January 6, 2014
It's been an Intentional Day
Today is Day 2 of our 21 day fast. I got hungry. I even told my son that the brown leather couch looked a little like a Hershey bar. I ate a rice cake and moved on. I'm ok.
It was back to homeschool for us today. This means being intentional. I taught my four shorties and it. took. forever. Ok, well, we finished at 3:30, but let's be honest...when you're doing Algebra, it's forever. During our Bible time, though, I read and discussed Daniel with the kids. It helped them to understand why they are giving up sweets and screens for 21 days. I must say, I'm really proud of those kids. When the craving showed up today (as it does every day around 3:00), they asked if they could put honey on a tortilla and roll it up to snack on. Nobody even asked for candy or doughnuts or anything! That in itself is proof that God still does miracles!
It was good to get back to our school and chore routines now that Christmas break is over, but the fast is not yet routine for us. I knew that Jeff would come home from work hungry, and I knew that he would've had Mexican food for lunch (he had a lunch meeting and he ALWAYS wants Mexican food). So, I tried not to duplicate that for his dinner. This meant being intentional. I boiled black eyed peas, made a pot of brown rice, steamed broccoli and chopped some fruit. It was fine. That's about all you can say about rice and peas and broccoli and an apple. Fine. Who cares? Well, Jeff cared. He LOVES black eyed peas and was sincerely grateful for the effort, so that was nice.
After dinner, we had another intention for the day. We gathered our kids in the living room and pulled out an envelope that has laid at rest for a solid year. It was the petitions that we asked of the Lord at the beginning of 2013. We passed them out, asked each child to review what they had repented for and what they had asked God to change. It's always amazing to see how faithful God is to a child. Their faith is strong and they aren't afraid to ask BIG! They enjoyed seeing the tangible proof of their prayers. We then met with each child individually to help them fill out a new petition for this year, discussing what they felt that they still needed to work on, and what new requests that had for this year. It's always a special time, because their ages are so varied and their requests are so suited to each age. One child even piped up, "I've got some pretty good ideas in there!" Haha!
In all my good intentions for the day, our petition time this evening reminded me of something, and it was bittersweet to me. When Jeff handed out everyone's petitions, there was one in every hand...except mine. There wasn't one to hand to me, because I didn't make one last year. I was there, sitting with my whole family that day in January, 2013, but I didn't fill it out. I couldn't. I absolutely could. not. do it. I was living in a dark and helpless place in my soul. I stared at that piece of paper and couldn't even form the thoughts to ask God to help me out. I couldn't imagine setting a single goal. I could't bring myself to even write the words "Help Me." I mentioned in a previous blog that I've known hard times, and, seeing how far we've come as a family, I cannot believe that it's only been 12 short months since I felt that way. Since life looked like that. Since I wanted to disappear. It feels like an eternity ago. That was the bitter portion. The sweet side of it comes when I know that God answered the prayers of my husband and children, and he just let me lay limp in His arms while He walked my family down the steps He had ordered for us. He's a Daddy, you know. I remember riding in the back seat as a little girl and arriving in the dark at home, pretending to be asleep so my Daddy would carry me. I'd make by body as limp as a rag doll, and hang there in his arms. It felt safe. It felt right. I knew he'd get me to my room, to my rest, to my home. God did that for me last year. I didn't intend for life to get dark, to feel alone, to lose hope. But I serve an intentional God. Somehow I knew that it would be ok to just lie there are let Him carry me. I knew that I was in the middle of an ugly chapter, but not at the end of my book. I knew that He intended a very real, very large future for me, and that if I needed to be a rag doll for a season, He would just carry me to my room, my rest, my home.
Today's Prayer: Daddy-God, thank you for allowing my humiliation to turn into a story that proves your faithfulness, your comfort, your peace and your restoration. Thank you that your mercies are new EVERY morning and that you NEVER leave me lying on the ground, to move along without me. Your touch is precious to me. Your arms uphold my very life. Your joy is evident in the eyes of my children. You never leave me. You never forsake me. I cannot keep from knowing you, loving you, sharing you. I'm forever yours. Amen.
Isaiah 46:4 I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you.
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Thanks for being so transparent Danielle! God is so Faithful to hear even our unspoken prayers! Thankful God brought you to Eastgate. May He continue to restore, revive and rejuvenate you each and every day. Big hugs, Mary Blankinship
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