Tuesday, February 7, 2017

True Strength

There are some mornings you pray before you start your time with God and you ask Him to reveal where you have carved your own path instead of following His.  And on occasion, He loves you with such a great intensity, that He sends rapid fire truthbombs that leave you laid flat.

The Prayer:  (in a nutshell)  Can you break these gates of iron that seem to keep me holding it all in?  The walls I have built up have to come down, but I can't do it because I don't know what they are made of.  Show me where to start.

Truthbomb #1:  2 Chronciles 32

When you see an impending attack you logically build up your defenses.  You block off a needed resource that is going to make the target you are defending less desirable.  Cutting off that supply to deter the enemy, also cuts it off from those who need it.

This is the story of a girl who lost her tears.  Not wanting to be 'weak' she turned her heart into a fortified city , cutting off the water supply (Jesus), built another outside wall, reinforced the terraces, and made a large number of weapons and shields.  Then she armed herself with words of encouragement from God and never let them take root deep within her heart, they were just her defense mechanim of choice.  And when the attack was over, she never let down her guard again.

Truthbomb #2:  Calling out in prayer opens the door for God to send an angel into battle, thus allowing you to be still and Him to fight.

God wants to fight our battles for us so we can't take credit for the victory.  Our attempts to battle are often futile, because no matter what, we cannot save ourselves.  Only God can save us.

Truthbomb #3:

We want to reduce everything to a formula, figuring out the greatest common factor to arrive at the simplest answer.  In doing that, we take away the mystery and complexity of watching the greatest hands solve the problem effortlessly and rob ourselves of a spectacular demonstration of knowledge, wisdom, and power.  The least common multiple will always be me and the greatest common factor will always be God.  And the method He uses of solving will always require His 'order of operations.'  But, the secret things, the ones not revealed to us, are the parentheses, exponents, and signs that only He can see.

Truthbomb #4:  Sometimes you need to change your perspective.

Every now and again, you need to take a step back and realize that God is allowing something to continue so that you can learn the lesson completely so you don't attempt to do this craziness again.

Truthbomb #5:  You see that what you've done as trying to fill your own cistern ~ and it is cracking, leaking, and about to fall to pieces.

Sometimes you realize that what you have filled yourself with is what you defaulted to years ago and you just picked it ack up.  You've labeled it a bit differently because the situation wasn't quite the same, but your help has become an idol.  And sometimes you don't need to lay it down as much as you need to see it for the good God intended.  It never ceases to amaze me how we can take what God has given us for our good and His glory, manage to use it for evil against ourselves until He lovingly redeems and restores it, and then pray our guts out we that never fall back into that pit.

(In my early 20's I lifted weights and worked out obsessively and in an unhealthy way because  I figured if I was physically strong, I would be emotionally strong, and nothing could hurt me.  I picked my weights back up again in 2011.....the last time I cried.  Talk about irony.)

So here I am, with my eyes wide open, my heart bursting with hope, and my lungs ready to shout praise, glory, and honor to the God who loves us all enough to point out where we've gone wrong.  Never underestimate His love and His desire to draw you back to His heart.

Father, as much as this was painful to realize, I am thankful that you loved me enough to put it all on the line.  I pray that you would help all of us find our way back to relying on Your strength alone.  Search our hearts, test our thoughts, and determine our steps from now until we are home with You.  In Jesus' redeeming and restoring name, amen.

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