It’s almost too easy to slip into a sea of hopelessness as we face this complicated thing called “life”. For those who have found their salvation in Jesus, it can still be overwhelming just dealing with the day-to-day. But, what if it was intended to be simple? What if the complexity of trudging through our days was merely a deep-seated lie we’ve accepted as truth?
A thriving relationship with God need not be formulaic or complex. It can be very, very simple. But the complexity we bring to the relationship via sin shifts all that simplicity into seeming chaos.
All through the Bible, we are told to lean on Him, trust Him, come to Him. Basically, the simplicity of a relationship with God is that we live as though He is actually our life-source.
But then we’d have to release other things, things that we find comfort in, things that we’re used to, things we believe to be true. Perspectives, addictions, worldly comforts, the sense of having control…all these things we would need to let go of for the simplicity of a relationship that more than fulfills all we think we’re getting out of these temporal things.
What if it was as simple as saying, “God, here’s my concern, my hurt, my devastation. What do You have to say about it? What do you have to say about me?” And then stop…and listen.
What if we could truly trust that Jesus dealt with our sin once and for all and is, Himself, the living Truth which moves beyond our limited and skewed perspectives? What if He is the only Source we need? Things might begin to look drastically different. Life may not get “easy”, but it would certainly be simpler. No longer relying on “me” to fix whatever I think needs fixing. Just trusting Him with it, whatever “it” may be.
Honestly, I’m not fully there yet. Many times, I still turn to worldly comforts as a default. I turn to topical books and classes (which are often full of wonderful wisdom), but when I look to them to “fix” everything, I’m seeing the class or the teacher as my source rather than God. Or, I take the nuggets offered and I try to force them on my circumstances, therefore attempting to master my personal universe. Take a wild guess how that usually turns out…
But God is wooing me back to a relationship founded in simplicity. Founded in trust. Founded in love. Founded in actually living like He’s my Source. Bringing Him into my day-to-day, asking Him to sit with me at the kitchen table, inviting Him into the reality of my messy kitchen while we sip a cup of tea and chat…doing life together. Isn’t this the point of it all anyway? Relationship. One that opens the front door unapologetically while wearing pjs, with the kids’ toys scattered all askew, without fear of judgment or reprimand. Relationship with the One who loves me most.
What does He have to say to you today about where you’re at? About who you are?
Imagine what your life would look like if you knew exactly who God designed you to be? In my book, Refining Identity, you will dive into God’s Word, sift through the lies you’ve been living under, and discover God’s purpose and identity for you. For individuals as well as groups, Refining Identity is written as an interactive discipleship journey to help you walk in that relationship with God, coming to say for yourself, “I am who I AM says I am.” Discover more HERE!
I don’t know about you, but I for one have walked (several times, in fact) down a road of wondering who I am…who I’m supposed to be. I’ve tried to answer that question myself many times, with each instance leaving me feeling like I’ve failed. Again.
I’ve tried to define myself by the “hats” I wear…and by others’ expectations…and by my strengths…and by my weaknesses…and any number of things that this society suggests define identity.
But, when I stopped…and asked God who He said I was, I stopped walking in circles and began to actually walk on the path of my destiny. He began to reveal to me His perfect design and steps I can take as I trust Him.
During this process, He also gave me a heart for discovering identity in Christ alone and sharing that with others…to see people set free from incorrect definitions. If there is anything that we need to properly have defined, it is our true identity. It shapes our decisions in every way. We MUST know!
God, in His amazingly gracious way, gave me a message to go along with this passion…and that message has turned into a book which is called Refining Identity.
Refining Identity is now published after nine years of waiting and working and writing and waiting some more. I am beyond thrilled to see my heart’s message, this passion of mine expand beyond the confines of my computer’s file folders!
To celebrate the Refining Identity Launch, jump over to my Facebook page on November 26 between 10am and 10pm. You won’t want to miss the GIVEAWAYS and special promotions happening all. day. long! I look forward to seeing you there!
Yesterday we (finally!) had some repair work done on our foundation. With the shifting Texas soil and now-decomposing tree roots under the house, the back of the house has gradually been sinking. So, out came the men with the tools and shovels and goodness knows what else for most of the day. It was loud and definitely unsettling as I stood in the kitchen feeling the ground move beneath my feet.
Once they left, we were able to shut doors we haven’t been able to shut in a long time, things were cleaned up outside, but inside there are quite a few cracks that will need some patching and a little repainting.
I got to thinking about how there are often times in my walk with God that I have to go back to my foundation: to the basics of Who He is and who He says I am. I will find myself looking around the walls of my heart noticing that things aren’t working as well as they used to…there are a few cracks that indicate some shifting beneath my feet. Maybe I’m getting easily angered and snapping at my kiddos with a harsh tone. Maybe I’m not as patient as I usually am. Maybe I’m worried about all the things I “need” to accomplish.
Whatever the indicators are, inevitably they remind me to stop and take a look at my foundation. Who is God? Do I really believe that He’s sovereign and fully in control? Do I really believe that He loves me without condition? Who am I? Am I walking in the truth of my identity in Christ? Am I following the guiding Voice of the Holy Spirit? Am I trusting in my Father to take care of my needs?
It takes time and intentionality to stop and ask these kinds of questions. And often it feels uncomfortable and unsettling. But without the asking, the foundation will continue to sink as I keep on denying the true problem. Any “patching up” I do is in vain if I haven’t worked on the foundation first. It will have to be done over and over again as the cracks get bigger.
But, if I fix the foundation first: trusting in Who God is and walking in who He declares I am…then the patching up will be done with the confidence that this will be lasting change. How can I possibly be patient with three individual kids declaring their individual needs at the same time if I’m not walking like Christ? I just don’t have it in me to do it on my own. But once I habitually walk in that secure relationship with God, trusting in His love and forgiveness, patience (and the fullness of the character of Christ) will be an overflow in my life as opposed to something I have to muster up.
How’s your foundation doing these days?