I’m amazed by how You care cause You hear my little prayer.

I stumbled upon this 30-Day Challenge for Single Christian Women on Pinterest from The BarnPrincess a few weeks ago. The original article was posted in April but said it could be started any time. I figured I would start it at the beginning of the year since January was so close and that’s typically the month for New Year’s resolutions and what not.

I am determined to make 2017 a good year. I started my day with soup made with collard greens and black eyed peas. I wasn’t taking any chances this year so I participated in all the southern traditions. For someone who gets picked on for being a terrible cook all the time, my entire family sure ate my soup with no complaints. A little birdy said they went back for seconds too. (Little stinkers better quit telling me I can’t cook!)

Anyways, now that I’m done being distracted, back to the challenge! Day 1 is about finding a Life Verse. The instructions are: “Find a Bible verse that speaks to you and make it your life verse. Focus on having it memorized by the end of the 30 days. Post it where you can see it every day. Journal about it. Be creative with it. Why did you choose that verse? What does it mean to you? How does it give you strength? Or how does it give you direction?”

Ok, homegirl has trust issues I am working on and that seems to be the theme in some of the books I’ve been reading lately. So, taking the hint, I seem to have been given, that is the direction I’m heading this month. I went looking for verses on trust and Proverbs 3:5-6 says: Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. That was a prominent couple of verses I read and studied this past summer so I already had those memorized so I figured that was cheating so I continued my search. I found Psalm 13:5 which says: But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. That right there is the one. That right there is what I need. Heavenly Father, those were the words.

I went to read the rest. There are only 6 verses that David wrote in the chapter. Psalm 13 says: How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and day after day have sorrow in my heart? How long will my enemy triumph over me? Look on me and answer, Lord my God. Give light to my eyes or I will sleep in death, and my enemy will say, “I have overcome him,” and my foes will rejoice when I fall. But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. I will sing the Lord’s praise, for he has been good to me. 

First off, You weren’t scared of the tough questions. Second, the other thing that got my attention from these verses is even when David wasn’t getting a response or the answers he wanted in his time, he still praised You. Lord, David was going through so much and he didn’t understand Your plan, but he still praised You. He still trusted You. His heart still rejoiced in You. He still sang for You. Lord, You were listening to David’s little prayer and You are listening to mine.

So, here in my prayer today. I pray for this new year, this new start, this new day. I pray this challenge brings me closer to you. I pray that I think about both David’s little prayer this month. I pray that I listen to David’s psalm and David Archuleta’s song. I pray that I learn to trust in you more. I pray that I trust in your unfailing love. Unfailing love. Lord, I don’t even know if such a thing exists. Unfailing love. Father in Heaven, please open my heart to your unfailing love. Lord, open the floodgates and let your unfailing love cover me. Let is wash over me. I pray my heart rejoices in your salvation. I pray that I see all the good around me. I pray that my heart sings and dances praises for you. I pray that I focus on all the good. 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.

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Show me the love I say I believe.

I was desperately seeking You so, I picked up that book my person gave me. Yesterday, the title hit home: “Not understanding everything.” March 8th’s verse is Proverbs 3:5-6 which says: Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. I’ve heard those verses so many times and each time I do, it means more.

I’m gonna break down my thoughts during the books explanation:

“By the time we reach adulthood, most of us are pretty good at figuring things out.” Well, I’m not really good at this adulting thing yet, but I’m trying.  Trying counts right? Nope. There’s daddy’s voice again saying: “Stop trying and do it.” “But in some areas our understanding may still be limited or flawed.” That’s for sure. Half the time, I still don’t have a clue what’s going on. Especially right now. I don’t the foggiest idea what You want me to do, who to be, or where to go. I thought graduation was going to tie up everything I’ve worked for with a nice little bow and it was going to be the stepping stone to my future. Truth is, I’ve never been more lost. Three months from now and my entire world is going to be changed and I have no idea what direction I’m taking. “That’s the joy of the promise in the verses above. God doesn’t expect us to understand everything perfectly.” Ok, good because I’m lost. “In fact, he warns us not to depend on our understanding but to depend on his perfect knowledge. We don’t just go our merry way, operating on what we assume or think to be true-we’re to look for God’s guidance. He wants to lead us.” This is where the hard part comes. Learning to let go and let God. Lord, way too often I try to figure things out on my own and then seek You. I should be calling Your name first. “Next time we start to set our own course, let’s pause and pray. Let’s follow God’s compass when we’re wondering which way to walk.” Ok, I’m gonna slow down, take a breath, I’m listening. Father, lead me. Show me which way to walk.

I remembered this part I read in Fervent:

“Because the fact is, He is quietly working on your behalf without any fanfare. Preparing, arranging, and planning for your good. He is all-powerful. He is sovereign. He is right and true and eternally glorious, impervious to the enemy’s intentions. And whatever comes next in your life, it will be undoubtedly be another opportunity for you to be swept into your Father’s arms and carried through it. And that is where you want to be. Because in His arms, you’ll know the beauty of His peace-‘the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension’ and which guards our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus (Phil. 4:7).”

So, that is my prayer today. Thank you for open arms. Thank you for never leaving me. Thank you for the cross. Thank you for being here. Thank you for guarding my heart and my mind. Thank you for working on my behalf. Thank you for your preparations, your arrangements, and your plans.  I pray that I lay mine down. Lord, help to lay it down, once and for all. Lord, help me lay down my control. Help me lay down my trust issues. Help me lay down my plans. Help me lay down my understanding, my confusion, my misdirection. Lord, help me to follow you instead of getting lost on my own. Lord, move me. Guide me. Lead me. Show me the path. Lord, open my eyes. Father, carry me. I can’t do this on my own. 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.

But I want Your way, Yahweh.

My friend and I were going down the road and she turns to me and says: “Have you heard this new TobyMac song?” (shaking my head no.) “Here, I’ll play it for you!” TobyMac wasn’t even finished with the first verse before I was ready to cry. This was exactly what I needed to hear. This was exactly what I was going through right now. Lord, You amaze me with your timing. Your hand is literally in every part of my life.

I am a backseat driver. I completely, 100% admit it. I have trouble with trust. I want to be in control and I like being in control. Not just in the car, but in every single aspect of my life, I want to be in control. I want to make plans and decisions and have actions reflect those plans. I want to swoop in and fix things. I want my 10-year plan and all my other plans to remain intact. But the moment I remember that 10-year plan, I remember You have an eternity plan. I am learning that I can’t plan life and I control everything. (Go figure!) I can’t control what happens to me or what happens to other people. I can’t stop bad things from happening, no matter how much I would like to. There is a line between giving up and not fighting for things and completely controlling them. The line is drawn when I trust You and let you guide my life and I let You fight for me. If I am not letting You fight for me, then I am fighting against You. That is a battle I will never win. One of the big things I’ve learned this year is that I can control my reaction to those things though. I can look to You, instead of reverting back to my old habits.

My old habits have taught me that my need for control comes from a place of fear. Maybe that lady was right, maybe I am timid and afraid. I am so scared of things going wrong that I need to control every part of it. Lysa TerKeurst posted: “The enemy wants us afraid. Not the healthy kind of fear. No, the horrible kind of fear that whispers worst case scenarios absent of hope and haunted by hurt. With death on his breath Fear says, ‘Dance with me darling. Entertain my entanglements. Linger in my lies. And drink deeply from my darkness.’ All the while it pickpockets our purpose. Cripples our courage. Dismantles our dreams. And blinds us to the beauty of Christ’s powerful love. Refuse Fear access to your heart, mind, and soul with the proclamation above all others – Jesus, Jesus, Jesus! The name of Jesus is Power. Protection. And Perspective that crushes fear.”

Isaiah 54:10 says: Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken. I can barely comprehend what is going on around me, much less the fact that while mountains will be shaken and hills are removed, Your love in unfailing and unshaken. Your love is deeper and more profound than anything I can even understand. Tim Tebow posted Proverbs 3:5-6 which says: Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.

The Do You Believe movie Facebook page posted this: “I am not in control, but I am deeply loved by the one who is.” Maybe it’s time I started believing that and trusting You.

So, that is my prayer today. I pray that I trust you. I pray that I take TobyMac’s lyrics and Lysa’s words with me. I pray that I take Isaiah 54:10 and Proverbs 3:5-6 with me. I pray that I let go of the control. I pray that I let you take over the driver’s seat to my life. I pray that I let you fight for me. I pray that I give control to you. I pray that I see your beauty and your hand in everything. I pray that I refuse fear access to my heart, mind, and soul. I pray for your power and protection. I pray that you change my perspective. Thank you for your unfailing love. I pray that I stop leaning on my own understanding. I pray that I trust in you and acknowledge you in all I do. Thank you for reminders to trust you. 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.