Thursday, May 9, 2019

where are you?



My husband, Jack, our daughter, Tracy, and I had just participated in a low-impact family ropes course. It included a series of challenges that we had to solve together as a team. There were several times that I personally didn’t see how we would solve the problem. But we worked together and we tried out different ideas until we completed the task. One of us always had an idea that worked. We learned we could relax and trust that we could figure it out together.


As the challenges came to a close, the facilitator had us gather in a circle, and asked if we wanted the final debriefing questions to be spiritual. We said, “Yes!” and then he asked this question...

On a scale of one to five, with five being as close to God as you could be, where are you?

I don’t remember what anyone else in my family said, but I will never forget what I said, “I’m a one.” It was an epiphany for me, which Webster’s defines as, “a sudden realization, a sudden intuitive leap of understanding, especially through an ordinary but striking occurrence.”

I had accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior as a ten-year old child during a revival. My fingers formed a heart as I sat on the front pew after filling out the decision card. I had been enrolled in our church’s cradle roll nursery at two months of age after my parents adopted me from the Salvation Army hospital in Jacksonville, Florida. I grew in my relationship with my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ through Sunday School and missions organizations, memorizing many of His wonderful words of life. And yet, here I was, a busy wife and working mother of two feeling like a “one.” How did I get here? Jesus had not moved, but I felt far away from Him. This feeling was expressed so well in the heart-felt song by Larnelle Harris, “I Miss My Time with You,” as the lyrics say,
I miss My time with you, those moments together, I need to be with you each day and it hurts Me when you say you're too busy 

I knew in my heart that prayer
, time in God’s Word, and worship with my fellow believers were the choices I needed to make to move from a “one” to a “five.” I began to pray this prayer as part of my quiet time each day...
Lord Jesus, give me a heart which yearns for Your Presence, a yearning for You that draws me over and over into Your Presence, a yearning that makes only a few days without time in prayer and Your Word seem like an eternity. Give me a heart which is motivated first and foremost by a desire for You, not for what You can do for me, but a yearning for Your Presence. Give me a heart that wants You more than anything else You could give, to love You and know You more than anything in life. Give me a heart that takes what You have made known to me and makes You re-known to everyone else, a heart that makes Your name and renown the desire of my heart. Give me a heart to feel Your Holy Spirit woo me once again to the place where I meet You. In the simplicity of my prayer time, give me a heart to be suddenly confronted by the majesty of my Redeemer—the One Who is responsible for any good in me. I bow at Your Cross, and I experience anew Your forgiveness, redemption, mercy, and grace, as I sense Your blood dripping over the Crown of Thorns pressed into Your brow, onto my heart, covering my sin, I get up from my knees wearing Your Robe of righteousness as I face the day ahead, welcoming Your fresh mercies which fall like manna from Heaven, and once again move my heart. I surrender all. Morning after morning.  

For it is God who works in you 
to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.—Philippians 2:13


Look Up
—meditate on Philippians 2:13 … pray to see what it reveals about the character of God.


Look In—as you meditate on Philippians 2:13 … pray to see how you might apply it to your life. Be propelled to ask galvanizing questions about your discoveries: "Because God is_________, I will_____________."

Look Out—as you meditate on Philippians 2:13  …pray to see how you might apply it to your relationships with others. Let the nature of God impact on every relationship, for your good, and for His glory.


* If you liked this post, you’ll love this book – Name Above All Names Devotional: Focusing on 26 Alphabetical Names of Christ

18 comments:

  1. I prayed that beautiful prayer with you today. Visiting you from the dancing with Jesus link up. laurensparks.net

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    1. Thank you so much for sharing that with me! It is a blessing to share what has helped me with others. Many blessings to you ❤️

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  2. Thank you for that prayer. It is truly a blessing!

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    1. Rebecca, I’m so glad you like that prayer. It is a joy to know that others are blessed by what has helped me. Many blessings to you ❤️

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  3. Beth, I am thankful for this prayer that you have shared
    We are living in difficult times!
    Prayer is essential to our survival!
    I would like to share a prayer I pray, with you.
    I will email it to you.
    Thanks! God Bless

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    1. Mary, you are such a blessing to me! Over these past many years since I started this little blog, you have consistently been such an encourager! Thank you for your email and your beautiful scripture-based prayers! I LOVE the Living Bible, so good! Many blessings to you, friend.

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  4. As I was reading this post, I admit, I did not expect you to say "1" in answer to the question. But your honesty refreshes me. Your prayer is powerful and I can see how praying it daily would make a difference. Your words are a blessing.

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    1. Mary, thank you for your comments. That day is so crystal-clear in my mind, I know it was a divine appointment for sure. Praise the Lord for how specifically He meets us where we are...even if we're a "one." Many blessings to you, friend!

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    1. Thank you for stopping by Jennifer! Many blessings to you!

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    1. Thanks so much for stopping by! Many blessings to you!

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  7. Thanks so much for sharing this transparent and edifying post! Great encouragement to seek after God.

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    1. Appreciate your encouraging comments. Many blessings to you!

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  8. Such an important question. We truly are as close to God as we want to be. Thanks for sharing. Blessings to you!

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    1. Mari-Anna, I so agree with you. Isn’t wonderful how God uses even a simple question to draw us back into His Loving Arms? God is so good all the time and we are the witnesses! Many blessings to you ❤️

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  9. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with the #DreamTeam this week.

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    1. Annette, thanks for stopping by...many blessings to you!

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