Thursday, November 27, 2008

Never Cease to Amaze

Where does the time go? It's been over a week since I posted. I very faithfully and regularly posted on our Bible study. I think because the study got my thinking and writing juices flowing. I've been having withdrawals from writing. As I've said before, writing is truly a time of deep communion with my Lord and Savior. I've had many thoughts and subjects come into my mind...thoughts of thankfulness, thoughts of testimony, thoughts of "let my people go". Yet, never the time to sit down and allow God to expand those snippets into a posting.

So, I sit here on Thanksgiving evening feeling the close of a very full day, feeling unexpectantly peaceful, joyful, and deeply thankful. For a month, I've been dreading the upcoming holidays. I feared this season would be worse than last year. Yesterday was so full of emotions. Work closing early brought memories of times shared with my beloved on such days. Making a new kind of turtle pumpkin pie brought desires of wanting to share this new recipe with beloved. Deviling my eggs brought reflection of times past and desiring more. My heart is heavy in the midst of joy spurts.

Even with a very restless night of insomnia and anxiety, I awoke with a joy for this day. I was surprised by a very lovely phone message from Lelia and two others contacted me via blogland and phone. I was ready for the day. I wanted to arrive at my mom's early and tempted to skip my daily reading of God's Word but I didn't. Thank you, Lord!

I'll spare you of all the details, but as I reflect on the day, I can clearly see how talkative I was to everyone. I cracked some pretty good jokes and made others laugh. My one cousin said he didn't think he'd been to my mom's house before today. Everyone was saying they thought he had. He said maybe he had. I chimed in and said "Maybe you should ask your kids since they still have their memory." He laughed and said "that's a good one." (He's my age, young.) Then there are the comments or inquiries that we can very perfectly and easily skip by just not contributing but I didn't. I was my extrovert side today. When talking with my dad and brother at times, I thought to myself, "shut up Paula" as I was just rattling about nothing essential.

I share all this to say...God never ceases to amaze me. I'm positive He doesn't you either. I'm pooped now and ready to chill with some CSI but I'm much at peace reflecting on today.

I do find it very odd that beloved as been on my heart, mind, and prayers, persistently the last week. Even in my dreams and you know how hard and emotional that can be with the person's presence feels and seems so real. :-( Even with that, I'm amazed at the peace of this day.

I knew that my mom would most likely ask me to say the prayer over lunch. Maybe's it not right, but I pondered on what I could say of meaning more than just a generic "we are thankful" and knowing that there are unbelievers and believers there. I'd like to share that prayer with you. It's nothing grand but I want to record the thoughts of my heart on this day, one expected to be difficult. Of course it's paraphrased as I do not have a photogenic memory. :-)

Father God, we come to you so thankful for all you provide for us. Lord, you offer salvation, love, and forgiveness for all of us to take. Thank you, Lord, for each and every person here. It is a true blessing to be with a house of 15 people. I have a very special friend who is with her mother only. So, to be in a house of this many is just an amazing gift. Father, we ask that you watch over those who could not be with us today. You, Lord, provide us with everything we have. We have so very much more than so many people. Jobs, cars, houses, food, health. Those simple things we take for granted. Lord, we thank you for this over abundance of food. Father, it is more than we could ever imagine. It is so much more than we deserve. I thank you for the hands who've prepared it and especially for my beautiful mother who worked so hard. We ask that you use this food for the nourishment of our bodies. In Christ's Name, Amen.

Again, nothing special about it. But, if I recall correctly, I was not able to pray last year as it was too, too close to my heart being freshly broken, crushed, and ripped out of my body. I believe my mom knew I couldn't pray without breaking down since it was only a week after the legal system declared me single...I don't even like the word or to be classified as it (d word).

Granted, when I pray with others I pray with respect to those in my presence. That is I try not to be too Christian in my words. I don't want to close someone's mind with talking too much about thankfulness of spiritual things. Those things I'm most thankful for are of a spiritual matter. Yes, I'm very grateful for work, job, money, house, family, friends, etc. But it goes so much deeper: His Word, freedom to worship, His sacrifice, His healing, His leading, His sovereignty, His concern for my specific life, needs, and desires. Yet, those are personal to me and not necessarily to those in my presence. Maybe I'm over cautious but I really struggle praying with unbelievers and even more with unbelieving family.

This is the very first post I've written free hand without preparation. I just wanted to give praise to the Lord for the beautifully unexpected day He gave me. There are many more things He did today but I don't want this to be a report of the day or my life. Rather, I want to use my life to point to Him and His light to shine, hoping the rays will hit another soul in anyway.

I've really been thinking about my blog mission and it's my deepest heart desire that I fulfill it. I pray that in some way for every reader each and every post will:

enrich your life
strengthen your walk
encourage your heart
enlighten your mind

The scripture that comes to mind that I want to share with you is this.

Rejoice in the Lord. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with THANKSGIVING, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Phil. 4:4-7

You all mean so much to me. You really do. I pray for many of you regularly for your specific needs that you've shared with me. I sincerely consider all my bloggy friends REAL and true friends. The Lord has blessed me beyond my wildest imaginations with the bonds and friendships formed in just seven short months.

We [I-Paula] always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our [my] prayers. 1 Thess. 1:2

I pray the Lord's peace, healing, and strength on you all. Please know anytime you need me, contact me. Many of you have my email already stored in yours. If not, you can find it through my sidebar.

Much love to you by God's grace.

Standing in Awe and Amazement,

27 comments:

Tammy said...

What a lovely post.

When I read you thoughts they always bless me. I enjoy coming by a reading the things that are on your heart.

Happy Thanksgiving,
Tammy

Laura said...

Paula,

I prayed for you today. I'm so glad that the Lord held you tenderly through this holiday. It sounds like a blessed time.

Remember...

His ways are not our ways.

Love you, dear friend!

much2ponder said...

Sounds like you are doing well and the Lord has been faithful. Though I don't always comment, I do ready your blog. Thank you for the thoughtful post and I pray the Lord continue to bless you as you walk along the narrow road.

Melissa said...

Cheri,

I haven't read any blogs in so long and I'm so thankful that I read yours tonight!!! It's just what I needed.

Happy Thanksgiving. Love you!
Melissa

Tonja said...

I think that special days can do either of 2 things...drag us down of lift us up. And the choice is really ours. Usually, we can be just as happy as we make up our minds to be. In the midst of a heart torn by circumstances...how comforting it is to be with family, and be consummed by that love and peace. And, most of all, comforted by the everlasting arms that surround us always.

JnL4God said...

Hi my friend. I am sooooo glad you had a peaceful day. Your post was great. I too like to be prepared but some of my best posts have been when I have let God take over in the middle and go a totally different direction than I started to go.
You're doing great and I am happy for you. Have a great rest of your weekend.
Loves,
Lynn

Lelia Chealey said...

Awwww...you are so sweet! Loved this post Paula. Always look at your blog as the mission field God has you on right now...for such a time as this. He reaches many hearts through you my dear friend. Believe that.
Love you mucho my friend!
Lelia

Deare Diary said...

Paula,
I am enjoying reading your blog. Your writings are encouraging, uplifting and anointed. Keep up the work given to you by the Lord.
Judy

Deare Diary said...

Paula,
I am fairly new to the blogging world. I have been reading your blogs but never left a comment until today. I like reading encouraging and funny blogs and meeting new and interesting friends. Just to let you know, I will be placing you on my list of blogs that I follow. Looking forward to more of your words of encouragement. I am from a small town in Mississippi and am meeting blogging friends from all over.

Edge of Design said...

A simple prayer perhaps and yet effective I believe. :) I believe Prayer is communication from our heart to God's and if folks happen to over-hear, oh well!

Abbasgirl said...

Beautiful post. Glad you were such a blessing to your family Thursday and glad you were so blessed.

Rejoice in the Lord and thanksgiving was my theme this week. I want to really be thankful at all times and in all circumstances.

Mari said...

Bless you for so freely sharing your heart. What a blessing to me. Thank you :)

andi said...

Paula, I seem to have come across as judging in the post I did about Obama smoking. Will you go back and read it along with the comments and give me your input?

Kim@Seasons of My Heart said...

Paula~
I've been thinking about you this week and praying for you as well.

What a great...heartfelt post my friend. God is TRULY doing amazing things in your heart and life!!!

Blessings!

Carol said...

Paula,
I thought of you during the Thanksgiving day, and prayed for you in the morning, that you would have a day filled with joy.

I love the prayer you shared and how you wrote from your heart.

Happy Thanksgiving a couple days late.

Love ya,
Carol

Amy said...

You have been such a blessing to me in this crazy year that I have had, and for that I am very thankful.

Blogging has been such a blessing to me, as well. God is so good!

I pray that you have a holiday season as lovely as you are.

Big hugs to you!
Amy:)

Melanie said...

Paula, I LOVE how God ALWAYS comes through. I am so thankful that He was with you throughout the day and brought to you such peace and thankfulnes.

Pat said...

"enrich your life
strengthen your walk
encourage your heart
enlighten your mind"

Done!!!
Love you sister!

Amy L Brooke said...

Thanks for visiting me in my snowy world. :-) Luckily, I'm not trapped at the moment. Though, I do think we are suppose to get some more snow tonight. Yuck. I suppose we'll see.

You have a great way with words. Thanks for writing.

Laura said...

Hey, Paula,
Just stopping by to say hi and let you know I'm thinking of you!!

Love ya!

On Purpose said...

Paula, I love you, I love the God you shine so brightly, and I love that you are walking in relationship with Him and so freely sharing it with all you come in contact with. I am praying and knowing and believing God has great blessings to keep showering on you!

Pamela (MrsJoeB) said...

Paula-you have a beautiful heart and you have come so far. Continue to allow God to fill that void your have been left with. And contine to be amazed at what God can do in your life. You are such a blessing to us all.

I continue to pray for you.

In His Graces~Pamela

LynnSC said...

Again Paula,
I loved your thoughts. It is always a blessing to me to come here to your blog. You are accomplishing your goal.

I am so happy to hear that you had a great thanksgiving. Continue to hold on to the Lord... HE is faithful.
Lynn

valerie said...

Paula,
This is a lovely post. I'm so thankful that your Thanksgiving day was good and that the Lord was so precious to you.
I know the memories are tough to handle, especially during the holidays. I am keeping you in my prayers and believing God for great things in your life.
I couldn't agree more about the blogging friends. Each one is so special and encouraging. It still amazes me the friends I've made.
Love & prayers!!!
Valerie

Tracy said...

Oh what a beautiful post you've shared. God is certainly holding you close these days, isn't He?

Thank you for sharing your heart so openly. He works mightily through your words to encourage and challenge others. I'm one of many who has been blessed by you and your sweet friendship. I thank God for you.

Thanks also for sharing that tender prayer. It's a testimony in and of itself.

Thank you for the kind birthday wishes. Your comment about singing made me laugh out loud. You're a gift, Paula.

Blessings, sweet one.
Tracy

Sharon said...

You were shared and prayed for at my Thanksgiving Table!
You are very special to me
Love,
Sharon

Pamela (MrsJoeB) said...

Paula-you are LOVED!! Amidst all the agony and pain we can be going through, this season represents something of so much more value. Focus on that friend!!

Praying...Pamela (In His Graces)