We stayed in a high rise beautifully decorated condo with everything we could possibly need, including a view of the ocean. We spent most days lounging by the pool, sipping fruity drinks or basking on the sunny beaches. We enjoyed a wonderful seafood meal, some local shopping and many, many laughs and memories.
Aside from snafoos here and there, I had a wonderful time and feel extremely blessed that God gave us the opportunity to take this vacation. My children traveled amazingly well on a fifteen hour car ride and God made every provision we needed.
BUT..... one thing was missing.
I guess my two year old daughter didn't want to miss the Orange Beach sunrises. as she was up at the CRACK of dawn almost every morning we were there. And when I say CRACK, I mean 5:30 A.M. Because of her early rising and the business with many people sharing the same condo, it was very hard for me to get my early morning quiet time with God.
I would try.
I would bring my Bible out to the deck (along with chatty Kathy AKA Audree) and attempt to read and pray but most of my time was spent keeping her from climbing over the railings of the deck and running in and out of the condo for numerous items she felt she needed at 6:00 A.M.
I missed God greatly. I longed for time with Him. And I could tell my heart was beginning to drift from His presence. I had some difficult moments at one point and knew I needed God's strength but found it very difficult to draw from His strength as I had not been able to communicate with Him or spend time in His word.
Then yesterday morning, I sat down on my couch with my coffee, Bible and prayer journal. I took out my pen and began to write my prayer. Immediately, I felt His presence. He was with me. It was the best feeling in the entire world. I sat there and prayed for guidance with a personal issue I am dealing with and within seconds of praying for this, my phone went off and I received a text from my cousin with a Bible verse and nothing else. I looked it up and it is EXACTLY what I needed to hear at that moment.
I realized in that instance..... vacations are a wonderful blessing...... but GOD.... is VACATION.
He doesn't just take me away from my busy, often mundane environment, He takes me away from ME. He takes me away from the craziness in my head and the non stop spinning thoughts. He settles my body to a place of tranquility and He surrounds me with His peaceful presence. He holds my heart in His hands and fills it with His joy. A sandy white beach has nothing on God.
A vacation destination can only take you away from your physical environment. Often, we still bring with us the worries of yesterday and the unknowns of the future.
A vacation with God, takes you away from the thoughts Satan tries to use to rule your heart and mind, to keep you from experiencing God's peace and guidance.
I have learned...... I don't need a plane ticket or a road trip to experience rest....
Resting in God's presence...... is my very favorite vacation destination.
May you take a trip there..... today.
Peace and Blessings