I am *tired* and the Sabbath (Exodus 20:8-11, Luke 6:5) can't come soon enough this evening but before I sign off for the day, I *just had* to share something that the Spirit (John 4:24) shared with me today as he and I were discussing you all:
"Shellie, far too many of my daughters are *praying to get married* rather than *praying for their future husbands*. Tell them to put more focus on the latter than the former and then watch what happens."
OK, when he said "watch what happens", that doesn't mean that God is some genie in a bottle that you can rub and instantly get what you want. What he meant was when you pray for/about things that are according to his will (I John 5:14-15), because he cannot lie (Titus 1:2), this is what happens as a direct result:
"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus."---Philippians 4:6(NKJV)
Sometimes I discern (Proverbs 2) that we miss this "prayer formula". The formula being that when we pray---and again especially when it's according to his will---there should be an inexplicable peace that comes over us. Why? Because of this:
"As for God, His way is perfect; The word of the Lord is proven; He is a shield to all who trust in Him."---2 Samuel 22:31(NKJV)
"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning."---James 1:17(NKJV)
"He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end. I know that nothing is better for them than to rejoice, and to do good in their lives, and also that every man should eat and drink and enjoy the good of all his labor—it is the gift of God. I know that whatever God does, it shall be forever. Nothing can be added to it, and nothing taken from it. God does it, that men should fear before Him."---Ecclesiastes 3:11-14(NKJV)
So, as I was "downloading" what he was saying to me, I got excited when I was led (Luke 12:12) to this:
"And He went up on the hillside and called to Him [for Himself] those whom He wanted and chose, and they came to Him."---Mark 3:13(AMP)
That verse references what Christ did *before* he chose his 12 disciples. It makes me smile because 1) it reminds me of the special connection/revelation/confirmation that comes directly through prayer and 2) it reveals that Christ got what/who he wanted *because he and God were in agreement (Amos 3:3) about who his disciples should be*.
Then I grinned all the more when I was led to this commentary about that very prayer:
12 And it came to pass in these days, that he went out into the mountain
13 And he goeth up into the mountain, to pray; and he continued all night in prayer to God. [It was a momentous occasion. He was about to choose those to whom he was to entrust the planting, organizing, and training of that church which was to be the purchase of his own blood. Jesus used such important crises, not as occasions for anxiety and worry, but as fitting times to seek and obtain the Father's grace and blessing.]
I dig it. A lot! When it came to the individuals who would assist (ASSIST) Christ in fulfilling (FULFILLING) his purpose (PURPOSE-Proverbs 20:4), he prayed about who he wanted and allowed God to decide if they should come to him.
Christ used that important decision-making time, not to be anxious or worried (Matthew 6:25-33), but to seek and obtain the Father's grace (favor) and blessing.
You know, Paul made it clear that once we are married, our husband's needs are going to consume a lot of the time that we have (if we take our marriages seriously, that is); that it's during our season of singleness when we can cultivate a true intimacy with the Father (I Corinthians 7:34)---that one of the great and best things about this season is we can learn to really and truly trust God to bring us to (Genesis 2:22) who he deems is best for us. Through prayer, we develop a strong faith (Hebrews 11:1&6) and hope (Romans 5:5) that allows us to be less anxious and worried and far more willing to look for the *customized blessings* (Psalm 33:15) that God has in store for each and every one of us. Including our future spouse---the one who will assist us in this lifetime to fulfill our purpose...similar to what the disciples did for Christ in a myriad of ways.
So take some time this weekend to redirect your focus a bit.
Rather than praying to get married, pray for your future husband.
After all, marital covenant is a spiritual union first, remember? Plus, prayer is the ultimate, holiest and most reliable form of communication. So since marriage is a threefold-cord dynamic (Ecclesiastes 4:12), trust me...by praying to HIM for "him", you'll be amazed by how close you will feel to your future husband and his Creator---even before physically connecting to your covenant partner.
Just the way a spiritual connection, through God, is designed to be.
Whether physically together---or apart.