Well, if you haven’t noticed the theme of my last few posts…..it’s PRAYER. God has done a powerful work in my walk through my prayer life recently. I feel led to blog about it to encourage those of you who feel stagnant in your prayer life and wanted to share some of the specific things He is teaching me. I have an awesome example of ladies at our church who have a fervent prayer life, & I have longed for that. It is awesome to witness & hear them teach about and share their passion for prayer. But to be completely honest, it’s been an area where I have struggled. I didn’t know HOW to get that kind of a prayer life. The Circle Maker kicked it off for me, but the answer is simple. Pray MORE. So just being real….I prayed out of habit more than out of desire. I prayed with words rather than my heart. I prayed empty prayers- to check it off my daily checklist rather than to seek a deep, intimate relationship with my Savior that he and I both desire. I talked and didn’t listen. I didn’t pray Scriptures. I would start praying and become distracted and never finish. I would pray at convenient times. I prayed more for a “need” than out of thanksgiving. I BELIEVE in prayer. I know it’s powerful. But it also takes effort on our part. Thankfully the Lord tells us if we draw near to Him, He will draw near to us. (James 4:8)
I have been praying more intensely for my walk, husband, children, family, friends (post to come), and ministry. One area God laid on my heart to pray more specifically is my home.
For those who weren’t reading this blog back in 2010 when we got married, you may not know this about our home. We prayed and prayed and prayed about finding a house. We actually started searching in 2008 (before we even got engaged) so we could capitalize on the tax credit. Jon was going to live there until we got married. But we never found anything.
Closer and closer to wedding time, we still had yet to find our home. We were doing our best to seek the Lord, but not gonna lie, it was tough. We both felt that He had the PERFECT house for us, but naturally we were discouraged we hadn’t found it yet. We ended up living with my parents for the first 8 months we were married, and we received some ridicule for that (people insisted that we should just rent something somewhere), but held fast to knowing it was what we were supposed to do. It worked out perfectly, and in February 2011, we finally found the house. We found out in April we got the house, and it far exceeded anything we could ask or imagine (Ephesians 3:20).
It’s changed a lot in the past three years, but here is our early home tour.
One of my favorite things about this house is that I know it is BLESSED. The lady who built it had friends write their favorite Scriptures throughout the house during the framing and they prayed over it. Here are a few examples we saw when our house flooded.
I have a whole list of the Scriptures and where they are located in the house. That is something we definitely plan to do if we ever build.
Before Jase was born, I prayed fervently over his nursery too. Funny, it is one of my favorite rooms in the house because of the PEACEFULNESS. It’s hard to describe, but others people have told me they sense it and feel it too, so I know I’m not making it up.
Since reading The Circle Maker (anyone sick of hearing about it yet? Sorry, I’m not sorry. It has been THAT impactful for me.), I have had an overwhelming sense to physically walk around the outside of our house and pray over it. Jase & I were eating lunch on the back deck the other afternoon & when we finished up, we began our prayer walk. We walked about 5 or 6 laps around the house, praying out loud. Thanking God for so many things, but also praying over it. Here are a few of the things we prayed (not everything, but just some ideas):
- protection within these walls -physical protection from floods, natural disasters, evil people, harmful animals/rodents/insects, gases, fire, etc. AND spiritual protection from Satan, attacks from the enemy, and his destruction.
- that we will use our home to bring God glory. that we will open it to others and be loving neighbors.
- that we will SEEK the Lord and make effort to spend time with him every day we are in this house.
- for the entryway- that everyone who walks through our doors will feel safe, welcome, uplifted, and an overwhelming sense of peace. that our love for Jesus will overflow and praise will always be on our lips in our home. it will be a safe haven from the outside world.
- for our dining room. that we will enjoy meals together. always give thanks to the Lord first. that our meals will nourish our bodies so we can honor God through our temple. that we will be safe from choking (sounds silly- but that’s scary). that we will have lots of laughs and make sweet memories around that table.
- that our future children will desire to spend time with us at home because we create a loving environment, and that their friends will want to come to our house as well. that we will love their friends and are a positive impact on them.
- for the kitchen. that I prepare meals with love and find joy in taking care of my family in this way. that I take time to plan meals, prepare healthy choices, and teach my children how to as well.
- for the bathrooms. that although we strive to take care of ourselves, we do not become vain.
- for the bedrooms. that we will rest well so we can be most effective.
- that God will help us remain focused, disciplined, and bless our efforts to pay off our house and be debt-free.
- that God will help us speak edifying, life-giving words that build each other up in this house. that praise music, laughter, Scriptures, and encouraging words fill our home.
- that we always remember how BLESSED we are and not take that for granted.
- that anyone who ever works on or in our home be protected and that we represent Christ to them.
- that we effectively teach our children responsibility as we all do our part to care for the home.
- that God will reveal to us if and when we should move.
"My people will abide in a peaceful habitation, in secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places."- Isaiah 32:18
“He blesses the dwelling of the righteous.“ -Proverbs 3:33
“By wisdom a house is built, And by understanding it is established; And by knowledge the rooms are filled With all precious and pleasant riches.” – Proverbs 24:3-4
“Now therefore may it please you to bless the house of your servant, so that it may continue forever before you. For you, O Lord God, have spoken, and with your blessing shall the house of your servant be blessed forever.” –2 Samuel 7:29