i drove like a bat out of hell to the gym. i don't even have a reason for rushing - it's just my default mode i guess. today's running schedule called for a short 3 miles. thank goodness, because apparently i have loads to accomplish and anything longer than that would equate to more time wasted. plowing through 3 puny miles and dashing through the weight lifting, i could hardly wait to get to the coffee shop so i could begin my real work. lent was only 2 days away and i needed to pour over my teaching series. i have an agenda here people.
after what seemed like eternity, i finally arrived to my office. (better known as the local coffee house). i work much more efficiently from the small round tables here rather than my ridiculously cluttered desk at church. before i give myself a second to pause and take in a much needed deep breath, my phone was ringing off the hook and text messages were swarming in. what is this? i opened up the word document for my lenten teaching series and drowned myself in the 6 week outline.
but i couldn't concentrate. i was annoyed. i was impatient. i was distracted. i have been awake for a lousy 3 and a half hours and already my day was as dismayed as a jackson pollock painting. what was i to do?
i shut off my phone. i closed my word documents. and then i did what i should have done the moment i woke up. i stilled myself, took one very deep breath and whispered; "good morning my lord". immediately the bindings of my overwhelming schedule began to loosen their suffocating grip from me. opening his word i was drawn to the book of mark and i found my nourishment (and comical conviction) for the day.
"He replied, this kind can come out only by prayer." ~ mark 9:20
jesus was telling his confused disciples that they were unable to release the evil spirit that lived in a young boy because they ceased to recognize that it is only though christ in them that they have the power to cast out such spirits. i failed to humble myself and embrace the truth that my teachings can only be constructed through prayer. my mentality was this: "for the past month i have been drenching prayer over this lenten teaching series. that surly is enough." oh how ignorant and prideful i can be! i must come before the lord daily. the prayers i both offered to the lord and received from his spirit yesterday or last week, or last month were strictly for yesterday, or last week, or last month. but what is for today? how could i ever have thought that i have what it takes to formulate an ash wednesday service for my students without quieting my own heart and listening for the voice of god? give me this day my daily bread, o god.