Is it adrenaline? Is it fear? Is it....intuition?
This topic of conversation has been highlighted to me since the beginning of the new year! Fear keeps creeping in as I actively walk in a new season I undoubtedly know God is calling me into. However, I have noticed that many close to me are also experiencing the physical manifestation of fear - anxiety. So, I have been inspired to use this topic, which the enemy has actively been using to prevent me from moving forward, to help walk us out of that place we find ourselves "Stuck" in. Obviously, with the help of Holy Spirit!
You may have noticed I have not been so active on here since we came into the year 2016. (I hope you've noticed !) I ended last year on a very high note! I had just had my first Silent Auction where I successfully auctioned off my original art pieces in efforts to raise money for our first Family Missions Trip! Which, by the way, has helped me purchase our passports and tickets to Switzerland!! Praise the Lord!! That was only the beginning of this "Inspired Art" adventure! What I thought may only provide a means to raise money for missions trips is indeed proving to be in high demand! Hmmm, not sure if that sounds right. Basically, what I am learning is that God is using this art to inspire His children in a very intimate way, and He has no plans of stopping this movement through me! I have been asked, by people I have come to know , to do private painting sessions! What does that look like? You may be wondering. It's simple, really! I set up my station and let my music play in the background while you simply read a book or relax. I am constantly in prayer during my painting. I don't need to know anything from you in order to paint something specific for you! I ask the Lord to express His Love for you in a deep way. I am just allowing Him to use me. Sometimes I won't even have an interpretation for you... because you will just know when you see it! Besides, the same picture will undoubtedly speak something different to anyone else. But this is a special moment and I would LOVE to see some testimonials in the comments below from anyone who has ,or will, receive one of these paintings! ;)
No, I have not forgotten the topic of this post. Yes, it is necessary for you to understand this little backstory of mine.
God, my Papa Love, has given me clear direction of my call in this life! He has promised me some BIG things and is bringing them to pass! I mean, I still cannot believe we are going to Switzerland in just a few short months! He has given me BIG dreams! And He has even been speaking some bold words into my life. Like, very specific things! Concerning Love and marriage and even where I'm going to live! This is " deep territory" He is walking me into. And, I admit, from the outside I look like a crazy lady sometimes. I gotta stop caring how I think other people see me as because that's exactly what will cause me to cower into a ball of insecurities and not move forward in His promises! And THAT is my introduction to addressing FEAR!
I would be foolish to underestimate the craftiness of my enemy! I am thankful that I have grown a lot in my understanding of my God-given authority I am to walk in! Otherwise, I would continue to be ruled by the debilitating fear that constantly shoots up like a huge mountain as I walk the straight and narrow! The thing about those mountains on a straight and narrow path is that you naturally cannot see beyond them! You are aware of how far you've walked and all you have already been able to overcome. Then you are faced with a decision... do you set up camp and just retrace your past steps and remain in what you have come to "know", and allow that mountain to keep you from going beyond? Or, do you refuse to remain in what you are meant to walk out of and scale that mountain?
My mountain is usually formed by the fear of expectation and even success! Which really forms an even bigger mountain of responsibility and reliability! I'm just gonna name it because my enemy already knows my fears and I believe that by being transparent about this I will gain strength! As will you! As I see the good that is produced by my obedience to His leading and my public vulnerability, I begin to see the magnitude of the influence He is allowing me to have on a large scale! And it is daunting! I mean, really, if I mess up in a big way, suddenly the world will know it and my entire reputation can be destroyed!! Suddenly my circle became bigger! By no means am I putting myself on a "celebrity" status pedestal! The reality of putting myself out there publicly is just really scary to think about, you know? People I don't even personally know suddenly really know me! And some of the people I do know and hold in high esteem don't even have a clue that I exist! Which, by the way, is not healthy, I know. What I really need to get over is needing the approval of man! And I know this! I am just laying before you the real fears and thoughts I face on a daily basis that are constantly surfacing in efforts to get me to stop sharing! And let me tell you about this fear of success I have! I didn't even realize that would be a fear until it was actually put into words! Doesn't everyone want to be successful?? Well, ya, of course! But to remain successful is a big deal! All these things, which have not even become tangible yet, stir a great ,breath-taking anxiety within my belly! But you know what? All these what ifs are really smoke and mirrors!
Want to know how to combat this tool of your enemy? Do you want to know how to use it against him, for your gain? Here's how...
... Do it anyway! It will not go away as you continue to walk forward. But you can experience peace during those times. God has not given us a spirit of fear. So, we know it's not from Him, which means it's from the enemy. And why would he try to stop us in our tracks with fear? Because, unlike us, he does see what's on the other side of that mountain! He does not want us to go out into all the world and make disciples! He doesn't want us to know our true value! He doesn't want us to know that we, in Christ, are a force to be reckoned with! What is his main goal? To steal kill and destroy US! And why did Jesus come? To give us life more abundantly! Again, fear will pop up constantly, but as you gain more momentum and seek first the Kingdom, you will rise up on wings like eagles and gain new strength and He will provide all that you need and beyond! Yes, I combined a few different paraphrased verses, but it's all true!! The true key is to acknowledge Him in all your ways and He will direct your path! And cast all your cares upon Him for He cares for you! Do you want peace of mind? Give Him your time and attention.
So, next time I have the privilege of painting in front of the church during worship service, I will enter into His presence and climb that mountain in anticipation!
If what you do in life is pleasing and acceptable to the Lord, yet causes an anxiety within you, you must bring it before Papa Love and talk it out with Him. Ask for understanding and wisdom. You will gain it! Never get too busy with even the good to set aside time with your Papa! He's the only one who can give you the fulfillment you seek. And, if you are not careful to keep Him first, the good works He once produced through you can become dead and even destructive. I pray I never boast in anything I do but that I forever sing His praises and boast in His everlasting Glory!
Aahhhhh.... that was refreshing!
Be inspired to keep going! And let God go as big as He wants with you!