For all the tension, stress, sadness, and angst in life, I have found without fail that taking time to pray removes all those feelings. On occasion, in the midst of it all, I find myself so wrapped in feelings that I forget to pray. Thankful, something reminds me to pray and once again, I find the relief from my fears I am seeking.
In the roughest spot in my adult life (divorce, custody battle, and redefining my self), prayer is where I found peace.
I was raised by a catholic father who took me to church every Wednesday and Sunday because his parents did and their parents did. It was what we did. At some point, my dad decided that it was not what we were doing anymore.
I was allowed to explore my religion and my beliefs on my own.
I joined a neighborhood Methodist church where I found friendship and guidance – not judgment.
As an adult, I began reading the Bible and visiting different churches hoping to find my home. What I discovered was I agree with the principals of the Bible – the right and wrong, living a good faithful life, but not how they are taught in the Bible.
I learned that I love spending time in a church in prayer, but not every Sunday in my finest clothes listening to a pastor instead of talking to God myself.
I learned God wanted a more personal relationship with me like I was seeking with him.
Through my challenges, I felt hopeless, lost, confused, and directionless. Many nights, in the beginning, I sat in my bed crying full of fear. Crying, not know how or what I was going to do as a single mom, working 3 jobs to keep my son fed and in our home.
Fear kept me from eating, and when I did, it didn’t agree with me. I lost weight. I lost hope. Although I think lost hope is what brought me to where I was.
I have always been one for quiet prayer. I like to talk to God and my Angels. Sadly I admit I forget to talk to them. I forget to ask for their help and guidance.
I am not sure at what point in the midst of my challenge, my crying stopped being crying and became a cry out for God. It took a little brain programming, but eventually every desire to cry became a prayer instead of a cry out.
It was amazing to see how quickly peace filled my soul.
I was still the same tired single mom working multiple jobs to make ends meet. I was still fighting for custody, but there was peace in my actions.
In time with prayer and by prayer, I didn’t ask God for money or for things to work out in my favor.
No, I asked God for peace.
I asked him to show me that he had this- whatever this was supposed to be, but let me know he was leading me to where he wanted me to be.
In time I learned to give up control. I learned he had plans for me.
The longer I tried to control where I was going, the longer I struggled. The sooner I gave into following his lead, I would be where I was supposed to be.
I have been given many amazing gifts in my life.
My life is the truest and amazing gift all and in itself.
Even my challenges as deep and painful as they were, they too were a gift from God.
The greatest gift I have learned through my struggle was Faith.
I learned how to put all my fears in my hands and offer them to God for his direction. I learned that we have angels and guides all around us that want to help. When we ask them for guidance, they are delighted to help us. They can’t do it for us, but they can see more than we can and want to help us.
6 years later, I have put myself through school, found a fantastic job (I only work one now). I have full custody of an amazing boy who is becoming an interesting person. I am married to a man who adores me the way I should be.
I am happy. Not to say I don’t still have fear, but it doesn’t encompass and cripple me like it use to. All because I have learned the true meaning of faith.
At least my true understanding of the meaning.
While God is answering prayer, move your feet.
I always enjoy visiting old churches while traveling. I love stepping into a church and feeling the prayers that remain.
I recall from a book I read that Angels are numerous in cemeteries and churches. That is where people come and cry for help, where they come when they feel helpless and don’t know where else to go.
It’s almost like unemployed angels just wait around for someone to come by and hire them.
I am not sure if the love I feel when I walk into churches is the love angels pour out for those in need, the prayers left from previous visitors, or the sense of peace that the angels grant those that come to pray.
Whatever the feeling is, I love feeling it wrap around me when I walk in.
Lately, I have had a few fears that have been creeping in.
I’ve been trying to ignore the fears for some time. I thought if I ignore them, they can’t grow, I won’t give them credit to grow if I don’t acknowledge them, yet I knew they were there.
The fears were not huge, but they were there.
I had not given them any energy and they had not grown. I hadn’t given them to God. By not giving them to God, they had remained just beneath waiting for the chance to take over.
While on our first large vacation, just Matthew and I, I was able to visit Domkyrkan. An 800-year-old Lutheran church in Lund, Sweden, where I use to live.
Domkyrkan was a favorite place for me to visit when I was 16. I had not searched for my faith at that time. I’d never even given it thought that one day I would be searching for my faith.
I recall at 16 I found peace at Domkyrkan.
I loved to lay on my back on a sunny day in the thick green grass outside Domkyrkan looking at the sky. I would try my best to count the blocks that made up the building. Except Domkykan was so enormous, it appeared to reach high into the heavens. No matter how many times I tried, I was never able to count higher than 1/3 of the way up the church’s side.
I have returned to Lund a few times over the last 3 years. I always make it a point to stop and pray in Domkyrkan. This prayer visit was a little more powerful than others in the past. Maybe it was because my recent prayer visits were to give thanks, to just say hello.
This visit, I brought something to God.
I brought him my fear I was carrying around in my soul. Not only did I bring him this fear, I asked him for healing that surrounded the past that was creating this fear.
I saw myself as I have in the past using Reiki to scoop the fear out of my soul. I scooped it into a pile, much like a child does when playing in the sand in their sandbox. When I’d scooped it all out of me, I looked at the pile of fear now in my hand.
While I didn’t physically make any movements, I was able to see my soul kneel, holding the pile up to God. I asked him and the angels to please take this fear from me, for it is of no use.
I felt the peace of my angels surround me. I thanked them for being with me. I appreciated knowing they were directing the next step and that I was not alone. I was grateful to know I could not fail because they were leading me to where I was meant to be.
I asked for healing.
As I reflect on my prayer at Domkyrkan and my tears to Matthew I am again reminded of faith. The angels could not heal me until I released my pain. By releasing tears and speaking with Matthew, I was able to heal myself by showing my vulnerability.
The angels were there. They guided me to speak and comforted me when I cried.
God hears your prayers. He never leaves you. He gives you the opportunity to fell the peace and strength within if you seek it.