when karen hears, “awake, o sleeper”

Posted: January 27, 2013 in Uncategorized

I visited my old church yesterday, as part of a prayer project I was doing with a couple of friends.  We were meeting prayer warriors there, taking on something that felt way up over my head.  All week, I had been praying in advance for this meeting.  Thursday morning I had awakened at 2 AM with this thing heavy on my heart, staying up to pray the day in.

In the fever pitch of preparation, I had let the location of our planned meeting kind of slip my attention.  I mean…I KNEW where we were meeting…but I hadn’t given it a second thought.

That is, until I opened the church door.  Then it landed on me:  wonder.  “Oh, yeah…” I whispered reverently.  How had it not crossed my mind, WHERE we were praying?

This was my old church.  The place where God taught me how to pray, how to do real-life spiritual warfare, one morning at a time.  The place where I had shown up way before sunrise, morning after morning, three…four…sometimes five mornings a week, leaving the lights mostly off but turning my worship music up loud.  The place where I paced with such determination it felt like I’d wear a groove in the carpet around the edges of the pews. 

The altar there was one of the sweetest places in my world, in that passage.  In the dark of the morning, down on my face, I soaked that carpet in my tears too many times to count.  Feeling the ache in my knees as I knelt, I wrestled before God with my own broken nature, my fears, my rage at what people I loved were enduring at the hands of an enemy who hates all of us, my frustration at how often they and I were part of the problem, not willing participants in the solution.

Teach me how to pray.  It’s a line in one of my favorite Jason Upton songs.  I prayed it morning, noon and night in that passage of my life (and I try to remember to pray it at least daily now.  He’s faithful to answer that request.)

And now, here I was yesterday, opening the door and feeling the rush of all that come whooshing over me like a warm wind.

I was undone.

I needed that boost, that reminder.  I needed that blast of sudden memory, falling across my mind in slide after slide, that well of peace and jubilation that made the warrior in me wake up and realize how many of her tools she’s been neglecting.  I needed that reassurance, that He is God, that He is good, that He will work in me and through me, inside of my willingness.  That the battle is His, and that He is well pleased when I step up and offer myself into His service. 

I know it’s God, when I am running through life in the “gotta get this done” mode and suddenly it’s all interrupted with wonder and tears.  I paced that old track of the carpet that really should be grooved from my feet, and I knew:  He hears.  He is here.  He is working.  This task never was mine to “do.”

God was faithful in our great big prayer project yesterday.  The way it played out looked nothing like I thought it would, and still was, I believe, everything it was supposed to be.  I anticipated wrestling and battling in prayer.  Instead, I got to sit quietly, listen, and watch.  I spoke very little.  I only prayed the little bits that He led, not the great torrent I had planned. 

Turns out the heavy lifting is His to do, and not mine.  Why I need to re-learn this lesson so often, i do not know.  Except for that final truth that I am small and broken, and He is not, and it pleases Him to do what I cannot do. 

My prayer for you on this chilly Sunday night:  that He will whoosh in and remind you, too, what He’s done in you…how He’s equipped you…now much of the load He’ll carry, if you’ll just bring Him your little bit of willingness. 

Receive it.  Please!

much love,

k

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Comments
  1. Linda says:

    I really enjoyed this … brings back memories of times I used to have in praise and prayer and how they impacted me….been a very long time.

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