Updated: Sep 24, 2020
This Is Me! It's taken a lot for me to get to this place where I feel comfortable just being ME. Not worrying about other's opinions or what other people are saying about me. Knowing who I am in Christ and knowing who HE says I am has empowered me to tap into His grace and live for an audience of ONE!
In this growing season, God has really helped me develop these 3 postures (if you will):
SIT: Who are you sitting with? Because who you sit with MATTERS! I had the privilege of hearing LaMorris Crawford preach last year, and one of the things he said is, "Show me your close circle of friends, and I can prophesy your future." That's SO true!! Who you sit with is who you'll listen to. Who you sit with is who you'll become like. And I am so grateful that God has plugged me in with a community of Jesus followers who love God, who honors God, and who fights for me to walk in my purpose!
STAND: I love the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. Because these 3 Hebrew boys give us a great illustration of what it looks like to stand tall even under great pressure. Not only were they taken from their homeland and brought into Babylon, but they were forced to bow down and worship this golden image by King Nebuchadnezzar every time the music was played or they were to be thrown into a fiery furnace. And one of the reasons I love this story so much is because every time these boys' names are mentioned, they're ALWAYS mentioned in the group. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. And as they did life together, they were stoking the fire that was inside each other and as a result, they were able to take a stand for God. Listen ... if you don't stand for something, then you'll fall for anything! Isaiah 7:9 says, "If you do not stand firm in your faith, then you will not stand at all."
WALK: Going back to the story of these 3 Hebrew boys ... can you imagine what it would've been like that day? The music goes off, but these 3 boys, they don't bow down - rather they stand tall! So Nebuchadnezzar orders the furnace to be turned up 7 times hotter. You know, I wished I could tell you that by following Jesus ... life gets so much easier. But the truth is, if you decide to follow Jesus, that fiery furnace in your life is going to be turned up 7 times hotter! And I believe that these boys were able to walk towards that fiery furnace unashamed, unafraid, unapologetic ... because they knew who they were! And when you understand that you're a child of God. When you understand that you were saved by grace ... you get this Godly confidence that enables you to walk through anything!! Isaiah 43:2, "When you walk through the waters I will be with you, when you walk through the rivers they will not sweep over you, and when you walk through the fire you will not be burned."
These boys were thrown into the fiery furnace. But as Nebuchadnezzar stares into the fire, he sees something bewildering to him. Something that doesn't make any sense. He sees a fourth man in the fire, and he says, "That fourth man, that looks like the Son of God." Guess what?? It WAS the Son of God! Because when life heats up, that's when Jesus shows up!! So these boys were pulled out of the fiery furnace, and get this. When they were pulled out of the fire, only their ropes had burned off. Because when you go through the fire, everything that was binding you is loosed!!!
So yes ... my #REDEEMED story is full of twists & turns, bumps & bruises, and hardships along the way. But despite my past and everything I've gone through, it's shaped me into who I am today. I am sitting with a healthy community. I'm standing tall in the midst of circumstance. I will continue to walk out my faith with boldness and courage. And despite my flaws, I'm proud to say