Today, I turn 49. I know, the last year of my 40’s! I’ve been married almost thirty years, with three grown children and three beautiful grandchildren. I have been richly blessed and am so grateful for the life I’ve lived.
I have some exciting news to share with you all, but first I wanted to talk to you about Taking a Leap of Faith. So, let’s break it down, shall we?
Here we go........the definitions:
Leap: to jump or spring a long way, to a great height.
Faith: complete trust or confidence in someone or something.
To sum it up, here’s my perspective on Taking a Leap of Faith.
“A Leap of Faith is when you’re all in, with complete trust and confidence, acting out of obedience because of the promise God has placed in your heart.” That was this week for me. But before I get into all that, let’s go back to 2009 because that’s when it all started.
Write. That’s what God put on my heart, to start writing a blog. I’ve always loved to write. I’d taken a Creative Writing class in high school, and always had a passion for writing poetry; most recently, for writing songs. It's been said, I have “a way with words,” so to speak. For me, writing has always come very naturally to me. As I continued to write my blog, I heard the promise; “One day you will write a book.” I didn’t think much of it, but as the years went on, a little spark began to ignite inside my heart for this so-called book. I waited patiently for my, “Suddenly!”
Things would happen over the next few years, people would come and go, or I’d witness a miracle and with each time God impressed upon me the importance of writing these things down. I had this feeling I’d need them one day. I didn’t quite understand it, but I did it anyway! Over the next eight years, God turned that little spark into a burning flame. When I finally transferred the files from my phone onto my laptop this past week, I was shocked to discover I have 630 files. I had no idea back then how these events would lead up to this week; but God knew. They were all part of a promise. For those of you who know me well, know I speak of the word OBEDIENCE a lot. It’s the final piece to the 1,000 piece barn puzzle you’ve been working on for weeks. It’s the action God is patiently waiting for so he can shower down his incredible, jaw-dropping blessings.
Friends, let me speak some truth into your life. Your pain, no matter how great or how small has a purpose. For you, someone you know, or someone who’s watching. God wouldn’t have allowed it if there wasn’t good to birth it. Why? Because God is ALWAYS good! If you are currently reading this and in the middle of a deep seeded pain, I know it may not seem that way right now. But trust me when I say, I know; I’ve been there. Jesus has been there. Did you know that Jesus has experienced every emotion that you have? Who better to understand what you're going through than him?
During seasons of pain in my life, I’ve held onto this verse, and I’d like to share it with you. “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” - Romans 8:28. We’ve all experienced pain from death to betrayal, heart-break, sadness, abandonment, abuse, disappointment, physical pain, and discouragement, just to name a few. But there is a purpose for this pain. The truth is written here in Deuteronomy 30:3-13.
“God, your God, will restore everything you lost; he'll have compassion on you; he'll come back and pick up the pieces from all the places where you were scattered. No matter how far away you end up, God, your God, will get you out of there and bring you back to the land your ancestors once possessed. It will be yours again. He will give you a good life and make you more numerous than your ancestors. God, your God, will cut away the thick calluses on your heart and your children's hearts, freeing you to love God, your God, with your whole heart and soul and live, really live. God, your God, will put all these curses on your enemies who hated you and were out to get you. And you will make a new start, listening obediently to God, keeping all his commandments that I'm commanding you today. God, your God, will outdo himself in making things go well for you: you'll have babies, get calves, grow crops, and enjoy an all-around good life. Yes, God will start enjoying you again, making things go well for you just as he enjoyed doing it for your ancestors. But only if you listen OBEDIENTLY to God, your God, and keep the commandments and regulations written in this Book of Revelation. Nothing halfhearted here; you must return to God, your God, totally, heart and soul, holding nothing back. This commandment that I'm commanding you today isn't too much for you; it's not out of your reach. It's not on a high mountain - you don't have to get mountaineers to climb the peak and bring it down to your level and explain it before you can live it. And it's not across the ocean - you don't have to send sailors out to get it, bring it back, and then explain it before you can live it."
I have to make a choice. You have to make a choice. Will you choose to believe what God’s Word says? That “your God, will restore everything you lost.” It’s a simple question. You see, you have to believe before you ever receive. You have to trust that God will make all things right. You have to have faith that God will work all things out for your best interest, according to his will for your lives.
I remembered another promise three years ago. God revealed to me that one day, I would have a platform. I had no idea what that meant, until this week. When you decide to step out of your comfort zone and take that Leap of Faith, miracles happen. Some people may choose to be part of the process, they run alongside and cheer you on. Some may just sit back and watch it all unfold from the sidelines. And others may not even show up to the race. But don’t get discouraged, sweet friend. You see, God is just waiting to see how faithful we are with the things he has called us to do. In 1 Peter 3:9 it is written, “Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.” God sees your heart. He knows how deeply you desire to please him. As long as your actions stem from the right motives, you will be richly blessed.
This week, I signed my first book contract with Redemption Press along with my cousin Cynthia, to be released in 2018. I am in awe of the doors God has opened for us. Now I know why I’ve been writing the things down he’s asked me to over the past eight years. And now I know what the word platform means.
This journey will be a wild ride, but I’m committed, all in and ready for God to use me.
Is there an area of your life you need to take a leap of faith? Has God put a promise in your heart? What are you waiting for?
Living BOLDLY 4 Him,
“Run away from infantile indulgence. Run after mature righteousness—faith, love, peace—joining those who are in honest and serious prayer before God. Refuse to get involved in inane discussions; they always end up in fights. God’s servant must not be argumentative, but a gentle listener and a teacher who keeps cool, working firmly but patiently with those who refuse to obey. You never know how or when God might sober them up with a change of heart and a turning to the truth, enabling them to escape the Devil’s trap, where they are caught and held captive, forced to run his errands.” - 2 Timothy 2:22-26 (MSG)
Have you ever had a conversation with someone and then suddenly can’t speak? Words are racing around in your head, but somehow they just won’t make it past your lips. Suddenly, you hear that still, soft voice, “Be quiet!” It was a sweet surrender for me, to give up my God-given “right” to fight for the truth. The urge was strong, and I was suited up and ready to rush into battle with my sword held high yelling, “THAT’S NOT TRUE!” I must have a voice; this isn’t right. Have you ever felt this way? Feeling like you have to defend your very being? Your integrity? Your honor? You hear that voice again, “Drop the sword; I’m fighting for you.”
Sister, GOD SEES YOUR HEART. He does! He knows your motives, your desires, and your intentions; even when you think, others don't. You don’t need to show up to every conversation or argument which invited. It’s a choice. Don’t get me wrong; I’m not saying it’s wise to hide your feelings, isolate yourself or shutdown in the middle of a conversation. Trust me that doesn’t work! What I am saying is that sometimes, we need to be mindful and ACT when God speaks. There are times we are to hit mute and not engage, but rather reset. Your circumstances may not turn out the way you thought they would. But know this; he goes before you. He runs into the fierce battle before you even know there is one.
Hold on to this promise sweet sister. He’s working everything out! "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." - Romans 8:28 (NIV)
How we handle pain and disappointment in our lives, may be our greatest opportunity for a testimony.
People are always watching. Especially, if you call yourself a Christian. Unfortunately, many place this label over our heads and put us into a basket like perfect red apples.
But we know the truth, don’t we? We know the only perfect one is Jesus Christ himself. How we behave despite the things that have happened in our lives, is not only a test of our character, but it can open the door to life-changing conversations. We should always be mindful of this.
Don’t think for a second that God hasn’t put people in your life for a specific purpose, and vice-versa. In pain there is a lesson for us and other times, we are the teacher and the lesson is for someone else. There should be a sense of peace in knowing that God is using you to be his hands and feet.
When I really stop and think about it, it’s an honor that God would chose ordinary me to impact someone else’s future. You dear friend, have the same opportunity to show the world there is hope in suffering by the way we carry ourselves as we tread through it!
QUOTE: “Only God can turn mess into a message, a test into a testimony, a trial into a triumph, a victim into a victory.”
Write down one of your greatest pains. How has God used this for good? If you don't have an answer, ask him to show you.
Andrea (Andi), is an Author, musician, speaker and Founder of Transcended Ministries. She encourages women to rise above their circumstances and to trust in God's timing. She is involved in Celebrate Recovery and sings on the worship team at her church. Andi believes no hurt is ever wasted and she longs to bring a message of hope and healing as she shares her story of bold faith. Her story includes her struggle with control issues and co-dependency followed by a separation from her husband of twenty-five years. After a year of isolation and being on her own, she watched God bring transformation, healing, and reconciliation.