Monday, March 23

A Prayer For Weary Souls from Edie Melson

Hi Friends! I hope you are all well. That you're finding a new rhythm with your family in these strange times, as awkward and unfamiliar as it all may feel. 

We're falling into a new homeschooling rhythm, a new dinner rhythm, a new bedtime rhythm. We're watching church online, and went rollerblading yesterday, which we probably wouldn't have done without the 'stay in place' mandates. Yes, its all a little strange, but its been good so far. 

That said these are strange times and depending on your individual circumstances, there certainly are a lot of challenges, concerns and cause for anxiety--many things that I am praying for others for. 

 I have friends and neighbors who own small businesses and are out of work right now-- they've had to start utilizing their savings overnight. I know women who have asthma and other health issues, and are concerned about their health right now for very real reasons. I have friends whose children have learning challenges and disabilities who were getting a lot of support from their schools, and now they're at home working through the challenges in ways that make them feel very alone. I have friends and family members who struggle from depression and anxiety and all of is exacerbating their very real struggles in very real ways. 

I see you. I hear you. I'm praying for you. If I can pray for you in any specific ways, please send me a message, an email, or a text...I'm serious...and I will write your name down on the list inside my Bible and pray for you this week. 

In lieu of all of the unexpected circumstances I wanted to share a word of encouragement and a prayer from my friend Edie Melson  with you today. 
In 2018 Edie Melson published a book titled Soul Care When You’re Weary. This book includes more than two dozen devotions and prayers (followed by a creative connection suggestion) for women who are feeling weary, tired, and overwhelmed.
Edie conceived this book when her father was at the end of his battle with Alzheimer’s. As she spent time supporting her mother, who was the primary caregiver, she spent hours in hospitals, waiting rooms, assisted living spaces and finally hospice. All of that while juggling full-time commitments. She needed the relief that only a deeper connection with God could provide, but found herself with no time for bible study or retreat. So she learned how to carve out moments of connection through creativity. 
Recently when I asked her how she makes time for rest and solitude now, but also how she did it when she was a busy mom to three very active boys she said this, “I learned to retreat in the in-between-moments. I rediscovered the value in five minutes of solitude or a simple walk around the back yard. Before, I’d disdained those short moments as wasted time. Instead, I learned they were as valuable as hidden treasure tucked into the crevice of a rock wall.”
Edie sent me a copy of Soul Care When You’re Weary last summer during a weary season of my own life. I was in the middle of supporting my mother who was struggling with her physical and mental health, and being in my early 40’s was going through some physical and hormonal changes of my own that were instigating mood swings and anxiety. This was all in the middle of the normal day-to-day routines of trying to maintain a house and love my family well, which we all know is just plain overwhelming sometimes. 
Because the book was so encouraging to me, I’m going to send a copy to one of you this week (see directions at the bottom of this post).
With her publisher’s permission I’m sharing with you one of the many very real and authentic prayers that Edie wrote in the book—a prayer that I’ve been praying this month as I continue to ask God for helping to bring order to my sometimes crazy days:

*A Prayer: Asking God to Show Me What it Means to Dwell (By Edie Melson): 
“The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my savior; my God is my rock in whom I find protection. He is my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety”
 (Psalm 18:2 NLT).

 Dear Lord, 
            I feel like I’m living twenty-four-hour-days in the middle of Grand Central Station. There’s no longer any rhythm to my life. It’s nothing but an all out effort, and the constant drain is taking its toll on my life and the lives of those near me. 
            All I want to do is find some pace to hide. I crave the peacefulness of solitude. But more than quiet in my environment, I want to find a way to quiet my mind. 
            Will you show me what it means to dwell with You, and let You dwell with me? Surely the peace found in Your presence can be mine. I know it’s available. I’ve read about it in Your Holy Word. 
            It’s so easy for me to move from Your side and once again end up in the midst of chaos and strife. Show me how to navigate my daily life while sticking close to your side. Bring people into my life who have learned this lesson and let me learn from them. 
            I want to be swept beneath Your wings and curl up close. When I’m with you, my perspective changes. The concerns that drive me from rest melt away. Dwelling with You keeps worry far away. Keep me close by Your side and never let me leave. Amen. 

I pray that you would all find rest for your souls in the week ahead. I pray that in the midst of these crazy, unknown days with news of COVID-19 permeating everything we read, watch and listen to, that you would be able to find your own spaces to pray, to surrender your worries to God, and to allow Him to replace worry with peace.

If you'd like to purchase a copy of Soul Care When You're Weary you can find it here (or wherever you like to buy books online). 

I’m giving away a copy Edie’s book, Soul Care When You’re Weary. To be entered to win either leave a comment below right here on the blog, or go to my Little Writer Momma Facebook Page and leave a comment below the link to the post (by 9 pm EST this Friday)! I will draw a name on Saturday morning and announce it on the Facebook page. 

(Edie Melson is an author, blogger, and speaker who has encouraged and challenged audiences around the world. Her numerous books reflect her passion to help others develop the strength of their God-given gifts and apply those gifts to life. She is also the co-director of the Blue Ridge Mountain Writers Conference—one of the largest (and most fabulous!) Christian writing conferences in the country. She runs a private Facebook Group called Soulful Ink, where she facilitates a group committed to reconnecting with God through creative pursuits. You can also catch up with her on her website, and through social media.)
*excerpt used with permission from Bold Vision Books, copyright 2018

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