discussing it over dinner one night. Because that’s what we do. Sure, we discuss what happened at the lunch table and why we shouldn’t have to take a high school chemistry class. We talk Alabama football and Lord help us all when there’s a political scandal. But who wants to talk about football and politics over a plate of spaghetti when you can talk about things that really matter? Eternal things. God things. Jesus things. And the Holy Spirit.

We act like these things can’t ever be explained. I believe that until we get to Heaven, we won’t truly grasp the enormity of God and all His mysteries. But, I also think we tend to complicate things that He meant to be simple.

The Gospel is simple. Jesus is the son of God, a gift from Heaven. He lived a sinless life, took on every one of our sins and was sacrificed on a cross. He died and rose again. Anyone who believes that gets eternal life. Simple. We complicate it with denominations, rituals and our legalistic practices.

I believe the Trinity is simple too. I once just accepted it as a blanket truth because I couldn’t understand it. It was just one of those things about God I planned to ask Him about when I get to Heaven. Now I believe its explanation is in plain sight and meant to be understood at the elementary level. How can a God in heaven also be God as a man, Jesus, and also be left as a counselor lingering on the earth as the Holy Spirit?

Simple.

To understand this, let’s use our child-like faith and drop everything that hinders us and the things that so easily entangle us and think about the one matter that is essential to all created life. Water.

Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” John 4:13-14

It is no coincidence that Jesus uses a water analogy to talk about eternal life since all naturally created beings need water to live. But to me, this is the key to unlocking the mystery of the Trinity.

Water is the only substance that still maintains it’s molecular design in 3 different forms; it’s H2O as solid, liquid and gas. God is all three at once – God in Heaven, Jesus on Earth and the Holy Spirit living in and dwelling among us.

Father

God as solid ice seems cold, distant and untouchable all the way over there in Heaven. Hardened and seemingly unjust. But He still holds healing and preservation powers. Like an iceberg, there’s so much under the surface of God that we can’t possibly fathom His complexities. Strong enough to move mountains, but oh, how He loves us!

Son

So, He came down and sat criss-cross with us on the floor. He dug into the mess we made so we could touch Him and begin to understand Him. We relate to Him, Jesus. Just like the tangible and refreshing liquid that is water. He’s the universal solvent offered to all of us to soften our hardened clay hearts. We were soiled, so he cleansed us and gave us new life. Sweet smelling like the rain. Peaceful as a mountain stream. Powerful as a roaring waterfall and vast as the oceans. He invites us to dive deep into a free-flowing relationship with Him.

Holy Spirit

As any human life must end on earth, Jesus ascended back to Heaven. But He left us with something better. A friend and omnipresent advocate, God’s Holy Spirit. Vapor-like. Invisible like a gas. Still mightier than a steam engine, the Spirit moves and breathes with us. It’s closer than our thoughts. And I like to think of it as bound to believers at the molecular level. Part of our DNA that guides who we are and cannot be separated from us.

It stands to reason, doesn’t it, that if the alive-and-present God who raised Jesus from the dead moves into your life, he’ll do the same thing in you that he did in Jesus, bringing you alive to himself? When God lives and breathes in you (and he does, as surely as he did in Jesus), you are delivered from that dead life. With his Spirit living in you, your body will be as alive as Christ’s! Romans 8:1

There is no possible way to fully understand God and His mysterious ways, but I believe He wants us never to give up the infinite quest to try. May we always have an unquenchable thirst to know more of Him, be closer to Him and to emulate His example.

As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God.

Psalm 42:1

 

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Three Reasons I Stayed Off Of Facebook Through Advent

It wasn’t a hard decision. Wasn’t even hard to follow-up. For Advent, December 1st through Christmas, I decided to stay off of Facebook. I used it still for work and for this blog. But I stayed off the social part of the social media app. And I am so glad I did!

I Didn’t Miss Anything.

People still told me when someone died or when someone was upset. I even got all the good news. Some even shared their funny videos with me from their own phones. What I didn’t get was the hatred, polarizing opinions and slander. It was pretty awesome. And look! I lived to write about it.

I Didn’t Compare My Already Pretty Good Life To Other People’s Highlights

My life is pretty good. Two healthy kids. A husband who loves me. A job with purpose and a decent home. But just like the rest of us, my life can get messy. And I tend to compare my messy days to everyone else’s triumphant days posted on Facebook. So, this year I decided to remove the temptation to compare. I am sure some of you went on amazing vacations, got amazing gifts and had your long lost family members come to visit you for Christmas. And you can tell me all about it when you see me next time. Which leads me to another reason I logged off.

I Enjoyed Actual Face Time

Lunch dates. Breakfast Dates. Just evenings at home with my family. I laughed a whole lot with people that I love a whole lot. It’s so much more satisfying to lose 3 hours talking with a bestie than to lose them scrolling through Cyberspace. It filled my cup so much and I enjoyed the season way more than I have in many years.

I had the best Christmas that I’ve had in a long time. And believe me when I tell you it wasn’t because of the gifts. It was because I chose to spend more time with the ones I care about most, to guard my heart against the lies of comparison and to live in the moment given to me tied up in a precious bow from my Father in Heaven.  Every moment is a gift. And I am so glad I paused to enjoy each one.

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The Sacrifice of Christmas

It’s Christmas. My girls are actually getting along, the house smells of freshly baked ginger snaps and is filled with music saved only for this time of year. It’s kinda picture perfect. More like a miracle.

Among all the busyness and cheer of the season, though, I’ve been pondering something much more critical. The birth of Jesus is the reason to celebrate Christmas. We give gifts to those we love, tie them in a bow and move on with whatever the next year brings. But I am thinking of Mary today.

Believers know that Mary was visited by an angel of the Lord who told her she would bear a child. Born to save the world. Her immediate obedience and faith is astounding. She doesn’t seem to blink an eye at this news. “Let it be so,” she says. I don’t know about you, but when I found out I was pregnant with my first born, I fell to my knees and cried. There was so much uncertainty. I had never been pregnant before. I was miles away from my hometown and I had no friends at the time. I felt very alone and my child was just an ordinary baby. I had dreams for her life, and what she would grow to be like.

I think of Mary and what her mother’s heart must have been dreaming for her child. Mary knew her child would be born as a sacrifice. Even a as a sacrifice for herself.

Let’s just camp out there for a moment and discuss the difference between death and a sacrificial death because they are very different. We are all born and we all die. It is everyone’s destiny. So, when I hear songs and read stories about how Jesus was born to die, it doesn’t impact me as much. So what? We all die.

Born to be a sacrifice. Now that catches in my heart.

To sacrifice something, according to my friend Webster, is to accept the loss or destruction for an end cause or ideal.

Back before Jesus was born to be sacrificed, people would offer up their best lambs, goats, cattle etc., in order to be cleansed of their sins. It was a filthy practice, actually. Ironic, huh? Beauty becomes filth to be made clean.

So, I am thinking of Mary in the filthy stable filled with animal waste, old hay and dirt. She’s giving birth to a perfect child. A child that no doubt she prayed over, wondered what he would look like and even thought about his future. How long would she have him? How long before she would have to say goodbye to her son? Before he was sacrificed…for me? And for you.

It gives me a new meaning to Christmas morning. It makes me think of Jesus’ little birthday party very differently. We were all born. We will all die.

Jesus’ difference is the sacrifice.

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Be Still {How I Overcame My Anxiety}

It’s not really crippling for me, but I can see how it could be. Anxiety.

I do struggle sometimes with feeling overwhelmed, out of control and over-worked. My mind races, which I hate. And I feel like the world is closing in on me. Suffocating me.

In more recent years I have discovered that if I call it out loud and tell others whom I trust in plain words “I am feeling anxious today,” even if I don’t know why I am feeling that way, knowing that others are aware and promising to pray me through a bad day, it helps me. There’s always a peace that comes from allowing others to share your burdens.

This week though, my anxiety decided to visit in the middle of the night. Do you ever have nights like that? You think things are good and you start to drift off and then suddenly you remember one thing you left undone. And then you remember what you need to do tomorrow. And the next thing you know you are listing off all of the things that went wrong or that could go wrong. Sometimes my mind just does a constant loop of what I should have said. I hate that one.

I was determined not to let these useless thoughts control me and lead me down the long lonely path to insomnia. (I know that one well too)!

Several years ago Psalm 46:10 took me in and adopted me.  I honestly didn’t know I was an orphan, but I had desperately needed Psalm 46:10 way more than it needed me.

Be still and know that I am God. 

There’s more to the verse but I’ll stop there so you can print it on a T-shirt.

It was in the quiet moments while everyone else in my house was peacefully slumbering, and my mind had started it’s midnight merry-go-round that God whispered to me.

Being still and knowing that I am God also means to rest and know that I am God. Rest and know that I got this. All of it. Breathe in My peace and pray.

Well, a few days ago I just started a new Bible study book, “Living Free: Learning to Pray God’s Word” by Beth Moore. So I started praying His word back to Him. I started speaking His language.

Lord, I will be still and know you will heal. Because you are God.

I will be still and know you will provide. Because you are God.

I will be still and know you will mend. Because you are God.

I will be still and know you will guide me. Because you are God.

And on and on.

Friends, I honestly do not remember anything more except the next morning when His mercies were brand new! There was no space between my prayers and the morning light.

There is no doubt in my mind that God carried it all for me that night. That he joyfully accepted each one of my burdens like carefully wrapped packages and set them at the foot of the cross.

I’ve not been promised I won’t ever have another rough night. I’ve not been guaranteed never to feel anxious and overwhelmed. The promise is Jesus. His power and His love for a child like me who needs constant reminding to be still.

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Disappointment {Wants and Needs}

I wish someone would have told me that disappointments were a part of life. No one ever pulls you aside to tell you to prepare for failure. No. People always set you up for the win. They set you up to succeed and to get the little trophies at the end of the game.

Is this why we often feel stuck? We feel stuck in our jobs, our marriages and the relationships we have. We feel like our kids could always be more like someone else’s and not like the ones God gave us. Not that we don’t love our own kids. They just could be a little smarter. Cooler. Not as whiny. And goodness if they would just once clean their room without being asked!

We wish for different hair, different skin and a different body. We are not ever satisfied with what we’ve got as if our Creator didn’t know what He was doing. (Sometimes I do wonder though. Ok. There. I said it!)

But it’s got me thinking today. Disappointment. I’ve felt it a lot.  And someone said recently it’s because I put my expectations in the hands of my fellow humans. Hmmm.  Maybe. We are all pretty flawed. And I wouldn’t have written the above paragraph if I didn’t think there were truth in it.

I think, however, that it’s quite the opposite. The disappointment I feel is not because I rely too much on my peeps, it’s because I don’t rely enough on Jesus. I compare my circumstances on what I think others think and not what Jesus thinks. He, I am sorry to say, is not always my gold standard.

Also, I invented a new word today. Pharasitic. I think it’s pretty awesome and I am going to talk to Webster about it.  But I have been pretty Pharasitic lately.

<Deep breath in>  Yep. I’ve not only been disappointed by you people, I’ve been pretty judgey (that’s a new word too).  I’ve been working so hard trying to keep up and look pretty against all you prettier and smarter gems that I have found myself stoking my fires of pride.

Ouchie. That stung a little.

But I know what I’m doing, right? I’m 42…wait. Not yet. I’m 41 years old. I’ve seen a thing or two. I’ve got it going on. My kids are smart, (albeit messy). They both love Jesus and it shows. My husband, let’s just face it, he’s awesome and a great dad. I love my job. I have healthy parents who are still married after 51 years. And my friends are the bomb dot com!

Even with all of that, I struggle. I struggle to realize I am wanted and not needed. There is a difference, my friends. God doesn’t need me to fulfill His plans. He wants me to fulfill His plans. God doesn’t need me to love Him and serve Him. He wants me to love Him and serve Him.  I think that is where my disconnect lies. I think that is where a lot of us start using the fuzzy math. Want and need are not equal.

I think once we realize who wants us (Hint, look up) we can set aside the disappointments and we can stop being so Pharasitic. Hey! I used it in a sentence! My mother would be so proud!

 

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Plan B {The Time Our Vacation Re-Routed Us}

Plan B. It’s not usually what we wish for. Plan B is the plan we go to when what we really wanted falls through. Plan B is settling for something less. Plan B is second best. Leftovers. Plan B means that something went wrong.

One of my favorite quotes is “God laughs when you make plans.” I heard it first when I was a kid, but it’s become my life’s mantra. Life with two teenage girls and working in ministry doesn’t always go the way I planned. In fact, I never planned for girls and I never planned to work in ministry. God laughs at me a lot!

I’ve learned in my four decades on this God-created earth that most of the time my plans are not nearly as good as what God has planned for me. Sometimes His plans don’t seem as good, or as fun or as rewarding as what I think I should be doing. But I have also learned that going with the flow is a lot less stressful and following as the Spirit leads is a whole lot more rewarding than doing things my way.

My family had planned a trip to the panhandle of Florida for months. We planned to spend two days basking in the sun on the white sand beaches, playing games together in someone else’s condo and unplugging from social media. Ahhh…

But, God had other plans.

Hurricane Michael rerouted our plans from the panhandle of Florida to the Gulf Coast of Mississippi, a place my family had never been. Turns out no matter where you are, God is still working. And He still uses you if you are willing.

We enjoyed time at the beach, fresh seafood and unplugged family game night. We took all the pretty beach pictures and stayed up late laughing (and fighting over bed space). We took a spontaneous trip to the French Quarter in New Orleans. But we also had our eyes opened to just how small our lives are and just how much hurt there is in the world.

I normally do not take any cash with me anywhere anymore. But I had read ahead of a restaurant we wanted to try that took only cash, so I visited the ATM before we left town. And for some reason, I decided I should take more than I would need for the restaurant. I mean, you never know.

But God does.

God knows there’s a man on the New Orleans streets waiting there to entertain you to make a living. God knows there’s a woman driving desperate in Gulfport, Mississippi who humbles herself enough to stop you to ask for gas money. God knows there’s a man riding his bicycle outside the shopping mall who’s hungry for breakfast. And God also knows He’s blessed you enough to be able to give it to them since they asked.

Give to anyone who asks; and when things are taken from you, don’t try to get them back. Do to others as you would like them to do to you. -Jesus

Luke 6:30-31

My husband wonders aloud, “Do we just have a sign on our foreheads that says we’ll give them money or something?”

I like to think it’s Jesus whispering into their ears and pointing our way. I like to think His face shines before mine and people know it’s a safe place to be human. Maybe those people won’t use the money for the reasons they asked. It doesn’t matter. It’s a lesson in obedience, a lesson in giving, a lesson in life that things don’t always go the way you think they will go. Vacation plans change. Life gets messy. But God is always there. The Spirit is always leading. We are always on the mission field no matter where we originally planned to go. I am convinced that we were exactly where we needed to be at exactly the right time.

Plan B can be beautiful. And if we are taking God with us, it’s always His Plan A.

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Misfortune: A Lesson In Humility

They say that bad luck comes in threes. I am unsure why they say that or who they are, but ok. If that’s true then I am done.

Busted hot water heater. One.

Leaking sunroof. Two.

Vehicle dead in the middle of the road. Three.

All in less than two weeks, so if we’re sticking with this theme maybe I’ve got something else up the road in week three. <pauses. prays.>

In reality I’ve been prepared for all of it. Emergency fund in place just for such a deluge of ‘unlucky-ness.’  Yep. It’s been drained. I think I actually heard it scream for mercy as I transferred the funds out of it to pay for my sunroof repair this morning.

I do a lot of reflecting when things like this begin to happen. There’s got a be a lesson in all the madness, right?

I’ve really been arrogant these last two weeks. Truly. I’ve been acting like these inconveniences have been a personal attack on my busy and comfortable lifestyle. I have honestly questioned why in the world God would allow these things to happen to me. I tithe. I minister. I do good deeds. I should be rewarded and safe-guarded. I should continue to be comfortable.

So, my bestie comes to pick me up (Thanks!) today to take me to pick up Harvey. (That’s my car). And I found myself doing nothing but complaining to her. She was, as all good friends are, a good listener and just let me vent about how inconvenienced I was. I had spent my morning stuck at home car-less and held hostage by the painters who had come to finish repair from the hot water heater damage.  As I was talking to her I realized how ridiculous all those complaints sounded when I said them out loud.

“Ok. I’m done complaining,” I said. And she casually changed the subject to remind me I needed to write. She has this way of encouraging me through conviction. I am not sure how she does that, but I appreciate and hate it all at the same time.

I came home to a finally quiet house. I sat in my favorite chair and prayed. I caught up on my Bible reading and of course, because He’s a good teacher, God kept showing me in 2 Chronicles one word over and over.

Humble.

It’s not a very popular word these days. We believe we are entitled to things simply because we think we are good. We think the world needs our brilliant ideas, our contributions and our time. But let me just remind you of something.

It’s not about you. It’s not about me.

Nothing we do. Nothing we say. Nothing we give or take away is for ourselves. It is all filtered through the hands of our Creator and then turned right back for Him to receive the glory.

So, when I find myself in a flurry of misfortune I have to remind myself that it’s all meaningless if I don’t praise the One calling the shots. I can’t complain about a busted hot water heater if I have been provided hot water, a luxury millions in this world cannot afford. I can’t express disdain for a leaky sunroof when God sent the rains on a dry land and *bonus gave me a reliable car. And I don’t want to talk about the car dead in the middle of the street because honestly, it’s car number four at our house. Four. As in, we-only-have-three-drivers-and-four-vehicles four.

I am abundantly blessed and all I could do was complain.

Father, forgive me.

 

 

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Simple {Having an Expectant Heart}

Simplicity.

I’ve always believed that less is more. Fewer activities. Smaller houses. Closer friends.

So, why is it a surprise then, when God shows up in the most humble ways?

Lately I have been amazed at how God has been responding to me. And if you are in a place where you feel like God has forgotten your hurt, maybe it’s time to get back to basics.

My heart hurts a lot. I know a lot of people who are hurting and God has wired me to practically feel physical pain when those that I love share their hurt with me. I’ll be honest and say that can become quite burdensome if I don’t keep it in check. I retreat a lot. I go off by myself a lot. I am not at all uncomfortable spending an entire day in solitude.

It’s during those times when I am still that I can hear God the loudest. Notice I did not say that He speaks the loudest when I am still. I believe He is always there waiting to say something, I can just hear him better when I am still. I draw up on Psalm 46:10 a lot. I have to.

Because when I am still I notice. I notice when He answers me.

I have two teenage daughters. (Prayers are always welcome on my behalf). They are loud, busy and always moving girls. They are always playing music too loud, running off somewhere or engrossed in the latest YouTube craze. Each one has a flair for the dramatic and have their own theater and dance outlets. They are priceless beauties and I am losing my grip on them more and more each day. As it should be.

Imagine a typical evening at my house when each one in their separate rooms have on their own favorite song. I don’t know about you, but if my favorite song is on, it ain’t at a low volume.

So it is with my girls.

What happens if I call to them? Do you think they would hear me? Do you think they would notice my voice?

Of course not. They continue dancing in their bedrooms or (and I have no idea how she does this with her music on let alone in the quiet) continue to work her Pre-Calculus homework.
I have to go directly to each one of my children, tell her to turn the music down so I they can hear me.

Do you need to turn your music down?

God’s not going to yell to get your attention. He’s just not. He’s a still small voice that speaks whispers into the hearts of those who are listening for it. He’s working every single moment of every single day and He delights in giving you your hearts desire.

But, can you hear Him? Do you see Him working?

What is so cool about God is that He’s God, but He doesn’t boast about it. He’s so complex but so very simple. He could move mountains. He can heal the sick. He can mend broken hearts. But He’s not going to be obvious about it. He’s a bit of a seek and find kinda guy. You gotta be looking for His handiwork in the every day.

I needed God to show up today. I needed a reminder that He’s still here even after a long week. I headed to my quiet space and told Him that.

And this is how He responded. This is the whisper into my heart.
Why do you need me to show up if I am always there?

It was so simple. And I was reminded of the beauty of that truth. He is always there. In everything He created.

So, then I just wanted a simple reminder and confirmation. And you know what the Creator of the Universe did? He sent me a tiny bird to dance and dazzle me in the treetops.

Simple right?

But I was looking for it. My heart was expectant.

I think sometimes we don’t get what we ask for because we don’t expect God to follow through.

Why wouldn’t He?

Why would your Father give you a snake instead of what your heart desires? (Luke 11:11)

We aren’t looking for it. We are too busy on our devices or we’ve got our music too loud. Or our calendar is too full to just be still.

How many blessings have I missed because I wasn’t expecting the simple but looking for the extravagent?

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