there is no fear in love.

Fear has always been something that has attached itself to me. And I think this is something that a lot of people struggle through, so, I wanted to take some time today to talk through what the Lord has been showing me on this topic.
Recently, a friend of ours walked through something really hard with his son, and every time we prayed about his situation I sensed fear in him.
Here’s the thing: when you partner with fear, you are partnering with the enemy. Period. That is where he can control you, your thoughts, and the situation. It can, and will, operate freely because you have given it (fear) authority too.
When you walk through a difficult situation it is imperative that you align yourself with what the word says not only about you, but who God is. Because GOD IS LOVE (1 John 4:16) and love never operates in a place of fear (1 John 4:18).
I want to challenge you to shift your mindset when you walk into prayer during a difficult season. You are essentially going into battle. Do you go into battle with a little white flag waving surrender?
But here’s the thing: when you partner with a spirit of fear, that’s what you’re doing. Instead, go into battle with your armor attached, and your sword held high.
Your prayer room is a war room. And, as believers, we already know the outcome when we partner with our Father because He has already done it all on the cross. He has proved His love to us by giving us His son (Romans 8:32).
I don’t know about you, but I’m going into battle today and reminding the enemy whose side I am on. Whose blood covers myself, my children , my marriage, and my home. I will not allow fear to reside in my spirit man any longer.

enneagram one.

I’m an enneagram one.

Now, if you’re unfamiliar with enneagram ones, here is a high level overview:
– moral perfectionists
– strong sense of right and wrong
– reformers
– always fair, principled and organized
– driven

I’ve fought that number in my mind for awhile. Which is ironic because ones struggle to find the balance of perfectionism.
And, in my mind, ones were not what I claimed as “perfect.”
In the past few weeks, however, a shift has started to take place in my heart. I no longer look at myself as somehow flawed as a one, but rather, the blessing being a one actually is.
I’m seeing my perfectionism as a benefit to our ministry, my drive to move in excellence as an opportunity to be an example, and my inner voice a strong certainty in a world of chaos.

Have you listened to the enneagram songs yet? Sleeping at Last has written them (except nines, although I am sure they are saving the best for last) and they are beautifully done. Not surprisingly, when I listed to the song for ones, I cried. To me, this song demonstrates the passionate drive ones possess, and the process of letting go while leaning into Gods grace.

hold on for a minute
cause I believe that we can fix it over time
every imperfection is a lie
or at least an interruption
i’m not saying perfect exists in this life
but we’ll only know for certain if we try
i want to sing a song worth singing

i’ll write anthem worth repeating
i want to feel the transformation
the melody of reformation
the list goes on forever
of the ways i could be better in my mind
as if i could earn Gods favor given time
or at least congratulations
i have learned my lesson
the price of this so called perfection is everything
i’ve spent my whole life searching desperately
to find out grace requires nothing of me.
i’ll hold it all more loosely and yet somehow much more dearly
cause i’ve spent my whole life searching desperately
to find out grace requires nothing of me.

___ ___ ___
God designed us in His image. Unique. Beautiful. Set apart.
And these gifts He has given us, He beautifully uses (as only He can). Today I’m thanking Him for creating me with a moral compass and a strong voice. I challenge you to look at the aspects of your personality that perhaps you have torn apart, and ask yourself – how are these aspects a blessing for God? Ask Him to show you if you don’t know.
He will.
And I guarantee He will surprise you in what He reveals.

healthy things grow.

Over Christmas, Robert got me a VHS player (aka VCR). It may seem like an odd gift, but he wanted me to be able to re-watch all the VHS tapes I had made when our kids were young. Eventually, we will have these converted to DVD’s, but we have so many so this was just easier – and more cost effective! 🙂
As we watched these videos as a family, I was taken aback on my insecurity. To the average eye, you would not have picked it up. But to me, I could see it as easily as I could see my bad haircuts. I mimicked my best friends laugh because I so badly wanted to be her (and she has the cutest laugh!). She knew how to let loose and have more fun. She was confident, and didn’t stress over the mess or any gained weight. To me, she was free.
I was self conscious and wanted to be anyone but me.
Sometimes I still feel like I’m that young mom. Just wanting to know who I am. Hating when I get overlooked or passed by. Feeling fat. Feeling like I am in the way.
But, here is the thing: I only feel like that when I am not planting myself to healthy roots. God’s roots.
Havilah Cunnington says: ‘When we begin living planted by God’s design, connected to His spirit, we live a completely different life. We have life in the deepest parts of our being. We are no longer subject to the world’s messages, dependent on what others say or think about us. We no longer need life to work out just right so we “feel good” about it. We now have an unlimited source of comfort, connection, and confidence coming from the inside of us.’
There are so many writers that say it’s enough to simply say you are enough, but I disagree with that. We cannot know we are enough until we know our Creator.
How many of you have had that moment? The moment, wether in church or in a quiet time, where the presence of Father God hits you. And it hits you hard. It’s as if you can see yourself fully alive in the spirit. You know who you are. You know how loved you are. Your mind is suddenly alive with potential.
Not just once a week or once a month. Our lives are meant to live in that secret place, in the spirit, moving and living a life full of God’s overwhelming love for us.
Where we know who we are, and whose we are.
Romans 8:11 says
“If the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he that raised up Christ Jesus from the dead shall give life also to your mortal bodies through his Spirit that dwells in you.”
___ ___ ___
So, today I am choosing to live in that secret place. In the sprit that dwells in me. Because without having Jesus as the center of my life, the source of all things, I will live disconnected from the source of all life. And, friends, I hate that girl who doesn’t know how loved she is by Father God. But I DO love the girl that thrives and loves so well under HIM who created me.