After eating dinner with She Speaks friends, I drove away to check into my hotel. I saw the sign and headed in that direction. The parking lot was full and only a few dimly lit spaces were left in the back. I decided to grab everything so I would only have to make one trip. So I grabbed my bags, hangers, and a flat-iron and headed across the parking lot, then around the building to the front of the hotel.
I walked into the lobby and just as I sat the heavy bag onto the ground, I heard these six words:
You are at the wrong place.
Call it nerves or whatever, but I wanted to cry. Can’t I just stay here? Can’t you switch my reservation? I thought this was where I booked?
No, you have to go to the other hotel about 15 miles away.
Maybe a tear or two fell as I picked up the bags that now felt heavier and I walked back to my car wondering how did I mess this up?
~You are at the wrong place!~
I heard and I felt those words. Did I miss something? What if I am wrong? What if this is more than the hotel that I got wrong? I grumbled. I doubted. As I drove those fifteen minutes to the correct hotel, I pondered this question:
“Who wants to pick up heavy baggage and carry it only to hear – you are at the wrong place?”
Finally, I pulled into the much brighter parking lot, and parked closer to the door. They were expecting me, and my room welcomed me. I breathed a sigh of relief as my head hit the pillow – I was at the right place!
The next morning I sat in the parking lot drinking coffee. It was foggy and cloudy, much like my head. I held up my phone to take a picture and in the blue filter at the top of the windshield I was able to see the sun peeking through.
Look for me.
Yes, Lord. Help me to see you.
Look to the Lord and His strength; seek His face always. Psalm 105:4
About halfway across the parking lot, I saw a praying mantis on the back of a car. I passed it at first and then backed up to take the picture.
Talk to me.
Wow, I took the words to heart. I needed prayer, especially today.
At our special luncheon, a new friend came and sat by me briefly towards the end. We chatted and she said she wanted to pray for me, and later she found me. Sitting alone in a large session, I felt her tap my shoulder and she sat and prayed such a precious prayer over me. Only God.
I realized I left my phone charger in the car, so I walked outside and the praying mantis was STILL there. I was standing in the hot sun frantically searching for my keys, while quickly retracing my steps in my mind to where I may have left them. I started dumping the contents of my purse and still no keys. I headed back to see if maybe I left them on the book table, and I stopped again at the Praying Mantis …
Talk to me.
“God I need my keys. Help me find my keys.” As I was praying, I looked down and saw a tiny pocket on the side of my purse and when I stuck my hand in the keys were there. I didn’t even know that pocket existed! There was a praise in my step – worshiping the God who hears me, when I call!! He met me in a parking lot by a praying mantis over a set of keys! He blew me away! He prompted me to pray and he answered my prayer. Only God.
I had meetings that afternoon, so I decided to leave class a little early and spend time in the prayer room. As I walked into the prayer room all alone, the details left me speechless – again.
The fountain, the candles, the King is enthralled with your beauty, Whom shall I fear, the flowers, all details that took me back to times when God met me. The rocks brought tears to my eyes. Rocks have been significant to me not only as markers, but also just to hold onto in brave moments. I picked up one and held it tightly and prayed. As I was walking out, a girl was walking in and asked me if I was staff. She needed someone to pray with her. I sat and prayed for her before heading to my meeting. Later, I spent over an hour in my car pouring my heart out to God, meeting with Him.
Talk to me…
When you are happy.
When you are sad.
When you a confused.
When you are angry.
I’m right here.
You can whisper.
I hear you.
I see you.
I love you.
I already knew how to pray, but this was different. This was exhaling and inhaling His very presence.
It was breathing Him.
Not only at appointed times, or just in moments of crisis or thanksgiving.
This was an invitation to have a never-ending conversation with the one who never grows weary of me, who lets me say whatever I need to say, who guides and directs, who calls me His beloved, His daughter, His Princess.
Psalm 116:1-2 (NLT)
I love the Lord because he hears my voice
and my prayer for mercy.
Because he bends down to listen,
I will pray as long as I have breath!
On the day I called, you answered me;
you made me bold in my soul with strength.
I’ve been listening to this song (Came to My Rescue by Hillsong) lately. I want to be mindful to call on Him, to remain in Him. What is God teaching you about prayer? How are you seeking Him? Take a few minutes, and listen. Be still, and lift Him high!