Hi. Uhmmmmm, I needed that hug. Did I tell you it rained last week? Yes, it was wonderful. Still is. So, what has your week been like so far? Mine? Oh, well, it's been a week for hunkering in close to Abba. Not hard as in personal difficulties but rather hard as in seeing brothers and sisters of the faith struggling along, falling into traps of offense, and barely skirting snares of selfish ambition. The devil is a liar, and that liar seems hell bent on wrecking the relationship of every Christian brother and sister he can.
I know, no surprise there. The Word tells us he comes to steal, kill, and destroy. I just wish that I could somehow do a supernatural download into the mind of every believer that the enemy's stealing, killing, and destroying aren't what it's all about. That the best part, the part we ought to be shouting the loudest over and getting the most excited about is the second half of that Word where Jesus tells us that HE has come that we might have life and that more abundantly. The abundant life of Jesus ought to be getting WAY more attention and publicity than the little bit of yuck the devil throws at us. AND YES!!! compared to the inconceivable goodness of God, the worst of the devil's worst is piddling and insignificant! God's goodness is bigger, more wondrous, more magnificent, more marvelous, more tremendous, more healing, more freeing, more peaceful, more faithful, more joyous, more good, more awesome than satan's bad, awful, evil, vile, will ever be. It. is. true!!! God's goodness outshines evil. One drop of the goodness of God chases away the dark of evil and death. Oh, the desire to impart this to fellow believers is so great, so intense. I want to shout it from the mountains for all to hear. GOD IS GOOD and His mercy endureth FOREVER!!!
Flames of love, blazes of passion stoked by the life of Christ Jesus inside of me fuel this desire of mine to shout out the goodness of God to a world mistakenly believing and living for themselves, according to their own understanding. When? When, oh when will the children of God believe His words? When will they arise and shine for their light has come? When? When will the saints dare to take a stand against the old mindsets, those lying fears and prejudices that have their base in hurts and woundings Jesus already healed? When will the saints of God intentionally close their ears to the buzz around them and hear only what God says? Live only for Him? Say only what He leads them to say? When? When? Oh, my dearly loved brothers and sisters, when?
It's hard, you say? So was receiving the stripes on His back, but He did. Jesus did, and He did it for us so that we don't have to pull inside of ourselves crying silent wounded tears while lashing out angry at our nearest and dearest ones. Jesus took those stripes. It isn't a story. It's truth. It's real. It happened. He was beaten, spit upon, beard pulled out, abused, wounded beyond what any other human has ever been, and then crucified on a tree. He interceded before the Father until drops of sweat blood poured from his skin. He did it. For us. When are we going to live for Him? When are we going to lay aside our everything, pick up His cross, and live fully engaged in all and only Him? When? When will we? When?
Yes, I say we. I say we because I too need to be asked this question. I need to be looked straight in the eye and asked when. "When, daughter will you live for Me as I lived and died for you? When? When will I be enough? When will you believe I love you? When will My wisdom, grace, and mercy be sufficient for you? When? You know all that I have given and done for you, yet you still choose to fear, doubt, and lack. Why? Why am I not enough for you? Why is your understanding and opinion so much more important than My perfect wisdom and truth? I have planned good works for you to do, good works, not evil. There is a great adventure, a wondrous life for us to live together. Marvelous work awaits us. When will you let go of you and let me hold you completely so that we can live this adventure and do the work? When, daughter, when?"Yes, I too need to contemplate this question of when.
Maybe there are thoughts that I don't understand, that only someone who has had an easy, spoiled life could write words such as these. Maybe it is imagined that I have obviously never suffered trial or hardship. If this is so, it makes me smile. For all have suffered. All have been wounded. All have lived pain. I have, and often I still do. Easy isn't a word used to describe life. Easy doesn't have anything to do with anything. Easy? No, not easy. Good. Good is rarely easy. Usually, good is hard, quite hard. But I don't recall God being too concerned with hard. Why would He be? He is all powerful, all knowing, and all present? What is hard to Him? That being said, what is hard to us, the people of His love, the called, the beloved, the redeemed? It is no longer we that live but Christ that lives in us, so what is hard when the One who conquered sin, death, hell and the grave resides in our hearts? What is hard when He has told us to be of good cheer for He has overcome the world and deprived it of its power to harm us? What is hard when He has told us to come to Him when we are heavy laden and He will give us rest?
He has given us Himself, the Word. Abba has provided armor to wear in the middle of the fray. He comes in like a flood raising up the standard against the enemy when he comes in. He busies Himself with our every step. Our steps are ordered by Him. His plans for us are of good. What is hard in the light of these truths? On and on and on the promises and Words of Truth fill the Bible. These are the sword He has given us, the sword the Spirit wields "which is the Word of God". This week has been a week for hunkering close to Abba and sharpening the sword He has given me to use. Battling for brothers and sisters in prayer requires meetings with Abba. God is the commander in chief. He is the captain. He is the leader. He is the One I go to receive wisdom from, to talk strategy, if you will. I know He wants His children to remember Him, to remember His Word, to remember what HE has done and Who He has been in their lives. He is same. He changes not. He has always been there and always will be.
My brothers and sisters need to know. They are weary. They are struggling. Some are losing their fights because they have forgotten their commander's might and power. They have been slapped in the face by the enemy and forgotten truth. It only takes one reminder. One reminder that God is good and His love endures forever. One reminder that He holds them in the palm of His hand. One reminder that He gathers them in His bosom. One reminder of God, of Love, of good. Just one. One Word from God can change your life forever. So, this. This is what my week has been so far. Hunkering in with Abba crying and praying the believers will remember Him, that He is good, that is is all about Him. Well, it is supposed to be all about Him. A Holy Experience blog, remember that one? Today at A Holy Experience Ann Voskamp was sharing it is all about staying in love. The words she wrote were the ones my heart didn't know how to write or say. I just pray everyone goes over there and reads how it is all about staying in love, in love with Jesus.
So thankful that you have not only fallen in love with Jesus dear friend, but that you are staying in love with Him. Every time we get together I am blessed to be in your presence for the presence of the Lord just oozes out of you spilling over into the very atmosphere of our visits. Thank you. Thank you for coming and thank you still more for listening to my heart. He loves us so much. You are one of the multitude of gifts He gives to tell me so. Thank you. Next time you come over, we'll make some of those chocolate chocolate chip cookies I have the recipe for. There are two recipes to try. We'll each bake one. Love you, friend! Here is the last peanut butter cookie to munch on while you walk home. Want a cup of coffee to go? They go together beautifully, don't they? See you soon!