“ARISE, GO FORTH AND CONQUER!”

arise go forth and conquerAt 5 AM, the alarm jarred me from a deep sleep. My mind raced ahead into my day with rapid-fire images of the multitude of responsibilities that waited for me at the office – and when I got home at night. My first thought of the day was, “I can’t. I can’t do this…I don’t want to do this.” That scenario played out for what seemed like a never-ending cycle.

That was certainly the case in the first years after my husband died, but it was also a familiar theme of the last decade of my career. I was ready for retirement ten years before it became a reality. When I look back, I wonder how I made it through. Then I remember…

My work as an Addiction Counselor, Social Worker, and Hospice Grief Counselor was meaningful and rewarding. The problem was that there was just too much work to be done, and not enough time to do it. The fact that I circuit-rode a five county area, often in wintry weather with hazardous road conditions, didn’t help. Even a rigorous self-care program was no match for the level of stress I experienced.

 What helped me through?

I started each day by the side of my bed, on my knees, with this simple prayer: “Lord, Show me your will for me today and give me wisdom and strength – and willingness – to do it.”

After a shower, I listened to Praise & Worship music as I put on my make-up. It helped turn my thoughts in the right direction. Once my morning routine was complete, I grabbed a cup of coffee and headed to my favorite chair to spend time with God in earnest.

After reading a portion of Scripture, I chose a verse to personalize and write as a prayer in my journal. Deuteronomy 33:25, 27 might look like this: “Lord, Thank you for your promise to give me strength equal to whatever this day holds. Let me feel your everlasting arms underneath, holding me up.”

After my time with God, I was ready to “Arise, go forth and conquer!”*

Just as my iPhone needs recharging each day, I still need a spiritual recharge before heading out into my day. I may be retired, but I am not ready for the rocking chair! Now that I have time and energy, I am pursuing my dreams of expanding my speaking and writing ministry, Holy Ground All Around. I need God’s wisdom and strength as much as I ever did, so I still start each day with time with God.

Do your spiritual batteries need recharging? Do you ever wonder how you will make it through the day? Allow for time with God – even 10-minutes in the morning will help get your eyes off your problems and onto the solution. God is with you and for you. He will give you everything you’ll need to face the day ahead. A few minutes alone with Him will enable you to “Arise, go forth and conquer!”

Today’s Challenge: Set aside at least 10-minutes for time alone with God. Read his Word. Ask Him to show you His will for you; then ask Him for wisdom, strength – and willingness – to do it.

* From “The Passing of Arthur” by Alfred Lord Tennyson, Idylls of the King, 1859 – 1885

6 Comments

  1. Gail
    Sep 24, 2013

    Thanks for a beautifully written reminder of where my focus should be…always.

    • Kathy
      Sep 24, 2013

      Gail, I’m glad we are doing this life together – we can remind each other of where our focus should be!

  2. Lisa
    Sep 24, 2013

    Great words of inspiration, Kathy! You live your words that you speak, which is beautiful!

  3. Marcia Wilson
    Sep 24, 2013

    I appreciated the addition of “Today’s Challenge”. It had some realistic and specific things of what to do to follow up on what your wrote.

  4. Sue
    Sep 24, 2013

    Your blogs are so easy to read & meaningful. Thanks for posting!

  5. Marilyn
    Sep 26, 2013

    Thank you, Kathy, for the challenge & the encouragement. I can see that God is using you mightily in women’s lives.

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