Most nights I read my kids a story before we go to bed. Lately they have both been into the children’s bible we bought them a while back. One particular night this week I was tired, and didn’t feel like reading to them… I was trying to push for an extra few minutes of the TV show they were watching, but they were relentless. Mom guilt sunk in, and I conceded and sat down with their story. We opened up to the story of Moses parting the Red Sea. As I was reading this story that I have read and heard a bunch of times, I was filled with conviction, and revelation. You see, I have been going through some transitions in my life right now. Nothing major, nothing big, just transitions where I have been having to set my “idea” of control aside, and trust that God has it under control, knows where I am going, and what will become of all I am going through. In full transparency I personally struggle with anxiety, and the need for control. I struggle with stepping out in blind faith, and with doubt. What is so calming to me though is He sees that. He knows my heart, He knows my struggles, and He wants to help me. He knew I was going to read the story of Moses to my kids that night, and He led me deeper into to what He wanted to reveal to me through it. All I had to do was listen.
I took it upon myself to re-read the adult version of this story in my bible, and it spoke to me in a way it never has before. For those of you who don’t know the story, or just need a quick refresher here it is. God called Moses to lead the children of Egypt and into the wilderness away from the wrath of Pharoh. The Egyptians, angry that the Isrealites left, pursued with avengence. When the Egyptians came upon the camp the Isrealites were staying in, the Isrealites were filled with fear and looked to Moses saying, “Because there were no graves in Egypt, have you taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you dealt with us, to bring us up out of Egypt? Is this not the word that we told you in Egypt, saying ‘Let us alone that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than that we should die in the wilderness. And Moses said to the people, ‘Do not be afraid. Stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, and He will accomplish for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today you shall see again no more forever. The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace.’” Exodus 14:11-14. The Lord than told Moses to “Lift up your rod, and stretch but your hand over the sea and divide it.” Exodus 14:16. Without hesitation Moses did just that, and the sea was divided allowing the children of Isreal to cross through to the other side. As soon as the Egyptians followed The Lord created chaos for them. Their wagon wheels fell off, their horses fell down and The Lord told Moses to stretch his hand out again, and return the waters to what they were, killing all of the Egyptians.
Who wants faith like Moses? I know I do. Moses never once said to God “are you sure?” He didn’t say “Well God… this is an ocean… and I don’t think I can do that…” NOO!! He just DID IT! He stepped out, in blind faith in God, and DID IT. No questions asked. We can do that! We have the same power! Hebrews 13:8 says “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.” The same God that worked through Moses to do this, is THE GOD WE SERVE! I believe that we all have more power than we even realize, and we need to just tap into that. We need to BELIEVE. We need to BE STILL AND KNOW THAT HE IS GOD, because He is, and He is so unbelievably powerful. YOU are so unbelievably powerful… realize that, walk in that, and HAVE CONFIDENCE IN THAT. Hebrews 11:6 says “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must BELIEVE that He is, and that He is the rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” It is so overwhelming to realize that. In His name we come alive, and in Him WE WILL NOT COME UP SHORT. Hebrews 11:1 says “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of THINGS UNSEEN.” Seeing is not always believing my friends. Believing is believing, and knowing in your heart of hearts that He loves you more than you know, and HE WILL NOT FAIL YOU. Be still and listen. In stillness, He will reveal what He has for you.
Be limitless. Don’t cap your excellence with doubt. Focus on who God called you to be, not on who God called your peers to be. God is limitless, and through Him you are limitless. We are the ones who limit Him by placing our doubts on what we can do. We doubt Him in our circumstances because we are afraid of being let down, or we are afraid of not getting what we want. Allow God to be limitless through you. Break away from that doubt. ASK HIM to take it away from you. Surround yourself with people who you love and trust, who can speak truth over you. You are enough. You are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14). Don’t let your circumstance determine your spiritual posture (Jerry Gorton). He sees you right where you are. He is waiting for you. He is waiting for you to believe in what He can do through and in you. You my friend… you are limitless. Know that.
“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil to give you a future and hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.”
Have you ever prayed for something you really wanted and not gotten it? Have you ever tried to rush things so they happen on your timeline and then the end results weren’t quite as satisfying as you thought they would be? Have you ever been frustrated with God because He is not doing things the way you think He should do them? If you answered yes to any of these questions… congratulations you are a normal human being. However, it is important to recognize that need for control, that need for things to happen on a certain timeline, are all things of the flesh, and we must die daily to them. He knows what is best for us and He has our best interest in mind. When we try and control things, and try to do things on our timeline we are hindering His plan for us, but when we let Him use us where we are, and completely surrender… COMPLETELY… not kind of.. we are given the opportunity to flourish and shine in EVERYTHING we do.
I began a prayer journal when I was in NICU with my oldest child 6 years ago. I filled this journal with letters to God about my worst fears, about my hopes for the future, and what my life was going to look like after bringing this baby home. Journaling and writing letters to God is still something I do everyday. I have notebooks filled of things I am still praying for, things I thought I wanted, and things I have gotten.
When I started praying about what to post this week, I came up blank. I usually have some sort of an idea, but this week I didn’t have anything. Today I was off, and I decided to really sit in silence and listen to what He wanted me to write about. I felt led to go through my old journals. As I began going through my entiries I was overwhelmed with humility and gratitude. Everything I walked through throughout the years, He was right there with me. Things I thought I wanted, He said no and protected me from them. Things I wanted and were good for my life, He blessed me with them. I had entries where I thought things in my life would never be the same, things I thought I would never get through, and here I stand today… with Him. It is so humbling to realize that He loves us that much. He loves to walk through everything with us, to pick us up when we fall down because we think we know best, and to forgive us for all that we do.
Reading these old journals caused me to really take a look at myself. Why do I question Him? Why is there ever a shadow of doubt in my mind?…. That is when He gently reminded me that I am human, and that is human nature, but if I die to self daily, open my mind and heart to Him, my questions and doubt slowly fade away. He will never fail me. He will never leave me. He will ALWAYS go before me. He never lets go. When I was pulling all of my old journals out of my closet, I noticed the Bible verse on the cover of one of them was Jeremiah 29:11. If we really break down, and look at this verse we see that He knows our thoughts and all He wants for us is peace. He wants us to have hope and knowledge of His promise for us. His future for us is so much better than the future we have set out for ourselves. When you call upon Him, He is always there. You will always find Him. He hears us, and He listens to us… He just doesn’t always give us the answers we want because He truly knows best.
God always meets us where we are. Sometimes I wonder why He doesn’t tell me all the things I want to know when I want to know them, but then I remember He doesn’t because He is protecting me. Think about the worst thing that has ever happened to you. Now go 10 years before it happened. Would you have wanted to know what was going to happen to you? Would you have wanted to go through those 10 years, waiting for this tragedy to happen? Anticipating it? Agonizing over it? It would take away your hope. Your entire life would revolve around this tragedy that was in your future. God created us. He knows how delicate we are, and He knows how strong we are. This is why He reveals His way to us… only in small pieces at a time. Pieces that we can handle, and pieces that equip us to handle what is in front of us. He controls time, He is time, and all things will be revealed in His perfect time.
“For in much wisdom is much grief, and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow.” Ecclesiastes 1:18