After spending about a year to learn how to open up my mouth and speak, God sent me on another quest which would take at least a year. This time, it was really a three-fold assignment that would all relate to one common theme, though I wouldn't see how all three tied together until later.
First, depend on God. Learn to rely solely on Him. Don't live as though I were an independent, autonomous creature, but instead, one that needs God for every breath, every step, every day of my life.
Second, learn to pray. Not just "say prayers," but pray, mighty, faith-filled prayers that connect with God.
Third, put God first in my day by doing my devotions in the morning.
The first assignment, Depend on God, I accepted unquestioningly. "Sure, God. I'll be glad to depend on you. I don't really know how, but I'll be glad to try." I then proceeded to try to work up some good "dependent" feelings. (Haha... must've made God laugh.) Overall, I realized that for all practical purposes, I lived without reference to God, existing without consulting him or feeling that I needed to consult him. I had my own ideas, made my own plans, and went through the day by myself. It didn't enter my head to depend on God most of the time. Of course, if I was embarking on a major step or had a weighty decision before me, I would pray "for direction," but even that was sort of a token gesture.
The second assignment, Pray, was somewhat more difficult. The truth is, I didn't really like to pray. I wasn't good at prayer. My mind always wandered. But I knew it was a good thing to do, and I knew I would need to do it sooner or later, and I had been meaning to study it anyway, so I accepted the assignment.
The third assignment involved getting up early. And that meant sacrificing sleep. Now, I love sleep. I don't think you understand. I LOVE sleep. Wait, I don't think you get it. I really, really love sleep. At sleepover parties when I was a kid, while all the other little girls were talking and giggling and watching movies into the wee hours of the morning, I happily snuggled down in my sleeping bag at 9:00, wondering how they could possibly make such a sacrifice for each other's sake to stay up so late. I, at any rate, was going to enjoy myself at this party, and that meant going to sleep. Sleep, for me, was (still is!) the ultimate indulgence. Therefore, my entire being revolted from this assignment with everything that was in me. And oh, what a battle raged!
The Master Professor, however, remained unperturbed. He knew how to teach me the right lessons in the right order. His teaching techniques were absolutely effective. He had infinite resources at his disposal. He was sure of His own success with his pupil, though I was not at all sure of it.
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