Saturday, April 18, 2009

Hangin' Out at the Cafe`

It has been several weeks since I've hung out at the Cafe`. I've missed you guys!!!

As I've shared before though, when DH is home, I really try to focus on him. He works so hard and our lives can get really busy at a moment's notice so I really try to cherish our time together.

Today finds DH outside using the chainsaw and cutting some brush and small trees and just doing that outdoor spring cleaning. So..I thought I'd pull up a chair and visit you folks at the Cafe`.

Click, click....SLAM!!!!!!!!!!!

WOW!!! Didn't even see this coming!!! The Holy Spirit, through Kim, plowed straight through and confronts me with something I've been fighting most of my Christian life....spiritual discipline. It's been a very good morning, why'd we have to go there????

I tease, though. I am so thankful that Jesus refuses to leave me where I am and that He will get my attention through whatever avenue He needs to. It is so comforting to know that my Savior loves me enough that He refuses to sugar coat those areas that I'm failing incredibly in.

Kim asks these questions:

1) On a scale of 1-10, with a 10 representing the strongest, rate your current prayer life. Why did you rate yourself as you did?

I rate myself an 8.

In the last 5 months, my prayer life has been almost continual. I can honestly say that most days find me in an attitude of prayer...praying without ceasing.

I've shared with you in past posts that DD fought her way home out of the wilderness about 3 months ago. DS, as well, has been home from the wilderness only a month.

It's amazing how God will allow situations to bring you closer to Him. I confess, that I am stressed and afraid and complaining while I'm going through these trials, but God uses those trials to bring me Home to Him.

I have friends who are going through serious health issues, marriage troubles and family problems..all of which need continual prayer. I'm finding that satan is on a rampage and the children of God cannot afford to sit around and do nothing. Sadly, it's that complacency that's brought us to the point we're at now.

2) If you are struggling with your prayer life, make a list of possible stumbling blocks to a more intimate prayer life with Jesus.

Am I struggling in my prayer life right now?? Not really. But prior to 5 months ago, you bet. I'm convinced that my lack of time with Jesus brought about the wilderness travelings of my children.

I got lazy. Thought things were going great. The scales on my eyes were so very thick and I'm sure they got that way because of laziness on my part.

For myself, I can get easily distracted. Prior to 5 months ago, I spent waayyy too much time on this computer. I couldn't bear the thought of "missing out" on something.

With our kids crazy work schedules, I found myself putting off my time with Jesus to hang out with them....not realizing that the time with Jesus would prevent the battles we've gone through.....or at least made those battle shorter lived.

Television, cutting coupons to save money, cleaning my house, not being able to say no....all of these things have caused and still can cause me to fall away from talking to my Father.

3) Make a list of how we can grow closer to Jesus in our prayer life as well.

First of all, I wouldn't recommend waiting until things get bad. How much of the stresses of life could be completely prevented if we made our time with God #1??

Turn off the tv, the computer. Put down that magazine and those coupons. Anything that is a distraction either needs to be brought under control. If it can't be controlled, then removed.

What's the point of saving 55¢ if you are losing your soul or watching the souls of others be lost??? I love that Toby Mac song that says, " I don't want to gain the whole world and lose my soul.."

And...there is one major thing that I think can and will make a total difference in our prayer lives....fasting.

Fasting is something that isn't talked about or practiced (at least not in my neck of the woods) very much anymore. It seems as if fasting happens when we get desperate, yet the Bible tells us to fast and pray.

"So I turned to the Lord God and pleaded with him in prayer and fasting...."
Daniel 9:3, NLT

"....She never left the temple, but stayed there day and night worshipping God with fasting and prayer."
Luke 2:37, NLT

I believe when we fast, we are being serious. Fasting isn't just the giving up of food, but of anything that is a major deal to us. It shows God that whatever we're praying about is so big to us that we're willing to sacrifice something important to us to see this prayer answered in accordance with God's will.

Have I got all the answers? Do I have this whole thing figured out? Not a chance!!

But God has shown me over the last few months that He is mighty and desires to answer our prayers and please us..BUT...we also have to do our part as well.

To join the Cafe`, click here.


Toknowhim said...

Loved your answers today... Thanks so much for participating... You nailed down so many things.

Blessings and feel free to stop by my blog today... I have a giveaway going on if you are interested..


Denise said...

Such a great post, thank you.

Sandy said...

Well said, Deb. Blessings to you!

Pam D said...

What a beautiful post.. it really wouldn't hurt for each of us to assess our prayer lives on a regular (maybe monthly?) basis. That way, we could spot problems before we get too far off track. Because, in this crazy world we live in, it is so VERY easy to to that. I love your definition of fasting, too. But it makes me a little uncomfortable.. because blogging and photography are my big "time eaters" right now, and it would be hard to give them up for any length of time. But.. when something becomes hard to give up, that's probably when it's best to do it. So that it doesn't become like the ring in The Hobbit; too "precious" to cast away. Much to chew on here; thank you for pouring out so much of yourself and becoming transparent.

Beth in NC said...

Great answers to the questions Deb. I rated myself a 7.

Have a blessed day!

Sandy said...

Hey, Deb. Saw your post on my blog. It made me chuckle. I love how He uses people and circumstances to teach us.