When I first gave my life to God: I started talking differently, walking differently and even dressing differently. I was so excited about this new realm of life that I heard was the bomb! I was determined to be the exception—vowing to never let sin or temptation come my way. Little did I know that’s a big part of this walk. Because I was so focused on the wrong thing (what people thought of me), I willingly bought into the “live life to the fullest” motto just because I could. My fire for Jesus was quickly put out by people I forgot to eliminate and places I didn’t know I had to stop frequenting. I was queen of secret-sinning — where nobody knew what I was up to—sometimes not even my closest friends. I remember feeling like God would not bother bringing me out of some situations because I readily put myself in them. So I began straddling the fence… appearing wholesome to the RIGHT folk but still trying to prove to my old life that I hadn’t changed. I made this a way of life. I even convinced myself that this is the way every Christian did it (there went my will to be the exception). I found such a comfortable place in my sin that it became the only way I could ease the pain of being separated from God. Twisted, I know.
The book of James talks about how a double-minded man is unstable in all his ways; well I can certainly vouch for that one! Trying to please the world and God will become stressful, painful and eventually embarrassing. Oh please believe, we will be revealed! I ruined my integrity with so many people. Feeling inadequate and unworthy, this caused me to spiral into sin all the more. I hit rock-bottom HARD and FAST. I knew I had to whole-heartedly commit to righteousness. Thankfully God is a restorer and makes all things new! God’s mercy will pull you out of the deepest, darkest pits of hell if you desire Heaven. By approaching God with a repentful heart, He will be right there ready to forgive with that beautiful mercy and grace of His! (Read Romans 3: 23-29). We’ve all sinned and fallen short of His glorious standard. He wants us to want to be saved and follow the ways of Christ.
The walk of a believer is not about rapid-fire scripture spitting or being perfect. Being a believer is striving & fighting to be more & more Christ-like every opportunity we get! It’s rewarded with unmatchable joy, freedom and favor by obedience and reverence for God through authentic relationship with Him. He will be your best friend, your husband, your girl, your food, your drink, your laugh, your hug, your kiss, your job and your benefits package…ok you get the point. God is everything we need Him to be if we allow Him to be it! Philippians 4:19 “And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” Putting God first in your life will NEVER leave you without. Matthew 6:33 “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.” It’s that simple.
So initially, I had this God thing all wrong. Living life to the fullest should mean serving God like it’s our last chance…not people. It should mean loving people when they may not even warrant our ‘like’; it should mean submitting to the Lord beyond our comfort level; it should mean worshipping in spirit and in truth. Well it does to me! It took some time and some painful lessons but I finally realized that our life is really not our own. Yielding to God is not an act of punishment from Him, it’s an act of LOVE, protection and kindness. It keeps us in the will of God where grace and mercy will forever abide while His purpose flawlessly unfolds. No situation is worth your priceless destiny with the Most High! God has put so much promise in us and allowing our own agendas to interfere, deflects the plan He has for us. So whatever you’re in that doesn’t feel right or you know God has told you to get out of; I encourage you to pray, obey and get a move on. I’ll always remember my trials but never will I regret my obedience to His voice as he instructed me out of them. Obey the tug on your heart… I guarantee you will never want to forget it!
GUEST BLOGGER :: Candace Thompson