What Is Holding You Back?

And he said, Hearken ye, all Judah, and ye inhabitants of Jerusalem, and thou king Jehoshaphat, Thus saith the Lord unto you, Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God’s. – 2 Chronicles 29:15 (KJV)

What holds us back in life? What causes us not to go for our dreams? Not to step out of the boat, our comfort zone, to see what we can be instead of settling for being average, being status quo?

Now there is nothing wrong with being status quo as long as you understand that you were created for more, to do more, to be more.

You were created to change and influence those around you, in your corner of the world. You have gifts and talents that could bring others to Christ, that could help heal those in your world.

What Is holding you back? What is preventing you from being the person God created you to be (Jeremiah 29:11)?

Fear. No matter what excuse you use–that you have to work, you have kids, you are too old, too young, don’t know how–it all boils down to fear.

Fear of not being good enough, not being smart enough, talented enough, pretty enough. Fear of not being enough.

Fear, though, is all in our heads. Fear is that constant picture in our heads of us failing, of us looking like fools, of us being out on a skinny tree limb and hearing it break.

What if that did happen? Would it be the end of the world? No. It wouldn’t kill you, but you would learn what to do, how to do it better and how to bounce back.

The key is to keep moving forward even when you lose it all. You must keep putting yourself out there until you find what you were created to do.

What if what you feared doesn’t come to pass? What if you step out, and you hit your groove. You start putting yourself out there, say in a small way, like making You-Tube videos to share your message, and it takes off. You get thousands, even millions, of new followers.

Eighty percent of what we fear doesn’t happen. Even if it does, God says in His Word that the battle is not ours but God’s.

What does that mean? It means we ask God to guide us, to give us wisdom (James 1:5), on what He wants us to do, how He wants us to proceed.

Then we do what we know to do and let God handle the rest (Ephesians 6:13).

We give God our natural and watch Him make it into something extraordinary.

It requires us to do several things, though:

1. Seek God. Matthew 6:33 tells us to seek first the Kingdom. What does God want us to do with our gifts and talents? Where does He want us to take them? Who does He want us to reach and how?

Remember He will never give you the full picture, only the next step, and His plans are already blessed. Seeking Him is like looking at the master blueprints for our lives. He is, after all, the Master Architect.

2. We must act on the leadings of the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:13.) We might have an inner knowing, have a dream or just find ourselves in the right place at the right time. There has to come a time when we act on what we feel God is leading us to do. You may step out and find out you were wrong. Just learn from it and move forward.

However, just because it is hard doesn’t mean it isn’t God’s Will. It is all part of the process of learning something new.

3. Believe (Mark 5:36). Once we have acted, it is time to surrender the outcome to God (2 Chronicles 29:15.)

God is in control. He is guiding us, leading us directing our steps (Psalm 119:133.) It is time. Time to get up from the pews that we retreat to every Sunday, and start changing the world. One person at a time.

#whatisholdingyouback #fear #dreams #Bible #Jesus #God #HolySpirit

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Want To Know A Secret?

“I worry about you.,” my best friend tells me as if I should be pleased to have made his list of things to worry  about.  I should wear a badge that honors my place as number six on his worry list.

Truth is that I don’t want to be number six, number one or number fifteen hundred and fifty-six.

To me, he is saying that I am not capable of taking care of myself.  I am more than capable, with God’s help, of handling anything that comes my way.

I am more concerned with the stress I have seen worry cause.  Not only with me but with him.

God tells us not to worry for a reason (Matthew 6:25-24, Philippians 4:6-7) .  He doesn’t give us arbitrary guidelines to follow.  He knows  what our bodies and mind can handle.

It is estimated that up to eighty percent of ailments that cause people to visit the doctor are induced by stress.  Eighty percent!

Worry causes us to be sick in our minds and bodies, making it hard to focus on our goals, the dreams God put in our hearts to accomplish and the people we care about.

I am a recovering worrywart myself.  I take it one day at a time.  Sometimes one minute, one second, at a time.

I learned to turn my worries into prayers.

Romans 8 tells us that the Holy Spirit helps us to pray (Romans 8:26).

When I am worried, I pray, “Holy Spirit, help me to pray about…” whatever situation that is troubling me.

Over the years, this has worked very well.  To the point where I call it my secret prayer weapon.

When I do this, I surrender the problem to God (1 Peter 5:7), knowing that the Holy Spirit is praying God’s perfect will for me (Romans 8:27).

This doesn’t just work for me.  It can work for you too.

Worry can kill your dreams, your relationships and make you sick.

What’s worrying you?  Why not let the Holy Spirit help you pray about those concerns today?

#Jesus #Christ #Holy_Spirit #believe #God #Bible #Annagail_Lynes

Must Believers Stay In Abusive Marriages?

What About Physical Abuse? What Does The Bible Say About It?

The Bible says in Malachi 2:16 (AMP), “For the Lord, the God of Israel, says: I hate divorce and marital separation and him who covers his garment [his wife] with violence. Therefore keep a watch upon your spirit [that it may be controlled by My Spirit], that you deal not treacherously and faithlessly [with your marriage mate].”

In the same Scripture in which God says He hates divorce, He says He hates a man who covers his wife with violence. The two sentences are connected by the conjunction, “and.” God hates divorce and a man who abuses his wife.

Many well-meaning Christians tell women who are being abused to stay in the situation. They tell them to pray, to be meek and mild so their husbands won’t be so mad. They cite the Scripture that says that the believing wife can change her husband by being meek (I Peter 3:1, 4).

Abuse is not about the person being abused. It is about gaining control and power.

For the first five years of my life, I grew up in a physically abusive home. My father used to beat up my mother. As I tried to sleep, I heard the raised voices, screaming demeaning, derogatory statements. I even remember witnessing one of these incidents at age three.

After the first five years, the physical abuse stopped almost overnight. Instead he turned his anger on the cars he tried to fix, doors and inanimate objects.

Then when he wanted to control us, he gave us a disapproving look, followed by the threat of violence. The physical abuse may have stopped, but the emotional and mental blackmail continued. We remained frightened of him.

Although my mother and I struggled after the divorce, I know divorce was our best option for a better future. My father is manic depressive and refuses to get help. It was unsafe for us to live in that environment.

God doesn’t expect women, or men who are being abused by their wives, to stay in an abusive situation. If the violence persists, these people are at risk of being murdered the longer they stay.

If the abusive husband, or wife, is willing to go into counseling or undergo medical treatment, excellent. If, like my father, the abuser refuses, though, the person should make plans to get out of the situation.

God has a plan for your life (Jeremiah 29:11), whether you are male or female. Many Christians believe that according to the Bible, women are inferior creatures in God’s eyes, that women are second-class citizens.

This belief comes from I Corinthians 14:34-35 (AMP), which states “The women should keep quiet in the churches, for they are not authorized to speak, but should take a secondary and subordinate place, just as the Law also says. But if there is anything they want to learn, they should ask their own husbands at home, for it is disgraceful for a woman to talk in church [for her to usurp and exercise authority over men in the church].”

These Christians fail to consider the culture at that time. The law dictated that women should be silent. However, Jesus fulfilled the law for us (Matthew 5:17). We no longer live under the law but under grace (Romans 6:14).

These Christians also miss verse 36, in which Paul asked, “What! Did the word of the Lord originate with you [Corinthians], or has it reached only you?”

Paul wondered if this “word of the Lord” had originated with them because he had never heard this “revelation” from God for himself.

We often point to the women in the Bible who did wrong. For example, Bathsheba, Eve and Jezebel. What about the ones whom God used mightily? God appointed Deborah to judge Israel (Judges 4:4). God used Esther to save the Hebrew people (Esther 1-10). God used Mary to birth the baby Jesus (Matthew 1). Who first heralded Jesus’ resurrection from the dead? Women (John 20:18).

Women are important to God. They are a part of God’s plan, just as much as any man. Not just to be mothers, wives and keepers of the house. Although those roles are important.

The Proverbs 31 woman kept her home, mothered her children and tended to her husband. In addition, though, she sold her linens in the market, considered a field and bought it. She worked as a business woman, selling her product in the market, while attending to her duties as wife and mother. She worked, and her family still called her blessed.

The man is the head of the household, yes, but that doesn’t give him the right to control his wife, put her down, physically or verbally abuse her. He is to love her as Christ loved the church. Does Jesus control the church? Put her down? Or physically abuse or emotionally black mail the church? Absolutely not!

Many men believe, though, that controlling their families is what it means to be head of the household. They hold fast to the belief that their wives and children are their slaves.

It is a weak leader who leads by fear, intimidation and violence. Good leaders are those who lead by example. They show others kindness, respect and love. They praise good behavior while instructing, without yelling or criticizing, in areas that need improvement. This is a leader. Violence, fear and intimation do not a leader make.

People who are in a bad situation where they are being physically abused need to pray about it and listen for God’s instructions.

Before deciding to leave the situation, make a detailed plan of where you will live, how you will support yourself, how you are going to care for the children and so forth. Think about setting aside a certain amount of money each week for the cause, if you are working.

Find others via the Internet, or through your church, who have been where you are. Then you can ask questions and obtain the support of someone who has been there and knows what you are going through. Surround yourself with people who will emotionally support you and not criticize you.

Get a plan and dedicate that plan to God. Ask Him if there is anything in the plan that needs to be changed, added or taken out. Revise it accordingly. Keep praying about the plan. Then at the right time, when all the pieces are in place, work that plan.

God didn’t call you to be abused. He called you to be victorious (Romans 8:37, II Corinthians 2:14)). He called you to be His. He has a purpose and plan for your life. You are no accident! God loves you and has the very best planned for you.

#Jesus #Christ #God #Bible #dreams #abuse #trauma #Annagail #Lynes #passions #purpose #marriage #domestic #violence