Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Establishing A Daily Time With The Lord

Have you seen the movie, The Wedding Planner?

Do you remember one of the very first scenes in the movie where it shows Jlo coming home from work?  She lays things out for dinner, just so.  You can tell by her movements that she is careful to tend to every tiny detail in her world.  She cleans and tidies the house before bed.  Her world is a picture of perfect order.

That is me.

Well, that is the me buried under all the mismatched socks and Legos.  I have a constant tension of my natural bent and my reality.  And let me tell ya, things have derailed around here.

One look at the pictures tells the story of life run a muck.  Whatever it is that derails you, getting back up and getting back on track can be difficult.  It's like, when you pass a certain point, you kind of give up because you are not sure what to tackle first.

For us it has been a string of sickness.  As in off and on for twelve weeks.  I have personally taken a couple of the hits and the result of my absence in the home is explosions of stuff everywhere I turn.

Everywhere I turn I see messes.  Floors overrun.  Dressers spilling over, so full they will not even shut.

Everything feels like it holds a layer of sticky and I cannot get myself caught up.  I am barely keeping my head above the water.  Two weeks ago I raised my white flag.  Sent out an SOS in an exasperated prayer to the throne.  I was in such need of a place to retreat to on a daily basis. I needed to create a space to go that was one tiny corner of order in my world.  Some kind of constant something that even sickness could not touch.  The rest of the house could be falling down, but I needed to create a corner of this world that I could call my own.  Where I could create the beauty that would fill me up.

I put pen to paper and made my battle plan.  It was time to fight for change.  Here is the list of things I went through to bring myself to a better place:

  • I realized that I HAD to figure out how to come to the throne room of grace every single day
  • This meant I needed to create a space where I could mentally sit and be with Jesus
  • I outlined a very simple plan of attack.  (wake, shower, prepare my room, show up)

This is my tent of meeting where I have been coming for eleven days straight to be with Jesus.  As you can tell from the pictures, we are still living in a pretty solid state of survival mode around here, but this space...this space right here, I have prepared the space and I have been coming and He has been meeting me right here in the middle of all my mess called life.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Make Room

When Jesus came the first time, there was no room for him.  I have been an unorganized mess lately.

Nothing is consistent.

Yesterday I raised my white flag.  Something had to change.

Order needed to be restored from my chaos.

I want to make room inside for the coming of Jesus this Christmas.  It isn't even Christmas shopping that has diverted my attention, I have bought nothing yet.  And that is not some super spiritual move on my part, it is just fallout from the mess of my days.

When I need to restore order, the first place I begin is with me.  I need a peaceful place to come and sit.  That is my bedroom, my haven I have created for myself.

Here's how yesterday went down (pre-white flag raising).  Got up late.  Every room was already scattered with bits of clutter here and there.  Felt behind.  Needed order.  Needed a calm place to sit and be with Jesus (hi, remember me Lord?).  So I timed myself.  Like, literally, timed myself. Getting ready feels like it takes 3 hours.  So I timed myself.  Turns out I can be ready in 45 minutes max.  It took 3 minutes to get the baby dressed for the day and her hair fixed.

I spent 10 minutes fluffing my bedroom.  I made my bed, turned on my lamps, picked up last night's clothes, ran a quick vacuum because lines complete me, lit my new Twisted Peppermint candle, turned on my Instrumental Christmas Pandora radio, got my Peppermint Mocha Creamer with a splash of coffee, and I locked myself in my bedroom.

The day started out behind and I took an hour to restore the order on the outside so that I could restore the order on the inside.  We have to know the truth about ourselves.  My truth is that I need order to rest. Chaos is so distracting for me.  And here is what I decided.  The rest of the house might be a dump, but my room is my space to keep just so, just how I like it.  It is my tiny space in this big world that is mine to retreat to.  It is my personal retreat space.  In a home shared with a lot of other people, I have made a space to go.  I have filled this room with beauty and it is one place I can create order to take the rest I need, both at night and throughout the day.

After I sat and admired the order of the room, I flipped open my Bible to this page.  Get up and prepare.  Dress yourself for work.

My life feels like one big sloppy bad habit.  There are so many sloppy areas to address it is hard to know where to start.  Life has piled up around me and buried me.  There are so many pieces to move so I can climb to freedom.  I look at the long road ahead, and I threaten to shut down and keep doing nothing. I threaten to keep living in this pile of defeat.

But I have to start SOMEWHERE.  So I choose to start here.  With this habit.  The habit of getting up, getting ready (even if it is just a shower and clothes with no pretty make-up and air dried hair). Getting up and dressed, making my bed, and taking the first moments of my day to sit with Jesus. It seems like order always starts in this place for me. With getting up and creating a space to meet with the Lord.

And sit I did.  I sat with Jesus and Exodus 33 and spent time thinking about how Joshua just wanted to linger in the presence of the Lord.  He did not want to go from His Presence.  And this is what I am asking from the Lord.  I am asking for big heaps of desire to linger in His Presence.  For an increase of the filling of the Holy Spirit in my life.  I want to wake up.

Make room.  Create a space.  Create your own Tent of Meeting to meet with Jesus and then come.

Make room.  Lord, make room in our hearts for more of you this Christmas season in Jesus name I pray.