So, this is a combo post because last week got away from me. I’m all of a sudden playing catch up in a lot of areas of my life, which causes me no end of heartburn because I hate that feeling. I have a lot of irons in the fire and I have not been disciplined enough to keep up with them all because I’ve put myself first.
Not in a good way, but in ways that drain my energy and sap my passion.
I actually had a post written for Week 9 but just never got around to editing it enough to put it up.
The short version of Week 9 is: I came face to face with my need for real, Godly rest.
Rest was the theme, rest was what was needed but rest I did not get. Sometimes life just does not allow for it. So, I slugged on through, engaging in some bad habits of the flesh (including a lot of sleep and T.V. watching) and got behind.
When I have a lot to do – and really when I haven’t managed my time well, instead of buckling down– I go the other way. I don’t want to do ANYTHING. So, that was last week. It’s not that nothing got done, just not as much as I’d planned or wanted to do.
Enter Week 10. I got a resource last week called The Circle Maker by Mark Batterson. He is the pastor of National Community Church in Washington, D.C. and not only does it chronicle the development of that church (and Mark’s personal prayer life), it sets the bar high for those of us who truly desire to see God’s greatness on display in our lives.
Well – that’s me. I want it on display. That’s why I’m documenting my prayer life this year. I want to look back and say, “Holy God, You have done amazing things that everyone can see!”
Within the first four chapters of the book, I knew it was anointed. This is the perfect time for me to read this book – in my life, the life of my family and the life of my church. A new friend at church told me about it Thursday but another friend told me about over a year ago, so she should really get the credit for this revelation of my spiritual life.
(Thank you Wynter and especially thank you Leslie for being so patient with me. :D)
It has challenged me to dig into God with my hopes, dreams, fears and frustrations - along with long standing Scriptural promises I'm hanging on to. Instead of thinking God wants my prayers to be “fresh and new” all the time, He is showing me how to P.U.S.H.
Pray (and Praise)
He led me to do a prayer fast. For 28 days, I am to meet Him from 3 – 3:30 A.M. That’s right, in the morning. The point of these early morning meetings is to listen to God…to hear what He wants to say.
No caveats, no boundaries. Whatever God wants to talk to me about for 30 minutes, He gets it.
I suppose because I wasn’t doing much listening before. This is an effort of faith, trust and stamina. I have an alarm set and I guard myself against going back to sleep. After that time period is up, I do get to go back to sleep (which I am so grateful for) but it is going to take a little while for my body to adjust. This is day 4 of the fast, which goes until Easter Sunday (which is also my 40th birthday). So far, He has taken 2 of my prayer circles and added to them, and given me a couple more as well. He has given me Scripture for all but 1 of them and I fully expect the biblical promise for that one will make itself known pretty soon!
I have no idea how to define progress in this type of endeavor, other than my level of passion for the things of God has been amped up considerably. Maybe that is more than enough. This year – this year of prayer – is all about learning at the feet of Jesus and growing in my desire for Him, His Purposes and His People.
I am getting more and more Mary time. I also redeems the Martha time, making the rest of my day much more productive.
Of course I have to apply myself during the time I have, which is my current (flesh) challenge. The spirit is willing but the flesh is SO WEAK. But it is what it is and as I wrote a few weeks back, the more I pour into the things of God, the more He pours out the ability to do everything else.
First things first – starting at 3 am.
I’m circling my prayers, circling my wagons and expecting big things from God. I am confident I will see the goodness of God in the land of the living!! (Psalm 27:13)