whoa! today was a near miss! my challenge of intentionally waking up early to spend time alone with the Lord in prayer was sabotaged by my teething two year old! up at 4:00 a.m., i'm guessing because her children's ibuprofen was wearing off, we didn't get back to bed until 6: 23! not good when the clock is about to go off at 7:00.
climbing back into bed i prayed, "dear Lord, you know my heart, you know my desire for sleep, pleeeease! make it work" and i was off into a land of heavy slumber.
the clock did go off at 7:00, i did wake up to turn it off, and then laid back down and shut. my. eyes!
oooooh ~ nooooo!
again waking up a little after 8:00 i immediately remembered my coffee date and felt horrible! waiting for it, i listened for the pitter-patter of feet from my son in the hall. slowing my panicked heart, i strained to hear my daughter awake in her crib. nothing. not. one. sound.
'thank you Lord!!!!' i leaned over and pressed brew and ya know what? i got a good two hours of quiet time with the Lord!! it was so much needed and so much appreciated! i really was afraid that loosing 2 1/2 hours of sleep early in the morning was gonna really mess it all up, and He totally gifted me our time together! i loved it so much!!
i have to say praying over family members, friends, needs even desires does something to me. i'm not quite sure what it is but i have to say, i love it! could it be the act of taking it all and laying it at Jesus' feet i feel freer to experience the rest of what the day has to offer? could it be the recognition that i don't have it all under control and the appreciation of not having to have everything under control? could it be the lack of clutter that usually rattles around in my brain during most days is suddenly missing? either way - i love it!
i really want to share some of the chapter from a book, that really has me convicted to intentionally start my day early with the Lord - alone. this book is called life management for busy women living out God's plan with passion and purpose by elizabeth george. i sincerely hope i don't get into trouble by sharing some of the key points from the chapter that spoke loudly to me. here are the first few:
a.)"observed duties maintain our credit, but secret duties maintain our life." "john flavel, a seventeenth-century english clergyman who loved to teach and write about practical religion and piety." i loved this and am still thinking on it.
she talks about prayer being a secret duty. now you're asking yourself, "why, if it's supposed to be a secret, is this blogger writing about it?'
honest enough - i'll tell you - honestly. because it's something i have been struggling to do. something that i love to do and want to get back into the practice of. my striving for intention blog is my way of intentionally doing my all each and every day for the Lord. i think this is a great way to start the day and in this book i learned of it's importance. i love to to share it with whomever is interested, whomever wants to take up the daily challenge of striving to be intentional for God too. this is perhaps, the best place to start. so i hope i don't write about it in a haughty-look-at-me kind of way, that's not my intention here. but to say, "i have had the struggle of doing this in the present and i want the struggle to end."
elizabeth george says, (b) "prayer is a secret duty...more a privilege-and responsibility. it is a privilege because of our relationship with God as His children. and it is a responsibility and a duty because of the many commands in Scripture that call us to a life of faithful prayer."
she goes on to say that our call to prayer is from the very beginning of the bible to the very end when (c) "men and women of faith are seen (and heard!) crying out to God. indeed, whole prayers are recorded for us word for word."
some examples elizabeth george gives are:
jeremiah 33:3 (niv) call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.
james 1:5 (niv) if any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.
matthew 7:7 (niv) ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.
matthew 6:6 (niv) but when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen, then your Father, who sees what is done in secret will reward you.
of course these are but a few commands from God to pray but the important thing here is that you know it is a command. before reading this book i did not know this.
tomorrow i will share with you elizabeth george's "five feats that prayer accomplishes in our heart and lives" but might i encourage you, buy or borrow this treasured book. it is full of meat that will feed your soul.
this is thursday afternoon that i am rereading this post. i originally wrote it tuesday night, half asleep. i so wanted to write about my morning and share the first part of the chapter right away. however, i am finding that waking up two hours earlier has me wanting to go to sleep two hours earlier as well. why did i not see this coming? so while i was finishing i was nodding .... off .... (for real) and decided not to post just yet - we all know about my poor grammar while i'm fully awake =) i assumed the same thing would happen last night as i was quite tired very early and just simply went to bed. i do hope to catch the blog up today but please bare with me as i figure out a new schedual for both myself and my family.
a.) life management for busy women by elizabeth george pg. 35
b.) life management for busy women by elizabeth george pg. 35
c.) life management for busy women by elizabeth george pg. 36