I have been reading the book Practicing His Presence. First of all, it is quickly becoming my favorite Christian book ever. Mainly because instead of being a how to/ 5 step program, it is the documented experience of two men, as they sought to be constantly in aware and in tune with the presence of the Lord. This is encouraging and challenging me deeply. So yesterday was my first day of really intentionally trying to constantly seek His presence. I'm thinking and hoping that this discipline will get easier with practice. Here is a summary of how yesterday went...
6-7 am: most of this hour was spend in the presence of the Lord, worship, journaling, basking
7-8: maybe a few seconds of this hour was I aware of Him
8-9: again, maybe a few seconds of this hour was I aware of Him
9-10: trying to learn how to be present and listen to God amidst the chaos of having multiple kiddos here. retreating to the couch with my journal. resolving that the most important priority today is resting in the presence of the Lord, not my to do list. resolving that my day will still be... no, will be more victorious even if I don't accomplish the things I'd like to do. pondering the balance between responsibilities and rest. of how to be present with God while doing. but not doing out of duty or obligation, but all as an act of worship, and out of love.
10-11: had some great worship time as I cleaned the house. then had a neighbor, and a friend (with more kiddos) over. had a hard time staying present with the Lord amidst conversations and kiddos running around.
11-12: a few moments aware of His presence, a lot of doing.
12-1 pm: busy and distracted with housework and caring for kiddos. need to work on being present with Him and others simultaneously.
1-2: prayed for friends and sent encouraging text messages. more aware of Him during this, but still need to practice listening to Him amidst doing.
2-3: reflected. journaled. praised. thanked. then not. still compartmentalizing my time with Jesus, and my time for tasks. encouraged though. because this documentation and intention is allowing me to experience much more of Him than normal in a day.
3-4: realizing that in my efforts to constantly be aware of the Lord, that I have neglected to bring the kids into that with me. taking a few moments with them to seek Him. worshipping. sitting. resting. even a few minutes are so refreshing.
4-5: busy & preoccupied. listened to a sermon... find it funny how things like that, that are supposed to encourage me in Him can actually distract me from His presence and peace.
5-6: busy & preoccupied mostly, with a few moments of awareness
6-7: time with a friend. hard to be fully present with the Lord while relating with her.
7-8: more of the same. but spent some time in prayer with a couple and had a great time seeking Him. still struggling to rest and listen to Him while praying with others.
8-9: moments of awareness
9-10: pretty much tuned Him out completely.
10-11: trying to bask in Him while falling asleep. worshipped. prayed. funny how prone I am to "doing" rather than just being and resting. had a few moments of awareness with Him and then my mind would drift off to details. then after a few minutes come back to Him, and so it continued on and on.
2-3 am: (Noah woke up and then I couldn't fall back asleep). some rich time with Him, while the house and outside world are quiet. finally listening well as He unpacked some truth in recent words for me from friends... allowing that truth to soak in and speak to my heart.
what a great day! the most part of each hour was not spent in His presence, but constantly realizing that, and getting back in tune with Him is so refreshing. prior to this exercise I'm sure that often hours at a time would go by before my heart turned towards Him. what a glorious and victorious day. and this is just the beginning.