Have you ever scrolled through Facebook or Instagram and you do an eye roll when you see a post from someone who is telling a snippet about their lives and everything about them seems peachy and wonderful? And you think… “Really? Why do they have it so good when I am over here struggling?” Or a friend posts a verse that is meant to be inspiring but your perception is one of, “Good for you, I just sat on the couch and watched Netflix all day and now you want to throw your sainthood in my face!”
Let’s be real… I know I am not alone in thinking thoughts like this. Why do we do this? The answer is actually quite simple. The devil will find any way he can to be divisive and cause unrest among us. We all have a weakness (or in my case very many weaknesses). You may not struggle as I do exactly, but we all have that “thing” that makes us vulnerable to deception and pulls us away from our Heavenly Father. The key is to draw near to him continually. The Bible tells us this:
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)
We all have weaknesses and it is our responsibility to seek out God to fill those weaknesses with His power. God tells us to put on the full armor of God in order to overcome this world. I encourage you to read Ephesians 6:10-20 (see below). This is the recipe for allowing him to fill that void in our lives and be the person he created us to be. I don’t want to be the person that I often am sometimes. I know that when I immerse myself in Him by continual prayer, reading his word, being the best servant I can be, and submitting to him in all ways, that I become much less like the person I showed myself to be at the beginning of this blog. I despise that person. But I naturally fall into that tendency each day; I do not fill up on God. When I follow His Word, it is then that I find complete joy and peace and my love for others becomes much more Christ-like than when I am not consumed by his presence.
During this time of quarantine, I have been able to spend so much more time with my sweet, Heavenly Father. Because of this, I have seen how He has changed my heart from one of jealousy and resentment to a heart filled with a depth of love for those around me in a way that only He can give. My prayer is to see the world and His people just as God sees us. I know the only way to do this is to put him first each and every day. And sometimes it is hard. My laziness or selfish desires get in the way. Sometimes, I get upset because God is taking too long to “address my need” and I get frustrated.
I’m going to be brutally honest… this is all really embarrassing to me. To share these deep inner thoughts with you all is quite difficult. I think… “Will people be like…Oh! My! Word! This woman is awful!” But in the end, nobody is perfect and as His Word states, he makes us perfect in our weakness when we draw close to Him. I believe God has allowed me to be used as a tool for His kingdom. I have so many weaknesses and if I allow Him to fill them, it will be God working through me and not me at all. And, let me tell you, there is soooo much room for him to work! I have so much room for growth and I am looking forward to what God will do in my heart and in my life, as well as the lives of those around me!
The Armor of God: Ephesians 6:10-20 (NIV)
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 19 Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.