This is much awaited, I am sure. Amidst being situated in a house with 11 other girls, going to lectures, fulfilling work duties, and seeking the Lord in an environment I am most foreign to…some of my good intentions fall to the wayside. This blog being such an intention that I would like to see realized.

I find myself often wondering if I could truly abandon myself to such a lifestyle. The past two weeks we were involved in a prayer seminar. Anxiously I have anticipated these two weeks unaware of the cost. I have never been so tired, so emotionally spent, so soaked in prayer, worship, and praise. Every morning, afternoon, and evening we were being taught and exhorted in the area of prayer and worship. When I wanted to pray, I was asked to pray. When it was too early to pray, I was asked to pray; when my body wanted to lay down and “check-out” I was asked to pray. When I thought I was done praying I was challenged to pray more. When I wanted to eat I was urged to pray. Is this what Paul said when he exclaimed, “Pray without ceasing!” and “Pray for ALL men.” I prayed when my prayer was, “Lord I cannot pray anymore.” And even this, this was not even the beginning of the challenge. This section of the blog is dedicated to praising the Lord. Holy, Holy, Holy is He…and thus began the battle…

Waking up every morning at 5:30 so as to be able to take a shower before 11 other girls filter into the bathroom is a challenge. Waking up early to have time with the Lord, also a challenge (in the back of my mind always lurks many excuses as to why I do not need to have a quiet time in the morning seeing as every activity throughout the day will be directly linked to the Lord, but my heart knows better). With more impatience than an alarm clock, my heart beckons me out of bed. Praying when I am tired is one thing because I can pray, “Lord, I am tired.” Now praising, praising the Lord is a completely separate ordeal. It is the great separation of self and Spirit. Praising is so other than my being, so other than everything my flesh binds me to. During these days, these hours, I sought Psalm after Psalm for guidance. I diligently read them and prayed the words that were fearfully composed onto paper, “Praise the Lord, my heart praises the Lord”, “Sing praises to the Lord”, “The Lord is good, my soul will Praise Him”. During worship when I wanted to mentally retreat into daydreams and thoughts about the future, even lunch, I was exhorted, “Thank the Lord for His character” and after what seemed many long mornings spent speaking out His character our evenings were laced with the same exhortation, “Thank the Lord for His character. Speak out who He is.” And when I thought, surely I have spoken all that I can, all that I know about His character we were called back at night to gather and thank the Lord again, praise His name, for He is Holy. If I can praise the Lord when I am tired I truly believe it will prepare for the time when I will have to praise the Lord in the midst of such remarkable heart ache and loss.
Wednesday… this is the love of the Lord. After dinner as we are entering into another time of teaching and praising some music played in the background and a few girls and I started to dance. Worship became a huge dance party with everyone smiling and throwing a most wonderful dance party for the Lord. He is so much fun and He gives rest to the weary, even in the form of a dance party!

After two weeks, Friday night arrives with much anticipation. I remember kneeling in a most reverent position softly asking the Lord for relief and He, who is most gentle, encouraged me that this is not a 2 week seminar but this is now my life. Everything in me agreed with His words – this tiredness was most rewarding and I want to always be praying like this, always be praising. So on Saturday morning when I woke up at noon, which I NEVER do, looking forward to embracing the weekend with idleness… I braced my mind and chose to continue pray and praise in a manner worthy of the Lord.

So it is. With words that do my experience little justice I send this to you all hoping it is an encouragement. And for those of you who want to take a nap after reading this may it be so because I want to sleep after recalling the experience!

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