This morning I woke up with a deep sense that my heart needed to do some surrendering. I couldn't sleep. My mind was busy processing my day, my week, my month, my new season of life. Things to think about. Decisions to make. Changes to process.
As much as I wanted to rest, I needed to run. As much as I wanted to run away, I needed to run into my sanctuary. A place of bittersweet surrender - a room without walls. A floor of hot pavement that winds through neighboring streets. Running is my physical response to my spiritual need, where I release my thoughts and plans; my concerns and commitments; my questions and answers to Jesus through the ache of my legs and the groans of my prayers.
Surrender~ when I empty my hands and my heart of all that I am carrying, all I want and need.Why is surrender so hard? Is it because we're afraid to let go? Yet, why do we wrestle to hold onto, and fight for, what we cannot change or control?
Today, I had to let go. My prayer of surrender sounded something like this..."God, I can't do this thing you call my life. Why are you allowing so many things to happen all at once? I want to know when we are going to Ethiopia. Have you seen my schedule this fall Lord? Uh. Yes, I remember. I prayed about it and You arranged it this way. But a baby? A new school? A book? Speaking in far, far away places. Late night flights home. Trying to decide whether to take Aster.
It's too much for me to figure out. I need you to give me peace. I need your wisdom and direction. Some supernatural time management would be good. Getting all the things I want to get done so I have a jump start and will be ready when Aster gets home. I need you to show me what to do first and then next.
I know God. I need to surrender. So I'm gonna stop asking You for what I need and start remembering that "You" are already all that I am asking for. You are peace. You are wisdom and direction. You are time - my Alpha and Omega-the beginning and the end. You are the orderer of my day. You are my God. You are life. You are wise. You are completely in control.
And I trust You. I surrender all of me for all of You. Please make room in my day for all that You have planned."
Soon after, I noticed my heart felt free. By relinquishing my rights to manage my burdens and blessings, a load had been lifted. My hands had been raised. Palms open. Heart willing. Desperately needing to let go of what I cannot hold or handle on my own.
An hour after I got home, the phone rang. God answering my prayers, but not the way I hoped. I was so very glad I had spent the morning in surrender, because it prepared my heart for the way He was about to rearrange my thoughts, my emotions, my day and my perspective.
It was Linda, Kim's mom, calling. Some of you have prayed for Kim
, leaving notes and promises after I posted about her battle with breast cancer this May. It's been two years since she was diagnosed with stage four. Kim, an adoring mom of 3, has been fighting and praying hard to win the battle.
In just a few hours I would be sitting beside my sweet friend Kim
in the hospital looking into her beautiful blue eyes and wondering what she's thinking behind that tired smile.
The doctors told them this morning that they are out of options. High levels of ammonia in Kim's blood indicate her liver cannot function. Her spleen is inflamed and hoarding platelets, leaving her with a count of 4 as of this morning. She's been in the hospital since Friday. Hospice was called today. They are doing their best to grant Kim's wishes to be home by Wednesday.
After a meeting with JJ at our boys' new school, I headed to the hospital for the day. Things change so quickly in times like these. Suddenly I didn't care what I needed to do. As I drove to see my friend, my heart was overwhelmed with a whole new set of questions, burdens and needs.
Why God? School starts tomorrow. Her kids need her!! Why now? Michael's so scared. He needs her. Her mom is going through so much. They all need time to plan and think this through. It's not fair. Why are you allowing this? What do you want me to do?
Pour it all out again. Making room for what God has for me and for Kim right now. Remembering Who He is. Remembering the great I Am. The Alpha and Omega, Kim's beginning and end. Surrender.
And so here I am again. With a heavy heart. Carrying a load I cannot handle or hold. Trying to let go. Trying to remember. Trying to surrender.
If you'd like to know more about Kim, see photos of her family or leave a note for her, her husband Michael, and their kids Jessica(12), Grace (7) and Matthew(4), please visit her Caring Bridge site at http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/kimwhisenant
Please also pray for her mom and the rest of the family.
Also, I've asked Leah to choose a winner for my "Beyond the Shadow of Doubt" message on DVD,
drawing and we'll be annoucing that on Wednesday.