The final words of my prayer as I went to sleep last night were, “not mine, but thine”, little did I know that I would be awakened in the wee hours (about three o’clock) with an anxious heart and a strong desire to rise, grab my Bible and my 2011 journal and hear from the Lord. When I looked at the clock, the first thing that came to mind was Matthew 14:25. According to Matthew Henry’s commentary on this section of scripture, “it is good, upon several occasions, and when our hearts are enlarged, to continue long in prayer, and in pouring our hearts out before the Lord.”
Much like Peter in the following verses, I oftentimes step out in faith with eyes locked on the Lord, only to be distracted by the wind and waves that swirl around me. Of this, Matthew Henry’s commentary goes on to say, “when we look off from Christ, and look at the greatness of opposing difficulties, we shall begin to fall, but when we call to him, he will stretch out his arm, and save us…The weakness of faith, and the prevailing of our doubts displease our Lord Jesus, for there is no good reason why Christ’s disciples should be of a doubtful mind.”
For several months, I confess, I have been “stuck” reflecting on a long awaited hope, a prayer I’ve prayed in many ways on many occasions and one specific prayer with a date of April 29, 2011. Like the tide, I ebb and flow in my fervency of prayer with regards to those things that seem to be slow in coming. When I set my eyes on the Lord, He reminds me of his promises: “I know the thoughts that I think toward you,” says the Lord, “thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” – Jeremiah 29:11
When I grow impatient or weary in circumstances and situations, I am often reminded that Jesus is transforming me through these times by drawing me to Himself in prayer, in His word, and changing me by the Holy Spirit in me that grows, strengthens and matures my faith with wisdom and understanding.
This is from my journal, April 29, 2011:
Surrender – Not mine, but thine. When I hand over (surrender) my expectations, I am free to receive all that He has planned for me.
Transitions – Moments of change. Moving from the disasters of the past and present into the blessings of the future.
God calls me to put in its proper place, anything that keeps me from fully trusting Him, leaving behind yesterday’s address so that I can accompany Him to a new place tomorrow.
I am thankful for my three a.m. wake up call and the reminder of these words, “surrender” and “transition”. Although I am waiting to see the purposes of the Lord in many things, I am comforted in knowing I need only to keep my eyes on the Lord. At the end of my journal entry, I wrote my God-sized dream. If I told you what it was, you may think it to be a simple thing and to most people it would certainly not be considered grandiose. To me, it is something only the Lord can do and although I don’t know when the dream will become reality, I have already seen glimpses of His glory in the waiting.
Lord, I confess that I sometimes struggle to believe_______________. Please forgive me for doubting, becoming anxious and growing weary. Please renew and strengthen your spirit within me to trust you fully and to keep my eyes focused on you.
Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. – Matthew 11:28
May the Lord of peace Himself give you peace at all times and in every way. – 2 Thessalonians 3:16