A reality check … Raw and real …

My dear friend, Pastor Terry Hoggard and his wife frequently make a ministry video blog which they call – Raw and Unedited.  I feel like my blog today is just that … raw … and real.

You may recall last month I referenced Psalm 91 … resting ‘in the shadow of the Almighty.’   Shortly after writing, I re-read the entire chapter … about how God will protect us as we stand in His shadow ~ His refuge, … but … to my stunned amazement, I heard deep inside of me ‘right, like that’s going to happen.’  WHAT WAS THAT … here I am, a believing woman who encourages others In Christ … where did that thought come from … what did that say about my faith?  WOW, I was blown away!

And, since hypocrisy is a hot button for me, I couldn’t encourage anyone else until I figured this out.  The root question became … did I really believe what the Word of God says?  I thought of that scripture in Mark where the …

 “father of the boy cried out [with a desperate, piercing cry], saying, “I do believe; help [me overcome] my unbelief.”

Unbelief … yikes, I’m so thankful God loves me all of the time, and, I thank Him for revealing this to me!  So I asked God for help to better understand … and my focus went to the beginning and end of Psalm 91.  It starts out saying:

“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will remain secure and rest in the shadow of the Almighty [whose power no enemy can withstand].
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, My God, in whom I trust [with great confidence, and on whom I rely]!”
Amplified

that means …

  • we need to dwell [like a permanent resident] …
  • we need to truly recognize Him as our refuge [condition of being safe or sheltered from pursuit, danger, or trouble] … and 
  • we need to put our trust in Him [confidence, rely on] ~ that’s the relationship he wants with us!! 

Think of your shadow as you stand in the sun, it wouldn’t take much to be out of the shadow, right?  God says stay close to me … under my wings, in my shadow …  that is where we will find refuge; envision me holding you in the palm of my hands.

 But, if we choose to focus on the pain in/around us, we ‘move out’ of the dwelling place!  

So Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus.  But when he saw [the effects of] the wind, he was frightened, and he began to sink, and he cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus extended His hand and caught him, saying to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?”

Believing and dwelling all ties together!  What are you believing God for?  While you wait, are you ‘dwelling’ in His presence, seeing him as your ‘refuge’ and ‘trusting’ Him.  Truly believing with every breath in you!!

“If you’ll hold on to me for dear life,” says God,
    “I’ll get you out of any trouble.
I’ll give you the best of care
    if you’ll only get to know and trust me.
Call me and I’ll answer, be at your side in bad times;
    I’ll rescue you, then throw you a party.
I’ll give you a long life,
    give you a long drink of salvation!”
Psalm 91 (the message version)

I encourage you, as God has encouraged me through His Word, hold on and hang out with God Almighty.  And, just like Abraham …

“he did not doubt or waver in unbelief concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong and empowered by faith, giving glory to God,  being fully convinced that God had the power to do what He had promised.”  Romans 4:20  

God’s Love and Blessings,
Michelle
coachfromtheheart@gmail.com

photo credit:  chris roth

Where do you run?

When you were a child, did you ever hide behind a long drape at home or on the school stage? And, maybe even at times, grab the edge of the long drape and swirl around until you were completely enveloped by the drape, believing you were safely hidden? Or, did you ever run and hide around mom or dad’s legs in a shy or fearful moment?  As children we may have felt safe and protected in those hide-away places.

But now as adults, where do you run when sad, scared, angry, or inconsolable because of the challenges faced?  When you don’t understand ‘why’ something traumatic just happened to a loved one; when everything is out of your control, and you don’t know what to do or say?  Where do you run and seek safety, counsel/guidance and love?   Do you remember then, as always, that God is your true, constant and ever ready friend?

“He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall remain stable and fixed under the shadow of the Almighty
[Whose power no foe can withstand].
I will say of the Lord, He is my Refuge and my Fortress,
my God;
on Him I lean and rely, and in Him I [confidently] trust!
(Psalm 91:1-2 Amplified)

Dwelling in the ‘secret place of the Most High’, is spending time with God and sharing your heart with Him ~ talking about your dreams and visions, as well as everything that’s causing you pain or concern; and being able to ask those ‘why’ questions.  It is ongoing time with God in prayer, getting to know Him through scriptures, asking for and listening to Him speak wisdom, guidance and love into your life.

When you walk closely with Him, He securely upholds you, guides you and there is a tremendous sense of comfort/security!  Because you’re dwelling ‘under the shadow.’ If you think of a shadow, it doesn’t take many steps before you’ve stepped beyond the shadow, right? He’s asking you to stay close to Him always, and when you do, He promises safety/refuge!

“Trust God from the bottom of your heart;
don’t try to figure out everything on your own.
Listen for God’s voice in everything you do,
everywhere you go;
he’s the one who will keep you on track.
Don’t assume that you know it all.
Run to God!   Run from evil!
Your body will glow with health,
your very bones will vibrate with life!”
Proverbs 3:5-8 (The Message)

Staying close to God/developing a trust relationship with Him is personal, and requires time, just like developing any quality/true friendship.  It’s not a church attendance thing, it’s relationship building.  I am so grateful to God that when I look to Him, even in those doubting, questioning times, He is always faithful to show me truth, comfort me and answer those important questions, and I know He is there for you too … right now!
I encourage you to get to know your heavenly Father, through Jesus Christ!
And, if I can help you, please contact me at coachmichelle@charter.net.

God’s Love and Blessings,
Michelle