I believe that this post addresses each topic in some form or another…they are woven together: 1. Mapping the reflection verse, 2. God is Here-describe a leap of faith, 3. Goliath- my giant I am facing, 4. Blessings…
In previous posts, I have mentioned my journey of faith. I am constantly growing and changing. There are times when God speaks to my heart and it confirms what I already know to be true. There are times when the lesson is a difficult one to swallow. I have been a Christian all my life. I was baptized when I was eight. I grew up thinking I was strong in my relationship with God. Becoming a reflection of Christ has always been my desire (so that people would see Him through me and believe).
I still did things that were wrong and sinful. I still made bad choices but I don’t doubt that my relationship with God was the real deal. I just didn’t know Him very well and I didn’t allow Him into every aspect of my life. God represented a set of rules and I felt pressure to be perfect. I failed and failed, time and time again.
About two years ago, my relationship with God completely changed. He wasn’t just there to hear my prayers when something went wrong and I no longer felt ignored/abandoned. I had longed to hear His voice. He showed me the word TRUST emblazoned in the darkness and my life was forever changed. He began to tug at my soul in ways I never dreamed possible.
God led me down a path of forgiveness with people who I had hurt and those who hurt me. God spoke to me the words obedience, discipline, discernment, and repentance. The things He has revealed to me about my past and my life have just been amazing. I realized I could trust Him and He loves me no matter what I have done or will do. I carried so much guilt with me and finally I can release it because I know God’s Word. He meets me in my need.
This weekend, I am going to face a giant of my past. I am 99% positive I will be seeing a man with whom I had an emotional affair about thirteen years ago. I was 18/19 years old and he was about double my age, married, and with a family. I will be attending an event with my husband and it just seems that it is inevitable to be in the same place at the same time when you know the same people. In the past, whenever I would see this person, I would feel a huge weight like there was a large elephant in the room that everyone knew about but they just didn’t want to make a scene. I would feel like everyone is judging me. I would feel as if it is giving Satan a big laugh…to see us squirm. However, this time is going to be different. We have forgiven each other. I BELIEVE I am a new creation in Christ. God has shown me and taught me through His word and Bible studies that I have security in Him. I am not the same person I was then and that sin in my life has helped me to focus on God and serve Him. I have been praying for several months that the steps of forgiveness and the growth/leap of faith that I experienced will stand firm. I have been praying that when we see each other, we will see what God sees and not what Satan wants us to remember. I have been praying that I will behave in a manner that honors God and my husband (right down to what I wear and how I represent myself). In the moments that I worry and think of scenarios that could destroy all I have learned, God gives me lyrics of songs (“Forgiven”, “Voice of Truth”, “You Love Me Anyway”, “Strangely Dim”, and “You are More”, to name a few). He gives me words of encouragement. The reflection verse:
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” Philippians 4:8
He gave me that verse three times in one day. It was a scripture on a blog that showed up in my email, it was on facebook as a radio station’s scripture of the day, and I read it at the end of chapter seven of the book Stressed-Less Living. Coincidence? There is no such thing. When I think of bad things and the what ifs, immediately my mind travels to God’s words…think about truth, think about what is lovely and pure, think about praiseworthy things. I am not completely a fan of changing scripture but I had the urge to take out think and replace it with focus. Focus on the truth, focus on what is lovely and pure. Focus on something praiseworthy. You know, the only thing that is all of those things and so much more is the Lord. My spirit just rejoiced in knowing that everything (bad and good) is in His hands. My past, my present, my future has a purpose and I am promised His grace and mercy. That, my friends, is a blessing. So, with a big leap of faith, I am going to continue to trust God to lead me. I will focus on Him this weekend and I will have confidence that I am who He created me to be. I will be still in Him, dance with Him, and offer myself to Him. I will sit in His lap…to be held in His arms…fully relying on Him to get me through. I will accept His protection from the enemy and I will call on His name to remind me who I am, remind me of His promises, and remind me of His truth. After all these years, I know that my experience shaped my life and my brokenness has been the best gift. My broken places are the spaces that God fills with His mercy and grace. Over and over again, my soul melts.