My prayers and heart lately

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Words have been tucked deep into my soul lately, and have mostly come out through whispered prayers to Jesus—–

prayers for grace in every moment,

prayers for leaning on Him as I walk paths that might not be my first choice,

prayers for the ability to just keep walking, keep moving, keep embracing the life He gives me and the people He brings my way,

prayers for an open heart and an open ear and an open schedule as I embrace those around me–in person, in a text, or on the phone,

prayers for sweet and gracious hospitality, that my home would not be merely for my own comfort and pleasure, but that my heart would be willing to share it with others,

DSC_0981And if you knew my heart you’d know these prayers come from a place that needs all these things…my default is to fight fight fight against the giving of myself, my time, my words, my energy. It’s not natural for me to say yes–my first inclination is to say no, just because.

Maybe it infringes on my previously conceived plans, or it’s just not on my list of to-do’s today. Maybe it’ll take away my Sunday afternoon nap or cut my nighttime TV watching out. Maybe my coffee will be cold if I talk on the phone right now or maybe I won’t be able to work out this morning because there are extra ways to serve and love on someone.

(I know, the last part about working out is really not that sad for me—it’s one of the first things I’ll give up in times of “crisis”…)

But It’s hard for me to release time–to give up my time and my space. Really, if you need money, I want to share. If you need food, I want to give. If you need a new sweater, I have plenty to donate. But when you ask for my time, I have to swallow a huge gulp before I give it up.

DSC_0968But God is so full of grace, and He is meeting me here, friends. In so many new ways, He has exposed these things in my heart, and even just leading me to pray for them is a huge step. But combined with the prayers He’s stretching me, asking me to give of myself and my own desires and to say yes to others, even if it seems so small to the general public. He’s giving me real life practice, for sure.

I’m realizing that there is more than enough grace for me to live the moments He’s calling me to live. There’s more than enough grace to speak through me and meet the new person when my flesh wants to duck out and not open my mouth for any form of conversation for the rest of the day.

There’s grace, friends, when you go to a meeting and not a single soul notices you or talks to you (my worst nightmare that came true recently). Even then, there’s grace. His grace. Because He is the truest friend of all, and His kindness just meets me in moments like these.

DSC_0951And so in the midst of these quietly whispered prayers, moments soaking up the Word, precious conversations with friends that have enriched my heart, the living of life has been full, almost overwhelmingly full.

Full of family, and friends, and neighbors, and food, and mothering, and driving, and cooking, and shopping, and listening, and talking, and wifing,

and not so full of quiet moments and alone time.

But God has strengthened me for the task at hand and has been the rock I’ve leaned on for renewed strength, through my failures and bad attitudes and all.

I want eyes to see the beauty of those around me and the value of relationships and self-sacrifice; eyes and a heart that rests on Him, the one who knows every one of your sorrows by name, the only one who truly satisfies.

And when my flesh bucks up against these things, there’s grace. There’s grace for each of these moments.

How about you? How have you been stretched beyond your own self lately? Has God pushed you into anything that feels unlike you, and all you can do is whisper prayers to Him?

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