Saturday, June 5, 2010

My Fortress and My Defense

The Bible tells us that we are given gifts from the Lord; gifts of the Spirit. He has given me a passion for writing and for as long as I can remember, He has had me use it as a way of encouraging others. Through writing, He has given me the gift of encouragement. I have never doubted that He has spoken to others through the words He inspired me to write. In the past, He would lead me to a card to purchase for the person whom He desired to encourage then give me an encouraging word and a Scripture address to enclose with the card.

Well, one day a few years ago, follow the leading of His Spirit, I sent a card and Scripture address to someone which had an adverse effect on me. Apparently, when the person received the card, she was offended, only I wasn't aware that she was offended...until a few months later. I will spare you the details of how it all came "out" in the open, but suffice it to say that it wasn't pretty. I walked away from the situation a "bloody" mess (figuratively). As I was driving home that day, the Lord spoke very clearly to me, "You have now shared in My sufferings." WOW! Amazing! Those words comforted me so much. To share in Christ's sufferings is an honor I would have never imagined.

However, after that encounter, I was a bit leery about sending cards to people. I would read and re-read every Scripture address and ask several time if it was truly what He wanted to say. This encounter had split a crack in my veneer which made a way for fear to creep in. I was learning how to allow the Lord to be my fortress and my defense, yet it wasn't easy! You see, this encounter was to be the first of several...learning to allow the Lord to be my fortress and my defense.

Recently, the Lord brought me to a valley where I would encounter the most difficult battle in regard to this lesson. He allowed certain circumstances to come to a place of testing. I believe He was testing not only me, but the others involved. He, once again, had me pick up paper and pen and compose a note with Scripture addresses of His choosing. Still battle weary, I looked up every one of the addresses He had given me. I read them carefully, then said, "Lord, every one of these Scriptures is something you have walked me through in my personal life. I thank You  for them. However, if I send these, there is going to be a lot of backlash and I am going to get burned!" His reply, "Yes, there IS going to be backlash, but let ME be your shield. I am your Fortress and your Defense. You will not get burned if you stand behind Me." So, with a bit of trepidation, I obeyed. The backlash came. But you know what? I didn't get burned! I stood behind the Lord and He sheltered me! What an amazing, loving God we serve. I have not only learned how to allow God  to be my fortress and my defense, but I have lived the Scripture that says it is better to obey GOD rather than man. I have overcome the fear which Satan attempted to plant in my life. The enemy's desire was that I would live in fear of speaking what the Lord wanted me to speak, but it did NOT work! Fear cannot hold me down! The Lord is my FORTRESS and my DEFENSE!
Praise Him! Praise Him! Praise Him all His people!

I know that each person whom God has used in my life for this lesson has also grown. I would not change a thing and I don't think they would either.

The love of Christ is amazing and He works ALL things together for good to those who love Him and are called according to His purposes!


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