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As I can I want to offer a fresh word of encouragement sharing from my experience how our Father God meets us in the middle of loving and living out our faith to draw others to freedom. The road to freedom can seem long and hard not unlike the experiences of those living as refugees from war torn nations, those walking out of years of abuse and pain in broken relationships, those facing the reality check that comes with unplanned pregnancy, and the great journey to healing from trauma. I fully believe we are offered so much more than we ever experience as Christ followers. We settle for a life in bondage to the elemental nature of this world and continue to live as Hagar when in fact we are daughters of Sarah.
Galatians 4:3131 So, brothers [and sisters], we are children not of the slave woman, but of the free woman.
An example of an assignment is homework given to a student.
An example of an assignment is the position of any US Ambassador.
An example of assignment is the act of the president choosing an individual to be part of his administration.
Assignment...being chosen to take responsibility...a position...a task. I am at the end of one assignment and the beginning of another. These moments often come with confusion, guilt and a momentary feeling of not being needed or wanted. How many times have I allowed myself to get so entangled in the assignment of loving someone else, carrying them in prayer, walking out a hard transition...but getting myself lost in the process forgetting that it is an assignment not my identity. Forgetting it is a season and my part will shift, will change, will be redefined. He has put me in this position and He hand picked me for this assignment...He is there before and He is here after...The passion that has drawn me to serving as I do, the heart cry to see the lost and hurting drawn out into the light and given release from their oppression, bondage, and imprisonment has come with many hard assignments. Seasons of intense prayer and fasting, seasons of living with hard to live with people, choosing a person over completing a task, giving up space, time and energy, constant rearranging and times of forced rest when I would not yield...Now I am entering a season laden with opportunity to enter a chosen rest from a place of humility and experience and not from desperation and exhaustion. I myself can experience restoration...restoration of health, restoration of relationships, restoration of my position as mother and wife and to some as friend. These were all in some ways set aside as the assignments before me took all of me...and now having wrestled with the Lord in the deep dark places not just of my heart but in the lives of those around me one assignment is ending and a rest from a season of "war" is in front of me. I am learning again or perhaps for the first time how to live after war. Isn't this what we are here to live out anyway? Aren't we all positioned to be living examples of those rescued, those saved, those who are able to enter rest because we put our Trust in the living God. The assignment is to live out my identity in Christ, to just be...If I truly am going to offer a place of breakthrough, of rest, of hope...then I truly have to step into it myself...If what I offer is no different then the confusion, separation and anxiety around me then I truly have nothing to offer.
Several years ago I shared on what I was learning about perseverance and the secret to perseverance in yielding to the Lord in trusting and resting in Him. Summarized in these points:
We quit moving towards godliness and stay stuck in the treadmill of self-discipline when we refuse to rest:
We quit because we are tired. We quit because it hurts. We quit because we do not see the end result. We think we have to make it work. If we try again…if we put everything else aside…but we refuse to return and to rest we refuse to yield to quietness and trust…we refuse to give up anxiety, we refuse to walk vulnerable…we must shore up our weaknesses, we must fix ourselves …. we must, we must, we must get it right…
The places that hurt, the loses, the questions, the concerns, the failures….are only endured through abiding trust and a willingness to walk away from a habit, a self defense even of what seems good and right allowing everything to be measured in the light of the true goal…Love
Three things you must give place for in your life:
Its sowing seeds in faith and feeling the Living Water starting to make them grow because even when He doesn't have to send encouragement, He does.
“If you can’t fly, then run, if you can’t run, then walk, if you can’t walk, then crawl, but whatever you do, you have to keep moving forward.” Martin Luther King Jr.
43 But now, this is what the Lord says— he who created you, Jacob, he who formed you, Israel:“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.
So may you give place to Process, Encouragement and Healing and learn to embrace the assignments while remaining in a place of trust and rest. Truly this is a process, we are not called to this alone, and healing is for you not just for those we are called to love and serve.