Encourage yourself in the Lord. That’s the verse I woke up to yester. The last few days have been a mess, I feel like I have gone through the turbulent of life and back. So to wake up to such a verse I felt like such a cliché Christian.
You know the way sometimes Christians can be cliché? The how are you I am very fine Christian, the one who never faces storms.
I like to think I am not that kind of Christian, I am the kind who has difficult moments in life, just like everyone else, I have learnt that being Christian does not exempt you from troubles, so I have my moments with the Lord, the not so pleasant moments. That’s perhaps why one of the people who I relate to most in the bible is one David; this guy has such difficult moments and is not afraid to ask God interesting questions. ‘O Lord, how long will you forget me? Forever? How long must I struggle with anguish in my soul, with sorrow in my heart, everyday?’
So anywho I derailed from the point I was making.
The stormy path
A couple of weeks back before I went through this storm, I asked God to help me develop the skills I would need in the journey ahead, the skills and attitudes I would need to live out what He has called me to do. Like clockwork God answered. He kinda ignored the part where I asked that He does it gently but well, the point is He answered.
And the answer was my daughter you need to learn to be resilient. Storms will come up even in this amazing journey you are in. Some days will be so hard you will wish you had stuck to the safe tested waters. Some days you will meet so many naysayers that you will begin to doubt whether God spoke to you. Some days you will face such seemingly insurmountable challenges that you will wonder if living out this calling is worth it.
In those days, what will hold you back is 2 things, a conviction from God that this is where He wants you. And that conviction cannot be formed on the day the storm falls, it must have been formed beforehand and this is why you must make sure you hear from God before taking a step, this blogpost is about that -> I ain’t man enough for this one. You will then be convicted enough that this is the path you should be on that You will hold on.
The second thing that will hold you back is this attribute called resilience. My dictionary defines resilience as toughness, the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties. And on these non-rosy days that’s exactly what you will need; you will need to hold on because you are determined to fulfill God’s calling for your life. Ask Paul why he hang onto the many trials he went through and at the centre will be those 2 things. “Stand firm, and you will win life.”
Is it hard, yes. But on those days you must encourage yourself in the Lord. Those days you must pick up the pieces and keep going. Those days you must go to the feet of the Father and ask to be fed, ask to be ‘Fathered’. Those days you must depend on God like your life depends on it, because your life will depend on it.
Grow some backbone
So that’s my message today. Encourage yourself in the Lord. Grow some backbone. Spend time with God. Develop your faith muscle, you will need it.
You know at the centre of any walk into purpose is a relationship with God. That has to be the beginning, the middle and the end.
I don’t know how anyone can ever begin to walk towards purpose if they have no relationship with God, if they are not sure they heard from the Lord because truth is it gets stormy, especially in the beginning. Some days you will wake up and wonder if you were mad to step out of the boat and walk towards Jesus. Some days you will be very tempted to look away from Christ and focus on the madness of the moment; that you actually stepped out of the boat. Yet the most beautiful thing is knowing even in those days, He is with you, He will not let you drown even when you have for a few minutes turned away from Him and looked into the madness of where you are than Him. He will step in and save the day.
And if you hang in there, if you encourage yourself in the Lord as I kinda had to do this morning, if you trust in the Lord for the mountains, even in between the storms; a day comes, an hour comes, when you look up and you are still so glad you are walking this path. It is still the most satisfying thing you will ever do, to live out God’s calling for your life. Some days you will be amazed at the grace and favor He gives you. Those days you will know in your heart you would not rather be anywhere else. Those days you will say yes yet again, you will sing I say yes Lord I agree, my desire Lord passionately is to be what you call me to be, and that’s what ill be.
Imagine you have to start the questions, imagine you must praying that God opens your eyes. Imagine you must because stormy as it may be some days, it is still the most fulfilling thing you will ever do.