I'm Elizabeth and God designed me to be an encourager, a dreamer, a story teller and most importantly, a Kingdom builder.
We’ve all experienced it. Doubt that slowly creeps in like fog on an early winter morning, or frustration that comes like a torrential downpour you can’t find shelter from.
Mixed in with the doubt and the frustration there is often exhaustion, a feeling of being depleted and utter loneliness. And that’s the one that really burns. The loneliness. The isolation. The feeling that takes hold of you and gently whispers, “know one understands, no one cares, you are alone.”
Those whispers, those feelings that come uninvited and without mercy, those aren’t lies from your enemies. Those are lies from the enemy. The one who comes to steal and take from you. The one who’s aim and goal is take your joy, steal your hope and suck the life out of your spirit.
When you are at your most vulnerable; more tired than you’ve ever been, more depleted than you’ve ever been, closer to the end of you than you’ve ever been, that’s when the enemy attacks. And I believe it’s because that’s also the time your heart can be open to Christ in the most beautiful way, and let’s face it, that’s the last thing the enemy wants. In your moment of weakness and vulnerability the direction you choose to go can have a profound impact upon you and everything in your life.
When the enemy attacks with lies of doubt and fear, Christ in that very moment is stretching out His arms for you. He is offering, as He always does, shelter from that torrential storm, and light that burns away the fog.
In your weakness, at your most vulnerable, He is strong. His power is made perfect in our weakness (Corinthians 12:9). When we come to the end of ourselves, that is when our relationship with God is set to truly bloom, like wildflowers in early Spring.
That’s also the time, in our weakness, that we must guard our hearts against attacks from the enemy. We must be quick to give grace to others, we must remind ourselves that fear and doubt never come from The Lord. We must be steadfast in knowing that while God may test us, He will never tempt us. God doesn’t work that way. He is never rooting for your downfall. He is always seeking for a deeper relationship with you.
I used to be so confused when I heard God referred to as a “jealous God.” It was such a juxtaposition. Wasn’t God supposed to be loving and merciful? Wasn’t jealousy a bad thing. As I’ve grown older and more mature in my relationship with God and my understanding of the Bible, I have come to realize that “God is jealous for me” because He loves me, cares for me and desires a relationship with me in a way that can best be described as jealousy. He wants nothing to separate us, no wall to keep us apart, no bridge to be burned between us. He is always on my shore. Standing with me, beside me and alive in me. He is jealous for my heart in a way that the devil could never understand. But that doesn’t stop the devil from whispering lies of fear, doubt and unworthiness into my ears, and into yours.
So what can we do? How can we protect ourselves against that which would destroy and diminish us? We guard our hearts with prayer, we put on the Armor of God every day. We refuse to believe that we are anything else but children of the one true King. We are loved, cherished and joyfully created in the image of God.
Sure it sounds easy in theory, unfortunately the everyday application can be a struggle. My husband has reminded me on more than one occasion of something he learned in his weekly men’s group at our church, “we are in a battle.” We have declared war on the enemy because we have joined the army of Christ. We are in a battle for something much larger than just our own lives, we are in a battle for the Kingdom. We are called to fight darkness with light. We are called to outshine evil with goodness. We are incapable of doing any of it without Jesus. As warriors we must prepare just as soldiers do. We must have a practice of prayer. We must exercise a heart of thanksgiving. We must give grace where it is not extended to us. And most importantly like the three young men Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in the Book of Daniel, we must be willing to go into the fire regardless of the earthly outcome.
This battle we’re in is bigger than ourselves but we can be confidant in our God, who is bigger than all. He is the Creator, the King, the Great I Am, and He is always and forever on our side, jealous for our hearts and holding us closer than we can even begin to understand.
If you are in the battle and would like prayer please leave a comment below telling me and anyone else reading how we can specifically be praying for you.
The Monday Morning Pep Talk will give your inbox a fresh dose of Christian inspiration and faith filled encouragement to start your week!