Hello again. I know it has been a few weeks since I last wrote but I am getting use to this whole blogging thing. LOL.
Anyways, today I would like to share with you a struggle I have been going through, as well as the wonderful things God has spoken to me through some sermons by Pastor Steven Furtick.
So about two years ago God called me to go to school to be a Christian Family Counselor. For most people this wouldn’t have scared them. But there was a reason that at the age of thirty I had not already gone to school, gotten a degree in something, and started a real career in my life. That reason is because I hated school. I have always disliked school, was never good in school, and most of the time the teachers didn’t like me. I was always more occupied with what was going on with my friends. If they had a problem I thought that as a friend that cared for them I needed to help them. This is life, we have to help each other through it. School won’t teach me anything that will really help me get through life. You could ask my family, I would skip class, give away my money, stay up all night on the phone, do whatever my friends needed to help them get through the tough times. So needless to say with that kind of desire to help people most of my friends and family would tell me I should go to school to be a counselor , I responded with the same answer. I hate school, I wasn’t good the first time I went to school and that means I will never go to school. Little did I know that ten years later after giving my life to Christ, He would call me to use my gift to help further His kingdom by counseling people.
All I could think was, NO WAY, I CAN’T DO THIS!!! I would be horrible I would never make it through school. But God kept pressing on me that this was part of His plan for me. So I did it. I started online college classes. But every semester I get anxiety (which my husband can attest to) and worry about how I will get through the research paper, or memorizing dates, and events, and definitions, etc….. And every semester I come out on the other side with God’s guidance with a B average. However, this semester is different. I still have anxiety but that anxiety is heightened because I am taking Algebra and Physical Science!! In case you don’t know Physical Science is basically a math class. So I am taking two math classes. I don’t understand equations and replacing letters for numbers and all that stuff. But my husband understands it. Which is great….. Most of the time. Since he understands it he keeps wanting to show me short cuts before I even understand what I am doing, which confuses me, and we just don’t communicate well so this has caused a few bumps.
Those bumps gave me a day of depression. I closed my computer, closed my book and told my husband that I was quitting because I didn’t understand this stupid stuff, I would never understand it and would never need to use it. I went to sleep and the next day I did not feel better. It wasn’t until later the next night I snapped out of my funk. What snapped me out of it. My husband… He kept reminding me that I was doing this for a reason, I was doing what God had called me to do. Of course I didn’t want to listen to him but I know he was right.
So now we get to the good stuff.
Here I am, answering part of God’s calling on my life, and I keep bringing myself down. Thinking I can’t do this, letting the words of someone from my childhood tell me I am too stupid to succeed. But that’s not what God says to me or about me.
Pastor Steven just finished a sermon series called The New Rules of Resolution; changing the way we change. It was great! If you can watch the whole series it has so much insight. But the one I want to share from it is the last sermon. It’s not what you would, it’s what you can. He talked about how growing up we all used the saying, “Would if I could, but I can’t, so I wont.” That is pretty much what I was saying just a week ago. Sorry God, I would if I could, but I can’t, so I won’t. And you know what, I can’t, not on my own. Which brings me to a sermon of Pastor Steven’s I just watched today.
This sermon was from January of 2011 where Elevation had just got done making a documentary about how the church got started called “This is How We Change the World.” The week before the documentary was shown to the church Pastor Steven shared with the church what he called The Five Mistakes I seem to Make Over and Over Again. This sermon was not long but it spoke to me so much that I am going to run through the five points.
#1: I worry about a battle that God has already won.
I mean really. If we think about it and just realize that God has won all of our battles past, present, and future how much easier would our daily lives be? Pastor Steven Read from Joshua 10:7-8 where Joshua and his army set out for Gibeon and God told Joshua not to be afraid because He had already given Joshua victory. GIVEN Joshua victory over a battle that he had not even fought. What should that tell us? That God has already given us victory over the things He calls us to do. Why do we worry about something He already knows the end results of. God doesn’t always do things the way we want Him to do them (actually He doesn’t do things our way often) but He always wins the battle. Another thing he said was something that Joyce Meyers said, “Worry is a down payment on a problem you may never have.” Yeah, think on that for a moment…..
#2: I think that when people leave me I have lost or failed in some way.
This point is not the same for me as it is for pastors. I don’t have a flock to lead but I felt as though it gives good insight in life and the career I am working towards. I have issues with worrying about why people are no longer my friend and why someone doesn’t call me as much as I call them. But not everyone in our lives are meant to be with us till the day we die. Ecclesiastes 3:1 says, “There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven.” Some are with us for a season because they have something to teach us, or maybe it was something we were teaching them and now they have moved on to teach others. But Pastor Steven said to remember that your destiny is not determined by the people who leave your life. Maybe that person was poisonous to your walk with God, maybe you were leaning too much on that person and not enough on God so he took them out of your life so you could learn to depend on Him instead of on a person. For Jeremiah 17:5 says, “cursed is the man who trusts in mankind and makes flesh his strength, and whose heart turns away from the Lord.” But verse 7 says, “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord and whose trust is in the Lord.” Also in John 15:2 Jesus said, “Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit.” So no matter how you look at it, if someone leaves your life because they were toxic to you life or because God had more growing for you to do somewhere else, it is all for the greater good of God and your life.
#3: I wait on the destination instead of celebrating in the journey.
How many times do we just want to get to where we are going without the wait. We don’t want to wait for anything. We honk our horns in traffic, we tap out foot when the person in front of us at the store has too much stuff, and I don’t really want to do the schooling in order to get my degree. We want God to tell us where He wants us and put us there and end of journey. Now we can do some work, right? But the journey is all about what we do when we get where we are going. You follow me? How can we give a testimony if there is nothing to testify about. BORING!!!!! We need to Celebrate what God has brought us through so far. Celebrate the successes we have had instead of looking at what we don’t have yet and may never have. Celebrate what God WILL do in our lives even though we are not sure exactly what it is.
#4: I let swagger jackers still my joy.
That is the person that likes to bring us down. It could be someone in our live right now but it could be someone who is no long in our lives but their words still echo in ours ears from time to time. That is what happens to me. I had someone in my life that spoke a lot of negativity into my life at a very young age and I fight with those voices at least once a week. Do not listen to those voices. Pastor Steven share Nehemiah 6:2-4 where Nehemiah was working on rebuilding a wall and some men where not happy about it and stop him and Nehemiah thought they might even want to hurt him. So he told them that he was to busy with his work to bother with them.
Sometime that’s what we need to do. When someone is trying to derail us from what we know God wants us to do, we need to just tell them, “Sorry I am too busy to deal with your nonsense.” This may sound harsh and mean, but we need to stay focused on God’s will not on others opinions or feelings.
Pastor also pointed out that there are people who sometimes think they are prophets, but they are just pessimists.
#5: I think that I have to fully understand God’s calling in order to completely obey Him
And this is where it really hits home for me. I think all the time how I don’t understand why God wants me do something or understand why He is taking me in a certain direction and I definitely don’t understand math and science, but Pastor pointed out that I don’t have to understand how it works to work it. I think he means that God will give me the understanding that I need when I need it in order to pass my classes. That’s life. If I am willing to go, then God will show me as I am going. God will bless your obedience.
WOW!!! I hope you are looking at this and can relate to at least one of these points. This has given me hope. I know that I cannot do school on my own. But with God leading me, encouragement and heartfelt reminders from my husband that I’ve got this, I know I can make it though school. At times I may want to quit, but I have to trust in the Lord, His ways, and not my own feelings. I choose to obey Him as He leads me down the path to better His Kingdom.
Hope this wasn’t too long for anyone. And if you would like to watch the sermon and documentary that I watched, here is the link:
As always, I hope this gives someone the encouragement they need and I pray everyone has a blessed week.
P.S. If there is anything you would like me to pray about and don’t mind sharing it in the comments, please feel free to put them below.