A few weeks ago, I posted a blog called “Get Low- A Posture of Prayer” in that post I talked about a time when I was really struggling under the weight of motherhood. I was bunched up on the floor with my face buried in the carpet. I remember sitting straight up like an arrow that was just released from a bow, starring due north & screamed “where are you?”.
In that moment, a moment I won’t soon forget, God answered back with words that penetrated the fibers of my soul: “where are you?”.
***Now in the spirit of being real…this next tid bit of biblical knowledge & connection was absolutely lost on me until I sat down to write this blog. I have learned a valuable lesson as a writer, teacher, & speaker & that is when I don’t know what to write, teach, or say- pray instead. I have learned to stop what I am doing. Walk away & pray about it. The cool thing about this job of mine is that I can count on God to deliver even when I can’t. Mondays are heavy in biblical stuff & most times, God speaks the clearest to me when the ink flows onto the paper.
So, back to God’s question…Where are you…he asked this question to someone else in the bible. Way back in Genesis 3, Adam & Even decided to hide in the garden when “they heard the sound of the Lord walking [through the garden of Eden]” in verse 8. In verse 9, he asks them “where are you?”. He wasn’t wondering where they physically where & this wasn’t God walking around playing a heavenly game of hide & go seek. This was the God of the this universe asking more along the lines of “what are you thinking?”. He knew where they were. What he was asking was what was the condition of their hearts. Where were they in relation to him?
So bringing this around to my day….
When God so clearly asked me “where are you?”, I immediately answered [straight up channeling Adam & Even]…”ummm, right here. In my bedroom, in a puddle of tears, where you have seemingly left me to rot, duh!”.
Ok, I didn’t say that, but I was kind of side-eyed like” ummm, right here” & I remember asking out loud, “why is this happening?”.
I don’t remember exactly how long it took for me to figure out the huge puzzle piece that was missing, but eventually I figured it out, I was not living out Matthew 6:33
“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these thing will be added to you.”
It was very simple why I was struggling so much. I can’t tell you exactly why everything felt like it was falling in around me, but I do know that God used that incredibly difficult time in my life- that lasted a little over a year- to open my eyes & show me I wasn’t seeking Him above all others. I was trying to be a good wife, a good mom & a good bible study leader & a good church volunteer. All noble causes & ambitions, but I was not seeking HIM first. I was not keeping God in his place.
The hebrew translation of first is “in time, place, order, or importance” and that was not where he was in my life. I wasn’t putting him first in my day- I was waking up to the faces of my kids or when I would wake up before them, I would jump on social media or email or turn on a morning show. I was being greeted by the world before I was greeting my savior. I was being filled by things of the world before I put on the armor of God (Ephesians 6:11-20). I was not guarding my heart like the bible tells us to in Proverbs 4:23 because I was not soaking in the word of God before I had to start that daily process. You can’t guard something if you don’t have the preparation or weaponry to do so. So what did I do about this?
Well, I started getting my butt out of bed an hour before my kids. This isn’t easy for most of us. We are tired mommas & we need what little sleep we can get, especially during the preschool/toddler/infant years, but I noticed a huge shift in perspective when I started doing this. I set an alarm. I found a place that I enjoyed going to [#frontporchtruths anyone?] & I always had good coffee available. I knew if I wanted this phase, season, time…whatever you want to call it…to end that I had to do something different. I had to commit my heart to God, first & foremost, & I knew my feet would follow right out of that bed.
Did that difficult season end right away, no! But I can tell you I felt so much better equipped to handle it. There were days, if I had time for nothing else, I would stand in my bedroom & read Ephesians 6:11-20 out loud over & over & over & sometimes on particularly bad days, I would physically put on the armor of God like a preschooler playing dress up. All the while, praying that God would give me strength & make me better. When I let go of the “necessity” to do it myself, God was able to step in & make Matthew 11:28-30 real in my life.
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Take my toke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly
in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light”
So, allow me to turn this question back on you dear readers,
WHERE ARE YOU?