come aside to PRAY

Every year I live in denial that this day is coming.  I watch the temperature and humidity levels inch higher and higher as summer approaches, but I hold on to the hope that maybe this year won’t be as hot.  Or maybe just not yet.


Today was the day.  Much like runners in the north finally cave and admit that the early days of winter have gotten just too cold, on the flip-side of the year, this south FL runner finally caved and decided it was just too hot and retreated inside to the treadmill.

About 30 minutes into my run I reached the last page of the prayer list I had propped up in front of me.  I noticed the first drops of sweat hit the clean, crisp print-out and just smiled.


If this summer is anything like last year, that prayer list will have a journey all its own over the next few months.  By August it will be well worn, dog-eared, written on, sweat over, probably cried over, hauled to the gym, the beach, the pool, and carted along on our beloved trek to Pennsylvania in July!

“Jesus said, “come with Me to a quiet place and get some rest” … for there had been much coming and going, so they didn’t even have time to eat.”  Mark 6:31

Yes.  There has been much coming and going this year.  And one sad casualty has been less time at the table – for our family to enjoy a meal together (and Bible reading and prayer!) … OR for me to linger there by myself, reading and pondering… and praying.  Our bodies haven’t been fed very well, but our souls have suffered more.

We all need the pace to slow, the demands to quiet, and the motivation to re-establish some healthy habits.  I pray for the Lord to draw our hearts to Him, to show us how to reconnect with each other and with Him in a way that we can’t live without when school starts again!

Running and praying, praying while running, there really isn’t a better way to start any summer day.  It’s time to keep my body moving but still my heart.  Healthy choices that lead to other healthy choices, for my body, heart and soul!  I wonder what else I could prop up on the treadmill to feed my soul as I run this summer.  I have a feeling as I look to the Lord to guide that nudge, He will show me.

As I started the cool-down mode on the treadmill, I glanced from my list to the screen, taking in scenes of Trinity Mountains in California.  In those pictures, I was reminded of God’s beautiful creation, of His majestic power, of His delicate touch.  And I am thankful that even in a simple thing like trying to get a little exercise, He will meet me there.  That corner of the gym can become my own little bubble with Him – my very own “war room!”

I absolutely believe in the power of those prayers to impact the needs listed and the people included.  I also know that the hour spent in prayer will tune my heart to His, help me know Him better, and lead me to rejoice in Who He is and the ways He continues to amaze me!

And so, although I may dread the hottest part of our year outside, I really do treasure the quietest part of our year inside and the invaluable “come aside” times with my Savior as our routines shift into summer-mode!

come aside to pray 2



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