HaPpY SON-day night! Today I had the privilege of leading the two church services today, in our pastor's absence. Every time I do this, or even just deliver the message when asked, I always say it's the last time, especially when trying to prepare. And yet, I still find myself up there. Yes, I say "trying" to prepare, because that can be so tough for me, to put a message together. I feel I'm all over the place. I dig and research, and also put in what I believe God would want me to say. Today's message was on reconciliation and peace. We can't have one without the other. Reconciliation with God, which can then carry out between each other. I love the thought of Christ's peace. There is nothing like it, and nothing like experiencing it. It really does rise above anything in this world. I'm not saying that we don't get rattled. We all most likely do. But to know that God really does have the whole world in His hands, is comforting. We don't understand it all, and probably never will- the ways of this world, but we can rest assured that God has us in His hands. I also was reminded in the verse (Ephesians 2:11-22), and in today's spoken message, to remember the time when we were separated from Him. Remember what that was like- continual chaos in some way- externally, and internally. Even though a lot of us still have our earthly issues, we can still have that wonderful and humbling peace. I know that as I try to prepare messages, I don't seem to get as rattled as I used to, but I cannot, and do not, prepare too far ahead. I just can't. I've tried. I do get ideas, and may jot down a few things, but usually come the Thurs or Friday before, I get a few paragraphs started, so I at least have an idea which way the message will be going. Sometimes it takes a turn as I'm writing, but I just try to go with it. Usually by the time Saturday night gets here, I am ready for it to be over. Don't get me wrong- it's such a privilege. I love it, but I also know that my own thoughts are not God's thoughts, and I at least know that. Sunday morning, I'm usually up by 4 am, and tweak the wording, and go over it a few times, and try to bring it together. I got up there today, joked a few times after I asked people to sit when it wasn't time, and almost forgot about the choir's song, when I announced what I thought was next, skipping over them. I'm glad people are so forgiving, and can even laugh about it. I got red, but it went as it should have gone. I tend to reflect on it after for a bit, and then move on. I am so tired afterward, every time I do this, and need to rest for part of the day. Bella got to be there, and basically slept the whole time. I always say how she is the walking definition of Peace. Contentment. Even if I put her to sleep! I'm glad she found peace in it!! I love the rain. I love seeing God's little graces. Just look at this leaf, and all that makes up this scene that so many would just pass by, including myself. He really does have the whole world in His hands.