Use my hands use my feet to make Your kingdom come.

My heart was heavy this week. Lord, I prayed for you to break my heart for what breaks Yours. I prayed for You to open my eyes to those around me that need You. I can’t not see it now.

I see the man who asked for me to buy him a sandwich outside the Chick-Fil-A and again the next day when I saw him again.

I see it every time these kids reach out to me after they’ve run away. My heart is aching for them. I want to stand in the gap and help, but I’m not sure that I can legally do or even what to do. I want to be the connection that points them to You. When everyone else says no, I want to be the one that says yes, I’ll help. I don’t want to sit around doing nothing. I want to be always moving and guiding and pointing to You. I don’t want to give up on them, even when everyone else does. I don’t know what this looks like right now, but I know You are stirring something in my heart.

And Father, it’s November, so our birthday is coming and I am missing my friend, something fierce. If it’s not too much to ask, could You give him a hug from me? Father, I know he’s with You, I just miss him. Thank You for taking care of him. Thank You for the time I had with him. Thank You for writing a glorious story of Your love with his life.

Galatians 3: 28 says There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. Abba, my friend is Yours. I am Yours. And these kids are Yours. You never left us. None of us. You have been with each of us, this whole time. We just have to call out to You. You are faithful, even when we are not, even when we are lost and afraid. You always keep Your promises and You are always trustworthy. Father guide these kids home to You.

So, here is my prayer today. I pray I hold onto those around me a little tighter. I pray I hug a little longer. I pray I make a few more calls and meet up for coffee a few more times. I pray I walk a little slower and talk a little more. I pray I love a little louder. I pray that I give a little more. I pray I spend a little more time with you. I pray I keep seeking your heart. Father, this life is a mystery and sometimes it drags on and on, while other times it’s over in the blink of an eye. Lord, I pray I make this life count. I pray that I spend my life building your kingdom. I pray my heart never stops breaking for these kids. I pray that I move where you want me to. I pray I do more. I pray I point to you more. I pray I follow you. I pray I give all of myself to you. Abba, I pray I remember this isn’t about me and I can’t do it all and I can’t save anyone, only you can. Father, that’s what I’m asking for: save these kids. Do what I can’t. Send me where I can and show me the way. Lord, I prayed for you to interrupt my life and you changed it’s entire direction. Thank you for giving me more than I could even imagine. Help me to stay focused on you. Father, grab a hold of their hearts and don’t let go. Thank you for chasing them with gentle grace, the way you chased me. And as always I pray for my family and sorority sisters. I pray for my university. I pray for guidance for our government, church, and school leaders. I pray for protection for our troops. I pray for all of those that need you now and for those that haven’t met you yet. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

He’s up to something.

Ok, so with graduation coming up, I have been sending out my resume with like a whole bunch of optimism and hope attached to that cover letter. Like my dreams are riding on those pieces of paper. The rejection letters that are following are weighing on a girl’s heart. Ok, most of them say they need someone immediately and to reapply in a few months. That’s fine I can accept that, except I don’t wanna wait. I’m excited and ready to go. There is a couple that say I need more experience, that’s fine because I knew I did when I applied for those but I figured it was worth a shot. You never know what might happen and what doors could open. I wanted to be open to all possibilities. Then there is the one this week that says they appreciate my creativity but decided to go in a different direction. That one hurt a little more than I would like to admit.

Elizabeth Edwards said: “She stood in the storm, and when the wind did not blow her way, she adjusted her sails.” So, here I am adjusting my sails, adjusting my outlook, adjusting my attitude, and turning all my attention to You, Lord.

I figured I needed a “pick me up.” I pulled out some old notes and got ready to start praying. Inside of my notes I found three fortune cookie quotes that I liked over the years and had saved. They kinda hit the nail on the head for the kind of reminder I need.

  1. “You are a skilled organizer and aware of group dynamics.”
  2. “You have a deep understanding of other people’s needs and feelings.”
  3. “You are far more influential than you think.”

Alrightttttt, let’s put that on my resume and I’ve got the experiences to back that up. Now while I don’t put much stock in believing in fortune cookies, I do think that God gives us little signs and reminders if we’re paying attention.

I’m reading chapter 5 of For the Love by Jen Hatmaker. The chapter is called: “Run Your Race.” In the chapter she says to invest in your gifts and stop downsizing what you’ve been given. She wrote: “You are good at something for a reason. God designed you this way, on purpose. It isn’t fake or a fluke or small. These are the mind and heart and hands and voice you’ve been given, so use them.” Then she says: “The timing is never right. Forget that.” Boy, did I need to hear this. This chapter could not have been timed anymore perfect. But it is perfect, because it’s Your timing. It’s Your details. It’s Your grand design. Every moment of my life has been orchestrated by Your hands and it is a beautiful thing. She ends the chapter with: “But off you go because we were not created to stand still, even though that is safe and familiar and you are guaranteed never to fall or stumble or grow weary. We were made to run. RUN. I’m grinning at you. We all are.” My heart tingled when I read that. Ok, I’m putting my running shoes on now. (Btdubbs, I need to thank Mama again for the new ones for Christmas.)

I also found my notes from Xtreme Winter. In my chicken scratch, written in a hurry, trying to soak in every word, it says: “Don’t miss an opportunity to pray. We have enough Jesus to get by but he doesn’t have enough of us. Step out and quit letting Satan control your life.” Then at the bottom of my notes is written: “I believe I was destined to be here.” Which reminded me of a saying: “You are where God wants you to be at this very moment. Every experience is part of his divine plan.”

So, that is my prayer. I pray that I let today serve as a reminder that you are not finished with me yet. I pray that I remember you have a plan for me. Lord, you have been preparing me and leading me to this point. You do not do things without intention and purpose. Thank you for guiding me. I pray that I continue to follow you. I pray that I set my sights on you. I pray that I adjust my sails. I pray that I give you everything I have and all that I am. I pray that I give you the control. I pray that I keep seeing your hand in the details of my life. I pray that I run my race. I pray that I remember to thank my friends and family for cheering me on and supporting me during my race. I pray that I don’t minimize my gifts. I pray that I put them on display for all to see the work you have done in me. I pray that I keep showing off how glorious you are. And as always I pray for my family and sorority sisters. I pray for my university. I pray for guidance for our government, church, and school leaders. I pray for protection for our troops. I pray for all of those that need you now and for those that haven’t met you yet. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

It’s all I ever needed.

When I’m feeling anxious I should probs just go straight to Lysa Terkeurst’s fb wall or read her books because she always says exactly what I need to hear. She sends me straight to You in prayer. She makes me see things differently.

Here was her words of encouragement today:

“When we have ‘I don’t know why’ situations in life, we have to make the hard choice to settle our mind with what we do know. Otherwise, the ‘I don’t know why’s’ will sweep us away into treacherous currents of doubt and disillusionment.

So, I grab hold of what I do know.

I do know God is a God of protection. God’s love for me is so consuming, He can only have my best interest in mind.

I do know God is a God of provision. God’s plans for me are good even if they don’t align with mine. He will provide but probably not in the way I expect.

I do know God is a God of process. God’s process to develop my character to match my calling might include me having to learn to let go of something I treasure.

So that’s where I park my mind, my emotions, and my trust.

It’s not the tidiest parking spot on the lot. It doesn’t make the loss sting less.

But it’s a place I can wad up my run away emotions and hand them over to my perfectly capable and all-knowing God.”

Well, she hit my issues on the head today. (As she always does.) So, let me break this down.

1. You are a God of protection.

This right here is my fave. Sometimes, (although I’m 23), I feel like a little scared girl that needs You to hold my hand. This right here gives me strength.

2. You are a God of provision.

This is one I struggle with on the daily. I shouldn’t though because You have given me more than I could ever even imagine. You have blessed me more than I ever thought possible. I’m a planner, but You are the creator. Even my best laid plans can’t even compare to the glory in Your plans.

3. You are a God of process.

Ok…So, this is the one I need extra help with today. Why do I struggle so much, knowing 1 and 2? Because I have trouble letting go of my plans. You’re plans are so much greater than mine could ever be, so why do I have such a problem trusting? Because I only see my immediate plans and I don’t see the much bigger plans You have for me. I see in terms of the 5 year plan and 10 year plan. (Maybe the 60 year plan if I’m feeling optimistic. That’s the retirement home plans! The one that has me and my best friends sitting in rocking chairs talking about our husbands and our grand kids.) You see the eternity plan though. You are the beginning and the end. The Alpha and Omega.

Basically Lysa’s saying You’re a dad which is totes why you’re called Abba Father. You’re the Creator. You are my Heavenly Father. You knew me before I was even a thought in my parents’ head. Before my daddy ever got that book and taught himself how to braid my hair, You knew how many hairs I would have on my head. Before my mommy ever picked my name, You knew it. You picked me even though You knew all my flaws. You still wanted me when You knew all my weaknesses. You chose me even though You knew how many times I would fail. You knew it all and still loved me before I was ever even born. Your love is all that I needed.” 

Then she says: “So that’s where I park my mind, my emotions, and my trust.” Ok, You have my full attention. (Especially since I am back to the car metaphors! *insert my loud obnoxious rendition of Jesus Take The Wheel again!*)

So, here is my prayer today. I pray that I park my mind. I pray that I let go of the useless anxiety that I give power to. I pray that I let you guide my life. I pray that I park my emotions. First off, because they take my attention away from you. Second, they add unneeded stress and trouble to my life. I pray that I keep my eyes focused on you. I pray that I continue my walk with you. I pray that I park my trust. I pray that I put my faith in you more. Thank you for being a God of protection, provision, and process. Thank you for being a perfectly capable and all-knowing God. Lord, I pray that you settle my mind. I pray that I let go of the unknown. I pray that I let go of the “I don’t know why’s.” Thank you for always showing me your love. Thank you for loving me still. And as always I pray for my family and sorority sisters. I pray for my university. I pray for guidance for our government, church, and school leaders. I pray for protection for our troops. I pray for all of those that need you now and for those that haven’t met you yet. In Jesus’ name, Amen.