In the world of social media, technology and TV, it's so easy to glamorize what everybody else is doing while thinking, Lord, have you forgotten about me? Have you abandoned me?
No, God hasn't abandoned you. But, He is disciplining you. And you have a choice. You can either press through this test and mature in your walk with Him or.. stay the same and continue to go around that mountain as you run from God.
I'm going to scream this from the rooftop and I want you to get this: God is MUCH more concerned about your eternity THAN He is you being happy. Wait, What do you mean Heather? God doesn't want me happy?
No. He wants you Holy. Holiness means to be set apart for proper use. God has to UPROOT some things that are INSIDE of you to show you that you cannot DWELL with Him and DWELL with this World. You are going to either hate one or love to other. (Matthew 6:24) And sadly, most people end up hating God and loving this world. They hate God because they feel like:
"God, why did you let my mother die?"
"God, why did you let me get abused growing up?"
"God, why didn't you protect me?"
"God, why am I homeless?"
"God, why does my husband treat me like this?"
Because we live in a fallen world that is plagued by sin. And because sin is running rampant in this earth, but these tests and trails we experience will prepare us if we respond in a godly way.
James 1:2-4 "Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."
Romans 5:3-5 "Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us."
The question is, what do you do with your mother passing away? Do you carry on her legacy and do what she cannot do anymore? Which is share Jesus with others? Yes, grieve. Yes, have your moments, just don't stay there. You know your mother or that family member would want you to get up and do what God has called you to do!
What do you do about getting abused growing up? Have you forgiven who has abused you? I cannot imagine what you've gone through over the years carrying that pain but don't you dare give another day or a moment to that person that abused you. You've already given them too many years. Instead, take your care to the Lord and ask Him to heal you. Ask Him to help you. Tell Him that you're upset, scared and it's hard to have relationships. He can heal you and then, He will use you to help other people that have gone through the same thing. I've learned that my heartaches and victories are to be shared so that people may come into the knowledge of Jesus Christ. So that they may know God took this absolutely messed up country girl from Brooklyn, MI and gave her purpose when she felt like she didn't have any.
Maybe you feel like, "God, why didn't you protect me?" Honestly, I don't know what happened in your life and situation but I do know that at times, we take our own path. We make our own way and we reject God. So, while God is urging us to go in another direction, we turn and go the other way. When we do this, we reject His covering and protection.
Maybe you're homeless or you cannot find a job. Maybe money is your issue. I must say that I can relate with you. I've had my own eviction notice when I first moved to NYC after college. I cried out to God and I told Him that I was gonna quit on this whole God thing if He didn't come through for me. He literally came through the next day and I was able to move with a female friend and we eventually got a 2 bedroom apartment and lived together for 5 years before I got married. In those moments of hardship, I learned to cling to the Lord. I wouldn't trade a second of those years of eating only eggs for dinner every night. I began to depend on the Lord for my daily bread. I began to cling to Him for direction and clarity. You see, if I was eating 5 course meals everything and my lights were on, I wouldn't be as desperate for God at that point in my life. I needed to be stripped of my mindset that money took care me. No, God takes care of me. So, if I have to sleep in my car, God still takes care of me. And things didn't all the sudden "turn around" for another 3 years but I went through that season of being financially tested because God needed me to KNOW without a shadow of a DOUBT that HE was GOD and GOD alone. I didn't truly believe it at that time, even though I sang the songs at church and served in ministry. That was my God-encounter that changed my heart forever.
Maybe you're in a marriage and you aren't happy. Maybe you want out and you feel like God cannot raise your dead marriage. So if you're bored and in what you think is a dull marriage, then most likely your relationship with God has become dull as well. There's no way that you can honestly pursue Him with your whole heart, surrendering pride, egos, your feelings and what you think you deserve and still leave your husband. I know, I know, I may not understand your situation. But I have been in a place where I wanted to leave my husband. I actually had it planned out in my head of where I was going to go and what I was going to do. I thought life was easier without him and I was sick and tired of being sick and tired. I believe that God designs the marriage covenant relationship to provide real love and fulfillment and the grass on the other side of the lawn is an illusion of temporary happiness. So what if I'm not happy Heather? Happiness is relative, based on your feelings and what you can see. You won't be happy at times in your marriage. In marriage, you will always need to work on things. Instead of focusing on what your spouse needs to do, ask the Lord to show you yourself and what you can do differently. GREAT joy has been birthed in my marriage from loving my husband when I don't think he deserves it. Now, I actually think he deserves it because I love him as onto the Lord, and not as onto my husband. My love is for Jesus. That's why I love my husband so hard. The love I have for Christ POURS out into my marriage. My husband has a very strong command-man type of personality and I've learned to make appeals to him in a respectful loving way. I watch the way I say things and I work on never nagging him. And, I've watched him in return love me like Christ loved the church. He even loves me in those moments that I don't "deserve" either but we've learned to push past our feelings and unconditionally love one another.
Maybe you're single and you feel like God has forgotten about you. Sis, it's nothing to God to bring your spouse. But do you want a spouse more than you want a relationship with Him? Anything that you build higher in your heart than God can be used against you. God won't share His glory with anybody else and He desires ALL of you. Not a part of you. Maybe, just maybe this season is preparing you to show you that God isn't finished with your single season. Don't prolong this season stepping out of His timing and rushing to get a man to fill your voids. You will get a man and send him back because of he was a Ishmael and not an Issac.
Now, there's so many scriptures that can be applied to waiting and trusting in Gods timing. Write down a few of these and stare at them when you get tested. Stop giving into the enemy and not making this word a priority!
Ecclesiastes 3 New Living Translation (NLT)
A Time for Everything
3 For everything there is a season,
a time for every activity under heaven.
2 A time to be born and a time to die.
A time to plant and a time to harvest.
3 A time to kill and a time to heal.
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
4 A time to cry and a time to laugh.
A time to grieve and a time to dance.
5 A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones.
A time to embrace and a time to turn away.
6 A time to search and a time to quit searching.
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
7 A time to tear and a time to mend.
A time to be quiet and a time to speak.
8 A time to love and a time to hate.
A time for war and a time for peace.
(This is me adding a few words just for the purpose of this blog)
A TIME to get married. A TIME to have kids.
*Add whatever "time" you see and how it applies to your life.
1 Peter 3:14
"But even if you suffer for doing what is right, God will reward you for it. So don't worry
or be afraid of their threats."
"Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you."
So, yes, you're being disciplined right NOW in this season. Discipline means to teach and to train. Discipline sounds negative to many people because some disciplinarians don't seem very loving. God, however is the source of all love. He doesn't punish us because He enjoys inflicting pain but because He is deeply concerned about your development! He knows that in order to become the person He has called you to be, we must learned the difference between right and wrong. God's LOVING discipline enables us to do that because He leads and guides to the right path and way.
YOU are NOT alone in your tests right now. So, in the midst of them, are you rushing back to this world? This world will never satisfy you. It's like going to get in the shower using mud water. Stop running back to your past because you think God hates you. He doesn't hate you. He loves you. He created you. He's for you. He's with you. Stop rationalizing and arguing with Him and return to Him.
How do you return?
1. Repent of your sins. Don't want for Sunday service. Fall to your knees right now and surrender to our king Jesus.
3. Now, it's time to let God instruct you and lead you. As you acknowledge Him in all of your ways, (Prov 3:5) HE will direct you. So He may direct you to cut off a bad relationship, stop listening to certain music, or some other area. So, guard that heart as you go about your way. You cannot afford to listen to whoever, do whatever or live however. The Holy Spirit lives in you.
Just a few things:
1. Find my (3) books, purity rings, shirts & all that good stuff via www.pinkypromiseboutiques.com!
2. We have developed an APP! Think: daily post notifications + weekly devotionals, recipes and so much more! It's out NOW for iphones + Androids. Under Heather & Cornelius Lindsey: Today With the Lindsey's
3. If you live in Atlanta, I want to invite you to our church. Join us on Sundays at 11:00am at Landmark Art Cinemas. Our churches name is: "The Gathering Oasis" 931 Monroe Drive NE Atlanta, GA. We also have our New Years Service at the same place at 10pm EST! Join us!
4. Register for the 2015 Pinky Promise in Atlanta, GA! It sold out last year, so you don't want to miss out! www.pinkypromiseconference.com
6. As always, you can join a Pinky Promise group locally! There's about 32,000 ladies that have joined! Find a group near you by joining & checking out the intro page! Join here: www.PinkyPromiseMovement.com
7. Pinky Promise is hosting a statewide baby shower for low income & single mamas in Atlanta, GA on September 12. If you want to donate or be a part of it, please email firstname.lastname@example.org For donations only, you can send the payment via PayPal to email@example.com & be sure to note that its for the Statewide Baby Shower. All donations are tax deductible.
God loves you like crazy,