i meet with a group of women every wednesday night. they make me a better me. they push me to be better. to follow after God. to pray with deep desire. and to love like God has called us to. they were purely God sent. and i don't know what my life would be like without having them encouraging me. loving me. and pushing me towards God's best the past couple of years. i am beyond grateful for them, their friendship, and their love.
this semester we decided to do the study, Stuck by Jennie Allen. y'all... WOW. is all i can say. it is pushing me. changing me. causing me to stop and think. and wanting me to give more of my stuck places of life to God. it is teaching me that with God... i am complete. enough. that His ways are perfect. that my life is not my own. that surrendering is the first step of obedience. and that by taking up my cross and accepting His grace daily, i am living a life of obedience.
this study has my mind boggled at times. each chapter is exactly what i need in this season. i am humbled. and on my knees in prayer that God would move thru me because of this study. every week, Jennie knows exactly what i need to hear and read. it is such a beautiful thing to read each page and see how God used her in her stuck moments to write this study. it is beautiful. and raw. and real. and just what i need. and i want her to be my friend, because she gets me. understands my thoughts and my heart. and i get her and i love her heart because of this study.
my prayer tonight as i finished the chapter for this week is that i would allow myself to die to Christ daily. that when i find myself buried in worry. fear. and anxiety that i will stop and surrender my thoughts to God and ask in prayer for Him to take captive of my heart and my thoughts. i want to be more like Jesus. i am only here for a short time. and in that time, i want to live out my faith to the fullest. showing others what it means to be a follower of Christ. i am not perfect. far from it. but i want to be better. i want to put Christ first daily, and die to myself. i want to let go of all my stuck areas so that i can experience the grace and love of God tenfold. it takes willingness... to move. to jump off the ledge. to go where others may think is weird. to be brave. and to live like i know Christ is calling me to live.
i am ready to allow God to move. and to call me for what i was made to do here on this earth. He is good and i know the plans He has for my life are perfect in every way. so now is the time to allow God to stretch me and make me uncomfortable so that i can become more like Him. so that i am able to love like Him and extend His grace to those around me. i am ready. my prayer is that each day i start with Him and stay focused on Him - because i know my days and life will be that much more fruitful because He is in the center.
are you ready to take this journey with me? it may be uncomfortable... but i know it will be so worth it.
"For we know that our old self was crucified with (Christ) so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin -- because anyone who has died has been freed from sin." - Romans 6:6-7
i had a moment in church today. an ugly crying moment where God just really moved my heart and began to tear down more walls that i have had built up for quite some time. during this beautiful disaster, i let His words of truth wash over me. something i don't think i have really allowed myself in quite sometime because i have been too distracted and burdened by the things of this world.
the sermon was on identity and the identity that Christ has for all of us - as a child of God. it was something we have all heard, but it resonated differently today. because at the end of the sermon, one of our deacons got up and prayed scripture over us and then began asking us to really think about what defines our identity. he asked us to just be still and let God move and to pray that God would bring to the forefront of our minds what we really allow to defines us. as the music played i prayed for answers and the tears just started to flow because all i could think about what i allow to define me is negative things... my past failures.fear.worry.anxiety.what other people think.... nothing that is from God. and that broke me. and it made me so sad because i have missed out on the beauty of so many things because of what my identity rests in. he then asked us to pray and relinquish to God what our current identity rests in. i very willingly told God to take it. this was a bold move for me. because i have been carrying the burdens for so long that it has become easier to not acknowledge them than it has to work through them. but today - God wanted it to be different. so i prayed for Him to take it away. and He sweetly told me that in His time all things will be made perfect. that everything will make sense. and that i need to clothe myself in His grace during this journey because His love is enough. and for me to just rest in Him and place my worth in Him. i cried some more. and Reagan just held my hand so tightly through it all. some of my tears were tears of joy because i was letting the weight of the burden go, but others where tears for what is to come... the unexpected. i really realized today that when i walk in His truths, that is when His plans really begin to make sense and i am able to see the beauty in it all. i need Him. God knows my heart, but He also knows who He wants me to be better than i know myself and my life. so today i had a breakthrough. and i am proud of myself for letting the Holy Spirit move in me. this journey has been a process but one filled with valuable lessons. and the more i become like Christ, the more i begin to understand the will and purpose He has for my life.
so i challenge you to evaluate yourself and your identity. is it focused on your family, your work, your past failures, your past goals and achievements? God wants nothing more than for our identity to be solely focused on Him and Him alone because we are a beautiful child of God and He only has His best for us.
when we allow ourselves to be stretched and broken... God is able to move. i challenge you to let Him move mountains because we all have room to grow and be broken so that we are able to become more like Him.