It’s been a little minute since I’ve posted on the blog…I’ve found myself in a rather busy season. Plus, I don't want to just throw something together so I can say I posted my blog for the week. I endeavor to post meaningful content that I pray will always be a blessing to the reader.
Amidst the busyness of the season I referenced above,was a little trip to Texas for the Southwest Believer’s Convention with Kenneth Copeland Ministries. I spent 11 wonderful days in Ft. Worth at the end of July and into the first part of August. The meetings were so powerful and I have spent as much free time as I can re-watching them online. I grew up on this ministry and count it such a privilege and an honor to be a part of it in this capacity.
Most of you may know, but for those who don’t, this is my third year getting traveling with KCM’s worship team. People often ask me how that came to be, and I can honestly say “it was nothing else but the favor and goodness of God.” The way the Lord connected, re-directed, prepared and brought this together is just a testimony of how purposeful He is about our lives and that He truly does care about every detail and He has a beautiful, hope-giving plan for each of us. The Lord is so very faithful.
In my travels with KCM, I have met many wonderful people. One couple in particular lives about an hour from me (small world!). The Lord has given them an assignment to bring the hope of the gospel to victims, survivors, and those at risk of sexual exploitation and sex trafficking. I had the honor of leading worship for their Annual Soul Celebration this past week. What a wonderful time in His presence and hearing them cast the vision for future outreaches. (you can learn more at www.monicasatcher.com) I just love how the Lord connects us and puts us at the right place at the right time, don’t you? And I’m ever mindful to remain grateful for each and every step He has had me take and for every door of favor He has opened to me. And yet…
There are times, days, moments when all that He’s done temporarily escapes from my mind, and I’m bombarded with thoughts of “should I be farther along by now?” and “Lord, am I really hearing from You? I am still searching for the next step..why haven’t I heard You? Have I missed you? ” I know. It baffles me too. Tell me I’m not the only one this happens to? With everything the Lord has done for me and for every broken place in my life that He has made brand new, for every opportunity He literally has put right in my path, I can still be vulnerable to the thoughts, the lies that come, trying to talk me out of what I know. I’m usually pretty good about tackling those thoughts with the Word and getting myself back into alignment. However…
Recently I gave place to those thoughts and started going through the list of things maybe I was or wasn’t doing right…”Lord, am I not praying enough? Maybe I’m not speaking the Word enough…I need to speak speak over my life more, call those things that be not as though they were…Oh! Maybe I’m not praising You enough? Maybe I need to worship more….” On and on I went, trying to think of all the things I should be “doing” in order to get God to move on my behalf.
Now, in and of themselves, all of those things are good things, very good things, to be doing. Of course we need to pray, speak the Word, declare His purpose over our life, praise Him and worship Him. But you see, what I did was turn those activities into works in order to get a result. So as I’m going on and on telling the Lord what I should be doing more of, He stopped me abruptly and said, “Sharon, you are making this way too hard.” I said, “I am?” He said, “Yes. You are making way too big a deal of this. You just need to rest. Rest in Me and in My promises to you.” “Oh. Rest in You and in Your promises.”
Of course. In my frantic state of trying to figure everything out and panicking a little because my time frame is usually not His, I forgot just how easy He has made it to rely on and trust in Him. He took me to the scripture in Matthew 11:28-30 where it says, “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” (MSG) Our rest comes from “keeping company with Him”. It’s so simple.
Exodus 33:14 says “And the Lord said, My presence shall go with you, and I will give you rest.” As we remain in His presence, we find the rest that we need. Rest from our mind that sometimes races trying to figure out the next step when we don’t quite see it yet. Rest from being worn out from trying way too hard to make things happen, when we already know the Lord’s plans and ways are much better than ours. Again, it’s so simple.
When we can pull away from everything and get away with our Father, that verse says “we will recover our life”! He is the ultimate Life-Giver. He not only gave us eternal life, but also on a daily basis He fills us with life, and graces us to walk out our calling and our destiny.
That day, I spent the rest of my time with the Lord just resting in His presence. I stopped working, and I rested. Please hear what I’m saying, there is a definite time and place for all of the “things” I mentioned above. But there is also a time of resting in our Father’s love, and truly allowing His presence to bring us peace and gently teach us to live “freely and lightly”.
He never makes it hard on us, friends. He invites us to walk with Him, and to find rest.
I’ll leave you with a portion of Psalm 37:7, “Be still and rest in the Lord; wait for Him and patiently lean yourself upon Him…”