Why do I share this with you? The beauty of God is we can talk to Him where ever we are, whenever we want to, and it doesn't matter to Him where we are located. Yet, for me, it's easier to connect while sitting on my deck than at the kitchen table. It could be the sound of the birds, the fresh morning breeze, or it could simply be I can't see the "to-do-items" when I'm on the deck. I let the lists and burdens go and savor each moment.
Over the past few weeks as I prepare for an upcoming speaking engagement, God reminded me how important it is to spend time with Him. God used my prayer and prep time to renew my focus and strength and the direction of my gaze. Someone once said, "Keep your eyes focused on God, not the problem." or something like that. Sadly, my focus lately has been on the "stuff", not on God. BUT, guess what, when I take time in the morning (even though it's inside and not long enough for me), my day is so much better.
Without realizing it, my stress has been visible. The only difference last week was taking time to write in my journal, pray, and read my Bible in the morning for at least fifteen minutes. The result, a more peaceful Lisa. I received compliments last week on how nice I looked and was confused. I wasn't wearing new clothes or even taking time to do my hair. It confused me but I responded in kind with a "thank you". I mentioned it to my daughter and out of the mouth of babe, "Mom, it's how you are carrying yourself, there is something different. I don't know what it is, but it's something from inside I think." Hmm...time with God, a brighter exterior? Go figure.
I enjoy speaking and sharing with churches about my faith. It is such a gift. God blesses me as I prepare as He renews disciplines I've relaxed on and restores my faith in ways I can't explain.
"God has given each of you a gift from his great variety of spiritual gifts.
Use them well to serve one another.
Do you have the gift of speaking?
Then speak as though God himself were speaking through you.
Do you have the gift of helping others?
Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies.
Then everything you do will bring glory to God through Jesus Christ.
All glory and power to him forever and ever! Amen."
1 Peter 4:10-11 NLT