Saturday, December 6, 2014

There's a difference

Wow!  It's been quite a while since I've written.  I usually make time to write when my heart cannot contain or hold back how I feel.  Recently I have been writing a lot in a journal, so my thoughts have been expressed elsewhere...which you may be relieved to know. :)  But I felt compelled to share what I've been learning, and how the Lord has been speaking to me.

It hasn't been that long that I've felt the presence of God in my life.  I grew up knowing a lot of things about God, but not knowing the true presence of Him in my life.  I always did the right things.  I "performed" to a set of standards that legalism always expects of you.  I was a good girl because if you were bad, you were not accepted in the circle.  I was condemning to the world around me at times too, and I still am because of that religious spirit.  There came a point in my life that I was sick of the whole acting thing.  Life is messy.  Just because you do the right things, that doesn't keep you going down the easy road of life.  Pain and heartache happen to all of us.  Life sucks at times, and if there is the absence of His presence, it feels empty.  I always felt like there was something more.  Something I had to be missing.

About 12ish years ago...yikes I'm old...I went to college and found I was missing His presence...His intimacy...His love.  And then over the years, I have come to know Him more.  He is constantly sanding and refining me.  The work He does is never done.  He points something out, and then begins to work on your heart in that area...and if the lesson isn't learned, He comes back to try it again.  I know because I've been through it.

In a recent study at church, I have been learning how to hear the voice of God.  I thought I was going to find out how to hear from Him.  Find out there was a process to easy communication that I hadn't figured out yet.  He actually revealed things to me that blew me away about Him.  Of course He has a plan for us, His plan is amazing.  But He is not a God that is just used for our purposes.  He is not a genie.  He wants to talk to us through His Word.  He wants us to meditate in His presence.  The Holy Spirit in us is for a more intimate relationship with Jesus.  And through that relationship, you see His plans, you see Him working in your life.  You hear his voice.
 He has revealed to me how I have confused His voice with the enemy.  I have many thoughts of  self-condemnation. I always think I am not doing something good enough.  I'm not a good enough wife...  not a good enough mother...not a good enough housekeeper, teacher, don't spend enough time in the Word...I have beaten the tar out of myself.  And I have believed it was conviction.  But I refuse to believe that lie.  The Spirit doesn't speak like that.  Jesus doesn't condemn us.  His conviction is gentle and loving.  This condemning of self is Satan's way of distorting His presence.  It has brought me down long enough.  I have exposed him and I am transforming my mind to realize that it's not the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit says, "Sarah, I miss you.  Come sit with me.  Come talk with me."  There's not a hint of condemning.  The Holy Spirit's conviction brings to light and exposes things, but doesn't heap judgement on our heads.  His conviction spurs true repentance and gives us hope that we can overcome. 

I will continue to be in His Word, because it is His Word.  I'm not in it anymore because it's what I should do.  It's what I want to do.  We have it right before us to study and learn how to become more like Him.  How to be changed and renewed....a constant process.

I pray all of you hear from Him in your life.  That your faith is made personal and you get to experience His presence.  It's unlike anything else.  Once you get a taste of HIM, you will not be able to go back to how you once were.  You will be forever changed.

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