God is the Sovereign Author of the story of your life, and many a reward and blessing is tied to making peace with all that He’s written for your life.
You also can find out who you are when God assigns you to be something. There’s one person in this room that I’ve called a prophet. And I think she’s doing prophecy all the time but she doesn’t really take that on. But she’s living it anyway, in spite of her. And another is so brilliant in the Word; the… can always get the word that applies and when you’ve got the word of God, you’ve got the voice of God and you’ve got the insight of God and you could find out who everybody is and who you are in that word. The… To be able to give each other a living word from the Bible is a huge gift of identity because it’s spoken to you.
God is… And John made this point earlier. He said, “If, if we’re to live in relationship with God, then we are to live in His voice.” We’re to live in His view. We’re to live in His revelation. And…
And also I think we have to live in the willingness to be exactly who we are in the story we come from. And I feel like John has given us such a foundation in sovereignty, because we can’t without sovereignly accepting every single part of our story, of our person, of our wounds, of our happies… The whole… I say the good, the bad, and the ugly. Sovereignty includes the good, the bad and the ugly. You have to accept it all. Then we can know who we are because we’ve received God as He is. Without receiving my story what I’m saying is, “God, You’re not God. I’ll, I’ll… You know… I’m going, I’m going, I’m going, you know, command this ship and I’m gonna go my own way.”
But sovereignty gives you such a foundation of then being able to receive your unique calling and design. And that your… Everything in your life was set up for this person, the new creation, not, not the old. The old is, is our adamic but, you know… You look… Abram was changed to Abraham. I mean we have a new name because we have a new identity. And… But we can’t move into that without accepting exactly how He brought us to the world. And I love John’s story of John the Baptist because to me, he lived in such restriction and confines and he was willing for all of it. All of it! It’s quite amazing.
I think it would be so much easier to be yourself in Christ than to try to be a Christian.
Somehow to me it just comes down to being rather than trying. We live in a world of trying and, and in our old person we, we try, we ever try. At least I am full of ever trying. But there is such life and power from being and not trying. And even being willing to, to say, like me to Jen or Martha or John, “This is who I see you are.” That gives life to them. Brings life to, to our own souls. To be willing to recognize my, my person is so different than Jen’s and Martha’s, and John’s. But celebrate the uniqueness of their giftings, their callings, their person instead of “Well, I see Martha has this now. I, I want that. I’m going to try and be that.” Well, I will never be Martha. I will never be Jen. I’ll never be John. I’m Joan. It’s just that simple.
I was going to say, John, that the beauty of John the Baptist is that every life that’s so secure in God’s will is a simple life, a provided-for life. Inside His will is every provision and under the kingdom, which is under the government, there is every supply, nothing lacking. I marvel at what God supplies but it’s not… It’s perfect. What John the Baptist had was perfect and it was very simple. His part was very simple, very clear. And we live… I can live in such complexity of, you know, there’s forty different ways that I should go and instead of in the simplicity of His plan. In His plan for me is me. So if I find His plan, I find me.
When He… I’ve told this story to, forever. But when He called me to write, I went, “Oh, no, not that. That’s the last thing I want to do. Oh, God, okay! All right.” So I started on my journey and I discovered I was a writer. His will told me who I was. His will revealed who I was and why. His will took me where I needed to go. His will was the, the, the guiding light that defined me and found me and forced me, yes, forced me to be who He had made me to be. And I, I remember saying to God, “I’ve been praying for the writing, I’ve been praying for it. Why am I not it?” He said, “Because you haven’t prayed for the power to write. It takes great energy and power to write.” And I wished I’d asked Him that earlier. So I started praying for the zeal and the energy and the power to do His will and then He had me pray for seven years for my style. And it was a perseverance beyond this woman, I’m telling you. It was a perseverance of God’s energy in me propelling me to the accomplishment of the thing He called me to, because He made me deep, deep, deep down in me, He made me to be a writer. And I said to Him once, “Why, why did… Why am I a writer? I don’t have an education. I don’t have a degree in writing. I don’t have, I don’t have really an education in English. Why did You choose me?” He said, “A writer is not a writer. A writer is a thinker. And if you’re not a thinker, you can’t be a writer.” And He showed me as a child the many hours I spent gazing at nature, walking in the forest, and being alone but pondering everything, thinking about everything. And that just happened to be who He made me to be before I was who I was. It was all there in my childhood and in my experience.
And so if we, if we fight the unchangeable things, as Joan is saying, if we fight the unchangeable, we lose our self. If we don’t accept, as Joan said brilliantly, if we don’t accept our parents, we lose our self.
I’m dealing in several situations right now where I know the bottom line problem is unforgiveness of a parent.
And I want, I want to restate this because I’m so passionate about it. To honor father and mother is a command with a promise. The promise is you’ll have a, you’ll live long, full life. The other promise is if you don’t, you will die. There’s a death penalty if you don’t accept your parents. And I wonder… And in my book I wrote it boldly, in the book on forgiveness. I said, “I wonder how many people die simply of the failure to obey that ‘Honor your father and mother’?” Why? “They don’t deserve it; I don’t give it. I’ll decide if I honor them. Oh yes!” No, that’s not it. It’s they are who God chose and everything… Proverbs says be wise and listen to your parents. Well, there’s some negative things to listen to. And there’s some positive things to listen to. But when you accept the will of God as He established it, there you find secrets of who you are and why.
I’ve told this before but it’s central to my life. My father had a temper and he would scare me with that temper. And I didn’t understand a lot of things he said to me. He would say, “Now don’t pucker up or I’m going to, go to town on that lip.” And I had no idea what he was talking about. I didn’t know he was talking about my little mouth quivering for crying. He was saying, “Actually, don’t cry.” But I had no idea how to succeed in what he told me.
But I did come in the dearest of my healings, I came to so praise God because I fear God and I obey Him pretty instantly because He gave me the, the right image of God. He also gave me, as all fathers do, the wrong image. And so in sorting that out, I found my God. And in everything you don’t have is a lesson from God. Everything you think you should have for your life is a lesson from God.
But His outlandish… To seek the kingdom first, to pray the kingdom down to earth, to live the will of God, to seek the will of God as your central goal in life is to be rich beyond your wildest imaginations inside of you – riches of His love and His favor that He pours on you if you’ll obey it. The riches of His praise for you. Can you imagine that God would praise you for something? Well, He does. He does! He, He praises the bride for things that she accomplishes in her life, and you want to have that. You want to be able to hear that God commends you. Because as Revelation 12:11 says, “The accuser stands to accuse you day and night. And we fight with the blood of the lamb covering all our sins and the testimony, which is Christ Jesus is Lord and sovereign, and we love not our lives unto death.”
Jennifer has mentioned the, the dying. Well, if you want to know who you are, you’ll have to die a lot of deaths of who you’re not and who you won’t ever be and what you’ll never have and what you do have. Sometimes there’s grief on what you do have.
But only in acceptance and surrender to God in His will and to the government of the kingdom will you discover you. And you may not be at all who you thought you would be or you may not end up where you thought you’d end up. That just tells us that we have our imagination instead of the voice of God.
But laying down your life for who He calls you to… But there’s several… There… He asked me to lay down my life for someone recently. And all the trial that went through it and all the dying that went through it, at the end of it is, was glory and increase and, and gifts and blessings and being loved and loving. So it’s, it’s a great adventure to be you.
Have You Received Your Story? – Episode #690 – Shulamite Podcast
God is the Sovereign Author of the story of your life, and many a reward and blessing is tied to making peace with all that He’s written there. Like the quality and length of your life is tied to whether you honor the parents God gave you. So have you?