Entering the new year, I had this strong sense that the Lord wanted me to start sharing more. It can be hard to find the time to sneak away from the boys, sit at the computer, and write without distraction, but I felt as though the Lord was nudging me to do so. I quietly and internally committed to sharing a minimum of twice a week.
I should have both expected and recognized what followed this increased commitment to sharing God's message. It wasn't soon after, that I started to hear this voice in my head telling me that I have no business "ministering" to others in this way. I began to obsess over my flaws and the day to day things that make me imperfect and that are sinful in His eyes. Basically what I was hearing was, "Who do you think you are?"
It was debilitating and so I decided I should stop sharing because after all, I am a sinner and I am flawed. When I thought about that question, "Who do you think you are?," my internal response was "No one special."
"Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour." 1 Peter 5:8
That voice, that wasn't my Heavenly Father. I should have recognized that this was a spiritual attack to keep me from doing what God was prompting me to do. Preying upon my own insecurities has been one of the enemies most successful tactics in keeping me from God's best.
Prior to the holidays, I shared that I had a similar experience when I felt strongly that it was time to put down my brushes. I had been hearing this same voice in my head and I allowed those lies to take root. But you know what? God loved me enough to make sure that those lies didn't take me off course. I shared this experience with my followers on Facebook on January 19th, 2018:
When I sat on my closet floor, crying and asking God for some direction, I had no idea He would answer me in this way. I have never felt so strongly that I’m heading in the right direction and in His will more than I do in this moment.
He has opened up the Heavens and sent me so many unexpected blessings that I’m truly in awe. This has been a month of miracles and there is truly no other explanation.
Yesterday I was greeted by the mailman with a box addressed to me. It was full of amazing products from Fusion paint, a Staalmeester Brush, to a Cling On Brush! The most beautiful and powerful thing in the box was a beautiful note of love and encouragement from one of my beautiful sisters in Christ.
I don’t know what’s happening but it’s truly magnificent!
I know without a doubt that the Lord himself wants me to continue painting! I plan to spend this next year and the years to come, painting the world beautiful! 💜
In the same way that He rescued me from drowning in Satan's lies in this instance, He continues to speak the truth to me, keeping me from straying from His will and His best for me.
In the past couple of weeks, I have been inundated with private messages from people who have come across my blog. Each one has a different story about how one of the messages was exactly what they needed, or that they knew God was speaking to them because they had been struggling in that area or with that same issue. Many shared that in their prayers they asked God to speak to them and when they read a specific message, they knew He was speaking directly to them. To be honest, those messages gave me the chills. God was using my blog posts to speak to others, to answer the prayers of those who were seeking Him.
"We know, brothers and sisters loved by God, that he has chosen you" 1 Thessalonians 1:4
The Lord sent me a sermon recently and the message specifically touched on how God used people who were "no one special" to do miraculous, courageous, bold, life-altering things throughout the Bible. All of these stories had one similarity, regardless of their stature, or how they were attacked, laughed at, doubted or ridiculed, they obeyed God and by doing so, they brought people to Jesus and as a result, saved their souls for eternity. Kind of mind blowing when you think about it that way.
"But now in Christ Jesus you who used to be far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ" Ephesians 2:13
His ways are not our ways. Without a doubt, I know this to be true. He has a plan for me and I cannot see how it will play out from the place that I am standing now. But I can stand here and look back and see all of the wonderful, unimaginable things that have happened in my life because I was obedient even when it didn't make sense or when that voice in my head filled me with confusion and doubt.
"For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." Ephesians 2:10
It's really not about who I think I am, or even who others think that I am. It's about who God created me to be and what His plans are for me. He is asking me to continue to share and the purpose is much greater than what it appears. He is using me as a vessel to share His message. He is speaking to His children and asking me to deliver that message simply by sitting down at my computer and sharing my experiences. No matter how silly, how messy, how sad, how joyful, how tragic, how miraculous those experiences may be, it is important that I openly and honestly share because He talking to someone. He is speaking to His children. He is giving them hope. He is telling them that He is in control, that He is present and that He loves them.
"But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God." John 1:12
When I ask myself now, "Who do you think you are?" My answer is simple yet empowering, "I am a child of God."