As I was reading through some of my devotions, I found this one that I wrote on January 10, 2021 as the new year was ushered in. I am going to share it again today. I look back to the words He gave me then and some are the same words He is giving me this week. The main verse He has given me over and over this week is, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.” Proverbs 3:5-6 My mind wants to try and figure some things out. We hear predictions from people we trust and some we are not sure of. We read different things, hear what others are saying to do or not do and it can get you confused if you are not listening to Him. This week I didn’t realize how many times I was leaning on my own understanding instead of His perspective. I found myself trying to figure out minute little things on my own and then thinking about how to handle or fix things that are out of my control. I MUST keep His Word before my eyes continuously. Anytime I am thinking about fixing situations, whether it is with people, healing, finances, daily situations and not considered Him first, I am leaning on my understanding. Acknowledge Him in all my ways!! Or, With all your heart rely on him to guide you.
It’s an amazing time in history. One like most of us have never experienced. I used to look ahead and plan a few months out but right now I don’t even know what to think about yesterday. Yet, the Word says without a vision the people perish. My vision is to live His Word daily, trusting Him and shining His love. I am seeking the Lord for direction and wisdom. He is our guiding light for sure. This is what I wrote in January of 2021. As I read it, I realize He never left us through all the situations. We lost our grandson who was on drugs. My Mom’s husband left her and she is now living with us and part of our family. You don’t see those things ahead of time but His promises are still the same. What will a year from now look like? Can we reread what the Lord has given us and know we trusted Him and acknowledged Him in all His ways?
“January 10, 2021. As I was thinking about this past year, I started thinking how in so many ways I feel I wasted some time in 2020. I was thinking about the whole pandemic situation, life shut down and how many people we haven’t seen for almost a year. I thought of time I could have communicated better but then realized just how caught off guard I really was with things. Maybe I wasn’t as prepared as I could have been. I probably was taken life for granted to a point. As I recalled the times, I realized I had never experienced such deception, division and distractions. I have lived through and experienced many things in my life – death in my family, fatal car accidents in our family, financial devastation at times, family health issues, Adams heart surgery as a baby, step-dad’s cancer, Mom’s stroke, Tim’s stroke. We’ve had a grandson struggling with drugs, lost parents and friends, been through church division and yet the sudden cloud, the storm of deception and control caught me so off guard! I feel I was in a daze so much of the time and let the darkness cause me to lose sight of some important things. Don’t get me wrong, I spent so much time with the Lord, in the Word and in prayer. I didn’t let the darkness remain or overpower me. His light shone brightly and definitely kept me from buying completely into the deceptions and fears of the enemy. I stayed in Him and His Word and yet let myself at times get distracted, confused and controlled by the enemies attempts. I don’t know if that makes sense but it is how I felt sometimes. I feel I let some opportunities go – sat around in dismay at times when I could have reached out to others. I say all this to say that is not what I want to do in 2021.
This year I want to walk in more clarity than ever before. This year will probably be bombarded with even more deception, darkness and evil than last year. I feel a lot of 2020 I was preparing my heart for what is to come but I know I can’t stop going forward. I’m asking the Lord now to show me how I am to respond to any situation that are ahead. We all know how it should look if we are walking in His love and wisdom but that isn’t how it always ends up. He asks me, “What is in your heart today that could cause you to react or respond in a way that isn’t Me?” I don’t have any idea what tomorrow or next week will look like. But I do know beyond a shadow of doubt how I want to handle any situation. I want to be totally sold out – surrendered and 100% committed to Him. No matter what a day or season brings I desire and am asking the Lord to show me exactly how I can respond or react to it. My greatest desire is for His Light, life and glory to shine through me no matter how dark and black a situation appears. Darkness isn’t even a reality with Christ in us unless we chose to hide our light. “Your lives light up the world. Let others see your light from a distance, for how can you hide a city that stands on a hilltop? And who would light a lamp and then hide it in an obscure place? Instead, it’s placed where everyone in the house can benefit from its light.” Matthew 5:14-15
“It’s impossible to disappear from you or to ask the darkness to hide me, for your presence is everywhere, bringing light into my night.” Psalm 139:11 I was talking a one of our granddaughters while we are here in Tennessee. She graduates this year and I was asking her how she sees her future. She shared her vision with me and said, “That is how I see it but may not be how it turns out.” I agreed and then shared with her that whatever our dream or vision we have to go forward – toward it and as we go the Lord adjusts, redirects and guides us as He sees it going. When we “arrive” many times things look different but we have a peace and know it is where we are to be. Now we don’t have to do it this way. We could fight to make it work the way we want it to be or how we originally saw it but the result will not be peace. Usually making it happen our way doesn’t bring the results we expected.
That is where I feel we are now. We have a vision of truth as to where our country is to be going. We have and need to continue to go toward that truth but cannot fight against Him to get the results we think we are to have. There is a fine line at times with what we think is right or leaning on our own understanding when He is showing us the path and steps we are to take. So far, the last few days things are not turning out or have not proven to be like I thought or wanted. Most of us could say that. But His word to me is to not give up! We all know these verses but they are a great reminder: “Trust in the Lord completely, and do not rely on your own opinions. With all your heart rely on him to guide you, and he will lead you in every decision you make. Become intimate with him in whatever you do, and he will lead you wherever you go. Don’t think for a moment that you know it all, for wisdom come when you adore him with undivided devotion and avoid everything that’s wrong.” Proverbs 3:5-7 He is telling me right now that I need to be light in this dark world. I feel this light must shine brighter than ever before. Light ALWAYS dispels darkness.
“The earth was completely formless and empty, with nothing but darkness draped over the deep. God’s spirit hovered over the face of the waters. God announced, “Let there be light.” And light burst forth. God saw the light as pleasing and beautiful. He used the light to dispel the darkness…” Genesis 1:2-5 He isn’t at a loss for how to turn dark situations into something glorious. He is the Light and steps into the dark situations and wraps Himself around them and they are no longer dark. He speaks and darkness has to bow to Light. He is in us and we shine so bright that the darkness cannot exist and that is where the deceptions come in. Somehow the enemy deceives us into speaking and believing that we have lost and there is no way out of the situation. My answer is “Bologna, we have already won! We just continue to put ourselves in places that appear dark because we are listening to the wrong words. Our words are to carry life not death! His life. Our words of life dispel darkness because they are His words. His Life shines in every dark crevice and there isn’t even a shadow of doubt. We were created in His imagine – His light that allows so darkness.
How does this look in all that is going on? Well, I believe a lot of the issues we are seeing are because the light of the Believers is dispelling the darkness and the darkness doesn’t like it. Except for the protestors in black that were full of deception and darkness that place, DC, was shining so bright with the light, life and love of our Lord Jesus that the darkness couldn’t stand it. Evil cannot not stand light.
“I’ve learned that his anger lasts for a moment, but his loving favor lasts a lifetime! We may weep through the night, but at daybreak it will turn into shouts of ecstatic joy.” Psalm 30:5
When Jesus came and gave His life for us by dying, being buried and rising from the dead the anger of God was buried with Jesus. Jesus appeased God’s anger and now His loving favor lasts a lifetime. There are issues and situations in all our lives but His light takes away the darkness and turns them into shouts of ecstatic joy! That’s what we are about to see! That is what I talked about last week – shouts of joy in 2021 and they will want to keep our mouths covered and masked so we can’t be shouting for joy.
I continue to seek the Lord and prepare my heart so that no matter what may look like a set back or the end in my eyes I will see from His perspective and not my own understanding and continue to let His light shine bright in my life. After letting things get me down last year this will be a challenge I can only do with Him but I know, “And I find that the strength of Christ’s explosive power infuses me to conquer every difficulty.” Philippians 4:13
“Pass through, pass through the gates, and go from old to new. Prepare a new path for the people. Build! Build up a highway for them to come to me! Remove every hindrance and unfurl a banner for the nations!” Isaiah 62:10 Keep seeking, keep asking, keep knocking. Let Him shine through you and the darkness will continue to disappear. What a glorious 2021 His light and Life is in us!!”