How To Slow Down Time and How to Pray Prayers You Don’t Think You Can Pray

Hi, my friends.

Life is flying. And I don’t know why, but I get a little freaked out by that. I get a little panicked. Like, “Crapola! My kids are growing up too fast! And the grass is growing too quickly and I didn’t get to walk barefoot on it enough! And the creeks are flowing by and they’ll just keep flowing by, whether I wade in them or not! And the fireflies keep blinking and then I blink, and my baby is learning to crawl and my oldest is eight already which means I’ll blink again and all my summers with him will be gone.”

I know. I need to calm down.

So, I’m learning to do that. I’m learning to stop breathing like I’m constantly running a marathon and start breathing like I’m enjoying things. Deep, slow breaths. Taking it all in breaths.

The only way I know how to slow life down, is to pay attention to it. I think Ann Voskamp taught me that. So, yesterday morning, when I let the dog out back, I stepped out on the wet grass and just breathed in summer, all slow and restful like.

I looked up into the trees and admired the sunlight streaming through them. And I paid attention to the way the dew drenched grass felt on my toes. And I noticed the little spider webs between the blades of green. And the way the grapes were growing on the vines. I walked over to the wood pile and took note that Maple gets all shimmery grey when it’s been baked by the sun.

And today, as I gave Haven a bath, I just sat quietly on the cold tile floor next to the tub and enjoyed watching her discover bubbles. She’d dip her hands in, splash a bit and then look up at me. Rinse and repeat. There’s a lot of beauty in the mundane, if we pause enough to see.

One thing I’m doing lately that has tremendously helped my soul, is I’ve gotten back into a groove of journaling and reading the Scriptures again. Some of you are like, “What? You mean you haven’t been reading your Bible everyday? But, I thought you were a Christian?!” Ha. SO, yeah. Some where in the middle of birthing another human into the world, I got really tired there for a while.

But, I’m finding more energy here and there so in the morning, if I can get up before my rascally children, or in the afternoon, when the kids are watching a movie, I just sit down by the coffee table and read a few Scriptures. Then I write some thoughts or some prayers out to God. My goodness, my soul has been nourished. It’s pretty much the only thing that’s keeping me steady right now. That, and breathing. Deep slow breathing when I start to get that life is going too fast panicked feeling.

I did pray this one crazy prayer the other day. It’s the most radical “surrender” prayer I’ve ever prayed. And honestly, when I read it, I was like, “God. I’d like to pray this prayer to You but I don’t know that I can pray it honestly. I mean, I don’t even know how much I trust You. So, if it’s okay with You, I’m just gonna pray as much of it as I can and will You just give me grace for the rest?” Because I figure that God would rather have our honest selves than our best efforts to muster up some fake spirituality.

The prayer was written by Betty Scott Stam, who was a missionary in China. It goes like this:

Lord, I give up my own plans and purposes, all my own desires, hopes and ambitions, and I accept Thy will for my life. I give up myself, my life, my all, utterly to Thee, to be Thine forever….Fill me now and seal me with Thy Spirit. Work out Thy whole will in my life at any cost, for to me to live is Christ. Amen.

So, yeah. I prayed that prayer as best as I could and God has been working some neat miracles in my heart. I plan to come back here and tell you more about those later.

And I know this isn’t the most put-together post, but I’d like to write here more often. I’d love to have your input though. How often do you prefer to read a blog?

Once a week? Is twice a week too much? I write a lot on facebook. Should I just keep writing mostly there and keep writing here just once in a while? I’d benefit a lot from your thoughts, if you don’t mind to stick them in the comments or you can email me here: surprisedbyhope@yahoo.com

Grace and peace to each of you, friends. And moments of just enjoying the summer sun.

Love,

Maggie

2 Comments

  1. by Lila on July 17, 2017  8:38 am Reply

    as often as possible....love readings from you

    • by Maggie on July 19, 2017  1:55 pm Reply

      Thank you so much, Lila!

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