Updated: Jan 4, 2019
I woke up on the first morning of 2019 feeling emotionally stuck in what I now see was intimidation. This was all about a decision I have to make, one that has brought with it a number of challenges. Should I or shouldn't I? The more I pondered the issues, the more intimidated I felt. Yet I didn't feel right about declining the invitation which the decision presented to me. Would I be missing a wonderful opportunity? Or would I be in a situation that was way over my head? Where was God in it all? I wasn't hearing Him. I was so busy trying to decide yea or nay that I didn't give any thought to the fact that my peace had flown the coop, and I was trying to resolve my dilemma through my feelings. It wasn't working. And I would have to decide within a week.
Before I even got out of bed that day, I searched in my mind for a verse to lift me out of my feelings. James 1:2 came to me: Count it all joy when you encounter various trials." But then I heard the Lord speak to me saying: "The Scriptures are not just so you can feel better, but that you know Me better." Well, that got my attention. I saw that I was trying to come up with a verse so my stress would leave me when He showed me that my motive was me, not Him! The word "reorient" went through my mind.
Then, as the following words began to come to me I grabbed a pen and notebook and started writing: "Remember that the ultimate goal of life here on earth for those who are Mine is to become conformed to My likeness. As you see (perceive) Me, you gain insight that allows you to become more like Me (see 1 John 3:2). So to consider it all joy when you encounter various trials becomes an exercise of interaction with the Godhead (to which I asked, "How, Lord?"). Because the Father always has Kingdom purpose in any situation that is higher than you may be seeing or aware of, and He has given you the Holy Spirit for you to find the holiness in it, to strengthen you from above and beyond the immediate circumstances. And in any situation you have fellowship with the Son who experienced all things as you do who is closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24) and a Friend as well as a High Priest to you, leading you and accompanying you in any circumstance. [Note: These statements are worthy of pondering.]
I then realized that I was assessing not only the situation based on my own weaknesses and trepidation, but I had been tending to project those same thoughts onto other situations, toward taking the easier way rather than a more potentially challenging way. As I reviewed in my mind what I had been considering as I went over the options in my decision, I realized that my thoughts had been limited to how I perceived my own abilities in light of what I was seeing as the magnitude of the challenge. I hadn't considered the victory to be had in putting my trust entirely upon the Lord. Questions then came to mind I knew were from the Lord: "Are you willing to take the risk if you know that I am asking you to go on this journey?" My arms instinctively flew up in the air: Yes, Lord! "Are you willing to go if it's hard? If it's sometimes lonely, if you know that I am with you?" I am, Lord. I still have the qualms, but I'm moving forward. I remembered my (now in heaven) father telling me, "Action dispels fear." Decision made.
Situations and decisions aren't always about being right, or emotionally safe, or comfortable, it's about where the Lord is in it. It isn't about me asking Him if He will go with me, it's about Him asking me to go with Him! I then asked, "Lord, will you show me what Kingdom purpose there is in this?" The answer that came to me surprised me. Again, it wasn't what I expected. It wasn't about what I might accomplish in the task. It was more about entering a new level of trust with Him, of putting His will above my own. I read something the other day by Graham Cook who said, "While we're learning to trust God, He's learning to trust us." Meaning, that as we come to a deeper level of faith, and take steps requiring a new level of trust in Him, God is able to take us into new and deeper levels of what He will trust us with.
At one time a prophetic word was spoken over me that brought a level of understanding of God's ways I was unaware of till then. The dear man who spoke the words said, "If you had not chosen to forgive as you have, it would have locked you out of a number of things that God has allowed you to do for Him." Locked out?! That statement deserve a big Selah! I thought about it for weeks. Evidently, we are capable of shutting ourselves out of things God might have allowed us to participate in without ever even knowing the possibilities exist, or could have been ours. Said positively, by trusting in God and staying clear of any compromises in our lives, including forgiving, by not allowing our pride, or hurt feelings, or fears to keep us from going the way of God and His Word, doors open for us by God Himself that we might have entirely missed otherwise. May this coming year be one of open doors for each of you reading this, a year of greater trust and deeper revelation as He shares His adventures with us.