Sunday morning I went into Sunday school for the first time in a while, since I’d been working in the 2-year-old Sunday school class for the past month or so. I was feeling so stressed and overwhelmed by everything… Our Christmas coffees at church are coming up, and I am in charge of the preschoolers’ song for it – what if they don’t sing, what if I don’t have any help, what if something just goes really, really wrong?? (And it didn’t help that I had gone to a Christmas program the night before where a children’s choir sang… not all preschoolers, but some of them were… every kid was singing, they stood in perfectly straight rows, and they were being directed – really directed!!) I have a research paper to finish for biology, as well as a final in that class… and I am really not looking forward to that final. I have four papers to write for my English class (Helping Writers Write)… thankfully they are pretty short and easy, but.. they still take thought and time! And then I have to do a rewrite of one of those papers. My internet development project is not done yet… and at that time, my computer graphics project was due the next morning – which I was finished but not completely happy with. I have two Christmas concerts/recital-type-programs I am playing in this coming Sunday. And then add in my regular stuff of just plain old life… school, work, Awana, piano, etc.

So anyway, that is kind of what was running around in my mind Sunday morning. When Pastor Brian asked if anyone had prayer requests, I said that I did. I first of all asked for prayer for the Christmas coffees and for help with that. Then I went on to share about a guy I work with. I have written about this before, so I am not going to go into that right now… but I briefly told the story behind my prayer request. This guy is into wicca, and he’d grown up in a Methodist church.. so when I found that out, I asked him what made him decide on wicca.. when he said it was because he wanted something real, and that people came to his church just because that is what you do – Sunday rolls around, so you go to church – it was a routine for them, not a part of their real lives. They weren’t living it. When he told me that, it really went to my heart, and it began to break me. I wrote about it on here one day.. It made me think about how we so often don’t live what we say we believe. And.. if we don’t live it, then we don’t really, honestly believe it. “Anyone who claims to live in Him must walk as Jesus did.” (1 John 2:6) So I told them about this, and then I said… “So, my prayer request is for him. But it is also for us…” I went on to say that yes, we need to reach out to others outside the church, but.. not only to them. We need to really reach out to everyone inside the church too. Inside the doors of our own church there are people who are going to leave – not just leave our church, but leave the whole idea of Christianity behind them – if we do not change our actions and reach out to them, and if we do not finally begin to truly live what we profess so boldly to believe. I do not want people turning their backs on God because of something I have or have not done or said. That is not Loving my neighbor, and it is not Loving God. We actually owe it to people to Love them. That is a thought that really strikes me every time I think about it.

Anyway.. I got off on a rabbit trail there…

So I gave them my prayer requests. They asked the guy’s name, and I told them, and asked them to also pray for a girl I work with, not that she is into wicca too, but just to pray for her. After everyone was finished sharing things to pray for, different people volunteered to pray for each person’s requests. Katie prayed for mine, and as we sat there as she prayed and then the next person and then next… I was filled with such peace. I had been so overwhelmed and stressed with life when I came in the door, and as we sat praying together, praying for each other, I was struck by the realization of a verse playing out right there in front of me. “Where two or three come together in My Name, there am I in the midst of them.” (Matthew 18:20, I believe…) It just hit me so strongly that God was there with us. I mean, He is always here with us. But as I sat there as we prayed together, it was like He was sitting there right next to me, reassuring me that He is here, everything will end up alright, and all is well.

He knew that I needed that reassurance at that moment. It was perfect.

So.. yeah, my preschoolers might not all sing, they might dance around on the stage… I might play something terribly wrong on the piano on Sunday when I play for the Christmas programs… I might not do well on my biology final, or on my research paper… everything might not get done on my internet development project that I want to finish on there… But.. you know what? — Whatever happens, all is well, because.. God is with us. That is so amazing to really think about. When you stop and think about what that means. God is here with us?? Yes.. He is. Always. How can I help but have peace because of that??