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Time to get out of the boat! (a Timeless Truths blog post)

man on boat

Cities are beginning to open up … quarantines are beginning to be lifted … restrictions are beginning to ease up … and people are beginning to venture back out into the “real world” … and into what is being considered the “new normal”. You would think everyone would be super excited … you would think everyone would be saying, “it’s about time”! You would think the overall reaction of society as a whole would be a collective sigh of relief … you would think. However, for some people who deal with anxiety … or even just a resistance to change, it may not be so easy. It may be hard for them to adapt … hard for them to leave what had become their comfort zone during a time of upheaval. And, really, even for the people who don’t usually have a problem with just “going with the flow” and “winging it” … these people may still face challenges as well … just because things are different now. It’s almost as if the world went into a collective ark like Noah and his family did in the time of the flood (see Genesis 6-9) and now it’s time to get out of the boat … if we dare. Now it’s time to start exploring the whole “new world” around us … with fresh eyes and fresh insight that we may not have otherwise gained had we not been “stuck” inside. Now we have an opportunity … an opportunity to live our lives in a whole new way … in a way different than before; different, perhaps, than we’ve ever dared to live them … ever. Maybe during this whole pandemic you’ve realized that time is short and tomorrow isn’t guaranteed. Maybe you have been procrastinating … putting off ’till tomorrow what you’ve known in your heart for a long time needs to be done … now. Maybe the recent turn of events has left you with an urgency in your spirit that you shouldn’t wait any longer … now is the time to get out of your boat … now is the time to get out of your comfort zone … now is the time to go forward into the plans and purposes God has for your life. Maybe you agree with everything I’m saying … but you’re still scared; you’re still nervous … well, that’s okay … Peter, one of Jesus’ disciples was nervous too. Matthew 14 tells the story of how Peter had to choose to exercise faith when he was in a boat a considerable distance from land that was being hit by waves because the wind was against it. At that time, he saw Jesus walking on the water towards him and he and the other disciples were afraid. Matthew 14:27-31 (NIV) says, “But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.” “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” So, here we see a timeless truth. When the Lord calls us to get out of our boat, we need to obey and we need to keep our eyes on Him. At the same time, since we are human, we can also take comfort in the fact that Jesus is merciful to us and will catch us if we start to waver in our faith. He never condemns us … He simply encourages us to exercise faith rather than listen to doubt. So, today, if you hear the Lord telling you it’s time to get out of your boat, take courage and boldly obey His instruction, trusting, as always, He knows best.

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When God closes a door He opens a window

Transition periods are not fun. However, when God gives you a new perspective, everything changes. Your spirit goes from feeling down and depressed to uplifted and hopeful. Such is the case with me at this stage of my life.

As I was in the process of finishing up writing Whispers to the soul, I was sensing in my own spirit that it was time for me to retire from writing books and “just” maintain a blog on my new website to keep the books “alive” to the public. I didn’t know what I would write on the blog – just that I was going to need to write “something” at least periodically. After all, I had done all the work writing all those books … and I didn’t want them to just fade away. I still wanted people to know they existed. I still wanted people to buy them. To read them. (Even if they only read sample chapters from them … even that would be fine with me … at least that would be something to know that my efforts weren’t all in vain.)

Then came this morning. I read a devotional and, after pondering it, God gave me a new perspective on my whole situation.

It wasn’t that I was going to be “just” writing a blog to keep my books alive. It wasn’t that I was going to be “stagnant” or going backwards or that I was going to have to try to come up with something more to write about the books that were already “out there” when there was really nothing left to write about. No. Instead, it was that I was actually going to be going forward. I was actually going to be allowed the privilege of writing a blog. I was actually being trusted by God to let the Holy Spirit lead me and guide me in knowing what to write and when and how … it was like a revelation. It was like God had trusted me to write all those books for Him, and now He was trusting me to take this next step of faith into the unknown – not knowing what the blog would look like, not knowing what exactly I would be writing about or how often… or, really, much of anything for specifics … just that this is what God was leading me to do next … for Him.

Then, realizing that it wasn’t really about keeping the books “alive” like I had originally thought. No. It was really about keeping my “voice” alive – about keeping the voice of all that the Holy Spirit put into me that needed to be shared with others alive. About continuing to let the Lord speak through me whatever He put on my heart to speak … just like with the books, but now, with the blog. But now, without all the pressure that comes with writing books and everything that goes along with it. But now, with freedom … freedom to just “speak.”

And so, here I go – just speaking what’s in my heart on this day – being led by the Holy Spirit to share my story with you in hopes that it will somehow inspire you to see things from a different perspective than you may have seen it before – a perspective that leads to you feeling the way I feel now – hopeful, nervous, and excited all at the same time. Not knowing what God has in store, but knowing – since it’s God – it’s gotta be something good.

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