The Evidence; It's Unfinished
Hold your opinions and keep them to yourself because I'm about to share something that may make you not like as much but it's my truth, and that's what matters.
I was recently listening to one of the most controversial pastor's of my generation: Steven Furtick. There has been articles and commentaries about his credibility and his practices and guessed what I'm not here for that. I don't want to sit down with anyone and debate whether or not Steven is a false prophet because the Spirit of the Lord verifies what no man can understand. And I trust that God will check what I'm about to share with you regardless of which side of this debate you're on (side note: believers? Do we need to be debating so much that we are putting this leader down?)
Again, I was recently listening to a sermon from Elevation church, and I was moved to understand somethings that I know without a shadow of doubt comes from God:
1| It's not why you went through but how you went through it [ and how God is going to be using it for your future]
2| You know that God's with you not because you went through but because what you went through and it didn't kill you
'I brought you from the ends of the earth and called you from its farthest corners. I said to you: You are my servant; I have chosen you; I haven’t rejected you. Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will hold on to you with my righteous right hand. Be sure that all who are enraged against you will be ashamed and disgraced; those who contend with you will become as nothing and will perish. You will look for those who contend with you, but you will not find them. Those who war against you will become absolutely nothing. For I am the Lord your God, who holds your right hand, who says to you, ‘Do not fear, I will help you. Do not fear, you worm Jacob, you men of Israel. I will help you’ — this is the Lord ’s declaration. Your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel. See, I will make you into a sharp threshing board, new, with many teeth. You will thresh mountains and pulverize them and make hills into chaff. You will winnow them and a wind will carry them away, a whirlwind will scatter them. But you will rejoice in the Lord ; you will boast in the Holy One of Israel. '
'Blessed is the one who endures trials, because when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. '
'And when Pharaoh drew near, the children of Israel lifted their eyes, and behold, the Egyptians marched after them. So they were very afraid, and the children of Israel cried out to the Lord. Then they said to Moses, “Because there were no graves in Egypt, have you taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you so dealt with us, to bring us up out of Egypt? Is this not the word that we told you in Egypt, saying, ‘Let us alone that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than that we should die in the wilderness.” And Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which He will accomplish for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall see again no more forever. The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace.” And the Lord said to Moses, “Why do you cry to Me? Tell the children of Israel to go forward. But lift up your rod, and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it. And the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea. And I indeed will harden the hearts of the Egyptians, and they shall follow them. So I will gain honor over Pharaoh and over all his army, his chariots, and his horsemen. Then the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I have gained honor for Myself over Pharaoh, his chariots, and his horsemen.”'
'And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.'
I got these two lessons from the sermon linked right here (check it out!), and I have to say, man is God speaking some truth to me right now!
Y'all, some of the things God has allowed me to face are way beyond what I had imagined I would've been facing when I said yes to him at age 15. But, to be honest, these battles have strengthened me in ways that frankly scare me. (Like, I never imagined I would be the woman that is currently sitting here and sharing these words with you.)
It's quite astonishing that no matter how long you walk with the Lord, He is always sharpening you in ways that are unimaginable. He indeed is the greatest artist of all time! No questions about it!
As God continues to sharpen me, I noticed that with everything that I have experienced in life, I could say that God has created something that is beyond my understanding. I wish I could tell you that this was all me, but that's a lie. I couldn't have imagined the woman that I currently am when I was going through each experience. Heck, I didn't think that I was going to make it sometimes.
Some battles challenge our perspective of ourselves. Some situations cause us to question as to whether or not we're the crazy ones. But instead of looking at your strength or who you are, I've come to learn that every battle, every obstacle, and every challenge is meant to shift our perspective from ourselves to God.
When our giants are more massive than we predicted and they seem to be louder than our voice, we come to a point where we must now allow the voice of God to speak through us and for the Spirit of God to intervene. This is a perspective shift that every spiritual battle requires in order to succeed.
It's not why we're going through but who we're going through with and what He's teaching us. He is with us in the hurricane because we couldn't be taken out, but we persevere because He is with us.
Let me conclude with this:
People ask, “how do you know that God is real?”
My dear, how do you not know?
How do you not know that the Creator of everything is real? The evidence is in the fact that you didn't die from your battle wounds. Those scars could've taken you out, but they didn't. That resiliency and drive to keep on running the race of life are from God.
The evidence is in the fact that you are alive and still kicking! He's not done with you because you are about to surprise yourself with the level of power, authority, love, and gumption (oh yes, I used that word) you have within you. Oh my dear, how magnificent you are and the best part…it's unfinished.
Until next time…