Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. | Hebrews 12:1 NLT
Recently, I felt the Lord download this word to me; it is a very personal word with both practical and spiritual applications. I sense that many in the Body of Christ, myself included, have been in a very long and extended winter season. Some may even call this season, ‘a dark night of the soul.’ You, like myself, may have wondered, “Will this season ever end?” I want to encourage you that though weeping may last through the night, the joy of the Lord comes with the morning (Psalm 30:5).
Through your seemingly dark and excruciating season, God has been at work. He has been skillfully working behind the scenes of your life in ways that will soon burst forth! Even though you can’t yet see the results, know that the process is necessary for the massive promotion that you are getting ready to step into.
Friend, even as the Lord was with Joseph while he was in prison, the Lord has been with you too. Nothing—absolutely nothing—that you’ve gone through will be wasted. I’m sure that Joseph could not imagine the greatness that God was preparing for him while he was in that prison. Nevertheless, Joseph remained faithful; as painful as it was, he allowed the Lord to further develop his character during that time. However, in just one day, Joseph literally went from the prison to the palace!
I sense the Lord’s heart of encouragement to those who have been in a fiery season of refinement and purification. The Lord is saying today that you are coming out refined and fortified like the gold! As it says in The Message’s version of 1 Peter 1:7-9,
“Pure gold put in the fire comes out of it proved pure; genuine faith put through this suffering comes out proved genuine. When Jesus wraps this all up, it’s your faith, not your gold, that God will have on display as evidence of His victory. You never saw Him, yet you love Him. You still don’t see Him, yet you trust Him—with laughter and singing. Because you kept on believing, you’ll get what you’re looking forward to: total salvation.”
The enemy would love nothing more than for you to give up right before you reap your harvest. Friend, God is getting ready to reward your faithfulness. Now is the time to push past the pain and continue to run the race that has been set before you (Hebrews 12:1).
We are told in Proverbs that “a joyful heart is like good medicine” (Proverbs 17:22). The Lord is calling us to arise from our place of apathy and discouragement, and to partner with Him in this exciting new season we are entering into! I sense that the Lord is releasing many from a spirit of heaviness that has sought to steal joy and peace from His people. I believe that this pertains to both the physical, as well as in the spirit.
On a personal and somewhat vulnerable note, I have put on some extra weight recently, and discouragement has really attempted to set in my life. However, as I sought the Lord, I believe that He has revealed that this is twofold: yes, I have gained some weight in the natural, but I have also been carrying the heavy weight of burdens and unresolved issues that He had never assigned for me to carry. Jesus, Himself, is our burden bearer; we are called to cast our cares—all of them—upon Him, for He cares for us (1 Peter 5:7).
I heard the Lord say, “Partner with Me, and watch that extra weight fall off!” Now, I have heard of ‘supernatural weight loss,’ which is awesome, and God can (and sometimes does) move in this way. But oftentimes, He is inviting us to put ‘shoe leather’ to what He’s calling us to do. I’m not sure what that may look like for you, but for me personally I’ve been jogging daily. Is it easy? Not necessarily. Is there reward in it? Absolutely! Naturally, there are physical benefits of getting into shape. I have found that though I don’t enjoy running, it has also been spiritually beneficial for me, allowing me focused time to listen to worship and seek the Lord. Often now I hear God speak to me even as I’m running!
I once saw a powerful statement painted on the wall of a local business; it simply said: “Don’t let what you can’t do stop you from what you can.” I may not be able to commit to a gym membership in this season, but I can jog around my neighborhood—or even up and down the stairs in my own home—free of charge. It’s so tempting to talk ourselves out of things because we may not be able to everything we desire for. However (when we start where we can), I believe that God will put His super on our natural, making our results supernatural.
You may feel the nudge of the Holy Spirit to sow into a certain ministry, but second guess yourself because the amount you can currently give seems so small. I’d encourage you to remember the story in John 6 of the boy who gave his lunch to Jesus, and God multiplied it to feed a crowd of over 5,000 people. The boy’s obedience in a seemingly small act made a huge difference that day. Or what about the widow who gave her last jar of oil to the prophet Elijah? Her act of radical obedience was able to sustain her and her son, for the oil did not run out (1 Kings 17:7-16).
I truly believe that as we step out in radical faith and obedience in this season. We are going to see some incredible and supernatural results! Those heavy chains of discouragement and despair are even now breaking. The Lord is saying, “Partner with Me, and watch that extra weight fall off!” I know it’s been an unusually long and harsh Winter season, but Beloved, take heart! God is even now rewarding your faithfulness, and Spring is finally here!
My beloved spoke and said to me,
“Arise, my darling,
my beautiful one, come with me.
See! The winter is past;
the rains are over and gone.
Flowers appear on the earth;
the season of singing has come,
the cooing of doves
is heard in our land” (Song of Songs 2:10-12).
A Note from Angie:
I pray that you are all doing well and that you are being blessed and encouraged by the words from the Lord. I wanted to give those who may feel led to give an opportunity to sow into LWC Ministries. Your support is greatly appreciated. Love gifts may be sent to:
Living With Confidence Ministries
P.O. Box 546
OR you may click the “Donate” button on the side menu of my blog. We pray God’s richest blessings on each of you today!