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Grateful for Growth: When God wants me to Surrender

November 11, 2019

Esther 4:14  

For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?



Esther could have just buried her head in the sand and ignored what was happening to her people. She was doing alright.  She was the queen.  It wasn't a great life.  She hadn't even seen her king in 30 days.  Should she put her life on the line now? Her uncle, Mordecai, knew she had to. And when he says, "Who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this" it spurs her to move forward.  She knows she may die.  She even says in Esther 4:16, "If I perish, I perish."  Wow!  Imagine having all that pressure to do something that you know is right but it could kill you, or knowing that your people WILL die if you don't. 


We make much easier decisions daily but still struggle with those decisions.  It seems that my stronghold this year and in the past few years has been my decision making.  Especially what decisions I am making concerning my health.  I will in no way compare this to the heroic decisions that Esther made, but I can learn something from what she did. 


Well, I have gotten way too comfortable in my life. I feel like everything personal has been put on the back burner for me for a while now. I focus on work and being a mom and I even manage to fit in time with Jesus. But what about me? Oh, I do things for myself, but they aren't always healthy. Recently I read Made to Crave by Lysa TerKeurst, and I was convicted about how I crave food and treating myself to that food more than I crave God! Ouch! This is not something I am proud of.


A couple of weeks ago, at our Soul Sisters retreat in Tennessee.  Missy Washem talked about strongholds and how they cancel out our abilities to bear fruit. Wow... I know that I have an eating problem and it is affecting me on the inside, but I hadn't thought about how it was affecting my relationship with God and my ability to bear fruit.  I thought about it and just knew that I would lose a million pounds and give all the glory to God.  (I even saw my skinny self declaring it while I sat on the back of the convertible with my sash and crown waving to all that came to my "She's finally skinny parade" to celebrate this feat... Just kidding... kinda) I got back home and ran into the same thought process I always have, "I will do it... soon."  


About a week later,  I was woken up to a thought in the middle of the night. "Who knows! Could your word for the year, Surrender have been given to you for such a time as this!" It felt like it had been said specifically to me. I didn't hear a thunderous boom or a deep Morgan Freeman-like voice.  I just thought it. And I, FINALLY,  realized that NOW was the time. I don't have to be perfect but now, at this very moment, it was time.  I have always felt God would use my story for something, but I have never SURRENDERED control of this particular stronghold.  I have never given my cravings of food to God. I have never actually surrendered them. I would try to, but I would pick them up later in the McDonald's drive through.  No more! I will do this! I will change my habits because I want to honor the Lord. 


Esther did a whole lot more than what I have been doing with this past two weeks, and I am not trying to say I am anything like her.  But I know that inorder to be who God wants me to be, I have to surrender this stronghold to God.  I have asked God to unsettle me and to remind me that the number on the scale doesn't define me. I also ask God to help me when it's time to make a food choice.  I have talked to Him a lot more in these last 2 weeks than I have in the past. Sometimes I have even painfully asked why those incredible cookies from Chicken Salad Chick can't be healthy!


He keeps reminding me of Ephesians 4:22-24: You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires;  to be made new in the attitude of your minds;  and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.  


I have been asking people to pray for my "want to" in this journey over the last month, and it is SO VERY evident that people are! Some of you are, I know it.  And I am so grateful for your obedience. 


This growth has only come in the last few weeks and I pray deeply that I stay the course.  I know not everyone struggles with this issue, but I do hope it helps someone else. 


Father, God, Thank you for loving us even when we aren't doing what we should. Lord I am thankful that You are always with us and always here to listen. I thank you for creating a living word that we can use in any situation or circumstance that we are struggling with. I know that You love us so much and want so much for us than we could ever imagine. Lord, I ask that you bless the sisters who are reading this that they may lean on you for whatever they need today and everyday. You are so Good! and we are so thankful for your love!  Please continue to grow us and draw us in.  We love you. In Your son Jesus's precious name, Amen 



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