I have been sitting here trying to rein my thoughts in. I’ve had somewhat of a restless heart this week. I realize I haven’t dedicated time to reading the scriptures, and I often feel this restlessness because of my own doing. This is a personal failure of mine. It’s one of those things I really struggle with. I get all wrapped up in life, my head gets spinning with the stresses and cares of a million demands around me, and as I scramble to catch up, I let the one most important thing in my life slide. I hate that. A friend of mine posted a quote this morning, and I’m gonna recap it. “If God feels far away, guess who moved.”
I always know it’s me. He is always knocking, and sometimes I treat Him like a solicitor. Ugh. I disgust myself. How can I put Him off like that, on the back burner? He who died for me. It’s a shameful fault of mine.
God’s mercy and grace toward us is astounding. I feel the urging in my heart to get back to the basics and open scriptures. He puts what I need right there in front of me.
Mark 12:30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, andwith all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.
Ooof. Yeah, that’s the one I fell short on for sure. I put other things in front of my God priority.
I spent yesterday in church services and both sermons were what I needed. One was about sin, and the next was about idols. I needed both of those. I’m not going out being a rebel rousing hooligan or anything, but when I lose sight of God being my number 1 priority, I find myself falling short in all respects. I grow frustrated in general, tired because I haven’t rested my soul, and short fused because I don’t have time to recharge. I need the patience and the mission statement that the word of God impresses on my soul. I am here for His purposes. My purposes need to sit back in the passenger seat and zip it, so God can steer my crazy train, back on the right tracks.
I can’t tell you the relief I felt this week when I had the opportunity to pray with a few friends. We were in prayer together, just 4 of us, praying for the needs on our hearts. As we prayed and I listened to their prayers, the Holy spirit washed over me. From the top of my head, gently brushing down my shoulders and warmly and gently embracing me for a moment. I felt such peace, joy, and thankfulness for the very moment I was in. I wasn’t worthy of it. I didn’t deserve it. It is just the grace and mercy of God, calling me back into His presence. I opened the door to his knocking, and he embraced me in a hug. I had prayed daily, but I hadn’t poured out my heart in earnest prayer like that. I need to pour out my heart like that daily. What type of amazing blessings await, when we fervently pray? The glory untold…just waiting to be opened to us.
Guess when this reminder scripture showed up on my phone bible app? Yeah, the day before we prayed together…
Mathew 18:20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.
He is. I felt it. It gave me such peace.
I had the honor of teaching the 7-8 year olds for Bible school a couple weeks ago. This group consisted of 5 energetic, smart, insightful and sweet boys. My conversations with these boys blew me away. The questions they hit me with during the week, surprised me. These boys have been thinking and thinking deep. One of the questions was, “How do we know if we are gonna be a good person or a bad person?” I told the boys that every decision we make will decide that. Each decision we make, sets us on a path. We either move closer to God with each decision or further away. I told them that I didn’t know the validity of the example I was about to tell them, but that there is an old indian proverb. I will insert it here:
I was pretty sure that they understood. They all seemed to think that made sense. Later on in the conversation, another statement was made by one of the boys. He said, “When you sin and you make a mistake, God erases it like He doesn’t even remember it!” I told him, “Yes! And it says He throws it into the depths of the ocean.” Just then, one of the boys got excited and he said, “Yes! God makes that bad wolf BARF IT UP!!!” We all dissolved in fits of laughter at that point, but I was so overjoyed to see that not only they understood the analogy, but they were even building on the meaning of it.
I feel like there are a lot of moments in life I wish I could make my bad wolf barf it up, and it would somehow erase those moments when I fed the bad wolf. I also recognize that sometimes it’s not that I’m feeding the bad wolf…it’s just that I’ve forgotten to feed the good wolf. My soul does the equivalent of what my real dogs do when I forget to feed them…they let me know I’ve dropped the ball. We have a dog and my in laws have a dog. I love both of our dogs, but my Mom and Dad in laws dog…he has the personality of a feisty loving brave alpha. The irony is that he is 10 lbs. We live on the same property as my in laws, and when they are gone during the day, he is at our house. When they travel he also is at our house. Our dogs act like siblings and are BFF’s. Their dog’s name is Boo.
We love this little guy like he is just our dog too. Here is his usual perch on my lap with our dog Ava
Boo’s feisty is no joke. He will bat his empty food dish across the floor like a world champion soccer player, until you fill it. Same thing with an empty water dish. When you look at him, he just stands there with pure innocence written on his face and he tilts his little head, like something so innocent could never cause such a ruckus. It makes me laugh. My soul does this when it’s not getting what it needs. It bats my emotions and patience around until I pay attention and fill my cup. I’ve started to recognize this sooner than I used to. It’s a learning process.
Whenever I hold Boo, and I start to shift my hands to put his little body down…he grabs my arm with his arms and wraps his paws around so I can’t let go. It melts me every single time and I love it. I pray my soul clings to God this close. That whenever I feel impending distance, that I will wrap my arms around God’s goodness and never let loose. I’m comforted to know that it’s never God who puts us down while we are still hanging on, it’s only us who wriggle free of God’s grasp.
While I’m thinking about it…I’m gonna go feed my dogs and the good wolf. Huge hugs to you guys!