I am so happy to bring you a guest post by one of my newest friends, Tara. She’s a Kentucky girl which made me love her instantly since my family’s roots are in that beautiful state. Tara is the author of the fabulous blog, Created to Be Beautiful, which is an inspiring, encouraging, and uplifting expression of her faith. Her life story includes struggles and challenges, but she looks for the beauty in the every day and strives to continue to be the woman God made her to be. I believe she succeeds beautifully.
The Heavy Sword
There are many times I have not understood God… many times I have felt His Words were contradictory.
Over the last three years I have been in a spiritual battle within my family. I have felt the attack in every area of my life; from my marriage, to my children, to my finances, to my very life on this earth…. Some days, I am just very exhausted.
Oh, there have been many, many victories!! God’s hands have literally carried us through each and every day. It is amazing to look back through my journals and remember all that He has done… I am overwhelmed!
But there are still times when I do not understand Him.
For us Christians, we truly believe in the One: The Almighty God. We truly believe in Jesus: God in the flesh that died upon a cross to save us from our sins, and then three days later rose from the grave. We also truly believe that God the Spirit lives within us, helping to guide us and lead us through this earthly journey called life.
So if we believe this to be true, then we also have to believe there is a darkness; an enemy of our souls… the enemy of our Creator. This enemy engages us Christians in a spiritual battle; he wants to steal, kill and destroy our lives here on earth, as he knows the end result: Our God Wins!
I have felt this battle. I have literally felt this darkness….
I have looked to God, to His army of Angels to help me engage and stand strong.
The battle has been fierce… it has been exhausting. I have enlisted many prayer warriors… I have prayed many prayers, and believed many scriptures.
We are told in Ephesians 6 that we are to suit up, put on our armor and fight this battle. So I have picked up my sword… I have fought and will continue to fight.
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God…” (Ephesians 6:10-20)
But then I grow tired, and God tells me to rest.
“Come to me all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)
Do I fight?
Or do I rest?
Then I read to “Pray without ceasing” (I Thessalonians 5:16-18).
So I pray….
But then I feel I am just rambling to God and I read, “Be still and know that I am God”. (Psalm 46:10)
Do I pray continually?
Or should I just be still and listen?
So I have debated with God over the last few years about this….
I want to fight, but my sword gets heavy; very heavy…. So I need to rest.
I want to pray and continually talk with God, but my prayers seem repetitive; I have poured out my heart through words and tears for years… so sometimes I just need to be quiet.
It sounds like God is contradicting Himself….
But I have come to a place where I now think differently. I think God meets us right where we are! Whether it is a season in our lives, a bad week we are having, or maybe it is just a weak moment… He meets us wherever we happen to be.
There are times in our lives when the battle is fierce and God empowers us. Not only can we carry our swords, we are ready to rage into battle and “slay that dragon.” So God gives us strength, boldness, courage and energy. We feel that extra spring in our step and we know “we can do all things through Him who gives us strength” (Philippians 4:13). Those are the good days.
But there are times in our lives when we feel weak, weary… exhausted. Not only can we no longer fight the battle, we seem to just be dragging our swords behind us. And you know what? God meets us right there, too! He beckons us, “Come to Me”… “I will give you rest”! He holds us, He refreshes us, He wipes away our battle sweat and tears…. He nourishes our weary souls. Those are also the good days.
There are times when we are constantly in prayer. All day our lips are full of praises to Him… words and prayers are being spoken with ease. He is our Father and our Best Friend as we engage in continuous conversation. Our spirits are lifted and we easily find the gratitude to bestow praises unto Him. Again, those are the good days.
But then there are those times when we feel we have said all we can say. How many times do we have to say the same prayers for the same requests… for how many years? We probably sound like broken records. Does He ever get tired of our voice? Of our asking? So we just keep quiet…. Instead, we silence the tongue and just listen. We listen for Him. We shut out the distractions of our own voice, of our own wants and requests, and we just enjoy being quiet before the Almighty. He has so much to say to us, but many times we are talking a mile a minute and we can not hear Him. Most of the time, God speaks in whispers…. When we are silent, those whispers can be heard loud and clear. Those are the great days!
Prayer is not monologue, but dialogue; God’s voice is its most essential part. Listening to God’s voice is the secret of the assurance that He will listen to mine. – Andrew Murray
So where are you today? Are you in a fierce raging battle within your own life? Have you put on your armor and engaged in battle? Or are you weary today… not even sure if you can take that next step or breath? Are you constantly praying and presenting your requests before God? Or are you taking time to be still and listen?
Wherever you are at this moment (and remember, it could change tomorrow)… just rest assured that He will meet you right where you are!
He gives strength to the weary. He gives wisdom. He gives guidance. He heals. He restores. He refreshes. He listens. He speaks. He gives. He allows. He rescues. He forgives. He loves. He promises and is faithful. He makes all things new and beautiful. He is all we need…. no matter where we are. He helps us carry the sword!
May you find the beauty in today,
“He has made everything beautiful in its time” (Ecclesiastes 3:11)
~ Leave me a comment, I would love to read YOUR thoughts~♥
Recent entries from my gratitude journal: (to read more about this, click here)
96. Geese swimming on pond
101. Gifts unexpected!
107. Life experiences… helping to prepare me for the future
112. Beautiful daughter on 17th birthday
117. Barefoot baby walking on sidewalk… hand tightly in mine
Thank you so much, Tara, for sharing your heart with us today! If you would like to check out Tara’s blog, you can find her here.
It’s Friday, folks! Have a great one and a terrific weekend!