Note from Kat: Today’s post is from my friend Christie Elkins.
One of the things that the Lord has been impressing upon me lately is His omnipresence. Summer months can derail a morning routine quicker than you can say “sweet tea” due to the changing schedules of children and spouses in your household. I have found this particularly to be true over the past week or so, when my boys have shared this bizarre virus that is floating around (Seriously, who gets this stuff mid-June?) and has left their mama depleted and in much needed time with God. Yet, there are three places I can count on when I really need to hear His voice. When I feel like I am hitting a brick wall in my quiet time, I can do a simple retreat to clear my mind and hear His voice with increased clarity:
1.) In nature.
I am not, by nature, an outdoorsy gal (no pun intended) but since we have moved to a farm and tried our hand at gardening for the first time this year, I have found that skipping outside to pull weeds and just dig in the dirt a little clears my head and gives me time to commune with God. No iPhones or radios allowed, just fair weather and a sweet breeze will do. If gardening isn’t your jam, try a simple walk or run in your neighborhood, a moment or two by the lake, enjoying a good book under a shade tree at the park, or swinging side by side with your children. (Note: if those park swings start to bow, jump off. Not that I can add this to a list of recent life experiences or anything. Ahem…)
2.) In the car.
One of the things I used to do a few summers ago when the children were smaller was load them up on a particularly stressful day and just drive. More often than not, at least two out of three would take a nap, and it would give me a few moments of peace and renewed thinking. When I felt the Lord pull at my heart seven years ago to resign from my job and become a stay at home mom, I pulled over to the side of the road and began writing everything He was saying to me. I never expected His presence to be so strong on the four lane, but it was and now I take full advantage of “car time” to pray and journal. Just put the car in park first…
3.) In public.
I have had the same experience two times over the past few months, where I have been in a restaurant or in the grocery store with my youngest, and a wife or grandmother have approached me in tears, telling me to hold tight to my little ones, how they are a blessing, and how they have lost precious children and would give anything for one more day. Those ladies blessed and humbled me greatly, as God used that moment to remind me how children are a blessing and a gift from Him, and how I needed that perspective change after long days of training and retraining little hearts. He used them to speak to me, and me to them. He is so good.
So, as we plan our days, keep in mind that the Lord is everywhere, keeping watch over the wicked and the good (Proverbs 15:3) He will show His love and grace when we least expect it, and when we seek Him we will find him. Even if we are knee deep in tomato plants.
Christie is a mother of 3, cop’s wife, and Junior Mint lover. She blogs at Letters From the Nest and is a columnist for her hometown newspaper, The LaFollette Press. Christie and her family reside in the Appalachian mountains of East Tennessee, where sweet tea is served at every meal and hospitality is second nature.Leave a Comment