Many times you may have heard the cliché “Let go…and let God!” It’s usually at a time when there is great frustration, disappointment, a trial, discouragement, heartbreak/ache, and etc. What does “let go and let God” really mean? What does it look like? If there is a special formula to it, then why don’t many of us practice it? I mean like REALLY, REALLY practice it — before things become too overwhelming and out-of-control — before we do ALL that we can do — before we reach the point of exhaustion? Do we really walk victoriously as we proclaim during the walk in the wilderness? Do we really trust God’s word that He will fight our battles? Do we believe wholeheartedly that He will never leave us nor forsake us?
Through the many hardships that I have had to endure in this life of mine as I’m sure we all have and if you haven’t (as my grandfather would say, “keep living”). Most of us hang on to things that should have been let go a long, long time ago (*raised hand). Let me be the first to say “IT IS NOT AS EASY AS YOU THINK!” Some people hold on to anger, hurt, disappointing events that took place in our childhood, as a teenager, or as an adult that was very traumatic. It is definitely a process. Some things have been so suppressed in memory that it has been mistaken as forgotten or it has been “let go”. IF what you are going through or have already experienced hasn’t been sealed in forgiveness, prayer, and the truth of God’s word…I am sorry to be the bearer of bad news — IT WILL RESURFACE! God is the only one that can enable us to be able to “let go” — it’s a matter of the heart and He is our great Physician — our Healer. Let’s be candid – I’m talking about the deep, down, dirty things that are swept under the rug, such as abandonment, sexual offenses such as molestation and rape, infidelity, lies, abuse from your spouse or significant other. The list goes on and on…
There will come a time that in our lives that we MUST move on…but it IS a process. A process that I am still learning to put into practice in my own life. Sometimes I get stuck…it depresses, suppresses, and oppresses and you can NOT move forward in the things you should be doing so there is a method to the madness!
- Prayer – “Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you.” (1 Peter 5:7 NLT) Find a quiet place and for a few minutes just share with God what has been hurting you. Tell Him EVERYTHING–no matter what it is–He will listen! “But in my distress I cried out to the Lord; yes, I cried to my God for help. He heard me from His sanctuary; my cry reached his ears.” (2 Samuel 22:7 NLT)
- Confide in Someone – Don’t keep it all bottled up inside–talk to someone who will LISTEN and share solid, Godly counsel with you. “The heartfelt counsel of a friend is as sweet as perfume and incense.” (Prov. 27:9 NLT).
- Journal – Write out your feelings is another way to express how you feel. Pouring your thoughts out on paper will definitely free up clutter from your mind. Be as transparent as you care to be. This is YOUR platform!
Wait! I guess you’re wondering…what about forgiveness? As Believers, we know that it is not an option. Forgiveness is a heart issue and a process within itself..Stay tuned for “Letting Go…The Process” Part 2 Forgiveness.
We often hear that integrity means doing the right thing when no one is around. It certainly is a choice. A sound judgment; a precise decision to simply do the right thing…allowing the Holy Spirit to be free to operate from within. Yes, I believe in the power of the Holy Spirit that enables me to do the right thing. Outside of Him, I am not likely to make the right decision or do the right thing. I do not have the ability within myself to consciously do what is right; besides, I have the track record to prove it. The Apostle Paul says it best, “…for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate. But if I know that what I am doing is wrong, this shows that I agree that the law is good. So I am not the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it. And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature.I want to do what is right, but I can’t. I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway. But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it. I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong.” –Romans 7:10-21 (NLT)
Have you ever wanted to say something that was untruthful and you thought of different ways you can say it and immediately you heard that voice in your head saying, “Why are you lying?” Or how about, “No, you should say it like this instead…” You know it would be easier to tell the truth because you work harder at coming up with a lie and perhaps even rehearse it in your head, even worse…with a friend to get their approval of “how does this sound?” The light of your integrity grows dimmer and dimmer and although we may be able to recover from our bad deed through repentance, however, it does not get erased from our past. Let’s all make a conscious effort to WANT to do the right thing by listening and submitting to the Holy Spirit who enables us and wants us to do the right thing ALL the time. Acknowledge your faults and failures. Take ownership. But also be wise enough to not use it as excuses or blame it on your human nature, as we sometimes do. Allow INTEGRITY to proceed before you, humility to be within you, and the grace of God to cover you…
A More Than…
Each trial seems as though it is going to last forever. How soon do we forget how God brought us through the last one? When it seems like no one cares. When it seems like your prayers are not heard. When it seems like God has forgotten about you. When it seems that the walk in the valley is so long. When the night sometimes seem so long…as the Psalmist says “O Lord, hear me as I pray; pay attention to my groaning. Listen to my cry for help, my King and my God, for I pray to no one but you. Listen to my voice in the morning, Lord. Each morning I bring my requests to you and wait expectantly.” –Psalm 5:1-3 Whether dealing with a broken heart, disappointments, discouragement, hurt feelings, or the lost of a loved one, there is a promise that we can stand on! “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” -Psalm 46:1
Sometimes in my own walk with the Lord I often wonder and ask the forbidden question, “WHY?” Yes, I ask God, why am I going through this storm at this time? What is the lesson that I am to learn? Is this a result of disobedience or a testing of my faith? In all that I go through I ask God to bring glory to Jesus out of the situation so that He is magnified and my faith is increased to stand and give an account of what the Lord has done for me. Here is a story that a very dear friend shared with me. You may have heard a different version and I probably won’t do it as much justice as she did but you’ll get the gist of it.
A young lady was driving with her grandfather in the car. It began to rain as they were headed to their destination. The rain got heavier. Granddaughter: “I think I should pullover. The weather is looking pretty bad.” Grandfather: “Keep driving.” She continued driving and the rain came pouring down and other drivers had pulled over to wait out the storm on the side of the road. Granddaughter: “I really think I should pullover. The storm is getting pretty bad!” As she says with panic but her Grandfather says, “Keep driving.” She continues driving and the storm is getting worse and she could hardly see. “Granddad, I think I should pullover until it stops!” Her grandfather remained calm and just said, “Keep driving.” So the granddaughter continues driving and notices that the rain seems to be letting up but people were still waiting on the side of the road as they passed them by. As they continue driving and it is now drizzling, her grandfather says, “NOW pullover.” She gives him a confused look and says, “Granddaddy, why do you want me to pullover? The rain is letting up.” With much hesitation, she pulls over and her grandfather says to her, “Now look behind you. See, we kept going and made it through the storm but you see those people parked on the side of the road; they are still IN the storm! Sometimes you gotta keep driving!”
I encourage you as I am encouraged as well to keep driving through the storm. Yes, I know you may be hurting right now or facing some challenges but I PROMISE you that THIS TOO SHALL PASS. You will smile again. You will laugh again. You will be strong again. There IS purpose in your pain and do know that “…in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.” Romans 8:37 Just keep driving!