Lone Follower, Encourage Me, encourage me

 

chicken close up dish food
Photo by Public Domain Pictures on Pexels.com

My site has a few followers now, beside me AND my husband 😉which is really cool, but God’s Word Girl means more to me than that.  Through WordPress I have been given an outlet for my God-gifted creative talents and I consider this a great privilege and responsibility to bring to you encouragement through stories and exhortation through God’s Word.  It’s as if a floodgate has been opened and my mind is drowning with ideas.  I have to pick through the debris and say, “Okay, LORD, where do we go from here?”

This is the beginning of my dream.  I am filled to the brim with words and stories and ideas.  Like Prego spaghetti sauce, “It’s in there.”  Therein lies the problem: it’s inside.  Sometimes I feel like a party waiting to come out.  It’s so difficult to wait for party day.    

I want to share a biblical story with you that keeps running through my mind about how David handled one particular difficulty in his life.  In I Samuel chapter 30, David is not yet king.  He and his mighty warriors have returned to Ziklag where they have been living.   They return to find that their enemy has burned down their town and taken their wives and their children captive. They have nothing. They cried and wept until they had no more power to do it.  Things got even worse, if you can believe it, and real ugly when the grieving men spoke of stoning David.  I can only imagine what his initial thoughts were, but this is what David did:

  1. He asked the priest to bring him the ephod.  I don’t want to go into detail here but ephodthey’re pretty interesting.  An ephod was part of a priest’s garb.  Numerous  writings attribute it to representing various things but I lean towards it representing God’s presence and covering.  David wanted to speak with God.                                  
  2.  David strengthened himself in the LORD.  He entered the presence of the LORD with praise and thanksgiving.  He encouraged himself.
  3. David asked the LORD what he should do.
  4.  David obeyed the LORD.
  5.  David recovered all.    It doesn’t get much better than that.

I think one of the hardest things to do as a follower of Christ is to maintain joy, hope, and peace while waiting for a dream to come to fruition.  And you know what?  I  have not “arrived”, as they say.  There are times when I still cave to fear, anger, unbelief, and the likes.  My bad reaction fills in the space between the desire conceived and the desire born.  Then there’s the painstaking business of watching it grow and mature.  The story of David encouraging himself  while waiting to be king has inspired me to learn to do the same; it ain’t fun.  Or easy.

Dreams can be tricky, like holding onto a greased turkey.  Yep, I dropped one once.  I slathered that thing down with butter, sprinkled on my seasonings, then in my rush to prepare to go to a funeral, I dropped it.  Literally dropped it.  My husband was holding out one of those neat Reynolds oven bags that keep the bird moist and tender and make clean up so much easier when I plopped it in.  What was I thinking?  It wasn’t a Hefty trash bag, it was a lightweight oven bag.  The bird burst through the bottom of the bag and that 20 lb. piece of poultry hit the floor with a thud.  My husband and I locked wide eyes for a split second or two over our main course laying on the floor at our feet.  We did what all shrewd people do: we picked it up from the floor, rinsed it off, gently placed it in a new bag and put in the oven to bake.  Makes ya think twice about eating at my house, doesn’t it?  🙂  I wonder if our guests will read this before coming to supper tonight…?

So many dreams.  Sometimes I know what I’m waiting for; sometimes I’m not quite sure.  It’s like trying to look at a picture through a pool of water.  Do you feel the same way?  Maybe you don’t know what you’re waiting for.  Maybe it’s an unspoken desire buried so deep that you don’t even recognize it.  I have a friend who has dreamed of having a place that’s sort of like where a coffee-house-type atmosphere and Christian bookstore collide.  Another friend has mentioned writing children’s books on various occasions.  Another friend wants God to “sign her paycheck”; she wants the freedom to minister rather than be tied down to an employer. These dreams have so much potential to make an incredible impact on those who would partake and yet they’re not realized.  Do we recognize them when they come?  And when they do come, what do we do?  We act as if everything depends on us, we pray as if everything depends on God and then we enter the world of 4 letter words and: WAIT.

Sometimes dreams are in disguise.  Pastor tells the story of a girl in youth group who went on a missions’ trip and was exposed  to teaching children.  She discovered that she loved it, but until that time she never knew it.  She is now the supervisor of a huge children’s ministry outreach in her church.  I have a couple of friends who are currently students, one in her 40s, and I couldn’t be prouder of her.  She has dabbled with herbs and natural remedies for years and is finally taking official classes.  I can’t tell you how excited I am for her.  Think of it, for years the googling and dabbling and now the dive in.  I’m especially excited at the prospect of her marrying the wisdom of the LORD with the knowledge of the natural. It’s marvelous.  Maybe there could be tea, Christian books, and herbal seminars. ?

The whole thing is a process.  There’s a vast amount of books and extensive study pertaining to dreams and seeing them come true; here are just a few simple tips:

1.Be/Get quiet.  Listen to the beat of your heart.  What’s it telling you?  Is your mind consumed with business?  Creativity?  Mechanics?  Healthcare?  Technology?  Farming?  Organization?  Ministry?  Education?  What is it that you can’t wait to google?  Where does your heart go to recharge when it is weary?  What evokes your emotion?

2.Go deaf to naysayers–including yourself.  Consider saying “Yes” to a proposal or request.  If someone has a need and has asked you to fill it, or is willing to open a door, think about it before caving to a standard “No” due to fear of the unknown or failure.  Life is one big unknown.  I could die in my sleep tonight and leave a bunch of yeses left undone.  As far as failure, been there, done that.  It hasn’t killed me yet so why not keep on trying?

3.Never, ever entertain the thought that you are too old or the dream is too big.  Dreams never expire.  And they’re often meant to expand.

Maybe your dream isn’t necessarily for doing it is for being: being free, being joyful, being forgiving, being at peace, being healthy–fill in the blank.  We all have them.  Whether “doing” or “being” dreams, here’s a final tip:

4.Hold on tight.  Dream-suckers come in all sorts of shapes and sizes.  That is where our story comes to play.  When it feels like the whole world and all of the time in it are against you, get alone with God and do like David did and be strengthened in the LORD; encourage yourself.  Keep on going!  Pick that turkey up from the floor, clean it off, and put it in the oven to bake.  Is it messy business?  You betcha!  Time consuming?  Absolutely!  Worth it?  Oh, so worth it!

Dear heart, whatever the dream, whatever the battle, whatever it is you are facing today, know this: God Is Able.  Beyond that: God Is Willing.  Go to your quiet spot.  He’s waiting there for you today to enable you in all of  your doing and to encourage you in all of your being.  He’s waiting to give you all that you need wrapped in all of His love.  Join me by making a conscious effort to sit in His presence today.    

 Click here to check out the talents of a couple of friends of mine.

 

 

Published by

Christi

My husband and I married nearly 19 years ago on a chilly, rainy, spring day. One year later caught me in a whirlwind as I was celebrating my first wedding anniversary, my first Mother's Day, and my first publication as a freelance writer. The birth of our third child followed a couple months after we celebrated our twins' 3rd birthday. Though a pen has been one of my constant companions, I have not pursued writing professionally due to the monumental task of homemaking and the raising of children. A shout out to my Robert who has been our sole provider while I have had the pleasure and privilege of remaining home with our children to homeschool them. Now, thanks to him, I have the liberty to once again pursue my passion to write and encourage others in written word as we journey with God through life experiences.

One thought on “Lone Follower, Encourage Me, encourage me”

  1. Amen! Thanks for sharing your thoughts and drawing back the curtain on mine. I’m heading to my quiet spot to pray and encourage myself and to listen to His voice and for His guidence.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply to Denise Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s