. . . for Lauren and Lauren: You better not pray for that

February 24, 2014

You better not pray for that

I remember one time talking with my youth pastor's wife when I was in high school and she somewhat jokingly told me not to pray for patience.  I can't remember what my circumstances were but she told me if I pray for patience God will teach me patience.  That he will give me situations where my patience will be tested.  

Obviously she didn't really mean to not pray for it, but to be ready to learn if I ask God for something.  To not expect to just acquire new characteristics but to only gain them through hard situations.  

I feel like I learned this when I chose my word for the year last year.  Surrender.  God taught me to surrender constantly.  To surrender my timing for a baby.  To surrender my fears and uncertainties when my mom had heart surgery.  To surrender the health of my baby when we had complications.  I prayed to God that I wanted to surrender to His plans, and he gave me many circumstances where I had to work to surrender. 

This year I am trying to learn how to rest.  How to find peace in where God has me.  How to rest in His promises that He will take care of our family.  How to be still and not fill my time and minutes with ten different things.  Honestly I am not doing a great job at these and I think its because I'm not trying and I'm not praying for opportunities.  

I started reading the book Seven, by Jen Hatmaker the other night and so far I love it.  The premise of the book is that she focused on seven different areas (one a month) that she lived in excess of.   But I found myself being tempting to just read it.  Just read through the words and not think about how that may apply to my life.
My thoughts were first that this will be a nice story for someone and is a really neat thing they are doing, but not for me.  I am not saying I am going to be doing any kind of radical thing like only choosing seven foods to eat for a month (like she did) or not watch tv for a full month.  I have barely started reading the book, but I want to approach it differently and I want to start approaching my days differently too. 

I feel kind of stuck in my spiritual life.  I feel like I am not growing and not seeking out opportunities for God to use me.  I'm aware my life is filled with excess of worldly things.  Tv, clothes, blogging, uncontentment in my thinking, jealously . . . I could keep going. I want to go into reading the rest of this book with a mindset that God may be trying to teach me something.  To make some changes in my life.  I want to start my days asking God for opportunities to teach me things, even though I know that means that I will be tested and stretched and probably uncomfortable.  

I know that I can't expect to gain wisdom, patience, or even the mentality of how to rest in God if I don't pray for it.  So today I am asking for wisdom.  For clarity in what God may be teaching me.  For opportunities to grow and for a stronger desire in my heart to seek after Him.  

If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.
(James 1:5)



Simply LKJ said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Love this Katie. We all come to crossroads during our faith walk where we seek more. We only need to ask for His guidance.

Denise said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Enjoyed this.

Sybil@PeaceitallTogether said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

I don't want to sound like a mom, but I am so proud of you! :) I was looking at this book the other day, but honestly, after I read the description, I was too scared to buy it. I thought it would challenge me too much! It is difficult to make that leap between believing and desiring to actually acting. I will be praying for the ways that God will use you!

CC said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

I just wanted to give you a couple of book recommendations for growing spiritually. Radical by David Platt can change your life if you let it. Kyle Idle man has two great books out - Not a Fan and Gods at War. All three have had a huge impact on my spiritual life in the last few months. I will be praying for you. ;)

Jenna Griffin said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Wow, your words spoke directly to me. I am going through a similar time in my spiritual life. I love your word for the year. "surrender". So fitting for what your going through!

Ashley said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

I completely understand the whole "just wanting to read it" but not apply it take on things. It's hard to take the jul to make a lifestyle change and make a commitment to what you want to do. I'm trying to be better at service, reading scriptures, teaching my boys from the scriptures...the whole thing...so I'm trying to be better at it every day. I think you're doing a great job, my friend!

Anonymous said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Thanks for sharing your heart :) I think if people were truly honest, they would say "I'm right with you girl!" :)
God is using you where you are planted. Praying for wisdom, clarity and a stronger desire to follow hard after our Creator!
Have a great week!

Meg Cady said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Awwwwh girllllll. I know this all too well.
Also I feel like God completely agrees with my "Awww girl" tone right now because he knows that anyone who has been tested in order to gain a new characteristic deserves some major "YOU GO GIRL's"


shelleystursma said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

At least you recognize that you are not where you want to be in your relationship with God right now. There are so many people who don't acknowledge that they need to work on their intimacy with Him.
I read 7 last fall and got rid of half of my clothes. I was hanging on to too much. If only I had the courage to walk the entire 7 journey.

Anna D Kart said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Thank you for sharing girl! I've always been cautious asking God for patience because next thing will be patience test...

Great job!


two birds said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

what a great post. i'm interested to see where the book takes you!

Erin said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Love this. I identify with just about everything you're saying these days...coincidence? I think not. I love finding other bloggers who are at a similar place in life. You are brave for tackling the challenges of that book; it definitely sounds like something that would be challenging and uncomfortable.

Ashley Sanderson said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

I absolutely love this post! And it is so true! You ask God to give you patience, and He definitely gives you situations to be patient in! I am not a patient person in nature and when we started trying for a baby, God quickly made me realize I was going to need to work on my patience. It took us 18 months to conceive and ended up having to have doctors help us to get pregnant with our little one. We will be welcoming our first in July. It was one of the most trying times of my life, but I can say, the Lord taught me patience and trust. I hope He does the same for you!

Kristen said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Katie, I love love love your honesty. I have so been stuck, many many times. Every single time though, when I beg the Lord day in and day out for a desire for Him and to get me out of my funk, He comes through for me. It takes persistence and discipline on my part, but He is always faithful! I've heard great things about Seven! Can't wait to hear more of what you think of it! :)

Angelica Nelson said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

The scripture you shared it one of my absolute favorites! I remember being told something similar in a joking way - to not pray for humility or patience - because you'll get it! But, if I want to become more like God, then those are qualities that I need to have fine tuned. In the end I'll be an even better if I learn how to be more humble and patient, more Christlike person.

Another really great book that sounds kind of along the same lines as Seven is The Happiness Project. It's fantastic. Totally changed my attitude toward how I looked at myself, my days and the good I want to do in the world.

Angela C. said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Oh girl, your prayer and mine. I am reading 7 too and it has also caused me to wonder how I can live life differently. Be sure to share what God continues to reveal to you!
Angela :)

Tiffany Ima said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

Oh yes, the age old prayer for patience..hoping that God will miraculously give you a supernatural ability to endure....Not so.

However, he will allow many tests of our patience! Then reveal His word in regards to patience.

Love this post!

Tiffany Ima
Style Honestly

The Lady Okie said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

The James verse reminds me of my memory verse for this week: John 15:7 "If he remains in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given to you."

Haili Hunter said... Best Blogger TipsBest Blogger Templates

What a beautiful post!