I am ashamed to admit that it took me 4 years of blogging -- the last year actually understanding that it's a ministry -- before understanding that I should probably be going to You before I write a single word on this page.  How is it that I've written countless posts about things You've taught me or Biblical truths without asking for Your anointing beforehand? That stops now. God, I pray that Your voice will be heard through me today. I pray that I glorify You more than I glorify myself. In fact, I pray that I won't glorify myself at all. That's gonna be a hard one, Lord. So here it is. I give this post (and all the ones after) to You.

You guys.
I took my first class with The Influence Network last week. Jessi taught on sharing the gospel, using our words.
Have you ever heard that quote by Francis of Assisi >> "Share the Gospel. When necessary, use words" ?

Guess what -- apparently, it's not even his quote! Who knows who originally said it. I see it everywhere, all the time. It's quite popular.

I get what it means -- live the gospel. It's a good thing. But it never set right with me.

Jesus lived the gospel, but He also spoke the gospel.
He didn't tell the disciples: "Go and live good lives. People will assume it's because you know Me."
No. He said that they would be his witnesses, telling people about Him everywhere... (Acts 1:8) 

Jessi also pointed out, "If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn't love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal... If I understood all of God's secret plans and possessed all knowledge... but didn't love others, I would be nothing." (1 Cor. 13:1-2)
It's a combo effect. God calls us to give our lives to Him. That involves living for Him and also, yes, talking about Him!  Don't keep what He's done in your life a secret! It's too good!

This isn't actually where I intended to go with this post, but as I prayed for the Lord to lead, this is where He's taken it.

The shocking thing that God spoke to me during the class wasn't even really what the class was about. But suddenly I was struck with the realization that I'm not praying through this space. I write about the Lord and share stories of striving to live for Him, but here I'm missing something so incredibly vital -- prayer. Thankfully, we have a God of grace who blesses our intentions anyways. But as we hope to grow, He will point out areas in our lives that need molding. This is one of mine.

I'm making the commitment, and I really hope I stick to it, of praying before posting. At first I thought I would pray if I was going to post about the Lord. But then, this morning, He spoke more and told me that I should pray before I utter a word on this page no matter what the subject line, even if it's about cupcakes and baby shower games.  I want the Lord to be seen in my life.  I stifle Him by ignoring Him. 
Well, I'm done doing that.

What do you guys think?
Do you pray before you post?
Or before you start your day -- before you speak to anyone?
Do you pray before you go to church? Asking the Lord to mold you and speak clearly through the speaker?

I imagine there are countless opportunities to hear from Him that I'm missing because of this. Because of my lack of prayerful preparation.
If you've got this constant praying thing down, I'd love you to add me to your list. Pray that I will be diligent. That I won't forget. That God will keep teaching me and that I'll keep listening.

Do you struggle with the same thing I do? Email me. I'd love to keep each other accountable, to hear your heart, & to pray for you too! >> thewilliamspost{at}gmail{dot}com

If you're not a part of the Influence Network, I encourage you to get involved! God is all over it. You don't have to be a blogger to use your influence for Him! He wants to use you where you're at. This network is simply a community of women encouraging each other to do just that through forums and monthly classes. There's room for everyone. There's room for you.

March 4th: Best Childhood Memory
This might surprise you, but my best childhood memories are with my sisters. Ok, that part might not surprise you. But the memories that stick out the most are when they were actually being kinda cruel to me! (That's what sisters are for, right?)
I'll never forget the day our whole family was riding in our old Grey Plymouth with red hand painted letters down the side: "Trail Duster". My mom painted those letters.
Like I was saying, we were all riding in that trusty truck. I sat on the floor board between the front seats, per usual (things were more relaxed back then.)
Suddenly, my sisters had an idea for a fun game!
I'm the youngest, so any time they included me, I was IN! So in.
The game went like this: on the count of 3, we would all say "MOO" at the top of our lungs.
They said we needed to practice first.
1... 2... 3...
"moo..." -- I was a little timid, since I hadn't played the game before.

Time for the real game now. I was ready. I prepared myself for the best "Moo" of my life. This was going to be epic.
"MOOOOOO*voice cracks*OOOO!"

I fell for it. I was the only one who "moo'd" They got me.
Oh the embarrassment!

31 Days Prompt

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