Count it all joy....

The holidays are approaching, and I am watching our schedule spin nearly out of control with so much to do and so many things to accomplish before another year comes to an end. This year has been brutal, not gonna candy coat it here. There is purpose in the process—I am learning to be more content with that statement and the depth of its meaning for my life. I am learning to find greater confidence, joy in seating myself firmly in what God has for me in this present season. And I believe wholeheartedly that is precisely what He intends for my focus to be at all times. There are lessons I have learned, wisdom gained from what I experienced in the past. Now and then, in conversation with others I find God plants nuggets in my mind and heart to share from something good I gained from past experience. But I don’t dwell on my past. I won’t. It doesn’t benefit me in any way, and it defeats me in many ways if I allow it. Satan is good at doing that to us, if we let him.

When I consider what we’ve experienced in life thus far, the good, the bad and the downright freakishly ugly—I count it all joy. I can say that far more confidently today than I used to. I can remember a time in my life when I wondered when I’d find that joy, that contentment because it seemed so far gone with all the muck I was trying to climb out of. My heart breaks when I watch dear friends struggle with this very thing. Life’s good for a time, then something hits, and the chaotic state suddenly has found its home again, and sets up shop for a time. We rally around and pray, pour out our support and encouragement, stand beside them as we walk with them through it, and see them begin to find their footing once again because of our foundation in Christ. That is what community in Christ, fellowship in the body of Christ is all about. It is cyclical, it is always available, it is not judgmental, it is unconditional, it is abundant at all times because that is how God is with us.

How do we find ourselves finally in this state of joy, contentment? Some of you are in a place today and reading that going, “What the heck is she talking about?” and feel as if you can’t relate in any way to what I’m saying because of the state you are in right now. Here’s the way to it: choose it. Because God has it for you. At.all.times.

And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Phil 4:19 NKJV

Did you catch that word? SHALL. There’s incredible power in seating ourselves in that scripture, especially that word. SHALL. It doesn’t say He might, or He’ll consider your state of being compared to others who are in a much worse situation than yours. He SHALL supply ALL your need according to HIS riches in glory by Christ Jesus. His intent is for you to be ENTIRELY strengthened by HIS supply! I heard something in a message by Steven Furtick this morning that caught me:

….invisible strength, unlimited supply…..

So it points to this: how far are we willing to trust God in our most desperate hour of need? Are we suddenly thrust into the chaos of our situation so much so that it clouds our ability to trust our God? Do we realize who is getting the upper hand in this moment? Oh don’t let him have it! Don’t let Satan win at yet another one of his games in your life, his pathetic attempt to throw off your powerful and purposeful course because of our great God.

We all deal with this fear, of somehow I may not have enough or be enough…..

What is that about and why are we allowing a moment of our energy to be wasted on that? Life is guaranteed to be hard, and we are certainly threatened on all sides by fear, doubt, despair, but…..

My God SHALL supply…..

Our confidence comes from seating ourselves firmly in a holy contentment in Christ.

Are we choosing it? Even when we don’t feel like it, when we are telling God and as a result telling everyone around us when they ask us how we are doing, “Well, I’ll be better and our lives will be easier if A, B, C,…….”

When we do that, we’ve made our choice. Who’s got our joy then?

The challenge, the choice we have daily is to simply seat ourselves firmly in this present moment declaring over ourselves through the power of His name JESUS, through the foundation of His Word, and because of the overflow of the Holy Spirit residing in us, that we count it all joy!

I’m speaking this to myself as much as to anyone else who may be reading this. I don’t claim any of this is easy and never will. It is a process, it is divine and purposeful process. So how about we choose it and step into it, rather than being sucked into anything less than what God intends?

I promise it will be a game changer for you, every single day of your life! When stress and chaos threaten to take captive your heart and mind, remind yourself of the strength, the supply that God promises you SHALL have! Call upon Him, lean into Him, release your grip and choose to be held by Him.

my Ebenezer...

“…Thus far the Lord has helped us.”-1 Samuel 7:12 There are moments in my life when I look back and can see how God in His perfect yet my...