Good morning, happy Monday!! Don’t you just love cute animal and baby pictures?! Warms my heart every time. The pigeon burrowing owls, above, never cease to make me smile. Photographer Mario Gustavo Fiorucci won the 2016 Comedy Wildlife Photography Award for that picture and it is easy to see why. 🙂
I’ve got to admit, the picture above completely portrays the way my schedule has been lately—a little sideways. Since Thanksgiving, the Crenshaw household has been a little more chaotic and off schedule, BUT incredibly blessed.
I don’t know about you, but when my schedule goes wacky for any reason, I feel “off.” Not stressed, necessarily, but not as peaceful.
What I realized this morning is that the biggest thing that changed for me is that my scheduled rest and prayer time is not as often as my soul needs right now. I need quiet time, in my prayer closet, a few times a week to seek Jesus, be still, and pray whatever the Holy Spirit prompts.
I believe this works best for me because I am naturally an introverted person. I “recharge” in my quiet and alone space. I need that rest time to quiet my thoughts, heart, and soul. My heart is more receptive to Jesus when I do this and I am a more peaceful, calm person to be around! 🙂
What about you? What restores your soul? A friend of mine is the complete opposite of me. She recharges by loud, fun worship music along with a Holy Spirit led conversation about Jesus. When Jesus is the center, it cannot be wrong, am I right?!
I thank God that even when our days are sideways or a little off, when we seek Him with our whole heart—He will meet us right where we are!! Praise God!!
Hello! What a week it has been, so busy! It is already the middle of September, can you believe it? Although, with the explosion of pumpkin-spice items everywhere, you would think it was the middle of October, am I right?! 🙂
Well, my writing took a different turn this week. Thank you, Jesus! I was about half-way done with this week’s blog and guess what? God led me on a different path. Prayer. I am really not surprised though, God began stirring my heart on the subject of prayer last week during church.
Sumner Family Church, where I attend, has a heart and a focus on community and what leads to community? Relationships, and what develops relationships? Conversations!! I know that was a lot of questions and answers, but stick with me, we get to the heart of it in a minute. What is the fundamental part of conversations?
Spending time together, getting to know one another, and talking.
Conversations are the essential building blocks for all relationships. This includes friends, family, neighbors, co-workers, and God. Yes, God. We talk to God through prayer.
“Prayer is keeping company with God.” Clement of Alexandria
Last Sunday, my church began, “Prayer Journey” which is “designed to establish a thriving prayer life in the families of SFC.” I love this! Through the next six weeks we will have a weekly prayer focus, bi-weekly blogs, text/e-mail reminders, and Friday night community groups in which we are coming together as a church to pray! Amen!
In its simplicity, and what I tell my kids, is that praying is talking to God. I remember when I was quite young, I wasn’t sure what to say to God, so I remember my prayers had more of a King James slant with many thou’s and thy’s. There is nothing wrong with praying that way, it just wasn’t natural to me. I discovered the best way for me to pray and converse with God is to be me.
I pray privately in my prayer closet, while driving in my car, on the phone when I need to, and anytime the Holy Spirit moves me to. I pray through words, silent reverence, song, and my prayer language. I pray daily to make conversing with God a routine. “You will never be able to pray everywhere, all the time, until you have learned to pray somewhere, some of the time” (Water, Mark).
I was encouraged further this week by the first e-mail I received in regard to Prayer Journal. It reminded me that each one of us are going through different seasons of our life and, because of that, my prayer life will not look like yours!Whew! Here is an excerpt from the e-mail:
“Pastor Mike talked about embracing differences on Sunday. This got me thinking about all of us embracing our own differences. In a world of comparison, how have our differences affected my view of my family and myself? Prayer in my life and in my family’s is going to look different from my neighbors. Mealtime can be too chaotic, so we pray at bedtime with the kids. Praying together as a couple everyday becomes a “checklist” item, so instead we set aside one night a week to pray and dig in deeper together with God. Have I embraced that, or have I created some ideal situation in my head that must be met in order for prayer time to be “successful”? My 19-month-old has no concept of not screaming his head off during prayer time some nights
The differences of what prayer looks like in your family, or for you personally, make it no less valuable for you than to anyone else. The point is you’re choosing God. You’re choosing to spend time with Him. That should be the focus. If you’ve never had a “big” prayer life, maybe baby steps are needed. Perhaps you’ve had a wonderful prayer life and want to spend this season digging in deeper with God. Everyone’s prayer life is going to look a little different – and that’s okay. Give yourself permission to look different. We’re all growing in this together! (Sumner Family Church, emphasis mine).
Isn’t that Beautiful? I love the way that was put together and I had to share it with my fellow believer’s and friends.
There should be no “prayer comparison” between the Jones’, the Crenshaw’s, and the Cagle’s. Praise God! But, there should be an active conversation between you and God. Every day.
What/where is your favorite way to speak to God? While out on a walk admiring the beauty of His creation? Singing songs in the pews of church on a Glorious Sunday morning? While driving on your way to work? If you would like to share, please do. 🙂
ALL the glory to God,
Image of “Conversations with God” by darussalambblog.com
God is first and foremost in my life.
my husband Steve, daughters Suzanne and Savannah,
my AMAZING family and friends,
the majestic beauty of the Pacific Northwest,
traveling and camping,
a GREAT cup of coffee with my morning devotionals,
and my Sumner Family Church family. :)