Step Over the Fence

Today a friend called. She was struggling with fear and hoped I might have something to say about the subject. Yes, I had something to say. Fear is a monster, brought about by our own false notions. I love what Dr. Henry Cloud has to say about the matter:

“Make sure you scare yourself today by stepping out of your comfort zone somewhere.  Life only gets bigger by walking through fear.  Fear is a fence.”

Fear is a fence. Does that say it all or what? If allowed, fear rules us. It confines us. Strips us. Stops us. And I believe that is exactly what the enemy of our lives had in mind when he created fear. Fear has this incredible strength to stop us dead in our tracks.

I’ve had a lot of fears in my life. Some were actually quite silly but they stopped me nonetheless from doing or accomplishing various things. I’ll never forget the sage wisdom of a counselor in my life many years ago. My problem concerned a job I was working in at the time. This job, while fulfilling at first, became my nemesis. I allowed it to eat me up inside because I didn’t know how to handle the stress of the job. And after doing it to the very best of my abilities at the time, I wanted a change. But, I didn’t know how to make a change.

I sought out and went to this counselor. Saw him exactly one time. I told him the dilemma.

“So what do you want to do about this?” he asked.

“I want to quit the job.”

“And so why don’t you?”

“I’m afraid to. I’m afraid of disappointing my boss and leaving her with the mess of finding someone else to do the job. I’m afraid of disappointing my parents and family because they’ve been so proud of me for my accomplishments in this job. I’m afraid of disappointing my husband,” and my voice dropped off.

He looked at me. “So if you quit your job, what would be the worst thing that could happen?”

“Well, I wouldn’t work there anymore,” I replied.

“And what’s the worst thing that can happen after that?”

“I wouldn’t have the money from working there?” I asked.

“Yes, that’s true. Can you think of anything else?”

“Um, no, that’s pretty much it,” I replied.

“So, if you quit and these things happened, would you die?”

I was shocked by his question. What kind of a nincompoop did he think I was? “No of course I wouldn’t die!” I stated.

“Then what’s the problem?” he asked.

And that was it. The crux of the problem. I was allowing fear and probably a bit of pride to stop me from doing what I wanted to do. Of course the financial ramifications were something that would have to be worked out between me and my husband, but we had already talked it over and I knew we’d get through that part. Fear was stopping me. Fear had indeed fenced me in as Dr. Cloud so eloquently stated.

The reality became clear. Fear was nothing but a thought that I had given permission to mess with me, a notion I wrongfully gave too much power to and it was smothering me. And it was that thought, that lost power of mine that gave the enemy permission to torment me with this job. I’ve never forgotten this lesson in my life.

Remember truth. Fear is a thought. Fear is not from God. God loves me and He wants the very best for me. He says it over and over, in countless ways throughout the Bible. God is for me, not against me. When I allow fear to rule, I’m trapped within the confines of the thought. Frozen, unable to move. Fenced in.

2 Timothy 1:7 (NKJV)
7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.

Step over the fence and see what happens. Will you die? More than likely not and you might just find the freedom you’ve been looking for. Brilliant! What’s the worst thing that might happen? Power…to live a life full of all the possibilities!

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The Day of a Little Bit is Ending

Life changed for me in 2004, the year we moved from our home of 28 years to a new place, a new beginning, as a result of my husband’s retirement. We had no idea what this really was going to mean for us. I can’t speak for my husband, but had I known what lay ahead, I probably wouldn’t have made the move.

My entire Christian life happened during those 28 years “in the old place.” Saved at 27, I walked out of the darkness and into the Light. I thought I changed a lot during those years. I thought God moved dramatically in many ways during that span of time. There were great times and low times. When Christ walked into my life, I knew only one thing; I would never go back to my old life without Him.

Then we moved, and God began a work so monumental in our lives I actually thought for a time that I might not live through it. When I tell anyone about the early days right after we moved, I usually tell it as, “God literally threw us on the mats of our life and told us, ‘NOW I will remake you both!’.” I never knew God to be so…so…forceful before. I thought I had been through hard things in the past; this re-making was brutal. I lived through it. Gloriously, wonderfully, I survived His skillful pruning. Funny how hindsight changes your perspective.

He took us to places we’ve not only never been before, but places we didn’t even know existed! He stretched us, prodded, poked, burned, chastised, and never let up. Placed alongside Him in the yokes of His calling, we jerked and pulled. We weren’t used to this kind of leading. We didn’t much like it most of the time but we kept going. We didn’t really know where we were going, where He was taking us, but when you’re walking with the Most High God, you keep going.

Curious things began to happen. In 2005, we received our first prophetic word, spoken by a delightful man of God who has now gone home to be with Jesus. As he spoke over us, we listened in amazement as he told us of our past life together. I didn’t much like most of what he had to say; he insinuated that I was a hard-to-live-with woman! My pride got in the way for a moment, a trait I would have to deal with many times in the coming years. He turned to leave us but then stopped and came back, delivering an afterthought, the final word. This was the one that really got me, the one that told my spirit he was indeed prophetic because his words confirmed what I already knew to be true and I would do well to consider his words from Almighty God.

God began to speak to us prophetically from that day forward. We would be excited at words spoken over us as a couple, or individually, but I must say we never jumped out enthusiastically into the River of His prophecies for us. Honestly, we never really knew what to do! We might make some minor adjustments. We might try a new thing periodically. We might begin to pray in a different way. But overall, we continued to walk in the “little bit” of His calling.

All this began nine years ago. Nine years of remolding, remaking, tearing down, only to begin the work of new walls being formed in our lives. I sensed deep within something happening, but I never could put my finger on it exactly. I began to be filled with impressions and ideas. Honestly, one doesn’t hold tightly to impressions and ideas when it comes to the spirit life. They are just too illusive, too prone and tied to my own thoughts, dreams, and habits. This is what I thought at least.

Some of the prophetic words spoken over us, over me personally, seemed just too far out and I didn’t trust them. I wanted them, I wanted to believe the Lord, but when you compare the words against the fabric of your life, the weaving didn’t match up. Or so I was led to believe by the enemy of my soul. You see, the spirit of this world would have us believe anything in order to keep us from getting from point A to point B, the prophetic word of God in our lives. I knew this but I couldn’t get beyond the “little bit” of my potential. And then we went through the valley of the shadow of death at the end of 2012 (see December 2012 posting).

Today I read a prophetic word given by Matt Sorger on The Elijah List, called, “13 Prophetic Insights and Decrees for 2013.” I’m not familiar with Pastor Sorger but his words cut to the core of my being. As I read, my spirit soared and a new Word came to me from God himself. I thought I had been formulating new thoughts and ideas in the past two months as we continued through the valley. I thought I was coming up with these new ideas. As I read today Pastor Sorger’s words of prophecy, I was astounded to find things lining up. What Pastor Sorger was stating lined up exactly to what I’ve been learning over the past two or three months! Astounding! Not every single thing, but many, many of the items were given confirmation through his words. God has been filling me up with directions, impressions, and instructions for the future.

My message today fills my heart with joy. 2 Cor 3:17 states, “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.” I declare this Word over you today and I decree that it come to pass in your life, just as it is coming to pass in mine. The Lord is freedom. He will bring you to it and you will walk in it. It may take nine years, or ninety, but He will bring it pass. Your freedom is here. Won’t you take it up? The days of a “little bit” are passing away and He is speaking to all generations. I believe the Lord is saying to you and to me, “Believe on Me! I am turning your “little bit” into abundance, beyond anything you can even dream of.”

As I ponder the words spoken over me during the past eight years, I realize that I walked in them just a “little bit”. He is bringing you and I into the full expression of His prophetic words of Life and Light. We were never meant to have just a “little bit”. We were meant to have it all! Can you believe that?

I am grateful for all the ways He shows His love for me. Today’s lesson of love is exhilarating! I walk in freedom with Christ. He died so this be true. I’ve only walked a “little bit” in the provision of His love. I see that now. One of His words spoken over me, six years ago, was that I would walk in a new freedom. In early 2012, this same word was spoken over me by someone else, on the other side of the country. It took that for me to realize how BIG my God is! He wants me to walk in new freedom. He’s breaking the “little bit” and turning it into abundance. I just have to walk in it. Grab my hand please…let’s go together!