Thursday, September 5, 2013

Lower Your Nets & a #FreshVision

"Praise Me"...those words gently fall in my heart as God nudges me once again. You see, we've been in a struggle for awhile now. God has been asking me to Praise him for the one thing I can't praise him for - losing my daughter. Wouldn't that mean I was glad she was gone? I would NEVER be happy about that. I've tried to dance around his request for a really long time by praising him for all the good things that came out of the situation: the renewed relationships, the excellent healthcare, the friendships. Many of the things I talked about last week, but this wasn't good enough. God wanted ALL of me. We are supposed to praise him in all circumstances.

I rarely get out of my house alone, but I had to run to the store one evening earlier this week. So, I went by myself and boy did God meet me there in my car! As I headed home from the store, one of the songs from my daughter's funeral began to play on the radio. Tears began to flow. "Praise me" he gently nudged. "No" I replied. I can't let her go and I'll never be grateful that she's gone. And just to be sure I was hearing him, a song about Praising God came on and I hear the words "Praise me" again. I started crying hard. I knew I was running with nowhere to hide. He wanted my obedience! I made it home without giving in, but he wasn't done with me yet.

Nicki challenged us to find our white space with God this week; to carve out daily quiet time with him. After watching her video a few nights ago, I sat down to quietly talk to God. "Praise me" he urged once again and I knew, I just knew that I wasn't going anywhere with God until I addressed this issue. My heart began to soften as I wanted to be a woman who said yes to God No Matter What. With tears flowing once again I asked, "Okay God, what exactly does praising you in this situation mean?" He answered that it didn't mean not loving her or being happy about her being gone. It meant that I trusted him in all circumstances and that I believed he was working all things for my good. Sobs racked my body as I broke down and finally praised him in a situation I never thought I'd let go of. "I trust you Lord and I believe you work ALL things for my good, even if I don't like them."

I went on to pray, "Father, I want to know what YOUR plan for my life is. I erase everything I've ever believed or wanted and I ask you to show me what you want me to do with my life." Only one word raced through my mind "Art".

#SayWhat? I'm no good at art. Memories came one after the other. The memory of my art teacher telling me I should have a career in art. My daughter writing "I want to be an artist when I grow up because I'm good at art" (He said that message was for me too). Writing in my daughter's goodbye letter that I would always do something artistic in her memory. How much I enjoyed my summer art programs in high school. How many times I've said that I wanted to take an art class as an adult (a Lot!) and the list goes on.

#SayWhat? Art? I thought I was going to be a writer. That was the plan. I thought that was what you've been telling me all along. Seriously God? Is this really from you? Excitement started to grow as this new thought took root. It's time to wait for the confirmations we've learned about in this study.

Maybe I should have separated this into two blog posts because I don't want the first message of lowering your nets to get lost behind the fresh vision. God wants ALL of us, even if it means giving him the one thing that hurts the very most in our lives, the one thing we don't want to praise him for because it hurts too much...He wants it ALL, because he's the only one that can set all things right. What do you need to give to God today?