I heard a story about a woman named Anna today. It was as though God wrapped His arms around me, whispering reason into my heart.
36There was also a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, 37and then was a widow until she was eighty-four.[e] She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. (Luke 2)
Anna was widowed and lived a single life for dozens of years. During her single life she devoted her time to God. Not just part of her time, ALL of her time. It says she NEVER left the temple. Wow.
My mom and I were having our daily conversation, which recently has been focused on my state of unemployment, when Mom shared a very wise outlook. She said that if nothing else I have learned to rely fully on God during this time for all things. She even qualified it, “I’m not saying that you weren’t reliant upon Him before. Maybe God just wants you to learn how to not sweat this stuff at all, and this is the way He’s showing you His faithfulness.” Huh.
So Mark Tolan, youth pastor, was continuing with his message tonight about Anna and spending time with God, and all the while my mind shifted to Mom’s statement of earlier. You know how it feels when you are on the verge of a breakthrough? It is as though the words and pictures are forming in your head and you can almost reach out to touch them, but they are muddied shapes being pushed into the fog by sudden distractions. Such was my experience tonight.
And then suddenly, the words and pictures seemed to mold into a clear message: “Andi, this opportunity you have to focus on Me, you can never get it back. You are anxious to put your hands to work, but all I want to do is spend some real quality time with you. Yes, I will provide a job for you. It will come. A family will come. You spend all your extra time helping the youth and preparing music. I will put your hands to work, but for now I just want us to relax and enjoy one another.”
My breath stopped for a moment as the words formed in my heart. Years of hurried moments, over-packed scheduling, and never-ending to-do lists gave me a picture of my romance with the Creator. It’s not that we haven’t had time. We just haven’t had much of a honeymoon. God loves me. He designed me for that love and to share that love. So I guess it’s vacation time, and God is courting me to prepare me for the things to come.
Tomorrow I’m gonna listen to Him sing me songs. And then I’m gonna make sure that even in my practice sessions every note is a love declaration to Him.
Thank you, Father, for my singleness. Thank you, Father, for my unemployment. Thank you, Father, for the husband and job that you have prepared for me. God, you have my whole heart.