Tuesday, August 31, 2010

An absolutly fantastical road trip

So about the only thing I regret about this past weekend is that I did not bring my camera. It was an awesome adventure and I must say that about 15 min into the trip I realized that my God has a big sense of humor.

Oh where to even begin!!

Well when I left work on Friday evening I had to rush home and do outside chores and pack. I also made time for a real quick shower and fixed some mac and cheese for us for dinner.

The plan was for M and P to leave their town at 6, pick me up at 6:30 and be on our way. The drive according to google map is about 6 hours to our destination. Well M didn't leave his place till 6 which means he didn't get P till 6:30 which means I didn't get picked up till closer to 7. Hmmmm.... already running late.

So we leave my place around 7ish and get on the road.

9 hours later....... we finally pull into our destination....lol. Oh yes there is quite a story behind that.

You see when I go on road trips usually I arrive sooner then the map says... not longer.

However P was in charge and not I. This is why about 15 min into the drive I realized that God must have wanted some seriously funny entertainment for the weekend.

Lets just put it this way:

3 sassy individuals + 1 truck + 6 (or more) hour trip + no map = fun er... trouble

Don't get me wrong.... we had some serious fun.

The 2 hr drive to Memphis was considerably quiet. P was reading her book while I picked M's brain and made deals with him about the music... He wanted Creed... I wanted DCB* we compromised and started off with 2 Charlie Hall songs (since we were planning on seeing him Sat night... this info is important, more on that in a min), all of Creed's new cd followed by all of DCB* church music. ( i get the better deal(-:) then we tried to agree on some... ok so he most likely just gritted his teeth through the Beckah Shae cd. But in my defense I just don't think I could of gone all night without hearing Life... it really is the ultimate road trip song.

We get to Memphis and all is well. Then P announces it's time for a bathroom stop.... half an hour later we finally find a gas station that actually has one. Then the arguing discussion of the hwy we needed to be on started. M said one, P said another. I just looked at them both and said I ain't got a clue (which was true). We went P's way (she was right, P-1, M-0).

Away we went and all was quiet.

Lol.... right.

Of course P was very excited that she was right and M, being male was not going to acknowledge that he had been wrong. And so began me being the parent telling P to be nice and stop bragging, while telling M to please just tell her she was right so that  we could get some peace!!!

Ok so sometime around 12 or so we get to Florance, AL. M is following the signs for the hwy...P is still reading... I'm harassing M with all my nosy questions and my crazy choice of music. All of a sudden there is a fountain in front of us. I mean dead in front of us. We are headed straight for the front part of the University of North Alabama. Don't ask me how we got there. M just looks at me with a very questioning look. Yes, I did see the signs and I agree this is where they lead us.

So what did we do?? Well we parked the truck of course and went for a stroll around the campus!!!!

We saw this pretty fountain

and to our surprise we saw this
except it was dark and there were no lions out)-: Still I thought it was pretty cool that they had a lion exhibit.

A little bit later we got back in the truck and continued on our way.

Argument discussion about direction #2 begins. This time M is right (so now they are tied). By now we are just a little bit tired and maybe a tad bit crabby. Thankfully all three of us are sassy and none of us take things too personal. So no hurt feelings, but we were all ready for some sleep. Around 3ish we finally pull into the driveway.

The deal was to get up somewhat early... let P drive the car (that's what we were doing picking up her car from some friends who had fixed up an old car for her). The car was a stick and P had very little experience driving one (ah yes, that itself was a whole other adventure which we will not go into here). Leave around 10 so that we would have plenty of time to make it to the Charlie Hall concert.

Just FYI.... life never goes the way you plan.

So 10 comes and we are about to load up.... P goes out to start her car... which she just got back from driving around the block mind you. And.... it won't start.... it is dead. Long story short and an hour later its the alternator. So 2.5 hours later new alternator is in and we are finally pulling out of the driveway. P and I riding together with M following.

Oh and by the way... I, the brilliant one of the bunch, have in my hands a print out of the directions from Al to the concert.... I was not up for round 3 of the direction argument discussion.

Well it did not take us 9 hours to get home. We did in fact make it to the concert... just in time to hear the last three songs(-: Which were amazing by the way. And yes that means we made the drive in under 6 hours... just don't ask.

We did not leave poor M by himself the whole way. I did jump in his truck and took control of his stereo and ask him serious life questions. P and I of course spent our time talking (no radio in the old car) and came up with great solutions to all the worlds problems(-:

 And that my sweet blogger friends is the end of the fantastical road trip adventure.

And yes.... M and I were just talking today about when we can take the next one.... however we will be planning the trip and not P (-:

Monday, August 30, 2010

Multitude Monday

Well... the weekend is over:-( Back to reality!! I am officially no longer a resident of that small little town I grew to love and very sad to leave it behind for now. Hopefully by the end of the week I'll officially be living in my new home. At least the bed is put together... it might be covered in boxes... but hey I can't be picky, right??

It's Multitude Monday and this week I'm changing things up... just for once:-)


I love that the God I serve is BIG

I love that my ways are not His ways

I love His sense of humor

I love Him

I love my amazing friends that have been through so much with me and still put up with me

I love meeting new people

I love when my first impression of someone turns out to be wrong... in a good way of course

I love road trips

I love that God put three extremely sassy people... in a truck.... for 9 hours

I love worshiping in the car... loudly!!!

I love worshiping with friends

I love that God sends chaos our way to remind us that it's all about Him

I love that He usually ignores the advice I give Him

I love that He knows best

I love it when friends help each other out

I love it when He changes my mind so that I might see His plan more clearly

I love being nosy

I love getting to know who people really are

I love talking about Him with others

I love seeing growth in others

I love unexpected talks in a driveway

I love having sleepovers with the p's girls

I love waking up to those girls crawling in bed with me

I love that someday I'll be woken up like that on a regular basis

I love how counting these blessings work on my hard heart

I love that He never stops caring

I love that He knows me

I love that He calls me His own... His daughter... His princess... His loved one

I love making pancakes with the p kids

I love watching a 6 yr old over joyed at the successful attempt at cracking an egg for the first time

I love that He asks us to look for joy in the small things

I love snow cones in the summer

I love hardworking kids who work with smiles on their faces

I love that He takes us out of comfort zones so that we might grow closer to Him

I love He hears my prayers

I love that He is faithful

I love that He loves me

I love Him

I love Him

I love Him

Whom have I in heaven but You?
And earth has nothing I desire besides You.
Psalm 73:21

Friday, August 27, 2010

New Friend Friday

It is absolutely gorgeous here in AR today. We finally have some relief from the horrible heat that seemed to never end. This 90 degree weather feels a bit chilly compared to the 100+ temps that we have been experiencing. The only problem is I'm stuck in the office:-( I don't mind being stuck inside when the temp is boiling (literally) hot but when its feels perfect... not so much.

So random, spontaneous news just came in.... a friend needs someone to ride with her to AL. It would be a 12 hour round trip. Leave this evening after I get off and get back in time for the Charlie Hall concert tomorrow at 6:-) sounds crazy!!! First thing... got to see if bosses daughter can cover for me tomorrow as I am supposed to be working. Fingers crossed-praying silently-secretly jumping up and down at the very possibility.

Have I mentioned that I LOVE road trips?? Maybe love isn't strong enough. Road trips are one oh my fav things to do. I love to see the country... to ride with the windows down.... to listen to music and sing at the top of my lungs:-) And a road trip with 2 friends make it even better. When I lived in VA for the year I went to grad school I would make the 12 hour trip home often. In fact that first semester I came home at least once a month if not more... my baby brother was a senior and first year starting kicker for the varsity football team... and of course had to make it to a few Razorbacks game:-) So.... needless to say I want to go on this trip super bad!!!! All this moving has made me a little stressed and a road-trip is the perfect cure. 

New Friend Fridays

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Ramblings on God and boys

 There's this topic that I've been writing on for some time. I have yet to actually publish one on it... maybe because I don't really want to... maybe because I don't quite have it figured out yet... or maybe because I'm just afraid to. However, I figured that it's time... time to just let go and let my fingers do the talking. Sometimes rambling on about a subject helps me to understand it more. Guess that's what I'm about to do.

The topic has to do with me.... or maybe it's more about another person I don't yet know... or maybe it's all about Him.

From the outside I'm a strong, put together, confident single woman. On the inside I'm a quiet, shy, searching little girl who just wants to be someones princess.

This journey of singleness that I am currently on is not one that I have ever desired. Yet, I know that it is one that He has asked me to be on... at least for just a little while longer. There aren't many quality choices out there... maybe one.. maybe two.. or maybe none. I don't believe in seeking them out, not to say that God doesn't have others do it that way, but for me that would just be a way for me to take control and God says no. In fact He even says no when I say no and put up walls. I can't go searching for the one but I also can't just shut out all guys.

He says no, stop trying to steer the car. I am to sit there next to Him and let Him control the direction... at all times... and quietly... and obediently... with a good attitude. He wants a simple yes sir from me and that's all.

I like to roll my eyes, sigh, slump down in the chair with my arms crossed, while mumbling something not very nice. I don't like to be told what to do, and I don't like to be to told to be quiet. Guess I'm not quite out of the adolescence phase of life yet huh???

A long while back a few friends and I were sitting around a table talking about boys and relationships. There was only one married woman at the table the rest of us were single.. none even dating at the time (now I'm the only one still single... lol). I don't know how we got to the following statement but I'll never forget it. But before I tell you it there's a disclaimer... it sounds really rude and mean but it wasn't it. I actually, still to this day, find it rather amusing because first off it's true and secondly I knew exactly what she meant and you just have to know the other 2 girls that were sitting there at the table. She told me "Mama's don't want their boys to grow up and marry girls like you and me... they want them to marry a girl like______."

You see her and I are a scary type of girl. We are that fiercely independent, strong-willed, I-don't-need-anyone type of girl that is covered from head to toe, and several layers thick of pure sass. A sweet, passive, quiet man just won't do for girls like us. I can't just get along with anyone and try as I do it just isn't possible for me to not offend someone a couple times a week... truth kinda just pours out of my mouth on occasion. Not to mention the fact that I want at least half-a-dozen kiddos, mostly adopted from around the world, and I plan on home-schoolin' em all. Not many guys out there that want to be on a journey like that.

I am aware of all of this and lets say... oh about... 89% of the time I am more then ok with this. I don't want to settle for just any man. But the older I get the more impossible it seems to find one that doesn't get his feelings hurt easily or that isn't afraid to stand up to me. And it doesn't help that out of the 20 or so people in our circle of friends I am one of 2 single girls and all the single guys are at least 3 years younger. It can get slightly depressing at times.

About a year ago a relationship that I was sure would end up lasting forever ended. It was hard at the time but looking back it was the best thing that ever happened. He and I just are not right for each other. I struggled for awhile asking God not why it had ended but why I even had to go through it... why not just never of had us date. I knew when he asked me out that it was God's will for me to say yes. So I never questioned whether I was wrong to have entered the relationship to begin with.

As the months went by I learned that God used that relationship to reveal some weak spots in my life. One of them is that I so badly desired to be married that I was willing to settle for the first guy that I was in a relationship with. He wasn't... isn't... a bad guy. He just isn't right for me. I never noticed how far I had slipped from being myself till I had been out of it for a few weeks. I had lost my sass... because he couldn't handle it. I stopped riding.... because he didn't like horses. I had given up some friendships.... because he didn't care for them. God showed me that the sass... the love of horses... those friends were the way He made me.... the people He put in my life. Giving up those things were wrong. I can't change who I am for some boy. It might be ok for awhile but as the years went by I'd be miserable.

Thankfully I didn't end up marrying that boy. Thankfully God not only knows what is better for me but also sees to it that I go in the right direction. So here I am today... determined to be who He made me to be, sass and all. I'm going to walk in His ways and worry only about His glory... trusting that someday that boy will find me and meet me where I am at. All I have to do is focus on seeking His face and He'll take care of all the details.

On that note I shall turn the post over to my fav country boy Mr. George Strait and his wonderful song, "How 'bout them cowgirls"

Boy, she don't need you and she don't need me
She can do just fine on her own two feet
But she wants a man who wants her to be herself
And she'll never change, don't know how to hide
Her stubborn will or her fightin' side
But you treat her right and she'll love you like no one else

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Moving...house sitting... fractured toe

Sorry about the neglect here lately. Let's just say that life has been a bit hectic the last few weeks.

I HATE moving... the word hate is not strong enough for my feelings toward moving.

Everything... er... well... almost everything is out of my old house, which is awaiting the deep cleaning that is required to get my deposit back by next Monday night. I took 2 extra days of work this week (what was I thinking??).  My parents have left for 2 weeks... my brother has left for 5 months... so that leaves me to care for their house, plus look out for my lil sis. Which wouldn't be that bad except for the fact that my life is in boxes... my bed is in pieces... my clothes are in bags... and I can't find my Bible.

If life wasn't already stressful enough... my dog went and fractured his toe... no, I'm not kidding. My dog has fractured his toe. It's not funny, well sorta, but not in the haha funny way. This dog is a survivor of heart worms and lime disease. I informed him that this is not to become a habit. We are not switching from deadly diseases to broken bones. He has used up his life savings already so there's no more vet money with his name on it. Period!! I'm done. He cannot do this anymore.

The vet said he should heal just fine... he could put a splint on it which won't speed up the healing process but might make it less painful... just one problem... it can't get wet he said. LOL... right... my lab/golden retriever stay dry... you have got to be kidding me. The dog could be on his death bed yet would still find some way to get soaking wet. I told him that I think it would be beast just to leave him be. Good thing I did... that x-ray + pain meds was enough to make me want to cry. It wouldn't have been so bad if I hadn't just paid the horses $300 vet bill the day before...sigh... when it rains it pours right. That is what savings accounts are for (I have to keep telling myself that).

Praising Him for multitudes of blessings

Yes... I am aware that it has been over a week... and that I have yet to count my blessings this week. I have several posts that I am currently working on and since I am sitting here at work with nothing to do I think today is the perfect day to finish them and post them.

First off... I need to remember all the amazing blessings He has sent my way this week.


An almost empty house

Extra days at work

A week and a half till the first Razorback game!!! Go Hogs!!!

Two and a half weeks till the first Pats game!!!!

Two and a half weeks till Romeo's first show.... YIKES!!!!

Friends to help move

A butt chewing from God that when I finally listened turned out to be ok

A fun Sunday afternoon drive with 2 great friends

Funny faces with Embery

A chance to be one of God's angels to a pregnant lady who needed a ride

Praying with that lady, hoping that we left a lasting impression that will lead her to His feet

Celebrating a little girls 6th birthday... oh how time flies

Throwing a beach ball around with the nephew, in his bedroom, when I was supposed to be putting him to bed.... shhhh.... don't tell his mom:-)

The smell of leather in my new tack room

The view from my new kitchen window.... it consists of a pasture with horses (soon mine will be back there), the arena (with lights and jumps!!), and a barn:-):-):-)

New curtains... a new rug... and a new pillow

A bareback ride with my best mare which helped relieve some stress.

Monday, August 16, 2010

What Faith really is....

"This is what faith really is:
believing, not with the head or the lips or out of habit, but believing with one's whole life. It means seeking community with ....
Christ in every situation in life."
Jurgen Moltmann


Friends to stay out late with

A dollar movie

Realizing that summer is almost over and quickly trying to cram as many late nights out we can:-)

Hearing two little girls get overly excited at having some "Kaffer time"

The amazing power of persuasion silly bandz hold

A shopping outing with a "lil sis"

Hearing about my nephew's immense love for horses, he takes after his aunt:-)

Knowing that that horse God has blessed me with for so many years is used to bless others

Teenage girls and all their joy

Enjoying the first preseason game

Gearing up for the start of football season!!

Words from a little girl visiting my SS class that just makes me laugh

The eagerness of some young girls who are soooo excited that I am letting them come help me pack

Going through old boxes full of memories

Laughing with friends about things from the past

The bittersweet feelings of seeing everything going in boxes

Two new daisies blooming

Fun adventures with lil mis embery

Hearing my roommate excited voice as she tells me all the plans she has for us to ride when I move

Planning a fall camping trip

Soaking in His grace

Sweet songs of praise lifted up to Him

Pondering on His greatness, yet His closeness and wondering how a God so big can also be a God so close.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Never alone

Have you ever stood on a mountain and looked out across the vastness of His creation and felt alone?

Ever feel completely isolated... from everything... and everyone?

It's not always a bad place to be. Sometimes He takes us to that place so that we might find Him. Sometimes the business of life make it hard to see Him. Too many distractions makes Him seem far away... make it harder to hear His voice. 

So He brings us to a place where we can hear Him. A place that may seem too quiet. In the loud world we live in the quiet can seem intimidating. Most often it is in the stillness that we hear Him. 

He leads me beside still waters...
Psalm 23

 So that I might hear Him.

Sometimes I have to feel alone to realize that I'm never alone.

A picture of His creation takes away my breath.

The greatness of my Maker at times makes me feel so small... so insignificant. Standing on the mountaintop, taking in the enormity of my surroundings, I realize that He is soooo big. Yet He is not beyond reach. He is interested in every little detail. Even the smallest flower receives His personal touch.

So when you find yourself caught in the period of loneliness... don't fight it. Stay there for a moment and dwell on His greatness... on just how big He is and just how small you are. Let it sink in that the world does not revolve around you. Then breathe in the air around you.... the air that He provided to fill your lungs. Drink in  His presence... after all it's all around you, never leaving you... not even for a second. He really is closer to you then your skin. He really does live inside of you. Surround yourself with His creation, and realize this...

"Those who dwell among the beauties and mysteries of the earth are never alone or weary of life."
Rachel Carson

(Found a website of a photographer that I just love!! All these pictures were found here. I love pictures of His creation and this guy seems to be gifted with capturing some of the most intricate details.... you can be sure that I will be using his photos regularly.)

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Dew in a desert

It's raining... the large drops of water hit the ground and the flowers and grass drink their full. Scorching heat has left them dry... begging for rain. He hears their cry and answers. The Almighty cares about His creation and He always provides... even for the smallest flower.

It has been dark lately... dark and dry. Words written long ago, in the back of a copy of His love letter reminds me
The freshest dew and the purest air are always found in the desert.
The sweetness of those words taste like honey and soothe my soul. He encourages even in the darkest times. He is a personal God, not some far off being sitting on His throne. He will not let me remain weary. If I reach out to Him, He will answer.

Words from a prophet of old speak wisdom and as the weeks go by the truth of his words can be seen in my life.
I know, O Lord, that a man's life is not his own, it is not for man to direct his steps.
Jeremiah 10:23
 He asks me if I'm willing to let Him direct the steps... even if the road ahead looks dreary. Will I set one dream aside so that another can be fulfilled? Will I take a leap of faith and follow Him on a journey that is full of uncertainties and at times extremely despairing and lonely? My love for Him is tested and He wants an answer. He seeks my undying devotion and a willingness to trust Him no matter how dark the road gets.

The storms roll in and turmoil erupts all around me. The unexpected happens and it feels like the enemy is winning... and maybe he is. Let him rejoice in is current victories because one day he will be finished. Soon he will forever be destroyed... I turn to the hope that He promises an eternal victory. There will be a day with no more tears, no more fears, and no more pain. The enemies victory will be for but a moment because the Almighty will win forever.

He sends another verse... one more to be hung on a wall to serve as a daily reminder that He is real, He answers those who call for help and that His voice is distinct.
"They will fight against you but will not overcome you, for I am with you to rescue you and save you."
Jeremiah 15:20
The enemy will fight... will seek to destroy us all. He is not weak and he is relentless. He seeks to make us weary, to send us into confusion, anything that will lead us out of our Father's arms. When we reach our breaking point. When all we want to do is give up and stop fighting, that is when He steps in. He swoops in like a knight in shining armor to rescue his fair maiden from danger. He is the great Rescuer. The Lover who never stops loving. He picks us up and sets our feet on solid ground and slowly but surely begins to restore us.

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
Psalm 147:3

Quotes from A.W. Tozer

I'm a tweeter... and today's tweets from Louie Giglio are his top 10 favorite quotes from the great theologian A.W. Tozer. I thought that these were so good that they just had to be shared! If you have never heard of him you should go out and grab a copy of any of his books. My fav is The Pursuit of God.

10. (God) expects of us only what He Himself supplied.
9. We are called to an everlasting preoccupation with God.
8. We please God most, not by frantically trying to make ourselves good, but by throwing ourselves into His arms.
7. Our pursuit of God is successful just because He is forever seeking to manifest Himself to us.
6. Let a man set his heart only on doing the will of God and he is instantly free.
5. God, being who He is, must always be sought for Himself, never as a means toward something else.
4. Refuse to be average. Let your heart soar as high as it will.
3. Prayer is never an acceptable substitute for obedience.
2. God never hurries. There are no deadlines against which He must work.
1. It is not what a man does that determines whether his work is sacred or secular, it is why he does it.

Number 8 is my fav... number 5 and 3 I found to be very convicting. I never thought as prayer being a substitute for obedience. It makes a lot of sense... sometimes I am hesitant in following Him so I say I need to spend more time in prayer about it. I need to learn and pray that His voice will be clear and that I will not hesitate to follow.

I'm a slacker

Last week came and went with no blessings counted. Not a good thing to slack off on. The last few weeks have been very busy, hard, overwhelming, although many blessings have shown through the darkness. I added a few new verses to my doors last week. I will try to post them here later today after I get some work down.

But I will trust in Your unfailing love;
my heart rejoices in Your salvation.
I will sing to the Lord,
for He has been good to me.
Psalm 13:5&6


The goodness of the Lord prevails even in our darkest hour

His blessings never cease

Nor does His love

Nor His grace

A new home

A home where my lovely horses can abide in my backyard

An answer to a prayer for those horses to be in my backyard

What looks like a great opportunity developing to minster to those in need of some Jesus

The prospect of more riding students

A relatively cooler week (100 temps instead of 115 temps)

A friend home from summer camp

A friend home for a visit

Fantastic cuddles with baby Ben

Watching Lexi sit up

Dreaming about the future with 2 great friends

Watching God move in the life of others

The best friends anyone could ever ask for (sorry ya'll I got 'em)

Prayers for my sister with my "sisters"

A hug from my baby brother

Encouraging words from my pastor

An awesome time of worship at church

Songs with little ones

Giggles from a baby

A good talk with a young boy seeking to be a man

Baking bread

A wonderful evening with an absolute amazing family from church

Tucking away dreams for the future

Knowing that some dreams have to be tucked away for later so that other dreams can come true

Realizing that God knows the very best plans for my life and trusting in Him to direct my steps

Saturday, August 7, 2010

The power of prayer

I was reading a post from Mrs K. on the topic of prayer. Interesting, as this topic has been a popular one among my friends and family as of late. I have a few pet peeves when it comes to prayer and what makes it worse is that I myself do the very things that I find so annoying.

The first one I'll address is that we tend to hit our knees when life gets rough. When the storms roll in that is when people tend to pick up their prayer life. Now just to clarify before you get mad at me, I believe that prayer is the BEST thing for weathering a storm. There is no greater thing you can for a person then to pray for them. The problem is, and hear me on this.... I am not innocent here, I am just as guilty as the next person. The problem is that for a lot of us, this period of storms is the only time we have a consistent prayer life. I imagine that the Creator of the Universe does not like to be called upon just as a problem solver. You don't, I don't, so why do we think He would??? You... and I forget that God isn't just sitting up there waiting to fix things. He wants relationships. He is your, my Father and from my experience dad's don't like to be called upon only when I'm in need of something. Of course He will always be there, He never leaves and loves that we turn to Him in our times of need. It is good to realize that He can fix things, that He is one who gives peace, comfort, and love when we need it the most. 

The next one is related and lately it's the one I find myself doing a whole lot... isn't it frustrating to struggle with something that just annoys the mess out of you!?! How much time do you spend in prayer asking God for something... or using the word I maybe followed by the word want?? You probably don't notice it... I urge you pay attention for the next week. Although you might get really annoyed at yourself because you do it more then you think. I have been trying for at least the last 6 months to really work on my prayer habits. It's been rather difficult to do. I find that I have spells where I do really well and then I go a while with barely spending anytime in prayer. My suspicion is that the enemy works really hard to distract me from this because prayer is a dangerous tool and if I develop good prayer habits the enemy has to work twice as hard. Which should be great motivation for me to get it right...lol. I tend to use the time I spend in the car driving to and from work to prayer. Lately I realize that I spend an awful lot of that time praying for myself... which isn't all bad. However, I think that there has to be a balance... and maybe, just maybe..... my prayers for others should outweigh the prayers for myself.

My fear is that we are a generation and are raising generations that underestimate the power of prayer. Sure prayer is still (at least I hope it is) something we do out of habit before meals, with kids before bed, and in our church services. Those habits aren't the problem... problems arise when this is all we do. It stays just a habit and often we get complacent. Again I think that the enemy tries really hard to convince us that the little bit of prayer that we do is plenty. He wants us to think that prayer is just another thing to put on a checklist. 

Prayer is far more important then we realize it is. I am fortunate to go to a church that is slowly learning that and it is amazing to watch. I have learned a lot about how to pray from our pastors as our whole church body seeks to grow in this area. I am very blessed to go to a church that believes in prayer and is seeking to understand it more.

I think that we tend to underestimate this power. When storms come, sure we pray for God's help, guidance, peace, but then we go about seeking to find the solution, often forgetting to listen for and answer to our prayer. Scripture says that if we seek Him, we will find Him. If we ask for guidance it will come, but not always when we think it should. Far too often we ask... then fail to wait for an answer. A lot of times the answer comes later because God wants to us to realize that sometimes we have to wait for an answer. I think we, especially us Americans, fail to hear answers to prayer because we are far too impatient. We live in an on-demand culture, everything we need and want is right at our fingertips and we rarely have to wait for anything. God never has, doesn't, and never will comply with our on-demand way of life. God does not revolve around man. Man revolves around Him and it is this concept that we humans fail to understand. Prayer isn't simply a way to communicate to God what it is that we need or want. Prayer is about communication... its a way for us to connect with Him. It's a way for us to build our relationship with Him, a way to grow closer to Him so that we might know how serve Him better... not the other way around.

Well how about that for a soapbox? That wasn't my intention but oh well, guess I needed to get that off my chest.

 Anyways... back to post I read...lol. There was a quote in the post that I really like and need to ponder on for a bit.
“If we trust in the sovereignty of God, we wrestle our way to peace in the knowledge that if an answer to prayer is for our highest good, the God who loves us will not withhold it.”
– Lana Bateman
 I'm not sure I like how its worded for our better good though. If the word "good" there is referring to us become more like Christ then I agree. The very best thing for myself is to be empty of self and full of Christ. (Are you following me?? Cuz if I ever get to theological for you tell me. Really... we Seminary students forget that not everyone reads theology books for pleasure) So if an answer to prayer is what will ultimately bring me closer to Christ then yes, I believe that God will not withhold if from us. The thing that we don't realize is that God is in the business of holiness... not happiness. (Remember that His def of happiness and ours are usually pretty different) What I perceive that Bateman is trying to tell us here is that sometimes God answers prayers in a way that makes us upset, hurt, sad, even angry. We have to trust that our God, who is without a shadow of a doubt sovereign, has the very best in mind for us. That He knows that the way things are going will ultimately lead us closer to Him. I like that she uses the word wrestle to peace here. Our Father doesn't think that it will easy to accept when He answers in ways like this. He understands that we are not sovereign and allows us room to wrestle our way to find peace in His decision. We must trust in His love.

God has really been testing my prayer life lately... many friends and family going through some really big storms lately. If you get a chance say a prayer for my sister, and for a wife/mother of three who is dying of cancer (good news is that last Sat she gave her life to Christ..PTL!!! We have been praying for this for months.... God answers prayer!!!). Thank you so much for the prayers that have already been lifted up. You guys are a blessing from above.