Has someone ever said to you, ”Don’t cry,” as your tears are pouring down your face?
I have heard it myself, and even said it to others, but just this week, two people around me have made this statement to someone, and it got me thinking…
Why do we live in a society that feels uncomfortable with emotion? Or, why do we feel ashamed to cry in front of others?
For me, I was told (again), it was a weakness to cry, and so I became known as the ”ice-maiden,” because I would show no emotion. Feelings were dead to me, but my husband, Kieren, struggled that he could see within that my heart was breaking, and yet I would try and keep myself composed, like a true English Gal!
I remember being told by an Aunt that ”we certainly do not air our dirty laundry, ” (because people will know something is wrong) – It took me a long time to ”learn” to cry.
Friends, we have a loving Father who talks about tears, crying, and mourning, a lot within the Bible
I love the imagery of God collecting all of our tears in a bottle (Psalm 56:8), or that he hears our prayers and sees our tears (2 Kings 20:5) – He is present, He is near, and He cares.
I remember, that I breathed a sigh of relief when I became a Christian, because I thought that I would never know hardship again…yet, I learnt (quickly) that pain and suffering still comes my way, I just now realise that I have God by my side to comfort, and listen to my cries
I want to encourage you this morning to not fear emotion.
I get a picture of every tear that falls, waters the ground, to bring life from God’s glory. God draws us near to Him in times of need, to know that we are not alone, but to also realise that He walks with us, step by step.
Remember, we might be within a valley of tears, but God is preparing us for His city of everlasting joy
So, next time you are near to some you care for, and they start to cry, hold them, and weep with them because it’s ok to cry – God’s got them, and He will use those tears, for good
Have you ever been in a place where God has asked something of you, and you feel a million miles away from how you ”thought” it was going to go?
Imagine Joseph – he was told by an Angel to take Mary as his wife, and to name her unborn child, Jesus – who wasn’t Joseph’s. Then they get called to go to the Census, in Bethlehem, because Joseph is from King David’s lineage, and then, Mary has her baby in a stable, rather than some five-star luxury resort, because after all, Mary is carrying God’s child
If I were Joseph, I would have thought, ”did I get this wrong?” I mean, Joseph must have doubted many times, on the journey, what he ”thought” he heard the Angel say
Yet, we see, time and time again, that when God spoke – Joseph faithfully obeyed, and remained in that circumstance until God spoke again. He trusted God to put one foot in front of the other, which always led his family to a place of safety
Sometimes, faithfulness is simply putting one foot in front of the other, and walking by faith, and not by sight. Declaring that you are trusting God in this unseen process, and watching God’s goodness unfold, even if that is days, months, years…or unseen. Sometimes, we don’t get to know why, or where, or how, but I want to encourage you, that if God spoke to you – whether the audible voice or stillness in your Spirit – and He hasn’t spoken since, remain faithful to that call
Don’t stand still…
Don’t go back to what makes you feel comfortable…
Look towards Heaven, and like Joseph, be obedient to what was asked of you
”At that time the Roman emperor, Augustus, decreed that a census should be taken throughout the Roman Empire. And because Joseph was a descendant of King David, he had to go to Bethlehem in Judea, David’s ancient home. He travelled there from the village of Nazareth in Galilee. He took with him Mary, to whom he was engaged, who was now expecting a child. And while they were there, the time came for her baby to be born. She gave birth to her firstborn son. She wrapped him snugly in strips of cloth and laid him in a manger, because there was no lodging available for them.” Luke 2:1, 4-7
I was raised not to show ”weakness,” and so, I grew up thinking that it was me against the world.
I developed a ”thick skin”, and wore an invisible ”mask” so that, no matter what came my way, and no matter how much my circumstances were hurting me – I wanted the world to think I was a warrior. Yet, at night, alone, I would cry myself to sleep, fearful of what lay ahead, and tired of the constant pain. I felt drained…tired of the sunrise and sunset.
Fast forward to when I met God, and my mind was blown to the possibility of the Creator of the universe wanting a relationship with me, but also I instantly went into performance mode. I would rehearse my prayers out loud (before I spoke them to God) and I would even think that this new relationship was based on me ticking off some Child-of-God-checklist. Therefore, I spent years thinking that, again, I wasn’t good enough; only now, I assumed I was going to hell because I kept ”failing.”
Imagine a house – I had created the perfect lounge for God to come and sit with me, but He was never allowed past the dining room because I could no longer hide the mess of the kitchen, the bathrooms, or the bedrooms. Nope, He was forbidden. I thought that God couldn’t see my mess if I only just kept my lounge tidy and my mask on.
It took me years to let God into my life. Before then, I kept Him at a distance because I assumed that from afar, He wouldn’t see the real me. God wouldn’t know my most inner thoughts, and so, He couldn’t see the failure I indeed was.
I didn’t know that God was omnipresent or omniscient because Christianity was new to me. I didn’t know that God loved me without conditions, without merit, or competition. I struggled that it was no longer, you against I to fight for affection – it’s you and I, equally loved, cherished, and restored, by God.
Friends, you may have spent a lifetime – so far – striving for God’s affection. You may think that you are all alone. You may think that you will never be enough. Or that you can only let Him into the entrance way…
I’m here to tell you that when I tore down the lies I had believed about God, it allowed Him to heal me from the inside out. But from this, I realised that when I voluntarily let God into my circumstances – things changed, miracles happened, peace came, and joy entered my heart, because in a world of impossibility, lies God, and He literally died so that you could find Him once more. There is nothing, within His will, that He won’t do for you
”I know that you can do anything, and no one can stop you.” Job 42:2
This topic is what I believe keeps the world broken.
Fatherlessness throughout the globe is such an epidemic that the world struggles with its brokenness, daily.
Fatherlessness sees so much pain, heartache, and suffering within so many statistics across the board, that these numbers are quite frankly, killing souls.
If you had a father who was kind and loving, remember to thank God for him, because for most people, this is not the case.
For me, my father was physically there, but on all other levels, he was absent from my life. I grew up craving that approval, to be seen, to receive the attention and acceptance that I so desperately searched for. So much so that my Daddy-issues were apparent in my life until only three years ago. For nearly 35 years, up until that point, I had seen myself as worthless – always desiring the affirmation of my heart. This led to the decisions that affected my life in ways I don’t think I have still quite comprehended.
It was in finding God’s love that enabled me to accept the love of my biological father, yet, to receive the Father’s love took me over a decade to find.
We are too quick to make judgements on others from our place of brokenness, and yet, let’s be honest, this issue of fatherlessness didn’t just start with our generation, or even the one before that – people have been craving the Father’s love, since Cain and Abel.
Friends, I said that it took me over a decade to truly find God’s love, but in doing so, it transformed my relationship with my dad. Is it perfect? Absolutely not, but, I have learnt to love him for who he is, not what I needed him to be.
I now accept my dad’s flaws because we are all beautifully imperfect. I let go of the expectations that my earthly father couldn’t give me and turned to the only Father who could.
Yet, in doing so, there was no more pressure for my dad to perform, to try and become who, I thought, he was meant to be. My ashes became a crown of beauty when I let go of the hurt and pain of fatherlessness, because I realised that I had a heavenly Father, who had been there all along. God’s love had been there all along – I was just looking in the wrong place, and blaming everyone else in the process
“Even if my father and mother abandon me, the Lord will hold me close.” Psalms 27:10
I have a love-hate relationship with winter. I love the coziness of being by the fire, with a blanket and a good book, or movie. I also love the invitation to “wrap up warm,” when I am about to brace myself to go outside. But, I hate feeling the cold – especially when the cold gets “in your bones”, and it takes you an hour to thaw out!
Winter always makes me think of the season we can face. The sparseness, the lack, the “God, where are you? moments” – but it is in these times that I have looked back and realised that I now look forward to this season. Not in a cruel way, but it is a time to go to God in complete surrender, a time to dig into the word, because when we draw closer to God – that is where our strength ultimately comes from.
I have found that when I go deeper, it is in the profound intimacy that I find peace, love, grace, and mercy. My soul is renewed and replenished. I can then find the Holy Spirit’s power to go beyond the human mindset, and tackle wherever life takes me
Friends, it is going deeper that we can go higher. If you think of a seed, it has to create a great root system to grow into a tree. A sky-rise must have a strong foundation to hold the building itself. We must seek God, spend time with Him and His Word to grow into whom we have been called to be.
Go deeper with God.
Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable, because God is waiting for a chance, where you can breathe, as he restores your soul. An opportunity that you will then soar as high as an eagle – just as you were created to be
Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.” Colossians 2:7
Words have so much power
I wish I could tell my younger self to stay focused. To not listen to criticism. The whisper of lies, and the deceit of the enemy, because it robbed me of my peace and joy for many years
And yet, recently, God revealed to me that, again, a lie had been received and had become my truth…
You’d think I’d know better, and yet, here I am, shocked at being sideswiped in a seemingly harmless way
Six months ago, I unknowingly stopped believing a God-given dream.
So much so that I stopped writing in my diary. Innocently (or so I thought) – I had decided to prioritise my morning routine, and therefore, for the next season, I thought the diary could go on the ”backburner” to allow me more time to breathe, to reflect, and to restore my brokenness of feeling rejected. I didn’t want to write about the pain, and the loss I felt. I didn’t want to see it in black and white
I know I am a daughter. Chosen. Restored. Healed. Loved…
Yet, I felt my book wasn’t good enough to be published. It seems ridiculous now, but I believed it. Instead of pushing through that negative thought, I accepted it, it comforted me, because I seemed to be at a dead end, and it made sense. It wasn’t that the path I was on was wrong. Just the outcome I had thought of, needed a different interpretation
Yesterday was surreal. Yesterday I signed a contract for my book to be published (release date: October 2019)
Then it dawned on me…
My diary had allowed me to process. To hear His voice and to reaffirm His truth into my soul each morning. The lie had stopped that revelation occurring. For six months, I have robbed myself of intimacy that only that time can know. So, I ripped that lie out, and I let go of the regret of not pushing through because something so innocent can stop us believing for what is to come.
Friend, ask God if there are lies we are believing, and be open about the revelation that comes, because with or without our prayers, God’s plan will unfold, but how much sweeter would the testimony have been, if I had rejected that unGodly truth that I had let in
I had a vision from God that I’d like to share…
I saw this beautiful old-styled, pure gold megaphone.
Where you put your mouth to speak, God had placed three jewels – pink (represented the love of God) orange (represented perseverance) and purple (represented authority).
The megaphone itself had seven lines from those three jewels, and I could see seven brilliant diamonds around the broadest part of the cylinder that touched each of the seven lines.
As we spoke into the megaphone, God allowed me to see the sound waves that came from it. They were like a prism – every colour that I could think of, and more, came from the words spoken – but, I could see the sound waves went throughout the land and beyond, in purity.
God spoke, and I felt Him say that there are many of us still speaking to others from a place of brokenness. Although we are His child, we have not let His love soak into the very depths of our soul.
Therefore, He’s now giving each one of us a megaphone. This will then speak the Words given by Him, to others, but our words will be filtered by the megaphone itself, so that they will be received pure, from a place of love, and with God’s authority. This way, no-one will deny they aren’t from God
Friends, time is so short for this life, and our brokenness allows the enemy to use the Words received by God, as a weapon of destruction. Our filter is like a bent antenna – although we receive the Words, they get distorted. The megaphone is strong, unbreakable, and brings wisdom.
Therefore, God is asking us to use His megaphone to speak in the last days. To pour out His love on the land, with authority, and perseverance because although sound waves can’t be seen, we can still ”see” the result of waves in action
”It is written: “ ‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, ‘every knee will bow before me; every tongue will acknowledge God.’ ” Romans 14:11