Psalm 138:1-3  

I give you thanks, O Lord, with all my heart; 

I will sing your praises before the gods.

I bow before your holy Temple as I worship.

I will give thanks to your name

for your unfailing love and faithfulness,

because your promises are backed

by all the honor of your name.

When I pray, you answer me;

you encourage me by giving me the strength I need.

 I am very excited today! In just two days I’ll go to ‘She Speaks!’, a training conference hosted by Proverbs 31 Ministries for writers, speakers, and ministry leaders.  This will be a tremendous opportunity for me to grow spiritually, learn more about writing for Christian publications, and prepare me for public speaking. 

I’ve been waiting for this for almost a year!  It will be great!  I’ll be surrounded by Christian women, all there to pursue ways to better themselves for their service for the Lord.  I’ll also get to meet the amazing women of the Proverbs 31 Ministry-the writers of the online devotions whose work I ‘proof’, team members who’ve been helpful and inspirational to me as I’ve answered God’s new callings for me, and I’ll finally get to meet Lysa TerKeurst herself!  Lysa is the founder of P 31 Ministries.  To date I’ve only exchanged email with her and I’ve heard SO MUCH about her from others who have met her or heard her speak. 

These things are all very exciting, indeed, but the greatest reason for my excitement is that my arriving at this great opportunity is totally and completely of the Lord’s doing.  Not only did He lead me along the path that led to this, He’s been with me this week helping me prepare for two presentations that I’ll be giving as part of my speaker training. 

Even though I’ve had almost a year to get ready for this, it’s just been in the past two days that  my thoughts and ideas have come together for my presentations.  Usually my head is swimming with thoughts, but when I tried to work on this in previous weeks, I came up with a big, fat NOTHING!  Anxiety was causing my brain to lock up!  

What was going on?!  I’ve been looking forward to this for almost a year!  I KNOW I can do this!  The requirements for the presentations are easy – one is to share ‘my story’/testimony in three minutes and the other is to give a ‘teaching talk’ in five minutes.  I do this all the time in my Disciple classes.  Why wasn’t I able to come up with something now when it REALLY mattered?  This is what God has led me to do so I can’t fail Him!   Then I realized that was exactly what I’d been doing.  I’d failed Him by not including Him!  I was trying to go about this all on my own – not seeking His guidance or leadership.  I know better than that! 

 Immediately I went to Him in prayer, apologizing for not including Him; acknowledging that this is all for Him and about Him; and promptly sought His help and guidance.  What did HE want me to say and do?  What was the message and story that HE wanted me to share?   And then my mind started swimming with ideas again.  Praise!

Not only did the Lord lead me to the thoughts and ideas He wanted me to share, He’s helped overcome health problems this week and provided alone time at the computer to prepare my work – something I didn’t think I’d have with my 6-year old son home all day while his older brother is away at basketball camp. 

My favorite verse this past year has been ‘Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your path.”   Proverbs 3:5  

It has proven to be so true in the past couple of days as I’ve relied on him to prepare me for this coming weekend, something that is very important to me because it is important to Him.  The three-minute presentaion came together almost effortlessly once  I entrusted it to God, but the five-minute ‘teaching talk’ was a little more difficult.  I had several ideas and couldn’t decide which would be best.  So again I went to the Lord in prayer, and just this morning that He made clear to me one that I should use.  He even embellished it a bit! 

So my heart is full of praise, as my once again I am amazed, at His provisional hand of grace.  The Psalm above seemed perfect to express what was in my heart -especially the last two lines. 

I hope you know me well enough to know that I don’t share these things to boast.  I share them to witness about God’s goodness and grace and to show how He is there wanting and willing to help us if we just trust in Him.  Is there something you could use help with?  Take it to God in prayer.  I promise He’ll help you just as He helped me.  God is SOOOOO good!

Blessings to all,

Renee

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