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Have you noticed that God puts things on our heart long before He reveals it to us? I really struggle with this because I have a strong desire (need) to know exactly what is expected of me so I can figure out precisely how I will get done what needs to be done. I like to have a plan, an organized detailed plan.
Thankfully, God is always giving me opportunities to be patient and trust His timing and His plan. Of course I always have dozens of questions for Him as to how He plans for this and when. I also have many, many, many suggestions how He can get things accomplished in ways that I feel would be best. These are the times God is usually quiet, waiting for me to be silent so He can speak through His gentle loving gracious merciful whisper.
In the spring of 2002 my husband and I decided it would be best for me to stay home with the kids and be a Stay-At-Home-Mom. I was thrilled at the idea, mainly because I was bored out of my mind with ‘work’ and needed a change. About 13 years later, while in the midst of Chaplain training, God gave me the desire to ‘work’ again.
What would I possibly do? Go back to Accounting? Work as a Chaplain? Open a business? How would I have time for my family, friends and the church? What? How? When? Why? These are just a few of the questions I asked God while trying to figure it all out myself. So exhausting! The thought of creating a resume after, now 14 yeas of not ‘working’, overwhelmed me. I convinced myself no one would every want to hire me, so why bother.
When my anxious thoughts multiply within me,
Your consolations delight my soul.~ Psalm 94:19
Then, the funniest thing happened. A position for an Administrative Assistant/Bookkeeper became available at the church I attended. I mentioned I MIGHT apply and the next thing I knew, the job was being offered to me. Why is this so funny? Well, I was currently on Session, an Elder, over Admin and Finances and the CFO. I kind of had an idea about the job that needed to be filled. Of course I would have to step down from Session before being allowed on staff, but easily done.
I was excited to be the bookkeeper but terrified to be responsible for the weekly bulletin. Could I handle representing the ‘church’? What if I messed up? Could I handle having a set schedule every week? I made my own schedule for so long. What if I got bored? My days of sleeping in and getting up whenever would be over. Wait, who was I kidding, I was a mom of three, I almost never slept in or made my own schedule. Suddenly the thought of having a set schedule and a place to go and be organized and detailed sounded glorious.
I know I mess up or forget things all the time, but thankfully I work with an amazing staff and the best volunteers on the planet! I get to see and talk with my church family every day of the week, work with numbers and keep things organized. I’ve now been working for 14 months with no worry of EVER being bored. I never know what the day will bring except God’s goodness! I don’t believe there’s a better job out there for me!
I think I’ve adjusted well to ‘working’. I enjoy what I do and LOVE the people I work with. My family is having a slightly more difficult time adjusting. When they call to tell me about their day, which is great, I gently remind them I’m at work and will talk with them more when I get off. Well, I’ve been told, in a nice way, how my ‘job’ is sometimes inconvenient for them. I love seeing how God is working on them as He is working on me.
Ask and it will be given to you;
Seek and you will find;
Knock and the door will be opened to you.
If you are in the season of the unknown, maybe with a strong desire for change, ask God your questions about it. He would like to be invited in and can certainly handle your concerns. Don’t stop seeking God’s answers because they are usually better than you could imagine.
My Prayer for us today ~ Thank you Father God for the tender, loving patience you have with us. Lord, I pray for Your wisdom, courage and strength to continually seek Your plan for us. I pray we trust You are at work in all things as we patiently wait upon you, Amen.
A few weeks prior to my husband’s chemo treatment, I heard about other women whose husbands had medical treatments being done. Each of these women were by their husbands side during and after the treatments. They had taken a step back from their responsibilities to be available to care for them. This was not my plan.
This made me question myself. Was I being selfish not adjusting my schedule to be with my husband? I decided to go to God with this question. Thankfully, I had asked, a few weeks earlier, to be lifted up in prayer after sharing my thoughts and fears about my husband’s health issues. This helped me focus on God and what He desired me to do. After spending some time praying and meditating, I felt God wanted me to trust He would be there and in all the details of my husbands treatment. He wanted me to focus on what He wanted ME to do, not worry about what or how others were doing things.
I find myself continually comparing myself to others or what the world expects of me. Sometimes it’s hard to remember God’s opinion is the most important, especially when I’m surrounded by the world.
My husband’s first chemo treatment was Tuesday. I went to my BSF leaders meeting as planned, took my daughter to school and stopped for gas on the way up to meet my husband. I had expected to be there until 4 or 5 that evening. The treatment was planned for 8-hours, depending on how things went. There was a long list of possible side effects that could happen while administering the drug.
As I arrived, I found my husband sitting with a smile on his face. I know he wasn’t feeling 100%, but he wasn’t letting it define his day and was dealing with it all very well. The nurse checked his IV and said he would be done and out of there within 30 minutes. This was at 1 o’clock. At that moment I felt God’s presence. I remembered He had promised to be there and take care of everything. Later, after talking to my husband about how things played out, he said he felt the presence of God, the Holy Spirit, as well.
No one will be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. ~ Joshua 1:5
When we returned home, I was so excited about what God had done for us. I had to share it with a friend. She said the most wonderful thing that helped me put things in perspective. She said, “You were covered in prayer, so you can rest in the fact it was all filtered through the hands of God.” That is such a beautiful image, don’t you think?
My husband has had very little effects from his first chemo treatment. Praise God! I can’t be surprised, because he WAS covered in prayer. We were both covered in prayer. Our family and the entire situation was covered in prayer, and continues to be. I’m so thankful my husband and I both reached out to everyone around us. There are some amazing prayer warriors out there and I’m grateful they are a part of our lives.
If you’re going through a trial in your life, big or small, please reach out to those around you and ask for help. Ask for prayer. It’s beautiful and uplifting to be covered in prayer. If you’re between trials, please take time to look around you to see whom you could offer help and prayer to. Is there someone around you who needs to be covered in prayer?
For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. ~ Matthew 7:8
My prayer for us today ~ Father God, thank you for the gift of prayer, which is a way to communicate with You. I pray those who are in need of help, reach out and ask for help. I pray those who are able to, reach out to those around them who are in need of help, Amen.