victim? i don’t think so.

On my drive home from work today, i began to realize how thankful i am. I am so so thankful for a God who remains on the throne when my sky is falling. When it feels like i just can’t quite get things right, when i am feeling broken and lost, or when i just don’t know what to do, i am so thankful to serve a God who has all the answers.

The story of Esther has always been one of my favorites.

Small town girl gets summoned along with several others by the king. The king then gets to choose the one he fancies the most and makes her his queen. (Spoiler alert) He chooses Esther, but then her family and friends’ lives are put in danger by order of the king(unknowingly). Esther must then face the king. She has to risk her life by entering his throne room without being requested. This was a massive crime and the king could have her killed. But she goes. She enters her king’s throne room with a simple request, and he treats her with a tender grace and compassion. He welcomed her with joy and granted her requests.

This is such a beautiful picture of how our King Jesus treats us. He chose us as His bride and when we enter His presence, He treats us with such a love and tenderness. When we are broken, He picks us up and comforts us in His arms. He hears our requests and makes them His priority. Yes, He is a just God who should be feared, but he also has so much grace and mercy to grant us. He wipes our tears, pulls the hair out of our eyes, and reminds us that we are His.

-At this point in writing this, i received some upsetting news. I shut my computer and fell apart. I was so frustrated. The next day, something else happened that was really hurtful. It felt like i had been stabbed and then the knife had been pushed in even farther. And while the things that happened were minuscule, it was like the enemy had peeked into my heart, found the tiny dreams i had, and destroyed them right in front of me. I broke down. It was almost paralyzing because it felt as if the enemy was lurking around waiting to attack the second i so much as breathed.

Spiritual warfare is a very real thing. It’s an intense battle between truth and lies. And i was in this battle.

I knew i had a decision to make. I could either give in and accept the label of a victim, or i could claim my victory through Christ. Because the truth is that love had already won the battle.

I got in my car and started driving. I was so genuinely ticked off at the enemy that i began to yell. I was done with him. My joy garden had come too far for me to allow him to rip it up. I made sure to put him in his place. He received his eviction notice and was kicked to the curb.

I was still broken though. I had to humble myself before God and ask Him to restore me. I had to enter His throne room and allow Him to hold me. I had to be willing to hear His voice telling me that i was His.

Whether you’re dealing with something big or small, I can honestly say that the fight is worth it. This won’t be the last time an attack comes, the enemy is a very persistent dude.

I know this sounds cheesy, but I’m so serious when i say that with God on your side you will never lose. You just won’t.

I know it can be very easy to focus only on the doors that have been closed, but if you spend your life just staring at a closed door you’ll never see the better, open doors.

Encouragement(for real though, this is the most important part): Choose to claim your victory in Christ no matter how difficult it may be. Allow your heavenly father to wipe your tears, comfort you, and restore you. Don’t waste time mourning closed doors, rejoice in knowing that there is a better one coming.

lots of love,

b

xoy9MgIuB_.jpg

 

Advertisements
Standard

let joy grow

Joy. What a wonderful gift. It is one of the fruits of the spirit and since it is a fruit, that means that it has to grow. Fruit doesn’t just appear, there are certain things that have to happen in order to grow fruit. For instance, you have to plant the fruit….then water it, and make sure it has the proper sunlight, etc. Well when it comes to joy, your first step is going to be asking God for it(and i’ve never known Him to say no, so you don’t have to worry about that). But the trickiest part of it all is what comes next…

During our day to day life, we go and go and go. And often times, that becomes so physically, emotionally, and spiritually exhausting. In my own personal life i have realized that i am so drained by the time a week is over that all i want to do on weekends is sleep. In addition to exhaustion, we can also become frustrated, stressed out, and unhappy. Let me tell you, trying to balance a full time job, a long distance relationship, a relationship with God, friendships, and trying to have some fun in there as well is a difficult task. They say, “welcome to adulthood” and “that’s just life sweetheart”. But sugar coating it by telling me something i already know doesn’t make it easier for any of us. Plus, it doesn’t have to be that way!

“…Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength” Nehemiah 8:10. We quote this verse all the time but i don’t think we actually understand what it is actually saying.

Because God has granted us His joy, we have strength.

Our strength lies in joy. The joy of the Lord to be exact. But here’s the catch, we have to choose to walk in joy. When we choose to walk in the joy of the Lord, we will have strength. It’s as simple as that. If you’ve asked God for joy and you’re sitting around wondering where its at, get up. Get up and go walk in it. That is the next step. If you don’t own the joy that God has granted you, what use is it? Unless you actually unwrap the gift and use it, it does you no good.

Being joyful is something that you as an individual have to decide to apply to your life. I can tell you to walk in joy, and i can even pray for you to have it but unless you make the decision that you want it, and you receive it, then my words have been wasted.

Guys, life becomes so much more enjoyable when you choose joy. Now, choosing joy doesn’t mean that you will never be sad, or upset, or tired, or exhausted. We all go through periods in our life when things may not all be going as planned. But having joy and choosing to walk in it gives you the ability to keep a smile on your face, to choose optimism, to still choose to love, to encourage others, and to rejoice in the victories no matter how big or small they are.

Nothing bad can ever come out of a joyous lifestyle. There will always be haters but when you have the joy of the Lord that won’t matter.

So go, be joyful!

lots of love and smiles,

b

Processed with VSCO with x1 preset

Processed with VSCO with x1 preset

Standard