I do not believe in coincidence. Jeremiah 1:5 instructs us that before we were formed in the womb, He knew us. That means that nothing can be hidden from Him; it is only when our eyes have opened, only when our souls are ready to receive….that is when it is time.
It’s been one hard season after another for me, or so it seemed. With children 21 and 17, clearly I have forgotten that giving birth is the definition of hard. So, when I was recently reminded of the words of AW Tozer, I heard God’s Voice speaking confirmation, finally, to my obedience.
“God is looking for people thru whom He can do the impossible. What a pity we plan only things we can do by ourselves” AW Tozer
What a pity indeed. It is not because I was a willing obedient servant, but rather that I was too exhausted, too raw, too broken, to resist any longer. If you’re a Star Trek fan you’ll get the reference….God as Borg; Resistance is Futile.
When He had shattered me, when I was ground to dust, demolished beyond recognition, with the salt from my own tears, I scrubbed away the shards of what was. There was no more of me. And in the absence, there was finally room for God.
In this season of my life, I am grateful that while I sought other things from God, those things were not His Plan. Where I sought Grace and blessed quietness, He poured in instead a warriors heart and a warrior spirit. I wanted peace; He wanted me to stir the waters. So He made me uncomfortable. I desired God to nurture my life, but we ought to be careful in our prayers; God will grant the desires of our hearts IF they align with His Will. His Ways are not our ways, however, and the lesson might just hurt. A LOT.
Years ago, almost another lifetime ago, or so it seems, I read something that haunts me still…
Surrender can be the sweetest thing.
Practice surrender and let the Universe do Its work.
What should immediately have followed was a clear warning; failure to surrender, failure to yield to God’s Omnipotence may be fatal. You may likely wish for death to release you from such willful and wanton disobedience, but even death will not come for you if it is not His Will. That should be the warning, but no such caveat ever came my way.
Instead, I hit every wall, every snag, came ever closer but always just missed being restored to the life I felt stripped from me. My career. My earnings. My savings. My Beloved’s health. Our security. ( I’d cuss here, ‘cause I do occasionally, but I think you get the drift.)
The point is, there was a whole lot of me, and not a whole lot of room for God. Tozer again. Used up, I resigned my lifelong position as strong black women and super-heroine. Trying nearly killed me. REALLY. Living the life I thought God ordained me to instead of surrendering to His Will nearly broke me. Nearly.
With what felt like my last breath, barely above a whisper I begged, “Make of me something new, Lord.” And I meant it.
What has the hardest and yet most beautiful season of my life taught me, and what can my testimony offer you? Don’t be too willful to surrender and trust God until it almost feels too late. Never too late for God, but Psalms 144:4(ESV) reminds us that
“Man is like a breath; his days are like a passing shadow.”
We don’t have all the time in the world.
Having survived my willfulness, my greatest lesson is humility. Equally grateful for water from a tin cup as the finest champagne from cut crystal, that my thirst is slaked is enough. It is enough, Lord, and for the gift of each dawn, now, in a new and deeper way, I. AM. GRATEFUL.
He stripped what was and gave my life back like something new. Only God could have shepherded this transition, and in all I do I give honor and glory to the Only One Who Reigns.
This is a fighter’s song. A warrior’s praise. Failure takes tremendous bravery, but it will sear away from you all that is not necessary. All that is non-essential.
Before I could clearly see again, I heard. The hearing was a knowing in my spirit, and it didn’t make sense. A word came to me late last year, through which God continues to speak.
My word for 2017? SALT. Salt is an irritant. It is also essential, like prayer.
Among the greatest sacrifices we can make is to cast aside our pride and be vulnerable. Your bravery tells someone else that they are not alone. Be that warrior. Be encouraged. Be vulnerable. Be available to someone who might need you, someone you might not even know, and above all, be assured…
Praise be to the Lord my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle. He is my loving God and my fortress, my stronghold and my deliverer, my shield, in whom I take refuge, who subdues peoples[a] under me. ~Psalms 144:1-2(NIV)
My word for 2018? EVOLUTION. It is time for more.