Facing the Giants.

So it’s snowing here in OKC. And its cold. And I’ve been working all day on sales calls and I had the TV on just for noise. You know the kind of noise…the kind that doesn’t mean anything to you. It’s not significant noise. It’s just keep ya company sort of noise. And then all of a sudden I hear “don’t quit! don’t you quit on me!” being shouted from the TV. And I turned from my computer and looked at the television. Facing the Giants. It’s one of the best movies that captures the faithfulness of God that I’ve ever seen. And so I sat. And I watched this movie unfold. And I cried like a girl.

And I’m not talking my eyes got teary. OH no. I’m talking, full on, sit in my chair and cry with noise. Why did this resonate so deep within me today?

Giants. I’ve been facing my own giants. It seems there have been a season of giants. Like 7 years of them. And do you ever wanna just lay down and QUIT? When your heart hurts, people disappoint you, you are trying to hear God because you fervently just want to be in His will…. The right relationships. Giants The right jobs. Giants The right places to live. Giants And…You miss it a few times. Or so it feels like you have missed it because the “thing” that you were believing for didn’t turn out the way you thought?

And you feel foolish because…well, you thought you had heard God but apparently you missed God.  And life isn’t a Disney movie and things sometimes suck and you feel like day in and day out you put one foot in front of the other believing that you are making progress only to stop and wonder… “am I really!?”

And that Disney movie seems like a farse because quite frankly, I haven’t gotten my tiara out in years. And actually, I got it out recently to look at it…and that tiara had a few rhinestones that had fallen out. And behold…the princess is much less in the castle and much more hiding out in the desert just waiting to possess what she knows…what she’s being promised…is her rightful place of inheritance. The Kingdom. Kingdom living.

The kingdom seems far off and the desert is just that. It’s the desert.

But oh the desert. And…what if you didn’t miss God at all? Maybe all of it was designed for divine positioning into the Kingdom? And when I say Kingdom living…I mean…the abundant life. The life that is full of destiny and promise and you know that you know you’ve really hit your sweet spot….People getting healed and set free and trouble seems to flee…kingdom living.  What if every tear was actually water for the ground you’ve been sowing in. Ground that will reap harvest if you do not faint…

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”

Galatians 6:9

And it hit me today while watching that high school player doing the death crawl blind folded…..first to the 20 yard line….then to the 30….then to the 40…..and then with every step gasping, struggling and believing that surely he was close to the 50 but since he was blindfolded he couldn’t see exactly where he was but he hurt so bad that even if he wasn’t close…the pain was almost more then he could bear. Giants, giants, giants… Surely he was about to get to what he had set out for…the 50 yard line. But his coach kept urging him forward….leading him. Guiding him. “Don’t you quit on me!”

So he kept going…and he was tired.

The burden of the boy on his back seemed more than he could bear. Giants. And he wanted to quit. But he didn’t. Another 5 steps. Giants. And he wanted to quit again. Giants. And finally he just felt his muscles tingle and burn and his breath give way….and his coach yelling…5 more steps, 2 more, 1 more…you made it!

You possessed the goal…and instead of the 50….he was in a better promised land. He had gone farther then he intended to. Farther than he thought possible in the natural. Farther then anyone expected him to go, actually. And it was painful. And nothing about it was pleasant.

Every muscle in his body was on fire.

And all he could do was lay at the foot of those field goal bars. Exhausted. But in position. A BETTER position that he thought possible. A DIVINE position…a WINNING position. His coach telling him at the end…”I need you. You are an influencer. Nobody else can do what you do. You were created for MORE to be more to give more. You’re a LEADER…”

And so I wept as I realized. I’m stronger than I think. And all the setbacks…..what if they’ve actually been set ups for a come back? And what if I really haven’t missed God at all? What if in my weakness,  I landed at the foot of the cross…and with every fiber in my tired body and weary heart with nobody around but just me and God…what if that was the plan all along?

It’s in the desert when you can’t see the whole picture…. that God is faithful. It’s in the desert that He wants our praise. It’s in the desert that He calls US to be faithful regardless of hurts and pain….and it’s in the desert that sometimes one more step is the very step that positions us at the foot of the cross.  Just. Don’t. Quit.

And so I sit here tonight….weary, a little disheveled, contemplating some decisions…and realizing…that quitting isn’t an option and that God will take me further than I think I can go. And so I’ll put my blindfold on tonight….and again in the morning…and I’ll wear that blindfold like a uniform of FAITH….and I will push myself and land at the foot of the cross again tomorrow night.

And I win. Because I really think it’s less about the destination and more about everyday landing at the foot of the cross.

So in the desert or in the castle…I will praise Him. And in the heat of the day. I will praise Him. And when I feel like I cannot go on and this death crawl called life just isn’t fair….I will praise Him. And what about those giants? The things that stand in the way of me making it to the foot of the cross everyday…to my victory. To my END ZONE.  Trust this, my friends, the field of battle will be peppered with carcasses of the giants….strewn about…defeated.

“David asked the men standing near him, “What will be done for the man who kills this Philistine and removes this                  disgrace from Israel? Who is this uncircumcised Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?”

1 Samuel 17:26

Out of my MOUTH I will say….”God, you are my God. There is none like you. You keep me from all evil. You rebuke the devil for my sake. You always provide more abundantly for my needs. Every concern I have…. I give to you to carry. I love you. I trust you. God you are GOOD TO ME and your faithfulness endures everyday and forever!”

You should click on the link below. Grab your cocoa and your tissue….Cause you will realize something at the end of this clip….you win too. #dontquit

Spirit Led War

Good Morning Pearl Girls….(and guys) if you follow us.

Whew. What a week! It’s Friday and I’m so thankful for that. Why? It’s been war this week. And last. And seemingly the week before that. And I am tired. Bone tired. Like in my heart, throw the covers over my head, please don’t make me get outta bed tired. And it’s been cold. All the more tempting to leave the outside world outside and to cuddle my little dog, Boomer until all the world just fades away. But alas. The world doesn’t fade away. Life happens and moves forward and that leaves us where?

Well. It leaves us moving forward. Because God wants us forward. He wants us taking the land and moving toward a Holy experience with Him and bringing other folks with us. What’s the point of the struggle I find myself asking. In the last two weeks I’ve talked to one friend contemplating leaving her husband because he had an affair and she has been just trying to survive to be able to get through it. So true to form, Satan has now tempted her with an emotional affair with someone else. I’ve had another friend who used to be paralyzed and then God healed him…struggle with old injuries and now is struggling with the fear of paralysis again. I’ve had another friend try to “figure out her life”…as though we have only ONE path and one path only of which to be successful and happy and if we miss it we are…doomed? God is mad at us? Another friend lost a boyfriend of 3 years in a car wreck. I have a friend who’s wife left him after 36 years of marriage. No warning. She just left. I have another friend that’s trying to make sense of her marriage of 20+ years that’s falling apart and her husband has been out of the house for almost 3 years and doesn’t want to move back despite her pleas and prayers. What does she do? What do any of us do? The pain of it all…

So. Now what. All theses people are awesome, amazing, wonderful, Jesus loving people. And yet. Life. Life is so darn hard. I myself battle with balance and shame and guilt and feelings of inadequacy. Trying to keep all the balls spinning. Trying to figure out my emotions in the midst of it all. And let’s just face it…it’s hard. But here’s the silver lining…it’s worth it. Because Christ suffered on the cross not just for our sickness and and our sin. But the Word says…he suffered for our wounds. And up until last weekend I hadn’t seen that. A friend pointed out, “Tatum, Jesus was emotionally wounded in the Garden and on the cross and He just didn’t die for our sin. He carried emotional scars…our scars. our wounds. And He understands and when offered up to God our suffering is redemptive.  Suffering is not something to be avoided but fully embraced with trust in a merciful and loving God.  Jesus embraced the cross so must we… for on the other side of His cross… and the crosses we carry…. is resurrection.

Wow. Christ Himself suffered with emotional hurt and bondage and came out the other side. Christ was made poor the Word says…so He understands financial lack. Christ knows rejection because God turned from Him. Christ knows backstabbing because He had Judas betrayal. Christ had been lied about, because Peter denied Him 3 times. Christ was tired I think, many times. Bone tired. And sometimes He just had to get away from the crowds.

So this morning as I write. More therapeutic for me then for you, I’m sure…but it gives me great hope to know that Christ gets it. He knows my wounds…emotional, financial, physical, and relational in every way.

And He overcame.

Last night as I was in the shower…Holy Spirit spoke so profoundly to me. “Tatum, all battles have to be won in the Spirit first.” Wow. Thank you Lord for reminding me that the gift of tongues is my greatest weapon against the wiles of the enemy and my flesh. Praying in tongues is simply my personal prayer language in which Holy Spirit is released on my behalf to go and fight for me. To go and intercede when in my human”ness” I have no idea what or how to pray.

Sometimes there are just situations where you hit a wall. Hit the bone tired. Deep confusion or sadness or grief. And today, I would encourage you to ask Holy Spirit to fill you to the brim where you just bubble out with YOUR prayer language. I don’t know what I would do without it. I don’t know why I haven’t been using it. I think that it’s one of the ememies greatest weapons to cripple believers. Lie to them about tongues. Because God reminded me last night….HOLY SPIRIT has all the answers…and every battle seen and unseen is fought in the SPIRIT realm first. “The battle is won in the Spirit first”

Thank you Jesus for the reminder that the hard things in life and not so hard when we can pray in the spirit about them. Thank you Lord for reminding me that the worshippers went before the army and the battle was won before a sword was drawn.

“But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5

Worship and praying in the Spirit brings our victory. I’m sure of it. And that gives me hope to sit her and rest knowing that this battle of life is not quite as looming as I thought. Because I have already won. On the Cross. With Jesus. Wounds, Sin, Lies, Hurts, Rejection. Adultery, Sickness, Death, Grief, Fear….all crucified. My hope is in Jesus the One who overcame. Press into the Spirit today.

Watch this…it’s powerful. I pray that whatever battle rages in and around you today…is won in the Spirit on your behalf. *If you don’t understand speaking in tongues…contact me or ask Holy Spirit. It’s a free gift to you. And it truly is…the power source.