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“There’s a peace I’ve come to know
Though my heart and flesh may fail. 
There’s an anchor for my soul. 
I can say ‘It is well.'”

Upheaval seems to be one of the themes of 2013 so far. In December, as I was pondering my 2013 goals, I distinctly had the impression that the Holy Spirit was preparing me for unexpected changes. If you know me at all, then you probably know that I did NOT appreciate that impression. Still, the feeling lingered…

Now, as I sit at my mom’s kitchen table in the quiet of pre-alarm clock moments, I can’t sidestep the notion that the unexpected changes have just begun. For starters, my grandfather received a surprising diagnosis in January and is now living…and dying…with a far more aggressive cancer than anyone had previously imagined. His hearty laugh remains unchanged, but his body begins to weaken. It may still be months or years, but unless God does a miracle…

“Jesus has overcome, 
And the grave is overwhelmed. 
The victory is won. 
He is risen from the dead.”

Yesterday, David’s meeting with a Mines University admissions adviser confirmed our suspicions…despite what we were lead to believe, it will take David THREE more years to graduate with his next degree thanks to the limited class offerings at the university. How we will make ends meet for the next three years is currently beyond my knowledge, but I’m sure God will provide. However, my “planning” nature still holds this portion of our “schedule” in disdain.

“And, I will rise when He calls my name –  
No more sorrow, no more pain. 
I will rise on eagles’ wings
Before my God fall on my knees
And rise. 
I will rise.”

This morning, despite unexpected changes, I find the lyrics to the Chris Tomlin song anchoring my soul. There is truly a peace I’ve come to know…in worship and surrender…asking for His grace, for His presence. Listen to these words from Luke 11: 10-13 (MSG):

Don’t bargain with God. Be direct. Ask for what you need. This is not a cat-and-mouse, hide-and-seek game we’re in. If your little boy asks for a serving of fish, do you scare him with a live snake on his plate? If your little girl asks for an egg, do you trick her with a spider? As bad as you are, you wouldn’t think of such a thing—you’re at least decent to your own children. And don’t you think the Father who conceived you in love will give the Holy Spirit when you ask him?” IMG_0420

Butterflies have always represented the presence of the Holy Spirit to me. When my mom was pregnant with me and not yet a Christian, she was constantly (strangely) surrounded by butterflies. Since then, they have always been a reminder to me of God’s constant peace and presence. Tuesday, as my heart struggled to grasp calm, I asked the Lord to let me feel His presence. Later, as I slowly jogged through my childhood neighborhood, the shadow of a butterfly kept pace with me.

I never saw the butterfly. Just its shadow. And, I was calm. At peace.

Today, I hope.

Today, I’m just asking for what I need. Today, I’m reminded that we were “conceived in love.” We are treasured.

Today, what do you need? Claim His promises and cling to His Word. Let the peace that passes all understanding guard your heart and mind.

Stand in hope. IMG_0408IMG_0423IMG_0421IMG_0422

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