Last week in church the question was asked, “Do you have to see it to believe it?” Of course in my mind I answered the question with a definitive NO. But is that true? Do I really have the faith I claim I have? Do I truly believe God will do all He’s promised to do – even as my circumstances scream it’s not possible? And if so, if I really believe it without seeing it, why am I stuck in this place of mediocrity?
I keep saying to myself (and to my auntie who is a constant source of encouragement) that I need to do more. I need to pray more and study more. I need to be a better Christian. But that’s not what God said. Yes, He has told me to be holy even as He is holy. He’s told me to be courageous for He is sending me and will be with me. He’s told me to seek His face and to walk upright before Him. And I do – most of the time. I could do better. Truth be told we could all do better. But that’s not why I’m stuck and not seeing the manifestation of the promises of God in my life.
I’m stuck because I forgot my life verse. Matthew 6:33 says seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all other things will be added unto you. (I tend to combine KJV and NIV in that verse but the message is there.) I’ve been seeking His righteousness and the things of the kingdom but I can’t say I’ve sought them first. Those “other things” have been a distraction and a snare for me. And I confess, I began to seek after the things of this world. I began to seek the promise rather than the promisor.
Also, I have allowed a spirit of fear to come upon me and have its way. God has gifted me to write and speak but I’ve done very little of that because of that nasty little four-lettered word – fear. You see I wrote a book and had it published and had great expectations for it. My expectations were not met. It did well but it wasn’t all I’d dreamed it would be. Without realizing it, because of the cases of books still sitting in my attic waiting to be sold, I decided I wouldn’t write anymore. Why bother if no one wants to buy it? I was afraid I’d fail. In fact, that spirit of fear said I’d fail again. But I didn’t fail the first time. I wrote what God led me to write and all who bought and read it testified it was a blessing and encouragement to them. That is not failure. If just one soul was blessed because of the words God gave me to share, I was a big success.
Today, my eleven year-old daughter showed me a saying she’d downloaded on her phone. It said, “Don’t let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.” Okay, Father. Message received. I’d taken myself out of the game because I was afraid. I’d bought into the devil’s lies that was not good enough, wasn’t doing enough, couldn’t do enough, to be all God had called me to be. But even before He called me, God equipped me to do what I was created to do. I just finished reading “Cure to the Common Life” by Max Lucado and he shared that God put tools and gifts in me before I was conceived by my mother. Those tools and gifts are to be used for God’s glory – for the building up of His kingdom and I am going to use them for just that!
As far as the manifestation of the promises go (and these promises will blow your mind) I believe – I KNOW – that when God decides the time is right according to His kingdom calendar, I will see every one come to fruition. I believe even though my natural eye can’t see it. I believe it because my faith says it is so. My faith says it is so because God said it is so. And if God says it is so, well that’s a done deal because He is not a man that He should lie and His word shall not return unto Him void but will accomplish that for which He sent it out.
On this Independence Day, I declare my freedom from the spirit of fear! The Son of God has set me free and I am free indeed! I thank God for His promises and for His word. And I thank Him for each and every soul that He calls to read these words. It’s the 4th of July where I’m at and America is celebrating her freedom. Let’s celebrate with her and declare WE ARE FREE!
For further study see:
John 20:24-29 – believe without seeing
Leviticus 11:45, 1 Peter 1:16 – be holy
Deuteronomy 31:6, Joshua 1:9 – be courageous
Deuteronomy 4:29, Psalm 27:8 – seek the Lord
2 Timothy 1:7 – we are not given a spirit of fear
John 8:36 – free indeed
To get my book, From the Shepherd’s Heart: A Devotional go to http://dutchesshorton.com/books