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Submission, Obedience, Faith – the path to a great life

Let me start by saying I love and adore all of you who have reached out for advice or with questions. For those of you who have bolstered my faith and given me confirmation that my openness has opened your heart to a degree. I am humbled and grateful and blessed. I know that God works in amazing and mysterious ways and that He has given me the gift of a big mouth at times! And I give God all the glory for the good work He is doing in my life through and for everyone who has been touched by my testimony.

That being said, I’m not a magician. I am not God. I can’t fix people’s hearts. But I can point you to the One who can. He’s not mysterious, distant, or ominous. He is the same, today tomorrow and always, close, especially to the broken hearted, and trustworthy because He is not just truthful, but He is truth itself. He is also not just a mighty warrior who fights our battles, although He most definitely is that! But he is also a loving savior who fights with his humility and grace. For a man who is fully God to willingly go to a cross and die a horrific death, we must realize that at some level, He is not just a distant and looming giant, but a close and loving friend. God wants relationship…with YOU! Imagine that! The great big God who created the universe and everything in it, specifically designed you for the world and placed you into it, in the time that he saw best, with a plan for you that He knows is best. Now free will gives you the choice to recognize your value and live up to your potential, or it gives you the choice to ignore your most inner knowing that you are valuable to the Lord, and instead to live a “happy” life of selfish desires. Sin leads to death brothers and sisters. Let’s just make that clear. God doesn’t want us happy. He wants us blessed. When you stand on your own two feet and say “I can fight this battle alone and claim the glory for me me me!”, you are really saying “I don’t need a God and I certainly won’t submit to Him. His plans are crazy anyways.” My counter is this. Did the wall of Jericho fall by your own strength? How about the Red Sea? Did the Israelites build the dam to part it and escape the Egyptians? And was Satan conquered by your own sheer force and will? Or did the Lord Jesus submit himself to the will of the Father in a way that looked crazy to everyone, including Jesus closest friends, in order that God would be glorified? We can choose our own will and our own strength. And the Father will sit back in heaven and watch us do it and also watch us fail. Or we can choose, like Daniel, to put our knees on the ground before our God and say “Your will be done. I trust you.” And watch Him shut the mouths of the Lions. Watch Him do, with one little flick of His finger, what masses could not accomplish. Submission to the Lord is never easy, but on the other side of the mess, it always was right. It doesn’t make sense looking at it from this side. But from the other side, it was the only logical solution. To all of those wonderful people who reach out to me, looking for the answer that you clearly believe I have, thank you! I appreciate the confirmation, but that is all it is for me. Confirmation that God is at work and the enemy should be afraid. My power and my strength and my answers don’t come from me. And you are able to find the answers in the same place I find them, on your knees before the throne of the Lord. I was at church on Friday night. I was with some friends and I don’t like to make a spectacle. I am open and honest online, but truly I am an introvert who craves consistency. So, in the middle of worship, when God was pressing me to get down on my knees, I was resistant. “God! I am with my friends! How embarrassing! They’re going to think I am weird or I am ‘too holy’. What if they don’t want to come again? What if I make them uncomfortable?!” But that nagging continued and I relented. I got on my knees and I put my head down to pray. Immediately I was in the presence of the Lord. I was in a long line of people all bowed and praying and I saw the Lord come down the line and say as He pointed to me “This one. I choose this one. I will use this one.” And I responded “It’s my joy to honor you. In all I do, I will honor you.” I am not sharing this to brag. Although, come on! Have I told you I am the daughter that the Lord loves?! But I am telling you this to share a point, that submission is the start. If you want God to speak to you and use you, you have to submit. He will ask you to do things that are embarrassing, uncomfortable, and weird! Sometimes, they are to test. Other times they are to bless you! I read a story in Craig Groeschels “Christian Aethiest”, where God pressed on his heart to pull whatever money he had from his wallet and give it to the woman sitting next to him at church. He was reluctant, because it was only $5 and surely that won’t change anyone’s life. But he did it and the woman poured out tears of blessing over him for it. She had only enough gas that morning to get to church, but God pressed her to go and she was obedient. She trusted Him to provide and then Craig trusted God in obedience. This is the church of Christ in beautiful display. When God whispers to your heart, listen! Whether is it embarrassing, humbling, or uncomfortable. You have no idea the impact that it will have! And by the way, you may never see the impact that it has either. That is okay! Just because you don’t see the roots growing, doesn’t mean they aren’t there! But you often will see fruit produced. In your life or in others lives. This is why it is called trusting God. Submitting to his direction and trusting that He will do something with that. So, if you come to me asking my opinion or for some advice, thank you! It fills my heart with joy that you love and trust me so much! And I will give you the same advice I have given so many others. Submit yourself. Commit to getting up early in the morning (I know! I hate it too!). 20 minutes early is all it takes. Get your coffee and your quiet place and pray “Holy Spirit come”, then open His word and read. And every day may not be gold, but God will use that. He is going to start cracking open places in your life that you didn’t realize you needed opened. He will start resetting broken places that healed all wrong. He will start forming the clay and when he sees it is marred in his hand, reforming it into a perfect vessel. He will start pouring His Spirit into you, the vessel, so that you can carry it forward into the world and pour into others. But keep going back to the source! Every day, let him pour his never ending flow of the Spirit into you and let that overflow into the lives of those around you. Like the servant who got a small amount of money from his master to invest, God starts out slow. He wants to see what you are going to do with it. Will you invest it in others lives or bury it in the ground? And when He sees that He can trust you with a little, He will start to trust you with a lot.

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