I have lived in New York for 2 1/2 years and have yet to see The Statue of Liberty up-close. Occasionally I will walk to the river and look over the water at her standing strong and proud. She really is quite beautiful and represents so much emotion for the United States. Although the freedoms that we have long enjoyed as Americans are constantly under attack, I am increasing in the glorious liberty that is mine in Christ – liberty that no one can steal from me.
The journey to this point has been quite tough. I often say that I wouldn’t do it again for a million dollars or trade what I learned for a billion. God has brought me through fire and through water and is now bringing me into a wealthy place, a land of milk and honey both spiritually and physically. Everything for which I ever sought I am being given, and it all comes by and through Jesus Christ.
Years have been spent on attempting to create my own life, success, health, peace and prosperity. I “named it and claimed it,” “gabbed it and grabbed it,” and every other cliche you have heard. I tried my hardest to envision the life of my dreams, only to find that these lusts warred against my very soul. They prevented me from really entering the Kingdom of Heaven. Every formula, pattern, thought-process, and meditation proved either worthless or made me materialistic at best and completely crazy most of the time.
After turning to the Bible, I found every verse that spoke of abundance and did exactly what it said to do. I was quite proud of my good deeds and told God how wonderful I was. He very kindly and sometimes firmly showed me that all my righteousness is like a used tampon and it is ONLY through the holiness of his Son that anyone receives ANYTHING besides eternity in Hell.
Now, I worship the Lord in the BEAUTY of His holiness. It is really quite amazing. God gives us the desire to be righteous, allows us to put on the righteousness of Christ, and blesses us immensely for that which he gave us. This is true in so many areas, but his holiness is the most spectacular to me.
Fasting is another key in my Christian walk that has utterly changed my course several times. Jesus told his disciples that there are some demons that you can not get rid of without fasting, and I have found this very true in my life. The Daniel Fast is my favorite, and this past one helped me to get rid of some huge giants in my life that have been bothering me for many years. I simply can not describe the brilliant feeling of absolute joy when you are emptied of the spirits of the world and completely filled with the all-powerful, loving Spirit of God.
Previously, I had three goals in my life: Wealth, Influence and Enjoyment. Not bad, really, but for me they were fleshly lusts. Now, my priorities have drastically changed to: Simplicity, Honesty, and Serving God. Nothing like I had thought I wanted. In fact, ever single thing I thought I wanted had literally disappeared or turned into something much better. Thank GOD for his continuous work in my life.
This is definitely not the end of the journey, nor the peak of growth. It is, however, the beginning of a life that I deeply hope will reflect in eternity. I don’t know exactly how this life translates into a better or worse life in heaven, but I know two things for sure. The first, of course, is that the most important thing I can do on this planet is to share the love of God in Christ so as to bring even one more person with me to Glory. The second is to CHOOSE to be righteous AND glorify God, because this is the only life where that will be a choice.
So, there you have it. A tiny sketch of what has been happening in my life and mindless babbling about my journey to forever. May God bless you as you seek Him first and His righteousness.
Statue of Liberty