Friday, September 7, 2012

Preparing A Place - RJD


THE RANDOM JOURNAL DAY link-up is only happening once a month now on the first Friday of each month. 

For more details, schedule and rules about this fun Blog Hop go HERE.
To Link up to the September list go HERE.
See you there!

My Random Journal Day post:

I opened a light blue spiral ringed journal today and the words immediately gave me a picture of my normal mornings back in April 2003. One of the best secrets about journaling and about words recorded on paper is that you can be transported instantly to another time and place with all the moods, sounds and feelings of the day you put those words down.

My mornings in 2003 were all about setting an atmosphere. I would arrive at the large church complex every Tuesday through Friday early in the morning, usually second only to the janitor. I would turn on office lights as I moved from the main office and up the stairs to the classroom where Hubs and I taught our small ministry school. 

The entire goal in that early morning quiet moment was to prepare a place. Hubs and I would walk slowly around the room, opening windows, straightening chairs and praying softly. I remember standing at one of the big windows overlooking a creek and asking God to come and meet us there that morning as He had so many times before. But each new day was just that, a brand new day. And you never knew what was ahead of us in the next hours as hungry students slowly arrived and joined our song.

We were preparing a place for God and preparing a place for the people who had set aside their jobs, homes and careers to spend 9 months seeking Him and learning to know Him at a whole new level. God wanted to be there and the students wanted to be there, all we had to do was prepare the place; to facilitate this beautiful meeting!

Part of my job description at the ministry school included administration duties, so on these mornings of preparing the place, I battled with setting aside the nagging and never-ending little tasks involved in running a school like this. I had to "turn off" the concerns about enrollment, unpaid tuitions and problems with student housing. 

So I was also "preparing my place" wasn't I? I knew that each student who walked through the door was also carrying worries, concerns and fears. I needed to put my stuff aside so that they would be able to walk into a place that allowed them to let their stuff fall from their shoulders easily and swiftly. 

One of my favorite delights was watching the sweet transformation happen before my eyes again and again. In they would trudge, some with bed-head, others with worry filling their eyes. Within that first hour of simple worship and adoration of Father God, we would see the change in their demeanor and countenance. 

The place had been prepared. God met students and students met God. So simple and uncomplicated. 

Now, today as I tap these words while savoring the sweet memory of those mornings, I wonder....I wonder if I have forgotten how to "prepare a place". Could this house, this family room be just as rich in His presence each day if I began the way I so diligently began those school mornings? So simple and yet so hard. 


I hear you Father.
Thank you for the reminder.
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13 comments:

  1. Beautiful. Pondering your preparing a place for God and Jesus preparing a place for us. So sweet...thanks Susie. You bring the stillness of His presence right into this post.

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    1. Thank you Dawn. I felt that also.....but I wasn't feeling it when I began the post. I love how God does that when we write.

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  2. So nice that you could get so much out of an old journal entry. It's funny how it can be so easy to do certain things "at work" but at home, we don't think to or it's so much more difficult.

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    1. Very true. I suppose the idea of Preparing a place for others feels more worthwhile than just for ourselves. But I have sneaky feeling that God would disagree with that. :)

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  3. I feel this deeply within me. You lived out one of our "dreams". Now that we have this home in the forest, with lots more space than ever before, we dare to "dream" again....a similar dream as yours. Just maybe God is stirring something within for a reason? For you and hubs...and for me and my hubby. Opposite sides of the country...same kind of dream. Perhaps it's not so unusual afterall. Praying for you, sweet friend.

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    1. Thanks Pam, God's viewpoint can be so diff from ours. Just want to get aligned, you know?

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    2. I DO know. Yes, I definitely understand. So often when we think we have it all figured out, He surprises us with something totally different...and better. Let's pray that way!!!

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  4. Preparing a space... that will be my mantra when I return to school on Monday!

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    1. Yah Marcia, there are many ways to use this aren't there? All teachers (leaders) can do more to set the atmosphere of a physical place than we realize. Happy Monday to you!

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  5. Ah, the work of hospitality: that's really what you're talking about here, isn't it? I forget that it's a blessing and gift and see it as a chore. Always a chore. My husband is so gifted at it, loves the preparation of place to receive people, to prepare them for community (church, fellowship, in our home, etc)--for meeting God, as you say. Good reminder.

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    1. I wasn't thinking of hospitality in the normal sense, no, but it really is the same thing. We clean and order our home for company, just as important to prepare our home for God. And our hearts for Him.

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  6. Its so neat to look back on journals like that and see how God has worked in your life. I have realized that thru reading my own diary entries. I've read some where I was so worried about what would happen, only to find out that years later God had this plan all along and all I needed to do was trust in that plan. I think when we journal our thoughts and fears and then go back and look, we can see just how God worked. Almost like the foot prints in the sand. I'm sure if you look back you can see just how your preparation of the place you made for worship for those students meant so much. You definitely were doing God's work. Great post. :)

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All comments are good comments!

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