Up to the Mountain to Pray


 Thanks Lauren B. for the photo!

I went to the most amazing women's retreat with my church in the mountains of North Carolina this last weekend. I learned so much about control and fear/anxiety taught by the amazing Stacy Hill, but mostly, it was so wonderful because the Holy Spirit met me there and renewed my walk with him.

I was on my knees thinking, "Lord, here I am and yet you are not here. You say, 'Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.' I got on my knees, where are you, Lord? I'm sorry I haven't been running after you. I surrender all that I am to you."

Just in the moment when I thought God wouldn't show, he came. In a song, but the words went straight to my heart.

Here I am down on my knees again (I literally was!)
Surrendering all, surrendering all
Find me here
Lord as you draw me near
I'm desperate for You
Desperate for You
I surrender

I surrender, I surrender
I want to know You more
I want to know You more

Drench my soul as mercy and grace unfold
I hunger and thirst
I hunger and thirst
With arms stretched wide
I know you hear my cry
Speak to me now
Speak to me now

Like a rushing wind Jesus breathe within
Lord have Your way
Lord have Your way in me
Like a mighty storm stir within my soul
Lord have Your way
Lord have Your way in me

It's the song "I Surrender" by Matt Crocker a Hillsong Publishing, but I had never heard it before. 
On Saturday, I was laying on a grassy area of this mountain looking out over the valley basking in the sunshine with the beautiful mountains in the distance. It was perfect weather and the sunshine was so warm and wonderful! As I was laying still before the Lord, I could hear the wind rolling up the mountain. I could hear it long before I felt it wash over me. 

I was reminded of God's grace. Like the rushing wind that rolls up the mountain, often times we hear it or have heard about it, but we don't always let ourselves be washed in it. Sometimes God's grace just pours over us and we can feel it, just like the soft brush of the wind. 

I didn't realize how much I would need the physical reminder of God's grace on that mountain. Literally, I felt like Moses who went up to the mountain to pray and when he came down he had to face all kinds of various trials. 

But even as the toughest of trials come, I can remember God's grace. I can feel it wash over me. I can walk in it, hearing it before it comes, and know that God is more powerful than the darkest sin. God is more amazing than I can ever tell and he mets us right where we are. In the hurt. In the joy. In the deepest pit. 

Jesus takes us by the hand and lifts us up! (Matthew 9:27)  

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