Sunday, January 27, 2013

Pray, Ask, and Have Peace

It's 12:04am, and I have felt the need to write all day long.  The longing and desire started about two weeks ago, but with everything going on, I haven't taken the time.  I think the pot is finally "boiling" (not that I'm angry), and this energy needs to be released.

So let me back up.  Bracebridge Dinner at the Ahwahnee in Yosemite National Park was absolutely more than I expected it to be.  The entire weekend caught me off guard - in the most lovely of ways - and I'm so happy that I went.  I was entertained, found myself singing to songs in another language that only true musicians would know, and truly felt the Christmas spirit come back to me.  It was a privilege and honor to attend this experience with a good friend, and it was even nicer that we got to catch up on life yet feel like no time had passed at all.  If you can find people like that in your life, keep them and hold on tight to them.  They are worth more than their weight in gold.

Christmas Eve gave way to a beautiful white christmas - something I haven't experienced in over 20 years, probably.  I kept taking so many pictures that I was questioned why I was taking so many pictures of the same thing!  Ha!  I was so enthralled with it all.  I felt a bit like I was in Narnia and had somehow stepped through the Wardrobe into another place (minus the lions and witches.)  I was surprisingly treated to a movie I'd never seen before - "Serendipity" - which was a wonderful Christmas romance.  And then of course, how can you go through Christmas without watching "White Christmas"?  Yes, every time the song "Sisters" came on, I sang.  :)

New Years Eve.  The time between Christmas Eve and New Years Eve is usually quite reflective for me.  I tend to withdraw inward and reflect on what the year had brought me, what I'd been through, and how I can improve.  After the year that 2012 was, I think the only way to go was UP!  I had a lovely and memorable New Years Eve spent with a wonderful meal, great company, and bringing in the New Year while sitting on a leather couch, looking out a floor to ceiling window with someone who I care very much about in our own quaint little nook.  We could hear the countdown in the background by others celebrating - most of them drunk - but for us, it was the most perfect way to bring in the new year - through prayer.  Thanking God for who He is, what He's done in our lives, and asking for God's guidance, will, and favor upon our lives.

January has been somewhat of a roller coaster as the year has begun.  I think some of it is trying to calm down from 2012, and yet another force is trying to push me forward into a new chapter for 2013.  I've received some devastating news from a doctor (at least in my eyes at the moment), been on an unbelievable high that was unexpected and not asked for and had brought me to true happiness as I thought I saw God's plan unveiling in front of me - almost too quickly, and then recently felt disorganization to which I'm not accustom to.  That's why I say that January still has some "settling" to do if it were on shifting sand.  I believe a foundation is being built, but the details are so unclear right now - leaving me questioning and grasping to hold on to nothing but air.

I'm certain that God has a plan for my life, and one to prosper me, not harm me, but give me plans for hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11).

 I've been led to hold on to Philippians 4:6-7 this weekend:

"Do not be anxious for anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be known to God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in  Christ Jesus." (ESV)

I actually looked up the true definition of supplication so that I could further understand what God was asking me to do.  Per the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the definition of "supplication" is to "ask humbly and earnestly." Good to know, because it just gave me permission to ask for what I want without giving up on my requests.  It is a petition to God - a pleading, if you will - that acknowledges His power and will over my life, yet being bold enough to ask for what is my heart's desire.  But if you look at the very beginning of the verse, it reminds us not to be anxious or worried about whatever we're feeling or wanting.  Be thankful.  Pray.  And pray without hesitation.  And the promise is that God will guard our hearts and minds from everything evil or harmful by the blood of Jesus.  So, I pray.

God wants to know our needs and our wants.  He wants us to ask Him!  He's not a God who wants us to simply sit back and wait for Him to do His work while we're being lazy and sitting around waiting for Him to bless us, but he calls us to put forth effort and ask!  Matthew 7:7 promises us that He'll bless our requests if they are within Jesus Christ's will for our lives.  "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you." (NIV)

Interesting, because if you back up a verse to verse 6 in Matthew 7, my best friend has always told me in the past that I was "throwing my pearls to swine" in certain situations in my life.  I kind of understood it, kind of didn't, and kind of didn't want to or care.  But over the years, I've heeded to her prayer over me.  I've recognized my value and worth, and I will not just hand it over to anyone who wants it.  This statement includes both my personal and professional life.  Maturity in Christ is a beautiful thing, and I'm thankful for those in my life who build me up to be a better person.  (Total side note there.)

So here I am left with what I thought was God's plan and will for my life... and now it's completely floating in space with no solidarity.  I know, however, that Christ Jesus is in control and will make whatever happens in my life be the BEST thing ever!  The Lord has been the only constant in my life, so I will put my faith and continue to build my foundation around Him so that whether here on this earth or in Heaven, the Lord will reward me with a showering of blessings.  I cannot control all things.  In fact, there is a lot that I cannot control now due to my disability.  So per Matthew 4:6-7, I will be thankful for where I've been, what I've been through, where I am today and the future He has for me, yet also pray without ceasing for those things that I want in life moving forward.  I may not understand why things are happening the way they are right now, but one day I will.  In the meantime, I'm grateful for the peace that I have a God who is protecting my mind and heart from such things that could possibly harm me.

I have a lot to pray for and a lot of desires, so I "best get to praying" as they would say in the South!  Love and peace to all of you!

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