It was a long day. Between my two jobs, I typically work 40 hours Mon-Thur, and often add “extra-curricular” things like Bible study in the evenings on top of that. Plus I’m commuting around 1 1/2 hours a day. So by the time I get to Thur. evening, I’m pretty well spent.
This is why my weekends get saved for margin, which includes time with God, time with family, time with friends, time outside, hospitality, events, cooking, and of course church.
Sometimes, however, life does not allow for a leisurely margin to reset and refresh. I came home this Thursday to a list of to-do’s, and I knew my heart wasn’t ready.
It’s the little things, after all. Could I keep my voice sweet when I answered the 5th person who walked through the kitchen and asked what I was making? Could I stop and actually listen to the 8 year old prattle about her day? Could I make myself care about the seemingly insignificant things my mom wanted to talk to me about?
When my mind is full, it’s hard to be mindful of others.
And on my own, I couldn’t make myself change. I breathed a prayer and asked God to give me a smile and patience (I’d really like to know why God’s definition of love starts with patience . . . it’s so very hard). But the underlying tension in my heart was still there. Conversations from the day lingered, and God was challenging me to consider something that I really didn’t want to, so I was mentally still kinda arguing with Him, and big unknowns in my life seemed to loom a bit too close.
To borrow from the old hymn, I’m prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, prone to leave the God I love.
Thankfully, I know the answer. I need Him to tune my heart. And the fastest way to do that is worship. Remind myself of who He is. Look to Him, and ask Him to tune my heart to sing about His grace and His mercy. Yes, I have learned to ask Him for a song.
So I found a break in my pie-making, and I took 15 minutes at the piano. To sing and play and recite truth and worship Him.
Adoration resets my heart like nothing else.
It’s how He binds my wandering heart back to Himself. By His grace alone, and yet my response of adoration matters too.
I came back up the stairs and finished my pies. I cleaned the mess, washed the dishes, wiped the counters. And sang as I worked. Reminded myself that He will hold me fast, and praised Him for it. Remembered the power of the cross, and worshipped. Told my heart to long for Him as the deer pants for the water, and adored Him as the One who fulfills my longings.
It is preaching the Gospel to myself. And it is adoring my Savior.
And somehow, it changes everything. There’s a spring in my step and I twirl a bit as I turn from one thing to the other. A smile is ready on my lips for the next child who needs something. I pause to chat with my sister and conversation flows freely.
Soon enough, the children went to bed and the house got quiet. I wrote as my pies baked, paused to pull them out of the oven, golden crust and bubbly berry filling making for pie-perfection.
Yes, it’s the little things, after all. He is faithful, even here, to constrain me to His grace and give me all that I need. Simple words, simple truths, a Gospel that even a child can understand – but it is all about a God who sought me, a wandering lamb, and made me His own, a God who is merciful and sovereign and good.
The tension in my heart fades away, and the arguing with God calms to a quiet “yes, Lord, I’m willing to pray about it and obey what You reveal to me”, and the big unknowns lose their power.
He takes my heart and seals it. Seals it for His courts above. I am His and He is mine. I am fully known and fully loved. He’s promised me forever, a future far more amazing than anything I can imagine. I will see Him whom my soul loves, face to face, coming before Him as His bride, clothed in the blood-washed linen, I who was a stranger and ill-deserving of it all. How I’ll sing His wondrous grace then, too.
I was made for that. And so were you. But we don’t have to wait till we get there to start worshipping Him.
O, come, let us adore Him, Christ the Lord.