Ever had one of those times when you hear a favorite song you haven't heard in years and you begin to remember all the things that made you love it? How about going someplace you haven't been to in a while and rediscovering why you liked to go there? Last night I had one of those experiences in a spiritual sense.
When I first gave my heart to Christ, I remember how on fire I was. I wanted everyone around me to know Him too. I couldn't get enough of the Word. There was even a point when it seemed that every time someone said the name "Jesus" I hit the floor. Perhaps the aspect that intrigued me the most though was prayer. God put such a heart of prayer in me that I was praying all the time for anyone and everyone. Maybe it was because I was so open then, but I remember waking up in the middle of the night from time to time and just praying - sometimes praying for people I knew, sometimes not. It was such a time of fellowship and partnership with God. I felt like I was "on call" and at any moment God could call on me to pray for a given situation.
I don't know exactly when things changed, but, just like the Bible says, the cares of life ended up choking that life out of me. Reality hit and before I knew it I was going through the motions with no real fruit to show for it and I was starting to be okay with that... Until a couple of posts ago where I blogged about giving my heart fully to God again. I knew things were going to change for me spiritually, but it's been better - actually it's been exceedingly, abundantly better than I expected. I'm returning to some things that I lost or let go of along the way; one of those things being intercessory prayer.
Last night I woke up suddenly at 1:40 a.m. One moment I was sound asleep and the next I was fully awake. It didn't dawn on me right away that it might be God because, as I said, it's been a while. I took the opportunity to visit the rest room and put my swim stuff in the dryer, but when I got back in bed sleep wouldn't come. That's when it hit me that something else was going on. "Okay, God," I thought/prayed, "what's going on." I started praying and then just listened for some direction. Literally 2 minutes later, I got a text from one of my girlfriends. (I don't normally sleep with my cell phone, but this time I did) She was just getting home from being at an aftercare facility. They found a mass in her chest and were scheduling a CT for her the next day! She was asking for prayers. I was shocked. "Okay God, what do I do now? Do I pray or should I call her?" He said to call her, so I did.
As I expected she was a wreck. I asked God what to say and He said not to say anything, just to listen. So I did. During the course of our conversation I could hear her go from panic to peace and by the time we were done I actually had her laughing, which, being the clown that I am, is always a plus for me!
It wasn't until after we hung up that I realized what had happened. It was that old familiar place that I hadn't been to in a while, that favorite song I hadn't heard in ages. Just like in the beginning, God called me into partnership with Him to intercede and minister peace to someone. I was speechless and it took me a while to wind down and get back to sleep.
The thing that humbles me and leaves me awestruck is the way the Father goes about restoring us to the places we've fallen from. Last night He put me right back on the "on call" list as though I'd never been off of it. That ministers His grace and forgiveness to me on so many levels... Woo!! I am so excited to see what will happen next. I'll keep you posted!
Happy Thursday all!