What if I believed
what God says about me?
What would I do?
Who would I be?
If I walked in His purpose
what would I dream,
if, by faith, I believed
things were not what they seem?
What if I told doubt
to go back to hell?
If I jumped right up
every time I failed?
What if I pressed?
What if I made it???
What if I won the game
before I ever played it?
What if the victory is already mine
and now it’s only a matter of time?
What if I believed what God says is true?
I choose to believe. How about you?
July 3rd, 1999…I went to Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch for the first (and only) time with my sister. We had separately been invited to attend a private party and neither one of us were gonna go. We were on the phone the night before and Kim said, “well, we could ride out there together.” I reluctantly agreed. We drove through the beautiful gates at the ranch, parked and walked into a place I still can’t believe was someone’s “backyard”. It was beautiful…we were amazed. But as I looked around, there was one thing that caught my eye more than the carnival-style rides and other festivities….this FINE guy had just arrived across the park. I froze. Kim looked to see what I was looking at and said with a gasp, “that’s YOU, Lex!” I didn’t know his name and I definitely wasn’t going to ask. I just admired him from afar. A little while later, the head of the Jackson security team approached me. “Miss Fields, do you happen to know, Kevin Jackson, from Adidas?” No, I had no idea who that was. The bodyguard went on, “I think he’s someone you should know.” He led Kim and I across the park and as we made our way through a group of people I realized I was being taken over to the guy I had seen arrive earlier!!!! We were introduced, and he totally played me. “Nice to meet you,” he casually said as he went on to speak to others he actually knew. I was humiliated. Why did that doggone man take me all the way over there??? Kim and I went back across the park and found a bench to rest on so I could tend to my bruised pride. Minutes later, the Adidas guy (Kevin) walked up to me and said, “do you want to get on some of the rides?” Yes!!!!!! Yes I did!!!!! I hopped up and didnt see Kim again for hours! For the rest of that day, Kevin and I enjoyed the Neverland Ranch together…and he put a ring on my finger years later. He eventually told me that he had asked the bodyguard (Ray), to come over and get me so that we could meet. He had been asking people about me since he noticed me at a party months before….and there I was, sitting on a bench at Michael Jackson’s house.
I’m so thankful this morning. Sometimes the magnitude of what Jesus actually did is downplayed through the memory of the world. We’re taught to remember a man dying and most of us do know the story. But today, I began to think about what it REALLY meant for Jesus to be born into this world and to live BLAMELESSLY in order to fulfill His purpose. We forget that Jesus was granted the same free will that we have. At any moment He could’ve taken His heart and mind off of God and fallen short. But with you and I in mind, He pressed toward His PURPOSE. He stayed aligned with the will of God by CHOICE!! He lived righteously and kept himself pure, because His SACRIFICE had to be pure for our sake. So we can’t forget. We can’t dilute how awesome and amazing what He did was and still is. As we celebrate His death and resurrection, it is imperative that we celebrate His life and His commitment to purpose….His commitment to us. We were His purpose.
The Spirit of God just ministered to me so clearly. When we have committed ourselves to the Lord and fall under the leadership of a certain Man or Woman of God our obedience to the mandate that God has given that leader is key. God gave Joshua specific instructions concerning the Promised Land. Now God could have done it, no matter what, but He specifically commanded Joshua to have his people march around the city of Jericho a specific number of times. He gave detailed instructions for the 7 priests who would blow the trumpets. Once those trumpets sounded, God told Joshua to have ALL of the people “give a loud shout” because God had given them the city. Joshua told them this BEFORE the walls of the city actually came down. By faith, Joshua was able to proclaim the victory before it was tangible. But, what if the people didn’t feel like shouting? What if they decided not to show up for the march around the city because they had better things to do? How would it have felt to be the one that came late, after the work had been done but still try to celebrate the victory as though they were there for the fight? We may not understand what our spiritual leader is asking of us in God’s name. It might not always make sense through the bits and pieces of information we receive. But some of our blessings, some of our breakthroughs are on the other side of obedience. God, told Joshua what to do. Joshua told the people what they needed to do. Then God gave them ALL the victory!! Support the vision that God has given to your leader. Play your part no matter how big or small it seems and you will end up being richly blessed through your obedience.
Lord!!! Forgive my disobedience and unwillingness!!! Let me be a USEFUL member in the Body of Christ!!
I had a great lunch with my stepfather yesterday and as I reflect, it’s beginning to put my relationship with God in perspective. I didn’t grow up with my biological father around much. That dynamic between father and daughter has always been strange to me. I didn’t know what it was like to feel special because of the love and validation of the first man in my life. I don’t blame him. I did for a long time, but as I’m getting older, I recognize how many factors play into the decisions we make and the way our lives ultimately play out. He made great efforts to reconnect with me during my early adulthood, but I was in a stubborn place and couldn’t accept it. So many of us were raised by a single mother…a woman who was probably seeking the same kind of love and validation that we also needed. It can be a vicious cycle. So this post is to speak very specifically to all of the women who find themselves searching for something to fill the void. You have a choice in how the next part of your life will play out. What you didn’t get from your father cannot and will not be replaced by random men and material things throughout your life. And just to be clear, “random men” don’t always seem random at the time we are seeking their validation. They seem special, perfect, challenging; at the time they are “everything you’ve ever wanted”….but if you’re able to “fall in love” with a new man every other week, it’s because you’re trying to fill a burning void inside of you. I couldn’t say it to you if I hadn’t lived it, too. God’s heart burns for us. He longs to fill that void…permanently. The book of John talks about a Samaritan woman who had an encounter with Jesus. She was a woman who had been searching for something. 5 husbands and a “boyfriend” later she finds herself, literally, still thirsty. She’s at a well drawing water when Jesus tells her, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” God doesn’t do “temporary”. He doesn’t do “partial”. He completes the work that he sets out to fulfill in us. What your earthly father didn’t give you is old news. What your Heavenly Father has planned for you is Good News! Seek Him!!! He will NOT leave us or forsake us! -Alexis
“You’re burning away the false comfort and You’re setting me free. You comfort me oh God. You comfort me.” Freedom’s Fire (a worship album)
Music affects me in a different kind of way. It’s almost as if I can feel it moving through me and reaching every part of my spirit. Worship music in particular is like “liquid praise”. It submerges me in the glory of God and I become one with it, offering up my heart and a sound that satisfies Him. As I listened to this song in my car, I cried and begged God to not only expose the things that I allow to falsely comfort me, but to remove them. The song says that He burns away false comfort. I love that because fire, by nature, is so unruly and uncontainable, but our God can control it and use it specifically to remove every trace of those things in our hearts that would try to take His place. Every loving parent wants to provide whatever their child needs. God is no different. He knows that false, temporary comforts will eventually lead to more brokenness and loneliness. He wants to purify us with His fire and in the process remove all hurt, all pain, all shame. There is freedom in giving our hearts to God and relying on his infinite provisions. Drugs, alcohol, lust, the validation of other people, money, the illusion of success….all false comforts. There is only one true place of comfort. There is only one true source of freedom. “He’s burning away the false comfort and He’s setting us free.” Let it burn…
I’m currently studying a few chapters of the bible (Romans 6-8) and I’ll be honest. At first, I was reading it like a cookbook with no kitchen. Nothing really meant anything to me, I was just looking at words; but something happened as I kept going. Conviction set in and the words came to life. These words were revealing my truth (past and present). Then I started thinking about WHY I have had such a hard time denying sin in most areas of my life. As a young woman who constantly battles with self esteem issues, I’ve always wanted to feel special or important to someone or something. Sin tricks us that way. It makes us feel like everything has come together perfectly for a moment for us to do something (that in our heart of hearts we know is wrong) and it makes us question how wrong something that feels so right could possibly be. Sin, as uncomfortable as it really is, has become the norm. We’ve almost been desensitized to it. We can’t be tricked by the enemy and allow sin to sneak in and fill our minds and our hearts. Those are meant for the Spirit and Love of God!! We have to practice righteousness until IT becomes the norm and sin is exposed for what it really is. Wrong.
I was just reading a devotion about the woman determined to touch the hem of Jesus’ garment. I’ve read the story, heard the story, seen it in a play before….but it hit me in a different way this morning. Maybe because I can so closely relate. My issue may not be the same as hers, but my solution is the same. I’m longing for God’s truth; His heart changing touch; His mercy. I don’t feel worthy all the time, but I feel like if I could just get a little piece of Him, I’ll be made whole.
I’m sitting at the top of a hill. Along the way up, I had so many revelations. There were tears…there were smiles. I realized that every time I got to a part of the hill where the ground was flat and the walk was easy, I wanted to stop. I could see the beautiful view and I felt like I had accomplished enough. But something kept telling me to keep going…push harder. So I did. After 3 times of having to push myself, I ended up lost. I could go right which seemed to go downhill or I could go left which appeared to lead higher…I went left. After another steep hill, I walked through some brush and debris. I’ll admit it was a little scary. I slipped a few times and had a hard time getting around it. Once I cleared the last bend, the most beautiful group of butterflies fluttered all around me. It was almost like I was one of them. I immediately knew God was speaking to me. I walked out to admire the view. I was at the highest point that my trail could reach. I was proud. After a few minutes of looking out, I heard some loud banging and clanging. I looked down the mountain to see where it was coming from. There was a house under construction. God spoke to me again. The house was me. I could only see it clearly because I was standing above it at the top of the hill. The revelation was clear. I may not know what God is doing. Things won’t look pretty while I’m under construction. But once I’ve reached another level in Him, I’ll look back and realize that everything I’m currently experiencing was all apart of His plan to build me up. As those carpenters know what will come of their banging and the work of their hands, so does My Father already know what will become of me. I have to keep pushing and follow the path He lays out before me. Tears. He’s good.
as I wither…
A woman fell in love with a beautiful plant and so she bought it. She watered it that day and the next and then the next. As time went on, she grew busy. She forgot to water the plant one day…and the next and then the next. Days went by and the plant went without water. Then one day, the air in the woman’s house seemed different…she glanced at the plant. She was shocked to find it hunched over and shriveled…it was dying. She immediately rushed to get water. She talked to the plant, watered it, even sang to it. She did everything she did the very first day she brought it home. For a month, she loved on the plant and nursed it back to life, pruning away what was dead. Then, one day, the plant seemed to be doing well and the woman realized she was bored with the routine of it all. So, distracted by the spontaneity of life, she left the plant to wither. It dried up, began to lean and the leaves fell off. Finally, she only noticed it because of the stench. It was no longer pleasant. She tried again to nurse it, to bring it back to life as she had done before, but it was too late. Neglect had killed the beautiful plant. Devastated, she threw it away and set off to buy another plant, that would soon share the same fate. If only she had learned…the plant was never the problem.