I like the way today feels a lot better. And it feels pretty miraculous considering that yesterday was in the top 5 of rough days.
Last night at the end of the long day, after the kids had gone to bed, and I'd worked through my frustrations with a good solid workout, and I'd had a nice conversation with the love of my life, and I'd gotten a nice letter of encouragement from someone who is basically a stranger but also a supporter of this blog and a sister in Christ, I got in the shower. I guess I should just openly admit that is the closest thing I have to a prayer closet around here, and I am sad to report I am not wasting nearly as much water as I ought to be, but last night while I did my best to wash away the residue of the day, I heard the Lord speak to my heart.
The scripture that came to my mind as I stood in the shower was Jeremiah 29:13. It's verse 11 of that chapter that is the "popular" verse, often repeated and shared, but verse 13 has always been the standout verse of the chapter for me. I have had my moments that I have held to the better known verse, but 13, it's the one that has captured my heart, and one I hadn't really thought about in a while.
It says, "And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart."
Oh blessed kingdom math, the absolute, the if/ then principle. It touches my soul. And in that moment as I focused on that verse, I felt the Lord say, "Seek Me."
So simple, and yet so profound. I was coming to the Lord with a list of problems and concerns and I was weary and weighted and in those two simple words, what He was saying was He has the answers, and if I will concern myself with Him, He will take care of my list. Maybe not how I want or might expect, but somehow, His way, the right way, my list will be taken care of.
I can't tell you the relief those two words brought me. Coming from a moment of really having no idea what I should do, to crossing into an absolute confident assurance of what it is I am supposed to do. Seek Him Wow.
When I woke up this morning I was singing. It's been so long since the last time I remember waking up with a song on my lips. It's a song I love, one the Lord revealed to me at a difficult time before. Come to think of it, it may be a full circle moment since then, and yet, I have yet to give over to truly seeking Him with all my heart.
The lyrics to the song I awoke to are so simple, yet so profound and perfectly capture a poignant truth. (If you'd like to hear it/ see the video, click here.)
The more I find You
The more I find You, the more I love You
I wanna sit at Your feet
Drink from the cup in Your hand.
Lay back against Tou and breathe, feel Your heart beat
This love is so deep, it's more than I can stand.
I melt in Your peace, it's overwhelming
All day long the song resonated in my heart. When I got up to work out this morning I stopped for the first time in a while and bowed to my knees and gave the Father the day. It was a simple prayer, short, seconds long, but effective. As I did my workout this morning my heart and mind were already properly focused, and that hasn't been true in a while either.
I sang the song in the shower, and wondered where I should do my devotional this morning, I even asked for suggestions from my Facebook friends. But as I was getting dressed I thought of my favorite devotional book, one that has spoken a timely word to me again and again, My Utmost For His Highest by Oswald Chambers, So I came out to my laptop and pulled it up along with biblegateway.com to see what the Lord might have to say. And this is what I read in today's devotional. "Faith never knows where it is being led, but it loves and knows the One Who is leading. It is a life of Faith, not of intellect and reason, but a life of knowing Who makes us 'go'. The root of faith is the knowledge of a Person..." What it spoke to me? Was again, to "seek Him."
I have big dreams, I also have big challenges, and I have looked at these and for the life of me not been able to grasp in my mind how the challenges could be resolved or the dreams could be accomplished. I have imagined, wondered, lamented, and never for the life of me been able to come up with any scenario that anything might ever work out. And suddenly as I read this, I realized, it's not for me to figure out. It is for me to... seek Him.
When I got to Facebook later I saw that one of my friends recommended Hebrews 11. As it happened, that was what the reference scripture for the Chambers devotional was. It felt like... confirmation. As I was looking at the passage on the screen I kept feeling the prompting of the Holy Spirit to look the verse up in my actual bible. When I did I saw that the commentary alongside the chapter was from a Max Lucado book titled "He Still Moves Stones." My God, the God I need to seek, He is the Mover of seemingly immovable stones. A quote from the book there stated, "God says that the more hopeless your circumstances, the more likely your salvation. The greater your cares, the more genuine your prayers. The darker the room, the greater the need for light... God's help is near and always available, but it is only given to those who seek it. Nothing results from apathy."
I have been afraid for so long that my situation, my challenges would never change, and that my dreams would never come true, that I have let it paralyze me. I have let it stop me from doing anything at all, even thinking on the dreams that in my heart of hearts, I believe He actually gave me.
Today while I was at work the office was empty as everyone else had left for lunch. I was doing my job, still singing the song, "The more I seek You, the more I find You.... the more I find You, the more I love You..." as I was walking down the stairs suddenly I heard the Lord, to my heart He spoke, "You are a woman of great faith." It stopped me in my tracks. I gasped for breath, and as I felt the Holy Spirit fall, I began to cry. I AM a woman of great faith. I am the woman who has believed God for big things, big and impossible things, and I have stood in that faith with confidence when everything,
Hebrews 11:1 says, "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." I have been trying to "see" for so long, that somewhere along the line, I stopped looking. I stopped
Verse 6 of Hebrews 11 says, "But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him." OK Lord, I'm listening. I hear you. I will seek You, with all my heart.
Nothing has changed really, the circumstances are exactly the same, but my perspective is not. I remember now, Who holds the future. I am remembering His faithfulness, His goodness. I am remembering Him, and I am remembering that whatever else happens or doesn't, the point of it all is to know Him, more and more.
So I am going to be obedient to the Word, and to the word He has spoken to my heart, and above all else, I am going to dig deep, focus on Him. This morning my little sister (in-law) commented on one of my Facebook statuses and she said this, "the valleys SUCK, but put your blinders on, stare at God and follow him out of the suck, ♥ you." They were the most beautiful and profound words, truth be told. And what they spoke very clearly to me, "seek Him." And so that alone is my focus right now, to figure out how to get all my heart in line, on focusing and seeking after my God, because I am a woman of great faith, and it's about time I started living like one.