Definition of EXALT….ig-ˈzolt…: to raise in rank, power, or character; to elevate by praise or in estimation.

I’ll come back to this.

Lately, life has been somewhat of a desert for me. I get up, get ready for work, drive an hour to work, drive an hour and a half home, spend time with Steph, take care of the house, go to sleep, repeat. The highlight of my day is the time that Steph and I spend together.

Nothing exciting. Nothing blog worthy to post. We changed churches so we are not able to work with youth for another couple of months. Steph is in choir and I work with the tech team on a very limited basis but still trying to find our place at PSBC.

The desire for a child is still great but around every corner is another obstacle. The desire to work in ministry is still great but around every corner, also other obstacles. Prayers are still going out daily for both desires and yet still, a very quiet desert.

The bad thing for me having a long drive to and from work is that I get a LOT of time to reflect on life and evaluate our situation. I get too much time to “think” and thats not a good thing for me. I look for ways to “fix” our issues with children and with the desire to be in ministry. I haven’t been able to find solutions to either yet.

Not being able to work in the areas that we feel God leading us toward, has honestly opened the door for a lot of junk to come in. I have allowed the world to hurt my walk and I haven’t felt as close to God in the past 6 months as I have in a long time. I have focused on MY wants, MY desires and tried to find ways for ME to fix MY situation.

Back to the word Exalt…

One of my favorite praise songs is “I Exalt Thee.” Many people have done it but the version that I really love is the one that is done by Jesus Culture. It gets me there. I can listen to that song and be right at the foot of the Cross.

Because I had allowed so much other junk to take over a huge part of my thought process, my ride into work, my ambitions, I had not listened to that song or anything uplifting in a while. Like the saying goes, “Garbage in, garbage out.”

Today, I listened to it for the first time in a while. God’s voice was like the thunder I heard last night. It was like He was saying, “When have you exalted Me in a while? When have you focused on Me lately? When have you trusted in Me to do the fixing instead of you depending on yourself so much?”

He was right. I get so focused on my life and how to accomplish what needs to be done, that I forget to focus on the One who holds everything in His hands. I forget my favorite verse, John 15:5:

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”

I forgot how it reminds me that as long as I abide in Him, I can do anything. As long as I trust in Him and not in myself, we can overcome the obstacles that appear to be looming over us in all areas of our lives.

I realized that I was wanting to delight myself in things that I wanted and not in Him. I also had to ask myself, “What if…?” What if God’s plan wasn’t children for us. Would He be enough? What if I never get to do youth ministry again? Would He be enough?

Hard questions to honestly answer. Sure I can say Christ is all that I need but the selfish part of me says “but the bible says in Psalm 37:4

“Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.”

I think we so focus on the second part of that verse that we miss the first part completely.

Dear God,
I’m sorry. I’m sorry I haven’t spoken to you much lately except when I needed something or I wanted something. I’m sorry that I let things of this world, push You into the background noise of my life. I’m sorry that I have focused more on what I want than what You want for me. You are the only One who can overcome the things in my life that I see as obstacles. Help me to know that these are opportunities for You, and not obstacles for me.