the holy spirit at work…..
y wonderful hubby took our 5 kids and went camping this past weekend so that i could have some quiet school planning time.
i was able to get quiet a bit done on saturday, but had to take a lot of breaks because i was having a hard time focusing.
when greg called me on saturday night, he lovingly asked me if i’d be going to church the next morning. i told him that i might stay home and maximize on my planning time, to which he graciously told me that going to church would probably serve me more.
and he was right.
i woke up sunday morning feeling so heavy hearted and thinking to myself that i need to stay home and just be alone. i found myself also thinking that i would be doing myself and my church family a favor if i just stayed home and didn’t bring my saddness to church. after all, who on earth brings their saddness to church?
but then i remembered something. i remembered my conversation with my hubby the night before, and how he had encouraged me to go to church. and what’s more–i knew he’d ask me if i went.
and so i went.
i walked in just minutes before the service started and sat down in my seat, secretly hoping that no one would notice me so that i wouldn’t have to talk.
the worship music starts and i can barely bring myself to sing. not because i didn’t want to, but because i felt to heavy to even raise my hands or my voice.
and that’s when it happened. the holy spirit moved and the worship leader paused his singing to share psalm 42 with us. he stressed the verse that says “my tears are my food”, and i lost it. i couldn’t stop the tears.
because that’s where i’m at right now. and i couldn’t believe God’s kindness in speaking through this man straight to my heart.
the worship leader talked about our tears being our food when we are walking through hard seasons, and how God sees those tears and he cares.
he went on to encourage those of us who are in a season like that to raise our hands so that people could gather around us and pray for us. at first, i resisted raising my hand. didn’t want to ask for prayer AGAIN. seems like that’s all i do these days.
but i knew that God brought me to church that day and that he wanted to meet me right then and there. and he wanted to use my church family to minister his grace to me. and so i raised my hand. and i cried through the whole prayer. but it was a cry of release. releasing to God my sorrow and yet also releasing my will, by showing him that i was desperate for more of him and was willing to humble myself in front of others in order to be cared for.
the rest of the worship service was a sweet time of allowing the words of the songs to wash over me like a balm to my weary soul.
after service, i had planned to hurry on out of there in order to get home and plan some more before greg and the kids came home.
but once again, God had other plans–better plans.
as i was walking out, a dear friend of mine literally yelled my name down the hall from behind. i turn around to see her joyful smile as she rushed up to hug me and to share words of love and care with me. and words of encouragement that i so desperately needed to hear. God knew that i needed that hug and those words, AND he prompted my friend to literally chase me down after church.
i was once again on my way out, when another dear friend stopped me and told me that she’d been thinking of me and was praying for me as well. she reads my blog and knew my struggle. and she could also relate. she shared with me something that has been so helpful ever since: she told me to take things not just one day at a time, but to take things one moment at a time. to ask God for help and strength in every situation i find myself in. that when i wake up in the morning and don’t feel as though i can even get out of bed, to pray right then and there and ask God for help.
i can’t tell you how much that bit of advice has helped me throughout the week…and it’s only tuesday!
i share this all to say that God is amazing and he knows our needs even before we do. and he cares. he cares about every minute of every day of our lives. even the smallest things are important to him.
i’m so thankful that God knew that i needed to be at church on sunday, and that he knew exactly what people i needed to hear from on that day.