You Choose

The alarm goes off. You open your eyes and realize that this is not the first time it has gone off. You’ve been hitting the snooze button for the last 45 minutes. Now youre late. And its a big day. Much to do. Too much. And now you’re already 45 minutes behind.

Once again, you have two choices. You could fly out of bed, get ready and go plowing through this day, and hope for the best. 

Or you could take another 10 minutes…. to pray. Turn off the frantic to do list in your head, light a candle, face the icon of Christ, and pray. Offer your day to Him and allow Him to bless your efforts.

So? Which do we choose? Which do we wish we would choose? Can we make a better choice each morning? Maybe even for just this week?

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But then….

Kind of a Post Script here…..if you missed yesterday’s blog entry, you can find it here.

But then… I had this other very wonderful thought.  It’s not just me who is being bombarded with tough stuff right now.  My kids and my husband are also being hit hard individually.  And in several ways, our challenges are not merely individual, but are obstacles that we can only overcome as a family, working together.

And that leads me to the wonderful part….these have not only been my prayers.  This means that these are the prayers of my husband and also the prayers of my kids.  This means that they are asking for the same growth that I am asking for, and we are all on the same path together!

Beautiful Mind Picture: me in my room, my kids each in their rooms, my husband miles away on a jobsite….all of us praying the same prayers to the same God.  And the candles flickering in front of the Icons.  And God loving us so completely.

Happy Smiling Thankful Moment!

Beware!

I am writing this as a kind of PSA, in hopes of protecting others from the stupidity into which I just stumbled….again.

I have always loved the line from the musical Into the Woods, that says “be careful what you wish for, because wishes are children, and they grow up too.”

And of course the Bible is full of lessons about how God answers prayer.

So it should have come as no surprise.  But instead, it knocked me off my feet…..again.

It has been a rough few weeks.  Our family has been working SO HARD on specific challenges.  We’ve been working harder than ever to grow and really truly be the people that God is calling us to be.  This is NOT one of those seasons of floating through life,  somehow half-aware of our spiritual health, just trying to keep up with the activities of daily life.

And EVERY. SINGLE. SPIRITUAL. CHALLENGE. AND ROAD BLOCK. AND OBSTACLE. HAS BEEN PUT IN FRONT OF US these past few weeks.  I mean, I can’t even catch my breath before the next blow comes!

And in my despair and self pity, I went to read through my prayer journal from a couple of months ago…wondering where I went wrong, wondering why things are so tough. These are the prayers I found:

“Dear God, I am ready to be who you want me to be.”

“Dear God, please help my family to focus on being the Orthodox community that we are desiring to find in the world….right here, in our house.”

“Dear God, please help me to see my own faults and give me the strength and courage to repent fully and allow myself to be humbled and changed.”

“As a family, I pray that we may strengthen and encourage one another always to carry our cross with humble gratitude and unwavering faith.”

…Okay, so I guess I asked for it!  And in typical God fashion, He doesn’t grant us the powers of patience and humility and faith like some sort of fairy godmother, but He gives us (generously) opportunities to cultivate patience and humility and faith.

UGH!  So, like I said, this is a public service announcement, friends.  DO NOT PRAY FOR WHAT YOU ARE NOT READY TO RECEIVE!!!!

May God continue to answer our prayers and give us the strength to carry our many blessings!