Posts Tagged ‘God’s will’

A Mama’s Prayers

prayerGod is so good! Although I am totally unworthy, He has listened to this mama’s prayers and actually answered them. I’ve been praying oh, so fervently, for Sam for quite a long time. Despite being raised in church and being inundated with the Bible, he chose to go his own way for a time. He is a person of extremes, all in or all out. So, while he was running from God, he was very far from Him. He said and did some things that made me fear for his safety and even his life. (For example, he once told me that he didn’t need God because he WAS God.) I have prayed and cried for this man-child of mine so hard at times that it felt like something was about to rupture, and I asked some of my friends to pray for him as well. I’m so happy to be able to say that God has answered our prayers. Last week, Sam got saved!

He made a profession of faith when he was about four years old, and he has known practically his whole life how to be saved and why he should get saved. Finally, one evening last week, while I was at work and he was alone in his room, he decided to stop resisting God, and he accepted Christ as his Savior. He told me that he knows FOR SURE now that he is truly saved. I know it, too. He is a totally different person! Old things are passed away, and all things have become new.

All he talks about now is God and the Bible. He is seeking to surround himself with people who will help him grow in his faith and serve God to the fullest. His dreams and goals for the future have drastically changed. He is even talking about going to a Christian college (maybe Milligan), which he would never even think about before. His number one goal right now is leading his best friend to Christ. He spent a few hours talking to him yesterday and has drawn up an outline of what he wants to say next time he gets a chance to talk him some more.

I am completely overcome with emotions, which is why it has taken me a week to write this blog post: I couldn’t get my ecstatic thoughts organized enough to write anything coherent before now. As elated as I am, I know that God did this in spite of me, rather than because of me. It has been a very humbling experience for me to see God work in our home despite my failings and unfaithfulness to Him. So, if you’re praying for someone, even if you’ve been praying for them for quite a while, don’t stop! He is not willing that any should perish, and He has promised to answer prayers that are according to His will.

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Choosing God’s Way

2016-03-12 19.09.11As I mentioned in a previous post, I’m re-reading In His Steps by Charles Sheldon and endeavoring to live my life with the question “What would Jesus do?” as my motivation for everything I do. Having grown up in Christian home, attended Christian schools, and generally been inundated with the Bible since birth, you’d think I would naturally be doing well at this already; but you would be wrong. Surprisingly (appallingly so), I didn’t realize how off the mark I was until I conscientiously considered my life in light of that question.

Naturally, changes have been made and continue to be made: some small, some big; some easy, some very difficult; some affecting only myself, some affecting everyone around me; some readily accepted by others, some questioned. One decision in particular was huge, very difficult to come to, will affect multiple people, and has not been unanimously praised by my friends. In fact, I have been told that I’m making the wrong decision and that it will end in disaster.

I’m not going to go into the details of the decision at this time, but I do want to explain how I came to it. (Curious minds will be indulged at a later date, I assure you.)

First of all, this is something I did not want to do. I have spent countless hours praying about it and searching God’s word for guidance. I did not make this decision lightly or flippantly. As I was on my knees, praying about it, I had the thought that maybe now I can, in a small measure, understand how Jesus felt in the Garden of Gethsemane when He prayed, “Not My will, but Thine.” The short answer as to how I came to this decision is that I believe 100% that it is what God wants me to do.

As I was praying and pondering over this decision one day, God brought to mind the story, from Daniel 3, of the Hebrew children who were thrown in the firey furnace. For those who are unfamiliar with the story, the city of Jerusalem was taken by Babylon, and the brightest and best of the children of Israel were taken captive. The king of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar, built a huge image and commanded everyone to bow down to it or be thrown in a firey furnace. Three of the Hebrew children: Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, refused to bow down. When they were brought before Nebuchadnezzar, their response to him was: “If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.” (Dan. 3:17, 18, KJV)

Nebuchadnezzar was angered by this to the point that he had the furnace heated seven times hotter than usual, and it was so hot that the flames killed the men who threw them into the furnace. Miraculously, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were not hurt by the fire. In fact, they were walking around in the furnace with a fourth man whom Nebuchadnezzar said was like the son of God. They were called to come out of the furnace, and they didn’t even smell like smoke! God saved them just as they knew He could.

Since God is the same today as He was then and has always been, I know that, as long as I am doing what I believe He wants me to do, with no other motive than pleasing Him, He will take care of me as well; and hopefully, others who see me will see God walking along beside me. Although I must confess some nervousness about my decision, and although I am aware of some potentially disastrous outcomes, I know that the God whom I serve is able to make everything come out even better than I can imagine. All I have to do is trust Him, and that’s what I am doing.

So, when I finally reveal all, I sincerely hope I won’t receive a backlash of negativity from my friends and family. Even if you don’t agree with me, I hope you can see that everything I am doing is in an effort to follow what I believe is God’s will for my life. I’m going into this as positively as I can, and I am counting on positive moral support from all of you.

(For those of you who just have to have a hint, here it is: Sam and I are moving. By the end of next month, we will be all settled into our new/old home.)

Draw Me Nearer

Although the song in my last post is modern, I actually tend to me more old-school. I love hymns. I find them more comforting and soothing than any other genre of music, and I listen to them often. (I have a favorite Pandora channel just for hymns.) When I first started attending Discovery Church, I didn’t care for the music at all because it’s all new music and rarely ever a hymn. Now, I appreciate the music at church and sometimes even listen to it in the car, but I still listen mostly to hymns when I’m at home.

At work, because of the loud machines and mandatory ear plugs, there is often not much opportunity for conversation with co-workers. Instead, I talk to God…a LOT; I have a lot to talk to Him about. I also sing to myself (in my head, not out loud). Most of the songs I sing are hymns because those are the songs I know all the words to, given my upbringing in church and Christian schools. They have been a great encouragement to me, often helping me have a better attitude about work and my co-workers.

The other night, I started singing the hymn “Draw Me Nearer” (also called “I Am Thine, O Lord”). It had been a while since I had heard it, and I surprised myself by remembering all the words. As I pondered on the words I was singing, God spoke to me, especially through the last few words of the second verse: “…And my will be lost in Thine.” I often pray with that intent, but then, as I go about my life, I find myself doing my will again. I believe the secret is in the chorus: “Draw me nearer…” The nearer I am to God, the more apt I am to do His will and not my own.

Here is a beautiful version of the song, in case you don’t know it, have forgotten it, or just want to hear it again: