I knew it... well - I didn't KNOW it... but I knew...
It was in 2012 that I felt a call to come back to Blogging. To find some consistency and stick with it. The Lord led me to a few amazing online communities, (Wait - What? You mean other people blog, too?) and I stumbled upon the whole idea of the #31Days challenge. Because - well, because of how I am - and because I felt the Lord ask me to be more consistent, I decided that this would be the perfect way to jump right in and be consistent... on two blogs? Because I'm crazy like that!
So, last year I wrote on my (now ignored and neglected) Scrapbook/Photography blog a series entitled Captured & Counted, where I took a photo a day and wrote about how it was a gift or blessing! Easy peasy, right? It was fun! (The link above will take you to the home page of that series so you can click through at your leisure!)
Because that idea came first, and on the heels of reading "one thousand gifts" - I simply had to do it, but I knew my focus was to shift to this blog right here. So I prayed and soon picked an additional theme and wrote a series here called 31 Reasons to Fall for Autumn. (I know, right? Super
So this year, well - I wasn't going to do it! Life is busy, and I have become fairly consistent here, posting a few times per week and I just wasn't going to play along. After all the days (twice a day) of writing last year through the month of October, and after my Honey repetitively saying how much he missed me that month, I thought if I was going to do it - I would PRE do it and have it all written by August.
Right... so that didn't happen!
However, as October got closer and closer, I began to feel a stirring to participate. I actually argued with God a bit about it. Afterall - I have to honor my marriage and I can't be sitting here at this computer ALL DAY and I didn't write anything ahead of time and aren't I already pretty consistent here? All of those excuses melted away when He reassured me that He had something to say and He wanted me to partner with Him in saying it. What kind of excuse can stand up to that? None that I had.
With that decided, or at least acknowledged, I jumped right in and commited myself to this #31Days challenge. I made a button and linked up with 1000s of other writers over at The Nester's and only then did I do the math. I was out of town, traveling and attending conferences, for nearly half of October? Surely God knew this ahead of time, right? And still - He wanted me to write about Encountering God? Well now - I was going to NEED to encounter Him if we were going to stick this thing out!
I didn't want to just write ABOUT it... I wanted to DO it... and I prayed (and pray, still!) that you would encounter Him too!
The purpose in the writing was to share how we can make it so hard, but really - He is ever Present and always ready to encounter us! He is relational and He desires our hearts and our souls and our devotion and time... all of this is gloriously true. But in knowing this - we can make it seem like if we don't have an hour or two to spend in prayer or in the Word, then we just can't possibly encounter Him. It doesn't take TIME to woo him down here... He is 'down here' always... always at the ready when our attention turns toward Him! From serious Biblical proportioned Encounters, to rainbows and grocery stores... He is all around us and my heart was to share Encounters that I have had and ways that He grabs my attention in the every day, in hopes that you would begin to see Him in your own every day life too!
So... I sat down with Him during the first week of October, and we wrote... for days and days and my Honey and girlie were oh so patient, knowing it would be but for one week, rather than the entire month this time. I encountered Him in the writing and the editing and the posting and scheduling. I loved how I would read other things on the same day that one of my posts would go live and I would know that what I wrote was written weeks ahead of time (- this is new for me! I am not in the habit of pre-writing much!) yet released and published at His chosen time... it gave me hope and peace that what my readers were having was more than a coffee-break read, but an encounter with Him, which is what we had prayed for all along!
I pray that you found Him in ways that you hadn't before... that you read the words and the dreams and the visions and encounters that I have had - and you came to realize that He desires to encounter us all like that... consistently!
There is not a day that goes by that I am not in need of encountering God! I may forget it... or ignore it... but it does me well to remember and seek Him out on a consistent basis - drawing ever nearer.
If I am being honest - and I am, because - well, that's just how I'm wired... after #31Days was over - I was thrilled. Exhausted - and not in all the best ways, really. I had no words to say. Nothing really to pour out here. While I wanted to wrap this up real pretty - I knew I needed rest and time to process and mostly, even though I had encountered God each day while I was gone... I needed some one on one time with Him and I just wasn't exactly ready. There is grace for that too, ya'll. When the flesh seems stronger than the heart and spirit and when you know what you need is an Encounter but what you convince yourself that what you want is
But let's not make it harder than it is! He is right here, right now... closer than your breath. Breathe in slow... close your eyes... wait for it... wait for it... (wait for Him!)
He will come. He always comes!
If you missed reading my #31Days, or just missed a day or two - you can find each post linked in one spot HERE... and if this series blessed you, or gave you thoughts on a new (to you) way of encountering Him, I'd love to hear it! If one post stood out more than the others, I'd love to know that too! Most importantly, if you have encountered God - share that in the comments below. So often, one persons' experience is what leads others into an encounter of their own!
Linking up with Jennifer Dukes Lee today as well for #TellHisStory