By Angeline M Duran Santiago
I started out this day excited about what God is doing and going to do in my life. I've made some pretty dumb and huge mistakes, so I'm not going to attempt to make you think I walk a perfect line, but I do believe that God not only sees where we fail, He knows when we are getting ready to have a moment of doubt or uncertainty, a moment of weakness, of anger, a moment of remembering we are human and not divine.
Yet, even when we get up in the morning to read that "Encouraging verse of Scripture" or take those few minutes to pray, we are still forgetting, (or at least it seems that I forget) we need God for every single minute and every single moment of the day. The Enemy is still on a war path against us when we have made peace in our hearts to do right, to love, to serve not only God, but everyone around us, and love all people, even those that get on our nerves. We go to work with a song and a dance, forgetting that the Enemy has not started his day declaring God's favor over his life, but our downfall. It comes in the situations that arise in our homes and in our jobs that bring us to a place of confrontation, where we are challenged to keep our peace and remember who we represent.
Lord, help me to remember once more that underneath these raggedy jeans, underneath my worn black T-shirt, and underneath the make up, I am truly dressed for battle. Oh, Lord, how I forget that you see my fatigues, my battle gear and not the next best shade of lipstick from Sephora. Help me Lord, to get it through this thick head that I depend completely on you and not on others. It's not their compliments, their false friendship or the acceptance of others that should matter to me, only that you oh, Lord are with me at all times.
God, I forget that my quick morning prayers are nothing but a sneeze, a trickle of water that springs up from the water fountain and falls onto the cement floor. Lord, help me to internalize that my quick devotion just to say I read your word is nothing more that the same effect when I go back to the coffee I left on the table, and now it's cold, tasting kind of bland, but I gulp it down because I don't have any more coffee, money or time to go back for a new cup of Joe.
I don't know if I am making sense to you, but what I am attempting to describe is the condition of our hearts as Children of God, how complacent we have become, how acceptable we have become with the junk taking place in so many churches, and how the so called Christian community has become more of a loud mouth to political bashing and hitting on one another. My heart, Lord, if only we could be like the Book of Acts. Give us ears to hear you say once more, "Wait for the promise of my Father." Give us the heart to find a place to wait for your power to fall upon us anew and fresh once more. Give us a hunger to wait upon you and see you, Holy Spirit. Give us a boldness to want to spread your gospel and not our own agendas.
I write and I write and I write but so many times my words are empty because they are not seasoned with your presence, Holy Spirit. I need your in my writing, in my daily words, in my walk, when I am listening to others, and when the Enemy attacks me and I rise up in anger instead of waiting on you. Keep my mouth shut tight so that I don't speak my mind in front of fools that will take my words and share them with others in a way I never spoke them. Keep my mind alert and my heart on You so that I am easily taken by surprise by the small storms that seem to continue around me each day.
It's getting late in my part of the world. The woman I see in the mirror is not the girl who once gave her life to you, Jesus. The goals and dreams I once had were part of my youth and now I need you to show me the road before me with your plan for me now, in my later years. Rise up within me and raise me up to be who you know I can be. Guide me to speak with authority and speak with love. Give me direction so that I can lead others to you. Shield me and cover me through the hard moments. Make me strong so that I can fight back in Your Name. Make my heart fearless and increase my faith and my passion for you and your kingdom. Help me to bring honor to your name, starting in my home, with my family, then at work, and from there, wherever you allow me to be present.
I need more and more of you, Lord. Amen.