May 7, 2010

A Little Encouragement on this Friday

I loved Elisabeth Elliot's devotional for today, so I thought I would share it.
I read her devotionals daily here.

Elisabeth Elliot's Daily Devotional
As Soon As You Begin to Pray
Author: Elisabeth Elliot

Prayer sets spiritual forces in motion, although the effect is often invisible, perhaps for a long time.

In the first year of the reign of Darius, Daniel was reading and reflecting about the seventy years of Jerusalem's Iying in ruins. He turned to God in "earnest prayer and supplication with fasting and sackcloth and ashes," confessing Israel's sins and beseeching God for forgiveness and restoration. The angel Gabriel came close to him in the hour of evening sacrifice, "flying swiftly."

"As you were beginning your supplications a word went forth" (Dn 9:23 NEB), he said. The answer was already beginning to be processed when the prayer was offered. It took a very long time. Periods of weeks and years for the nation, and times of mourning, solitude, weakness, and fear on Daniel's part were required before the answer could come to pass.

We should take heart from Gabriel's message. Though our prayers seem feeble and sometimes appear to have gone unheard, a word has gone forth. Spiritual agents from the throne room of the King of kings are mobilized against spiritual forces from the headquarters of evil, and there will be ultimate victory.

"Tremendous power is made available through a good man's earnest prayer" (Jas 5:16 JBP).
Last week I was going on about the sweetness of life. So it had to happen. This week has been a long, difficult one full of frustration, exhaustion, and yours truly threw in a couple of emotional melt-downs for good measure.
Do you ever have times like that? Where you feel as if you are constantly on the edge of emotional extremes? As if something is off balance? I know that my fellow females can relate.
It makes a difficult week far more difficult when you don't feel emotionally equipped or capable of handling obstacles. Or mean people. My job, though fun at times, is a customer service-type position, and sometimes it feels like the mean customers call all at once. It is hard for me not to take it personally.
So, as you can imagine, I'm very much looking forward to the weekend. Daniel and I are going out for a quiet dinner with another couple this evening, and I am going to breathe in deeply my weekend enjoyment. I have no plans tomorrow except to sleep past dawn tomorrow (I wake every morning in the dark and leave the house just as the world is turning blue with morning light) and cuddle with my puppies and husband in bed. There's a little rain in the forecast and slightly cooler weather -- cooler than the 94 degrees it will be today -- but I don't mind. We are making a habit of trying local places around town and enjoying good food and drink. It's one of the fun things about living in Austin.
Perhaps we will find ourselves at Zocalo in Clarksville again, drinking frozen Sangrias.

Last weekend we visited the Blue Star Cafe, and it was fresh and tasty. I'll definitely be going back again.

Eggs Florentine Benedict - delish.

On Sunday we are taking Daniel's mother to Russell's Bistro for brunch. We love Russell's. Especially their mushroom risotto. That made my mouth water...

(picture from an evening at Russell's)
I hope you all have a nice weekend, whether it be relaxing at home or driving kids to soccer games or going out of town. I hope you find enjoyment in whatever you're doing. Let's do that together.
Happy Mother's Day to all the mommies! We love you and thank God for you!

Kingsley enjoying the sunshine on a warm afternoon - and my completely out-of-control backyard weeds grass.

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