Jul 17, 2012

Tuesday SHINE....

Today's Reading: Ecclesiastes 12

Good morning, SHINE girls! How's your prayer challenge going? Are you staying in touch with Your Heavenly Father? Oh, I hope so!

We are finishing up Ecclesiastes today and moving on to the book of Acts tomorrow! Good stuff in Acts, girlfriends. Good stuff.

So, I had another testy day last Saturday. Remember last week I told you about my Taco Bell experience?

Well, this one takes the cake. (literally.)

I woke up Saturday morning with a spiritual hang-over from the past week. VBS was AWESOME, and God was just a'working all around me that week. It was a week full of heart filling and heart spilling, if you know what I mean.

Well, my spiritual hangover caused me to be a little grumpy that Saturday morning. (surprised?)

Presley had an early morning birthday party to get to and I was in charge of getting their early to take pictures of my friend Kim's little girl. It was a surprise party, and Kim wanted me to snap pictures of her coming in. I was honored to do this for her.

I showered, put on my make-up, flat-ironed my frizzy hair, and put on my brand new, clearance rack Old Navy top.

It had been beckoning me from the hanger for the last two weeks. FINALLY, I could wear it. Yay!

I glanced lovingly at this adorable top in the mirror one last time, and headed to the kitchen to grab my keys and go to the party.

Lem walked past me in the hall and said, "Are you wearing that?"

My face turned 50 shades of red.

"Yes, don't you like it? It was really, really cheap at Old Navy....and I love it!" I replied.

He gave it one last look and walked on by.

I could have spit nails at him.

I ran back to my closet, grabbed every shirt off the hanger and wailed that I had nothing else cute to wear.

As I was pitching my nice little fit, Presley walked in and asked if I was really going to wear that "weird" shirt to the party.

I was at my wit's end.

I told Presley to go and get in the car while I found a replacement top for these people that OBVIOUSLY had no sense of style. Good grief.

Finally, I found something old and worn 100 times over, and headed to the car.

Presley almost knocks me down as she comes running back in from the car looking for paper towels.

She had spilled her sweet tea all over the cloth seats in our small car.

I don't remember what happened next. Let's just say, it wasn't good.

Okay, so moving on.

We got in the car and headed to the little birthday party. The Holy Spirit convicted me. Again. 

I apologized to Presley, and I apologized to the Lord for blowing it...again. 

After the birthday party, we headed to another birthday party. I was feeling better, and my mood was lightened. (a little, anyway.)

We finally got home from the second birthday party, and we had a few minutes of down time before heading back out to another party. Yes, another one.

I took off the ugly, worn 100 times shirt, and put on a comfy white t-shirt and my running skirt.

I needed to breathe for a few minutes before racing back out the door.

I was still grumpy. My cute top that I had so happily purchased, was not-so-cute apparently. And to top it all off, my house looked like a small atom bomb had gone off while we were away. Nice.

I was spiritually drained and dry. I wanted to just kind of disconnect from the Lord for a bit. I was having a pity party to say the least.

The Lord clearly spoke to me right then and there in the midst of that dirty house and my comfy white t-shirt.

He is literally beckoning me to stay in tune with Him. I can feel Him tugging at my heart.

Girls, this is the last thing I feel like doing. I am tired. I am worn out. My house needs a good scrub. The last thing I want to do is hit my knees and pray.

Seriously, Lord? Now?

He tells me to pray for these faces that I am seeing in my mind. Not only to pray for them, but to write their names down to remember to pray for them.

Seriously?? Right now?

My laundry is overflowing and my toilets need sanitizing. Do I really have to stop and pray? Can't I just pray while I am scrubbing? (I may have even rolled my eyes at this point. Don't judge.)

Against my fleshly flesh, I obey.

I look for some paper to write down the names and do not see any in my path. Instead, I grabbed a wet/dry marker and wrote the names of these people on my bathroom mirror.

As I wrote each name, my heart melted with each pen stroke.

After each name was written, I put a big heart around the names and wrote Jeremiah 29:11 inside the heart.

The Lord had just given me the biggest visual. He knows I am a visual girl.

He was telling me to quit looking at my reflection in that mirror. He wants me to see their reflection when I look in that big mirror every morning.

If I am seeing them everyday, my heart is back to where it needs to be. It will remind me to pray.



He was pushing me. Pushing me to fight through my flesh, and pray to Him. Although everything inside of me was telling me to disconnect and keep on with my little pity party.

I (against my flesh) obeyed.

I prayed for about 10 minutes. Lifting these loved ones to the Father, and re-focusing this heart of mine to Him.

Despite my grumpy self and pity party flesh....I pushed through.

Seconds later, the doorbell rings. 

Oh, shoot. Who in the world??

Here I am, tears running down my face, hair is disheveled, and I am bra-less. Yes, you heard me right.

Presley runs into the bathroom and says that someone is here to see me.

My mind is racing. To see me?? Really??

I go to the door and a friend is standing there holding a big, beautiful cake carrier. She has decorated it and personalized it just for me.

(This friend and I had just met at the birthday party that morning, and she just so happens to be the same one donating the cake carrier for the weekday give-away this week.)

She gracefully hands me the personalized cake carrier and tells me that she just thought that I may like to have a cake carrier for myself as well.

my push present. 


Lo and behold.

Little did she know how much the timing of this gift meant to my heart.

I thanked her profusely and then hugged her.  Bra-less and all.

When she left, I stood there in awe of what the Lord had just done for me.

He was teaching me right then and there.

I must have been a sight for sore eyes standing there in my foyer bra-less, holding that beautiful cake carrier, and mouth wide open in awe of the Lord.

He was showing me that when I push through this flesh and obey, there is always something good waiting on the other side. I have to trust Him. I just have to.

Girls, are you hearing this?

What are you having to push through? Does it seem like it will never happen? Does it seem like you have been pushing longer than you should have to push?

Keep pushing, friend.

He is making you stronger. He is making your blessing BIGGER.

With each push, you are getting closer and closer to that cake carrier. You are.


will never stop pushing,

jill


"For I know the plans I have for you,” 
declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, 
plans to give you hope and a future."
Jeremiah 29:11