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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Saved by the bell...literally

This morning I spoke to some teenage girls at a local high school. I asked them what some of their biggest fears were. I heard tornados, rats, failure, finding a dead body to achieving success, heights and a few other things.  I wanted them to leave with a new understanding of how fear immobilizes their dreams and moving things forward. This one particular girl raised her hand and said "how do I face the fear of finding family members who are alcoholics dead?" As soon as she asked me the bell rang and I thought to myself wow that's what being saved by the bell looks like.   As I thought more about the bell ringing in the exact moment I was at a loss for words it reminded me of Gods timing.  His faithfulness blows me away at times and yet it also can frustrate me beyond words. There have been moments I have needed insight and wisdom His silence felt like crickets chirping on a breezy summers night.  What I realized is that in those moments of begging God to move I had shifted my attention and affection away from Him and instead locked in on what it was I needing Him to fix.  We measure everything we do and that can become so toxic in all we do.  For years I would measure my success by other peoples standards and yet somehow I would always come up short.  When I began to embrace the freedom I have in Christ that measuring stick had to be thrown into the trashcan.  In Joshua 7 I am reminded of how many times I have ended up in the hands of the enemy asking God what in the world was going on by questioning His sovereignty in my life. What a brat I am and have been. 

Joshua 7: 12 that is why the Israelites cannot stand against their enemies; they turn their backs and run because they have been made liable to destruction. I will not be with you anymore unless you destroy whatever among you is devoted to destruction. 13 "Go, consecrate the people. Tell them, 'consecrate yourselves in preparation for tomorrow; for this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: That which is devoted is among you, O Israel. You cannot stand against your enemies UNTIL YOU REMOVE IT." 

Removing things in our hearts that will lead to destruction is a painful process.  I have taken God off the throne and replaced Him with food along with other things many times. I begged God for years to give me freedom and victory but it wasn't until I admitted it and then surrendered it to my Father in Heaven that I could feel the release it had on my heart. It had nothing to do with Gods timing but everything to do with my repentance.  For some maybe its your job and the pursuit of "success" that your devoted to and it consumes your time and causes you to miss out on life. For some its your weight,body image and appearance you are devoting every single thought to and the desire to look and feel a certain way. I had to remove the things I was devoted to in order to stand before my enemy and embrace the freedom my heart longed for. Today what needs to be removed from your heart in order for you to claim victory and avoid destruction from the giants in your life? Gods redeeming and saving grace isn't based on His timing but our embracing.  It's time you stop waiting on a perfect moment to let go or a saved by the bell moment and just walk in the beauty of the cross. Forgiveness and redemption awaits. 

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