Tuesday, January 31, 2012


I Smile

     After I posted my testimony "Hold On To Faith" on the 'Amazing Grace- My Chains are Gone' Facebook page, one "Faithbook sister (we are known as the Faithbook family) posted this comment:
          "God sends us through trials and tribulations so that we will lean on HIM because we get in our heads that we can do things ourselves, when the truth of the matter is, we can do NOTHING without Jesus Christ, our Lord!"
   This comment is so very true and I knew this truth from studying the Bible. So I made the commitment to praise my Wonderful Father everyday! I thanked Him daily because I knew where my blessings came from. I knew I was in the wonderfully blessed position I was in only because God made it all possible.
   But, although I did the right things to please God, I was becoming comfortable with my blessings. I was thanking and worshiping God, yes... but I wasn't really leaning on Him. He blessed me with everything already. What could I possibly lean on Him for?
   No matter how blessed we think we are or how much we think we couldn't possibly need anything more from God, we do. And He wants to give us so much more. He wants us to continuously lean upon Him for our spiritual growth. He wants us to lean upon Him for more of His Truth because no matter how much we try to learn everything... we just never will. We will never fully know God like we want to but as long as we continue to lean upon Him we will grow into the person He created us to be.
   Sure, I read my Bible and devotionals daily. I watched Joyce Meyers, The Christian Ministry teacher, every morning --- she came on different stations consecutively so sometimes, if her teachings were really good, I'd watch her two or three times a day. But that isn't enough. To spiritually grow, not only do we need to study the Word and meditate on it, but we must act on it!
   My "season of trials" taught me about passivity. God doesn't want us to become passive. How can He use us to accomplish His Will if we are passive? He needs us as His instrument to reach others and bring them to Him. He needs us active so He can bless others through us. We can't shine our light in the darkness of the world if we're passive. And if we don't shine our light in the world then how will we give glory and honor to God?

   Matthew 5:13-16  "You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost it's flavor? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless.
   You are the light of the world --- like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.                                                             NLT
   The Lord knew I was grateful for the blessings He gave me. He knew the cross I carried from previous years and, because I was faithful, obedient and allowed Him to transform me, He allowed me to rest. But I was just sitting on the side of the road on that narrow path. In order to grow and become the person He wanted me to be I could not become stagnant.
    After carrying the cross, God does allow us to rest for a bit but when we start to get too comfortable, as I was, He stands us up, hands us our cross and gets us back on that journey again.    1 Peter 5:10-11  In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered for a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you and he will place you on a firm foundation. All power to him forever. Amen. 
   Yes, I'm glad He helped me through those trials. I'm grateful the Holy Spirit kept me from falling and encouraged me not to give in to sin. It's such a good feeling to get through to the other side then think back on the struggle and rejoice in victory!

   1 Peter 1:6-7   So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while. These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold -- though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith  remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.                            NLT
   Another thing my "season of trials" taught me is that my faith will always be tested. And I believe it's more for our sake that anything. God knows us. He already knows our heart, our thoughts, our next move. But we don't really know ourselves. We often say we trust God but then we catch ourselves sometimes asking, "But what if? What if God is not going to answer my prayer because I got angry this morning? What if God isn't going to help me because I always turn away from Him?"
   Satan worked hard to cast doubt on my belief in God's promises. He used anyone and anything he could to try and bring me down. He wanted to cut the lines of communication between God and I. And I admit, he was almost successful. But right when I was about to give up, that's when the Holy Spirit whispered in my ear, "Don't give up now. Your breakthrough is just around the corner. Trust God!"
   My faith has been tried and I know it will always be tried. Because true faith will be tested. I realize I only understand my trial when I reach the blessing. The trial is my learning period and I don't understand it until I get through it.

Brothers and sisters, I want to encourage you to accept whatever comes your way and TRUST GOD! For if you think back on other struggles in your life you'll realize that you made it through and God was with you all the time. When you got through it, you were able to rest a bit before the next struggle came. But life is a constant struggle. It will never be a walk in the park forever. But with each struggle, we are growing spiritually and becoming stronger.

   Heavenly Father, thank You for loving me so much and never giving up on me. Thank You for Your understanding when I would get frustrated and about to throw in the towel. Thank You for guiding me on the way I should go. Father, what I really want to say... THANK YOU! I love You, Lord! Amen.

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