On January 1, 2012, I committed to read the entire Bible in a year. Our church gives us a reading plan every year in October so we can pray and prepare to commit to this year-long process.
I rarely use the word proud to describe how I feel about anything I’ve done, but I am proud to say that I am still sticking with it. I’m right on track. It’s a great plan that has me reading two Old Testament chapters and two New Testament chapters at a time. Sometimes I don’t want to put it down.
In addition to this reading plan, I also do a daily devotion out of the book Jesus Calling by Sarah Young. Whenever anyone asks for a devotion recommendation, this is it. The sense of peace that I feel every day just from this devotion is indescribable. It somehow always manages to have a short message that is exactly what I need to hear for the day, and gives some recommended scripture reading.
On Monday, June 18, we had a house showing. I’ve stopped really getting my hopes up, and have really started to feel a little bit like, “what’s the point?” But when we have a showing scheduled, we clean and pick up and mow the yard and do our best to make the house smell great. We give it our best shot.
And then after every showing, I dwell. And I worry. And I start going through the “what ifs” and it’s just a ridiculous cycle. I am rolling my eyes at myself, believe me.
So I called my mom on Monday and I was talking through all of this with her and I’m sure she was rolling her eyes at me. And she said, “Have you read your Jesus Calling today?”
“No,” I said.
“Hang up and go read it. Then you can call me back if you want to.” My mom always has an answer for everything. Usually a right answer for everything.
So we hung up and I ran upstairs to grab my copy of Jesus Calling. And the words on the page for June 18 left me breathless.
“Concentrate on keeping in step with Me, instead of trying to anticipate My plans for you. If you trust that My plans are to prosper you and not to harm you, you can relax and enjoy the present moment.”
My hope and my future are rooted in heaven. In heaven. Not here. Not in this house and not in our future house. In heaven.
And. AND! What am I doing trying to predict the future? Why do I continue to waste time wondering who is going to buy this house and who will put a house on the market that will one day become ours?
Why do I spend time anticipating the future for anything at all?
So what’s been missing?
Despite spending time every single day in God’s word, and feeling Him with me as I go through my day, and being committed to my faith…
My prayer life is seriously lacking.
I don’t know how to do it. I don’t know how to keep myself from getting distracted and I don’t know how to quiet my mind. This is why I removed Twitter and Facebook from my phone. I don’t need anymore distractions.
And while I love Jesus Calling, I want to feel that peace all throughout the day in my conversations with Him that aren’t read in my favorite devotional book.
I used to pray in the car while I was driving. With my eyes open, of course. But my car time was my quiet time. This was three years ago when my car was a quiet place.
I spend a good bit of time praying for other people and other families. But not enough time praying about the every day stuff and praying about the things I can’t see. Certainly not enough time praying about this move and the preparations being made for our ultimate landing spot in this process.
How about you? Do you ever feel like you have almost all of the pieces coming together?
What’s missing? What is your best advice for carving out time for prayer and quieting your mind for that time?