Alabama Gazette - The people's voice of reason

Seasonal Reasoning

 

February 1, 2019 | View PDF



“I love those who love me, and those who seek me diligently find me.” Proverbs 16:17

October 28, 2015 I heard Him speaking to me. In my time of prayer, just as He often times does, He was speaking over my words. Loudly, boldly as to get my attention. “Read it, write it, speak it.” These are the words He spoke to me. “Women’s ministry. Seminary.” This was the commandment He gave me. I silenced this ridiculous thought. How in the world could God possibly use me to further His kingdom? A sinner. Just another ole Rahab. Pure and utter senselessness on my part. There is NO way He would call me to such a grand platform. This must be some sort of crazy manifestation of a dream I’ve concocted in my mind. But wait, I know this isn’t what I wanted to be when I grew up. I never played dress up like a preacher lady. I’m from the south and preachin is for the menfolk. The disciples led by example, but so did Mary Magdalene. Though I don’t feel as I have ever been possessed by the devil in the literal sense, there have been times where the devil led my life, just as he did in Mary Magdalene’s life. If He can use her to glorify His name, He can use me.

October 28, 2015, a day I’ll never forget, is the day I felt God breathe life back into a soul who was searching for an answer. It is also the day I began begging. Begging and pleading for Him to take this nonsense away from me. I began to pray for discernment. I tried to humble myself as Jesus had done, and laid face down on the floor and begged God from a place I felt couldn’t get any lower. If this wasn’t of God and was of man and was of the devil, that He would silence this idea and show me the path I was to walk down. How ridiculous that I would ever think that God could use me in this way. I began to immerse myself in His word. I read the Bible constantly. I prayed for hours a day. I talked to God. I begged and pleaded with Him. I listened and I wrote. I loved God on a whole different level than I had ever loved Him before. I sought Him every second of the day and in everything I saw and did. I began to pray everyday for God to specifically put me in uncomfortable positions, that I would have the opportunity to minister to people and be unashamed of Him. It became my mission and job. My baptismal vocation. He answered my prayers daily. He always gave me that daily heavenly ordained opportunity.

March 12, 2016 In an utter state of confusion and having this overwhelming sense of urgency and a desire to push away these thoughts I had been fighting for 4.5 months, I turned on my computer at work; at a job that I absolutely loved and felt that would be my next step in life permanently. There it was. A verse. The verse. The verse forever etched in my heart. Another heavenly validation.

“Therefore my brothers, be all the more diligent to make your calling and election sure.” 2 Peter 1:10

There it was on the screen that had only moments before been black and without power. It didn’t make sense, but it plainly spoke loud and clear to me. Matter of factly, it gave me the answer to the question to which I had already known the answer. He told me what I was to do in October, I just didn’t listen and have the trust in Him that I needed to make my calling and election sure. Or maybe the months I had used to study His word and grow to know Him more were just stepping stones in the journey to making my calling sure. I’m not sure exactly how it was all supposed to work out, but God does and my faith is in Him, not myself. In relation to Matt getting the job and the 3 months that led up to that point I was in a state of the unknown. I didn’t have a clue where we would be. I didn’t know the outcome of the future, but I did have this peaceful knowledge that God had given me through prayer, that we would not be in the same place for the upcoming season. I loved UL and the people and the kids, but I knew God plucked me out of my comfort zone in Andalusia and dropped me into a place, where besides work (and one other precious soul) I didn’t have anyone to talk to or be friends with besides Jesus. Humility was on God’s agenda for me during those 10 months. I got a healthy dose of it. Long story short, I began praying that God would make a way for us and that He would begin to prepare the hearts of the people in whatever town we would be in next. That God would make them accepting of our family and the Word we would bring. That they would be accepting of our ministry to them, whatever that may be. I never prayed to go anywhere specific, just where He led. So, as He always does, He fulfills His promises to us. He made the path incredibly easy. He allowed us to be shown without a shadow of a doubt where we would raise our family. Where we would begin my ministry. I didn’t see this aspect as clearly as I do now. I yet again fought what He told me to do. I tried to justify His calling in saying I would go back and get masters in special education and then maybe I should go into Christian counseling. I tried so hard to take His commandments in my life and make them into something relevant and relatable to a Christ filled path. I couldn’t even look at the course work because I found myself looking on websites of seminary schools. It was like He was saying to me, “you aren’t going to school to do anything other than what I have commanded you to do.” We got settled so to speak in July(not completely) and as the kids began school and football kicked off I began to feel His push again. I began to once again feel this insatiable desire to read His word and act on what He commanded. I had gotten in a funk the months prior and was feeling out of place again, like I wasn’t fulfilling His commandments in my life. In August I began to be convicted again, but this time with a little more gusto from God. When I woke up I would hear Him say to me repeatedly before my feet hit the floor, Luke 4:12 Jesus answered, “It is said: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.'” I know this was Him reminding me that He has commanded me to do His works and I hadn’t taken the proper steps. It scared me. It scared me because I began to worry that He was going to start taking things away from me if I didn’t answer Him. He is a God of love, but also wrath. So, I began to pray for an opportunity in the community to arise that I would be able to be around like- minded people. That I would be given an opportunity to begin my ministry, small at first and as God desires, that it would reach as far as the east is from the west. I was given an opportunity to work at a local church. I know God ordained this opportunity for me to learn and be led. I was so honored to be given the opportunity, that I prayed for, to work with the community in ministry. This job opportunity is an answered prayer.

I spoke of this inner turmoil to someone out loud the other day regarding God’s wrath and my overwhelming sense of urgency to begin His work now. The devil heard me and I felt the him working against me. I also felt God overpowering the devil. I felt this desire for others to tell me I’m doing that right thing. God showed me that I didn’t need the acceptance and the validation from others, because He already given it to me. It has been an incredible experience the past two weeks, being in the midst of this war and seeing God prevail as He always does. There have been countless instances that God has tried to show me and I just didn’t get it, but I have finally submitted to God completely in this area. I feel like I can finally breathe again. I’m at peace knowing what my future holds because God promised me and I have faith.

“Riches and honor are with me, ensuring wealth and righteousness. My fruit is better than gold, even fine gold, and my yield than choice silver. I walk in the way of righteousness, in the paths of justice, granting an inheritance to those who love me, and filling their treasures.” Proverbs 16:18-21

God is so faithful to us in our prayers and our continuous seeking Him. I am learning to be obedient to Him. So, as I dive into His word again with the insatiable desire to know Him more, I now see His plan for me finally manifesting into something greater than I could’ve ever imagined.

“Therefore my brothers, be all the more diligent to make your calling and election sure.” 2 Peter 1:10

I no longer ask Him to take this thought from my heart. I no longer believe that I am unworthy. I do not sit back and watch the devil try and steal my joy. I long to love God more. I long to feel His embrace. I long to lead others to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ by being His vessel. I long to have no human accolade, but that in all things the glory be given to whom it is owed, our Heavenly Father. I do not work to be seen, but yet to share His love as that of an innocent child or a faceless servant. I long only for Him to be given praise. I will never, in my human flesh, be enough to save anyone. That is the work of our Lord.

 

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