So, I went to celebrate a friend's birthday last night. Nothing fancy, just a bunch of ladies getting together for finger foods and games. And lots of talk and laughs.
I think my favorite part of the night was when the conversation turned to the Lord and prayer. Being true to character, I may not have added a lot to the discussion, but I was definitely taking it in. There were a lot of opinions and views, but one thing was clear. These ladies loved the Lord.
In the midst of discussing what we had learned and taken from the awesome Christian movie, War Room, one of the guests admitted to not feeling good. Before I knew it, we decided on an impromptu prayer meeting. Other requests were given, from those diagnosed with cancer, to young mothers in danger of miscarrying, to a husband with bronchial pneumonia. Another lady suggested prayer for the single ladies of the group, that we would be willing to wait on God's time and His best for us.
It was a sweet moment, I have to say. A group of ten or so ladies, all in various stages of our walk with God, holding hands in a circle. Some of them I knew well. Others I had met on previous occasions. And a few I had only just met. But we were joined together by one thing: Christ.
I found myself thanking God that we had the freedom to do so. Not just politically, though I was grateful for that. But in our hearts, we felt free to join together in an outward show of faith and love. It left me encouraged and blessed.
It's not every day a birthday party turns into a prayer meeting! But I've heard of other stories where friends and acquaintances gather together and the meeting turns into a time of prayer and meditation. Or chance encounters on store parking lots that bring about a request to pray.
Have you ever had that happen to you? I'd love to hear about it. May we never lose an opportunity to agree together in prayer, even if it happens in an unlikely place. May we always have the mindset to talk to God, no matter where we're at, who we're with, and what we're doing. And may we ever rest...
In His Grip!
"Pray without ceasing." -1st Thessalonians 5:17
Happy Valentine's Day! I hope all you wonderful couples are able to spend the day with your "special someone." I pray that you will fall a little more in love with each other every day and that God will richly bless your relationship.
And I want to wish all my special singles out there a Happy Valentine's as well!
I know what you're thinking. I can hear it now: "Crazy girl, doesn't she know what Valentine's Day is all about? Doesn't she realize that this season is all about couples and romance and candy and love?"
And I get it. Valentine's used to be my LEAST favorite holiday of the year. I'd see all those hearts and balloons go up and I would cringe. And every year at school, I'd watch teachers' faces light up when a special bouquet was delivered by their significant others. Even my first graders would shyly offer a card and a gift for their crush in the class next door.
And me? I got handful of Valentine cards from six and seven year old boys...and girls.
No, Valentine's and I did not always get along.
But, recently, I've come to feel differently about it. Oh, sure, I still wish I had someone special to share it with. But that longing doesn't consume my life anymore. I choose to use this day to show my love to the people around me. That's what it's all about right? (And, no, I'm not talking about the origins of the holiday or any pagan influence to its beginning. I'm referring to the reason most of the Americans I know celebrate it today.)
So I don't have a Valentine. I still have plenty of people in my life that I love just as deeply. My parents, for instance. They've been together for thirty-six years, and though they are certainly not the most romantic pair, they still show love to each other and their children in many ways. I have my brother and sisters. While I may not buy them a Valentine heart full of chocolates, I still look for ways to express my love.
I could go on. There's my pastors and church family. My grandmother, uncles, and aunts. Cousins galore! Co-workers, students, Facebook friends, acquaintances, even strangers. The list goes on. My life is filled with people, people that God has place in my life for a reason. Maybe so they can reach out to me. Or so that I can reach out to them.
And then there's one more. My Friend that sticks closer than a brother. The Lover of my soul. The Fairest of ten thousand. (In case you haven't picked up on it yet, I'm talking about Jesus!) I can honestly say that I have fallen in love with my Lord. I love Him more today than I did a year ago. And He continues to show me over and over again just how much He loves me. Every day. For the rest of my life. And He will never fail me or disappoint me or leave me. It doesn't get any better than that!
So, I choose to live this day with joy and appreciation. It doesn't matter that I won't be going on a special date or getting chocolate covered strawberries. It's enough to know that my Savior loves me. And that's all that really matters. To say that I'm also loved by family and friends is just icing on the cake! (A heart shaped cake...with pink frosting.)
So, again I say, Happy Valentine's Day! May it be a blessed one. And may each and every one of us remain steadfast and loved...
In His grip!