Monday, January 17, 2011

Bible Graffiti

Mini-mommy-meltdown: complete.

I feel silly. Don't know what got into me, but oober thankful it has set sail and left me flying high again. It's departure probably had something to do with something PK said in his message Sunday morning:

The presence of exhaustion does not equate to the absence of God.

I've been studying my old Bible this past week. It magically appeared during the move and I find that when I read it, it's like being hit over the head with a frying pan. I got this particular copy of the Bible back in 2000. I was a sophomore in college. It was the year before I met Chris.

The margins look like an underpass in downtown Atlanta. Graffiti in the form of chicken scratch quotes and thought-provoking lines from past sermons and messages.

The other night I came across a line in the left hand margin.

It read: "I wonder if I will ever have a testimony to tell."

I got goose bumps as my eyes read and re-read those simple words. Little did I know. I can clearly remember feeling like I didn't have a "story" to tell. People would stand up in church and speak about how their lives were transformed and made new. I would sit in the pew, lovin' on my Jesus (the tiny infant version of Sweet Baby Jesus, mind you), wondering if I would ever have a huge lightening bolt moment--an epiphany--a transformation.

All my life I have known Jesus. I have worshiped Him, walked with Him, loved Him, thanked Him, praised Him, questioned Him...I honestly can't remember a day when I didn't know Him. Sure, I have grown in my faith--have had peaks and valleys, but I believe that He has always been a part of me.

My mom says that I was saved when she was pregnant with me. To say she had a tough time in those days, is an understatement. She hit a wall where she felt like she physically didn't have the strength to carry me. She asked God to carry me, and well, He did. And He does. And He always will.

I digress, my original point was that tonight I ran across these words in my old Bible: "Focus on what is left, not what is lost".

It's in Philippians. Next to one of my all-time favorite verses:

"I've learned how to be quite content whatever my circumstances. I'm just as happy with little as with much, with mush as with little. I've found the recipe for being happy whether full or hungry, hands full or hands empty. Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am."

Tonight I sit in awe of answered prayers. It's easy to focus on what we don't have. When you stop to see what you actually do have, you, like me, might just find yourself overcome with gratitude. Prayers whispered up have indeed come raining down. They cover us. Surround us. Blanket us.

If I had to name 2 answered prayers, that I would have never dreamed possible of coming true, I would say: 1) By the grace of God, the love of my life is now cancer free. Absolute. work. of. God. 2) We have been blessed with the incredible gift of becoming parents. A tiny little peanut who lets us rock him to sleep at night, wipe his boogies, kiss his boo boos, and hug his little neck sleeps in the room just down the hall. What we thought might be impossible, became possible this past year, and for that we are eternally thankful.
Garth Brooks reminds us to thank God for unanswered prayers, but tell me, do you also stop to thank God for answered prayers?

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