The righteous are as bold as a lion. I pray that this encourages you to stand firm against the deceit of the enemy by combatting it with truth and be who God has called you to be. I used to think that if I was bold then I wasn’t humble, but God has shown me that they go hand in hand. Humble yourself before the Lord and in due time He will lift you up. Pride may come before the fall, but oh my beloved, boldness comes before God is lifted higher and His people His people encounter Him in ways like never before simply because your beautiful heart was willing.
People. My goodness how I love people. Red, yellow, black, white, man, woman, young, old – I love you. What you have done, what you believe, the choices you make, what you look like, it doesn’t and never will change how much I love you. Why? Because God’s love is unconditional. Today, many protests are being given because we, in some way, shape, or form, are trying to prove our identities, have approval, and gain power. But I am here to tell you simply that you are seen by God, approved by God, and loved by God. No matter how hard you fight and no matter how loud you shout, if your goal is to gain approval and power from people then the protests will never end. You were created by God so beautifully and only the Creator can make complete what He created.
“The Lord does not look at the things people look at, for people look at the outward appearance but the Lord looks at the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7). God made you in His image, and He doesn’t see you based upon the color of your skin, but He sees you in the color of love. Pursuit of equality has been sought after in many ways. Men and women seek approval in comparison to one another. The color of my skin is compared to the next person’s skin. We all seek acceptance from people in unhealthy relationships. We seek peace in the midst of mayhem…all in all, the true root of this is that every person wants to be wanted. Every person craves to feel significant, appreciated, and valued. But we are seeking to satisfy this desperate desire and longing from the wrong source. I even find myself seeking it in the wrong thing sometimes.
This idea of approval is sought in protests, relationships, doing whatever feels good whenever it feels good, and violence. Yet, lack of contentment, bitterness, and judgement still saturate hearts all over the world.
So how do we bring genuine peace in the midst of mayhem?
“The Lord is my Shepherd, I lack no good thing” (Psalm 23:1)
Without Him, I don’t know what to do with all of this suffering.
Without Him, all I see is blaming and persecuting.
Trying to feel worthy on my own leaves me drained.
Without Him, I am consumed by guilt and shame.
No matter how loud I shout, I feel like no one even hears me.
No matter how many times I plea.
Then, His love that never fails reveals my true identity.
Then, when all chaos is abounding and I don’t even know the difference between what is right and wrong anymore, He surrounds me in His peace that surpasses all understanding.
When the waves of violence and hatred blow rough like the wind against my sails,
He stands and by the sound of His voice, the winds and the waves are calmed.
Wow. In Him, I am loved.
In Him, I am more than enough.
In Him, I am worthy.
In Him, you are loved.
In Him, you are more than enough.
In Him, you are worthy.
In Him, I know my identity-not because of anything I have done or any approval from someone else, but simply because He sees me and approves proudly.
Just as Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream, the King of kings has a dream for you.
A dream that you would know how much He loves you.
A dream that you would live to love others too.
He is love. You are made with love. You are made to love.
How do we bring peace in the midst of mayhem?
The kind of love that doesn’t end just because a disagreement occurs.
The kind of love that isn’t based upon conditions.
The love that is patient. The love that is kind.
The kind of love that remains even when the storm breaks loose.
This is the love that is not self-seeking and doesn’t boast.
Awesome people, this love is not arrogant and it doesn’t dishonor other people.
It keeps no record of wrongs.
The kind of love that keeps going even when it gets hard and messy.
It doesn’t delight in evil, but rejoices in the truth.
The love that lives in ALL CAPS no matter what the response.
Yes, this love always protects, always hopes, always trusts, always perseveres.
It never fails.
And you may ask, how on earth could I love someone in such a way…especially when they are so different than me, do me wrong, or point out every flaw in me they see?
Well, you see, when you grasp how much the Father loves you,
It can’t be contained, and peace will flow through all you do
even when others protest against you.
No matter your past, present, or future, God sees your heart worth pursuing. He loves you so much that He wants to meet you right where you are, but He loves you too much to leave you there:) His love takes us deeper…oh how sweet it is:)
Let us not be discouraged by the shadows of deceit that the enemy throws, but in radiant JOY, may we walk boldly forward in confidence that we are more than conquerors in the King of kings and watch not only the shadows fall behind, but let them become a part of the beauty for God’s glory:)