Do you ever feel like giving up?
Like ditching whatever storm you're in, hardening your heart, throwing up a few walls, and forcing yourself not to care?
Like distracting yourself with the temporary lures of the world?
Like giving in to the voices of defeat that whisper "It's pointless." "Things will never change." "This is impossible."
Sometimes, when our storms go on and ON, it's tempting to do any or even all of the above. Think about why bars are so full. Why rehab centers are so crowded. Why one-night stands are so prevalent. Why credit cards are maxed and closets are full of clothes that don't fit anymore. We substitute for Jesus and binge and indulge either physically, mentally or emotionally to distract. To sate. To numb.
I've been there.
Recently, in fact. Like, two days ago. (not in a bar or in rehab! I mean, in the temptation to go a direction I didn't want to go because of pain)
But here's what I realized.
Where do those voices come from? The voices of defeat, resignation, despair, and discouragement?
Not from God.
So... if it's not from God, it's from the enemy.
The enemy is the father of lies.
So...do I listen to those lies? Do I obey those voices?
And neither do you.
Allow me the faith to declare that maybe, just maybe, those voices are coming because victory is on it's way. If I give up, give in, and surrender to anything outside of God's perfect will, perfect plan, and perfect path for me, then the enemy wins. He has me right where he wants me - out of the game. Benched. Ineffective. On the sidelines, rocking in the fetal position while the game goes on around me.
I'm pretty sure Easter is a clear reminder that the enemy doesn't win. And he won't win in my life either. For all your "Big Bang Theory" TV show fans, I like to think of the Resurrection as "the first Bazinga". :)
Think about this...
What happens if I give up? Defeat.
What happens if I keep going? Well, I don't know for sure right now. But I know Romans 8:28 is alive and well and active in my life and so are the rest of God's promises to His Beloved. Even at the worst, that sounds a whole lot better than defeat. Even at the worst, God will provide for me as I seek Him first, take care of me, and give me life abundantly. He will give me the desires of my heart as I delight in HIM.
Not too shabby. :)
Here's another thought.
When people ask me in interviews what's my best advice to aspiring authors, I always say DO NOT GIVE UP. Because if you quit submitting your manuscript to agents and editors, if you quit trying to be published, you are guaranteed never to be published. Duh. Just a fact. But if you keep going in the face of rejection, you have a shot at reaching your dream.
Pretty logical reasoning there, but we (I) forget to apply it to my non-writing related life so often. You probably do too.
Bottom line? I can't control my circumstances, but guess what - my circumstances DO NOT control my faith.
I don't know what your storm is today, but all of the above applies to you too.
So, my public announcement for the day? I'm not giving in. I'm not admitting defeat. I'm going to keep fighting. Keep praying. Keep seeking. Keep writing and baring my soul to the world to encourage others. Keep the word of God alive in my heart. Keep surrendering to JESUS - not to the enemy and his ridiculous lies. Keep believing, keep having faith, and keep striving NOT to fix my own circumstances, but to rest in His peace. To let Jesus fight for me when I'm too weary to even pick up my Coke Zero much less battle in the spiritual realm.
He is Warrior. He is enough.
My response to the enemy is therefore, today, twofold. Ahem.
1. He is risen!!!!