Greater than ourselves.8:19:00 PM
I wrote this post almost a month ago. Today, marks a year of our drive down from our beloved town of Wilmington NC to Clearwater Florida. It has been one of the hardest, most eye opening experiences, but yet full of sweet growth and abundant memories.
I wasn't going to share these words with you, but as we celebrated today all that the Lord has done in the past year, I was reminded that celebration usually comes after moments of trial and enduring faith. That most often our greatest accomplishments in life make us sweat and grab hold of Jesus in a real, tangible way.
I hope this post encourages someone who may be struggling to find perspective in the moment and reminds you of seasons, they always bear fruit at the appointed time.
As we approach a year of being on our journey into the unknown, I have noticed that my emotions seem to be across the board wavering from day to day. I know that as women this is one of our greatest gifts, allowing us to carry the compassion and heart of Jesus, but without control these emotions can cause us to venture into territories that are outside of where God is calling us to be.
Over the last month, I have ventured into this place far too often that I would like to admit. I would awake ready to conquer my day and before 8am, I would find myself in shambles, unable to control my emotions or even put into words what was wrong. Because honestly, everything seemed wrong. My kids were crying too much, school was not going my way, I was too busy, but yet I had nothing to do. I hated living in Florida, but yet I knew that God was calling us to stay put and not jump ship because of our lack of comfort. I was so happy to finally be in a house, after 9 months in an apartment but yet I was stressed about the lack of funds to decorate or the things that "needed to be done." I was the dripping, nagging faucet spoken of in Proverbs and I knew it.
I felt crazy inside and I think I was.
I knew that my emotions had taken too much precedence in my life and that I needed to gain control. I was watching a sermon by Lisa Bevere and it struck me to my core. Reading my Bible and encouraging myself through sermons and books have been the only thing that has helped me through this season of change, but something about this sermon spoke straight to my heart and confirmed what I already knew.
I had laid down my sword.
I had allowed my circumstances, my thoughts, my sadness to take a higher priority in my life than the blessings that surrounded me. I could not get my stance on sturdy ground because I was filling my life with sinking sand. I was filling my mind with what "I didn't have" and losing sight of what was right in front of me. I had allowed my sense of lack to take control and the enemy was having a blast with stealing my joy.
But as I let God use the words of Lisa B. to penetrate through my spirit, I began to pick up my sword. I was reminded of powerful prayers. Not prayers of begging. But prayers of power and remembering what I was up against. Prayers that reflect God's heart and use scripture to declare God's will and truth over my life, my circumstances and my emotions.
I fell to my knees when she finished her sermon and I cried. I cried hard and I repented.
From that place, I was able to stand on sturdy ground for the first time in 2 months. I felt like my sword had returned and instead of getting angry at my circumstances, I was reminded of the enemy who wants to steal, kill and destroy, which reminded me of my purpose.
His purpose. Our cause.
Our reason for living this life is so much greater than ourselves. We are called to be disciples, spread the Good News, share His love by healing the sick, raising the dead and casting out demons. Our cause is not survival. It is surrender to Him and through that place, we are able to lay down our circumstances and pick up our sword, God's word and become powerful warriors for His kingdom.
It's not about us. It's about Him and our surroundings, our emotions are not to control us, but ENABLE us to grow and become stronger for His kingdom. These emotions can keep us captive in our small worlds of self accomplishment or depression or insignificance, or they can PROMOTE us into seeing life outside of ourselves and a world that is much greater than our inner circles. Our world is dying and needs a Savior, but because God made us to co-labor with Him, He needs His warriors to live from a place of victory, not defeat. He is waiting on His bride to rediscover who they are in Him and take a stance on sturdy ground, holding the sword of Truth. It is through our emotions and our circumstances that we can relate to others, just as Jesus did, as long as we surrender them all to His purpose. My story, YOUR story matters. It all has purpose and it is all a part of His story for the world.
I want to be a daughter that although I may struggle, I can hold my sword. Holding my stance against the schemes of the enemy knowing that My God will use everything to gain momentum for His kingdom and restore life to His children.
Greater is He that is in me, than he that is in the world.
Some of our favorite memories from our first year.