To learn how to stay faithful through your waiting periods and through the disillusionment that can easily follow, download a free copy of our Becoming His Princess Bible study (HERE) and check out our weekly video segments HERE. You can also listen to and/or download the audio for each week, free, HERE. (Make sure to return to our YouTube Channel a week from today to check out week five, which centers completely on waiting faithfully and what God is and might be doing through those difficult seasons.)
This Thanksgiving, may you feel God’s presence, experience His peace, and give yourself and those you encounter the same grace He offers to each of us.
Happy Thanksgiving from the Wholly Loved Ministries Family!
“I give up!”
The word surrender often makes us think of defeat and failure, right? But what if I told you surrender can mean victory…even freedom?
As a toddler, my mantra was, “I can do it myself!” Unfortunately, I carried that attitude into adulthood. I wanted to be in control and live my way, on my terms. To me, that was freedom—not being dictated by anything or anyone …certainly not God.
But my perceived liberty was a lie.
We were created with an innate longing—to be seen, known and loved. I now know only God can fulfill that desire. But, for years I tried to satisfy the craving with things the world promised would bring contentment. I just needed the right —job, relationship, house, clothes, physique, whatever—and then I’d be happy. Such pursuits, though, tethered me to them…enslaved me. I gave my all, but one by one, each accomplishment and item failed to live up to my expectations, or left me exhausted, living with regret. Ultimately asking: Is this all there is to life? I constantly felt restless and unsatisfied, like something was missing
I finally discovered what I was missing—the most important thing in life, the foundation that gives everything else in my life meaning and purpose. God.
Not the God I’d misunderstood for so long…the distant, controlling dictator. But, the One who “fearfully and wonderfully made” each of us for a specific purpose. The God who sees us—knows us better than we know ourselves—and loves us so much that He sent His Son, Jesus, in the greatest love story ever told—to rescue, to free us from bondage to a broken world.
“Surrender” has never been so victorious as the day I gave up serving myself and this world and placed my life in Jesus’ precious, nail-scarred hands. The day I discovered that living in His love is where true freedom is found.
Are you living free? Lay down your pride and fears today and run to Jesus, as you learn to live Wholly Loved.
My foot edged out of the airplane door in preparation to jump, the cold wind slapping my face and screaming in my ears. As I leapt, I glanced down and realized that I wasn’t wearing a parachute. I was gripped with terror!
Ok, so that was obviously just a dream. But we face fear or anxiety almost daily, right?
In the Bible, God repeatedly commands us not to fear. In fact, fear is such a big deal that Scripture mentions it at least 365 times (one for each day of the year). It’s easy to understand why fear is bad. For one, it reveals a lack of trust that God’s in control.
But, feeling frightened is human instinct, right? God, how can we possibly just “not fear”?!
I don’t think God is threatening, “Don’t ever feel afraid again … or else!” Rather, through Scripture, He proves that Christ’s victory over death is the reason we no longer need to let fear control us and equips us to strip away its power.
In my dream, I was free-falling without the proper protection needed to land safely. Honestly, I would still be nervous even with a parachute strapped securely to my back. But, I could quiet my worry with the knowledge that I’d dressed myself appropriately for the situation.
God calls us to dress daily…in His armor. You’re probably saying … wait, armor is for battle. Why do I need that? Fighting fear is a battle, my friend. And failing to put on the armament He’s provided is like jumping out of a plane without a parachute.
Ephesians 6:10-18 lists each part of God’s armor: the belt of truth, breastplate of righteousness, boots of peace, shield of faith, helmet of salvation, and sword of the Spirit, and how we can use it to stand victorious in Him each day.
Praying this protection over ourselves won’t stop bad things from happening or prevent us from feeling fear. But, fully dressed, we’ll have every weapon God provides us at the ready, so we can quickly recognize and put fear in its place….in His hands.
Are you controlled by fear? Don’t fight it alone. Instead, dress yourself in God’s armor and step into the battle alongside the One who will always win.
Do you struggle with fear? Want to learn how to learn how to live in greater freedom? Then join us for our next Bold and Brave conference, hosted by Good Shepherd Presbyterian in Lincoln, Nebraska. Find out more and register HERE.
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