One of the advantages of pursuing a lifestyle of prayer is that you become more aware of the continual presence of God in the midst of any and all circumstances. Page 263 was a reminder of that truth as I set about taking care of my usual early morning tasks. While I believe God has confirmed within me a life calling to preach and teach a lifestyle of prayer through the work of Impact Prayer Ministry, for now He has chosen to supply the needs of my family and prayer ministry through a staff position of maintenance director at a church. With a preschool and K-8 school in the building, my weekday mornings usually consist of cleaning and daily prep of the building. I write that as an introduction to my prayer and worship time this morning — you see, as I was cleaning toilets this morning, I was talking to God as I usually do and found myself singing the song which has the line, “Surely, the presence of the Lord is in this place. I can feel His mighty power and His grace.” In that moment, with toilet brush in hand, God quietly whispered, “You’re not alone.” We talk, and I teach, a lot about God always being present, but I must admit that sometimes in the mundane tasks of life it is easy to forget that. Because I practice a lifestyle of prayer, which includes praying as I clean, God was able to remind me of His presence in a time and place where it would be easy to not notice it.
As I took the trash out, a morning mist was rising off the grass and the sun was cresting the horizon and sparkling through the dew-covered trees. I grabbed a camera and took a few photos as I rejoiced in the beauty of God’s presence. Overall, it was a rather quiet day as I followed up on some maintenance issues and continued some work on the Growing Strong retreats and on a couple of sermons for October. As I worked at my desk, out of the corner of my eye I noticed the movement of a bird. By the time I got my camera out, I got one shot before she flew off to search for her meal in another location. As I thought about the birds in the woodpecker family, I thought about all the times throughout my life when it’s felt like I’ve been banging my head against a wall — and here’s a family of birds that basically do just that as a way of God providing the food for them that they need. I wonder if some of my “head banging” was God’s way of providing for me at the time. I know that in the midst of those moments, I rarely have paid attention to what God was trying to do in the situation.
Before I headed home from work, another poem made its way out of my head and into my blog. After wrapping up the workday I headed home for a late lunch, then spent some time relaxing and eventually took a short nap before sitting down to write today’s page.
As I reflect on the day, here are some thoughts/lessons that stand out to me:
- God’s presence isn’t dependent on our recognizing it.
- When we draw near to God, He draws near to us regardless of where we may be.
- When you are confident of what God has called and equipped you to do, you will find a way to allow Him to accomplish that work through you.
- If you find yourself someplace where you don’t feel you can worship, you may want to examine why.
- Just because you have not yet reached the place in life where you want to be, it doesn’t mean that you’re not where you are supposed to be. Life’s a journey.
- God’s provision may not always look like you expect it to, but it is always for your good.
- God expects us to share what He gives us. If you’re not sharing, you probably shouldn’t expect to receive much.