Friday, December 14, 2012

The Power of Prayer

I came home Friday afternoon, and Facebook & Twitter were full of nothing but references to the events in Connecticut. I rarely watch the news.  Social media lets me know when there is something big going on.  The news is depressing.  Evil in this world is depressing.  And most media outlets sensationalize it. 

I maintain my life as a drama free zone.

What’s really important?

And not to diminish the tragedy and lost lives, because truly words cannot describe how horrible it is.  I mean that.  But the reaction seemed a little over the top in proportion to what happened.  And I feel sad saying that because shootings like this happen way too regularly.  Not always with little kids, and not always on this large a scale, but it happens too often.  And my Facebook newsfeed is seriously full of almost nothing but statements related to the event. Pray for everyone involved. Occasionally something about gun control laws.  But a lot of “pray for” statuses and pics.

I am in favor of prayer.  Prayer rocks.

Why aren’t we constantly in prayer? Why is my newsfeed not constantly flooded with pictures of candles or, better yet, puppies & kitties praying? Maybe we are all constantly in prayer. I suspect – based on my own personal experience and distractions – that this is not the case, though.

Before today’s stuff happened, I had my own prayer journey this week.

When we last talked, I had finally taken some action on the latest whisperings from God. He has seen fit recently to plant a phrase in my head from time to time. Different phrases at different times, and when I can’t shake it after a few days I usually realize it’s probably real and I should do something about it. 

This time a friend needed prayer.  And just as quickly, I needed it back.  We agreed to pray for each other.  And not in a “I’m going to re-tweet this picture” kind of way, we really mean it.

Many of you have figured out and / or heard I suffered a major wipeout last week, causing multiple bruises down one side of my body. A couple days later, I burned my hand pretty badly. What only a select few were aware of, though, is that I had to go through this past week without antihistamines.  Periodically my doc retests me to see if the various and sundry treatments are working – shots, namely – and if adjustments need to be made. To get a true read on the test results, I have to spend five days detoxing from that which keeps me from breaking out in hives on a regular basis.  In the past, by day two or three I have been itching uncontrollably.  Even the palms of my hands and the soles of my feet itch.  I come close to losing my mind trying not to scratch my skin off.  Try getting anything constructive done while you’re in that state.

This week I made it through relatively unscathed.  A little twinge here and there, but nothing, and I mean nothing like in the past.

I had asked for prayers for calmness. And calmness I got. I felt like I was wrapped in a big fleece blanket hug from God all week. I floated through the week. It was almost surreal.

What an awesome, amazing, divine surprise.

God. And prayer. Those are my only explanations for how I got through this week.

And it’s how I will continue to get through every week, every day, every moment.

Sunday, December 9, 2012


Ahhhh … peace.

Ms. Genius over here finally sought out a second opinion on the subject of these little whisperings from God that have been going on – the latest episode anyway – for a couple of weeks.  I usually feel like I’ve lost my mind on these things.  I worry that I’ve invented thoughts in my own head and am speaking and dictating more than I’m listening. 

How many times do we get a song stuck in our heads and go all OCD with it.  Does it mean something, or does it not mean something?  Does it just have a good beat & we can dance to it?

But not this time. 

I was right on the money.  Nothing uber dramatic.  Well, completely & totally God-inspired, but yeah.  It was just a general “oh oh we need each other” (thank you, Matt Hammitt) kind of thing.  Which is kind of what I thought, but I was too busy telling God he was either wrong or a comedian to do anything about it.

And all is right with the world. 

Oh yeah, I may have soapboxed a few things along the way.  Hey, I have opinions.

With my conservative religious upbringing, burning bushes are purely an Old Testament thing. We don’t really expect God to talk to us via flaming hedges these days.  Btw, I have promised to make a phone call immediately should the landscaping burst into flames and start speaking.   I wonder if tweeting the pope would suffice …

And speaking of flames, my klutziness continues.  I burned my hand on the oven. Second degree.  Kind of glad I wasn’t scheduled to play this week.  Ugh.  I might need someone to pack me in bubble wrap.  This is getting kind of ridiculous. 

Words and nudges from God.  I’m starting to get better at heeding them sooner rather than later.  I have a long way to go.  Don’t we all.  Having that second opinion helps.  As does a go-to second opinion provider who, to date and to my face anyway, has not called me insane.

I also have to think back and wonder how many times I haven’t recognized God’s leading or chose not to believe it, and what could have been if I had done something different.  Not regret, just a “how many times do I have to see that he fixes everything before I shorten that discernment process and act” kind of observation.

He fixes everything.  Not necessarily how we expect, but he fixes everything.  Always.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Deer or Pavement

Sometimes God hits you with a deer in the car door.  Sometimes he hits you with the pavement.

As I write this, I am arranged carefully on a variety of ice packs.  I’ve been experiencing issues mastering the art of walking. 

So whatever it was I started writing about yesterday … whatever point I was trying to make … I don’t really remember.  It’s a good thing I got a decent workout in yesterday, because today is a day off for sure.  And who really needs a soapbox anyway.

I did have a thing on my agenda today requiring manual labor.  No excuses … I did it anyway.  Against my better judgment.  I think I survived relatively unscathed.  Yay, another item off my to do list.  Onward to more secret elfin magic missions.  But first more rest & ice & all that good stuff.

So God has been whispering this phrase to me for a couple of weeks.  As is my custom, I have been in denial and telling him he’s wrong and must be joking.  And then today it hit me.  (Ha!)  I guess that even if I decide to acknowledge this particular little revelation as true, I’m not really sure what to do about it.  I guess I could ask.  (!!!)  Hello.  Duh.  

For as much as some people seem to think I’m a super-genius or full of inspirationalness or something, I would be wise to heed my own advice at times.

I don’t come up with inspiration and wisdom by ignoring what God and people are saying.  I don’t keep calm and carry on just by conjuring it up myself.  Everything is connected, and I don’t believe in coincidence.

So I’m just gonna breathe here for a minute.  And stop worrying about being right or making a point or explaining anything.  I’ll just go back to listening …