my zoo prayer

I stand in awe of you, God; I really do. You wow me. Every day, but these past few weeks especially. From bloggy-friend hosts to checks arriving just in time, from super-cute little girl summer clothes at a thrift store to free lollipops at a lingerie shop, from taxes to Texas and everything in between–your hand is so obviously in it.

You make my eyes pop and my jaw drop. I can’t get over you.

God, thank you for Elizabeth and Megan and Amy and Kaye and Kelli and Mary and Sandi–and their wonderful families–for sharing their homes with us. Thank you for all the hard work they’ve done cleaning guest rooms and washing sheets and scrubbing bathrooms and planning meals (and please don’t let my family get too spoiled by all the cleanliness and organization and gourmet cooking and expect it of me upon our return home). Thank you for these gals’ wonderful husbands who are somehow okay with the fact that, in a few short days, five strangers are going to invade their home and lives, and they’re not really sure why except it has something to do with blogging or animals or something. Thank you for this super-cool kind of friendship and an amazing opportunity to meet new, wonderful people.

God, I pray for safety as we travel. I pray for good health for all five of us. I pray that you’ll stretch our money and make it last our entire trip. I pray that our van will run like a dream.

May you be glorified a million different ways through these unconventional means. This is about more than checking zoos off a list, Lord. I know you want glory, and I know we’re desperate to give it to you, and I know you’re going to get it. That’s what you do. This Zoo Thing isn’t an end, God. It’s a crazy-cool way to point others to you.

Praise you for your creation–the birds of the air, the beasts of the field. Praise you for giraffes and zebras and elephants and hippos and rhinos and chimpanzees and okapi and camels and gorillas and orangutans. The majesty and beauty of these animals shouts your name. “Look at our Creator!” they’d yell, if they could. “He is AWESOME!”

I don’t have any idea on your big, green earth why you’re allowing us to serve you in such a thrilling way. I know our lives aren’t one big party. I know you see the hurts and sacrifices and rough spots we can’t always share on our blogs. But my goodness. Writing books and working from home and being with my husband and girls and admiring your exotic creation and meeting beautiful people and seeing Texas and Oklahoma for the first time, and SHAMU?

It’s a little taste of heaven, that’s what.

God, remind me of all this when we’ve been driving for 12 hours straight and Livi and Ava want to murder each other. Remind me of this when Gabe is dead tired and snaps at me for no reason. Remind me of this when I wish I had something cute to wear. Remind me of this when it rains all day. Remind me of this when my head hurts. Remind me of this when I feel like yelling. Remind me of this when my tired three-year-old whiiiiiiiiines without ceasing.

Lord, help us to seek out ways to share you with others. Give us teachable moments with our girls. Help us be a witness for you wherever we go–gas stations, zoo restrooms, authentic Mexican restaurants (yum!).

Thank you for zoos. Thank you for spring. Thank you for friends. Thank you for my family. Thank you for free tickets. Thank you for my bloggy buddies. Thank you for YOU.

I love you, Lord.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

10 thoughts on “my zoo prayer

  1. Allen N

    Marla,
    Love your “Zoo prayer”! As you can probably guess, I’ve been thanking God for zoos for a couple decades, and I still do! What great places to take our children to! They are educational, recreational, and fun! God bless you all!

  2. Lacey Branum

    Praying for you as you travel. Bumbed that we will miss you, especially now. Go to Taco Taco in San Antonio. GREAT breakfast taco’s…really cheap. If you eat there you will have to wait in line but you can get them to go. 🙂 Can’t wait to hear all about it!

  3. Jennifer

    Speaking of animals, y’all will be meeting EVERY member of our family this week… even our dogs, who will be staying at Jim and Sandi’s house while we go to Florida. I know, I know — could you BE more blessed!?! 🙂 Praying for safe travels and lots of sunny, sunny days…

  4. Mary

    We are so excited for you guys! I love the prayer…God truly has blessed y’all so much! I laughed where you wrote about our husbands who just know this visit has to do with blogging or animals 🙂 My husband is a little confused but I just told him it will all make sense when y’all get here! Let us know if you need anything last minute…I guess I will be scrubbing those bathrooms in the meantime…?? 🙂

  5. Marla Taviano

    Oh, I absolutely do not expect scrubbed bathrooms and all that! Two of you mentioned clean bathrooms in your e-mails, that’s all. We are super-low maintenance. For real.

  6. janelle taviano

    Ipray in the Name of JESUS that satan’s doors are closed and GOD’s doors are WIDE OPEN, angels all around your van and the HOLY SPIRIT filling the inside of the van and those 5 precious ones inside…I pray that GOD takes every thot captive…in Livi, Ava and Nina…and you know it is HIM….HIS hand of blessings…beyond RAIN HE alone SHOWERS YOU WITH HIS LOVE….storms of DIVINE LOVE

  7. Sandi

    Amen. Can’t wait! Thanks, Lord, for a family that would trust that we WOULD clean toilets, change sheets and towels, and tidy our homes. Help us honor You in our hospitality, and bless their visits with unexpected joy.

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