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I have witnessed first hand and have experienced how the Lord, or as I would like to call Him – the Good Shepherd – brings us back on to the right path. Those who follow Jesus are very much like sheep. I have been fascinated for most part of this year with this concept, so much so I changed my last name to Ovejas, which means sheep in Spanish. I giggled when people asked me whether I was married and replied, “Yes, I am married to the will of God.” I shall explain this sometime later. Stay tuned to this blog 😀
The verse that got to me the most is this one:
He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Psalm 23:3
“He leads me on paths” just paints a picture in my mind of a little naïve, and may I say, dumb sheep, being led on to the right path. Although this sweet and innocent sheep, unaware of the dangers of this world, goes astray and loses the way, the Good Shepherd leads it back to the safe path, which is nothing but the path of righteousness.
The wrong path of unforgiveness
It has been 10 years this November 2001 since I first felt the embrace of the Heavenly Father and knew that He was truly God and God alone. I made an official decision and accepted Him as Lord and Saviour in January 2002. It has been the most exciting adventurous journey ever since. On the way, at times I have been that dumb little sheep trying to get on with her life, in her own way. I testify this day that the Lord always led me back. There have been many instances, but I do not have the liberty to write them all down here due to time constraints. I have mentioned just a few, which have been on my heart to share with you all.
One of the paths of unrighteousness that I almost tread down was becoming slave to unforgiveness, anger and hurt with respect to a certain person. The person is someone that has had a major influence and impacted my life. Someone I loved dearly and looked up to all my life. And suddenly it all changed over a period of a few years, especially since I decided to follow Jesus. In the beginning, there was much strife over my decision to love and serve Jesus, but somewhere after a few years people gave up. They just accepted me as a Jesus freak that no one could ever change. The person also commended me for being different from other youngsters and boasted about me among his comrades. He was proud of me. Then once again, the equation changed and he did something so wrong that impacted my life and the life of those I cared about. I hated him. I guess he had hatred towards me too. I would get so angry that often I would wish he were dead, but then correct myself. I would just feel so weighed down by the fact that I couldn’t love him, it enslaved me. I chose to allow the emotions to take over.
Slow and steady release
The last year and a half, I have been more diligent to lay my life down to Jesus and have accepted the challenge to let Him deal with me. I attended a camp last year, where God really dealt with me in an evident way. I used to tuck my anger, unforgiveness and hatred under the carpet. Instead of submitting it to God I hid it from Him, much like we hide the things that make us ashamed. Reminds me of Adam and Eve when they hid because they sinned against God. So, at the camp God led us campers to submit, surrender and depend on Him. On the second day, after morning devotion when everyone was at lunch, I felt uneasiness and I did not know what it was. I prayed and God reminded me about the person I couldn’t forgive. I ran to one of my mentors, a wonderful woman of God and I told her. She said God is dealing with you, just surrender to Him. I cried and said I will be late for lunch. I went to my room and just released it all before Him and said it is hard, but I surrender. I made it a habit since then to forgive that person everyday. The person has not changed towards me. He hates the sight of me. Even after surrendering to God, he did worse things. I said, God I cannot do this on my own, help me love him.
Somewhere in June, I got news about him being severely ill. I visited him in hospital and even prayed with him. He cried and asked me to forgive him, I did already. Then, things got back to normal and he began his hate brigade against me all over again. He has accused of things I have not even thought about. To the extent of robbery and things I do not even go close to. I would cringe at the thought of all the things he said about me, and once again found myself on the verge of going down the wrong path. I cried out to God.
God answers when we call, there’s no doubt about that. Most people have to go to psychologists, psychiatrists or in other words shrinks for what they call sessions. They pay thousands and even lakhs to help deal with anger issues and such. Well all I needed was to depend on God and He took a session with me. The Lord was working on me through dreams, wherein He made me face the person and release all the hatred I had towards him. I spoke of all the hurt and wrong doings, one-by-one I lashed out on him accusing him of all the things he did until I had nothing bad to say to him anymore. Then I realised that deep inside I loved him and after my session of spewing all the venom inside, out came these words, “I used to be proud of you. I loved you. I boasted among my friends about you and how you took care of me.” I woke up crying at 4 am, I think I woke my mother and she went back to sleep as she is used to me talking, crying and getting up to pray in the middle of the night. Someday, I believe I can tell you who this person I couldn’t forgive is and testify about how God saved him. I believe that day is coming soon! You know what? After I woke up I was released finally. Truly, whom the Son sets free is free indeed! God gave me the same dream again. I am learning to love and forgive others too. Thank You Jesus! Hallelujah!
The wrong path of unbelief
“…for whatever is not from faith is sin” Romans 14:23
God hates unbelief. It displeases Him.
But the cowardly, UNBELIEVING, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.” Revelation 21: 8
But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. Hebrews 11:8
I can go on and on about how unbelief is this and that, but there are many unbelieving folk among believers, i.e., those who claim to follow Jesus and believe in His words. The opposite of faith is fear. When you don’t believe you start to get anxious and afraid. Absence of faith can be the result of two things pride or self-love (believing in oneself to be able to do all things) and fear. I have been dealing against this fear in me. Trust me my victory lies in just trusting God and putting my fears and anxiousness aside. Also, learning to crucify my ‘self’ and completely depending on God. God recently dealt with my unbelief in the most beautiful way through two really good friends. I thank Him for their lives and them being so loving and gracious towards me. I shared with them about two separate things I was troubled by. One of them is the fear of losing track with God and the other is a fear I will share about when I feel at liberty to do so.
The Lord dealt with my unbelief
When I told my friend DD about the fear of losing track, the Holy Spirit quickened in Him this word:
For the thing I greatly feared has come upon me, And what I dreaded has happened to me. Job 3:25
I was amazed, because I read the Book of Job many times. However, suddenly this verse stood out and was apt to deal with my unbelief. So I must not fear, but have faith that God is able to keep me away from the things that I fear. My GOOD SHEPHERD HE IS. This was on a Saturday night and the every next day was Sunday service. Guess what the word was about? IT WAS ABOUT Faith!!! God has been dealing with me.
In short I realised Faith is an action not and emotion. ABC of faith according to Pastor Francis – an Act based on Belief sustained by Confidence! Even if it doesn’t seem so, or you don’t feel like it, stand and say, I still believe.
Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed. John 20:29
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Phil 4:6-7
I have written about faith a long time ago, but I was led to revisit again. The earlier post is at https://scribecorner.wordpress.com/2011/01/18/does-fear-rule-your-life/
The other fear was me doubting about receiving an answer to something I have been praying about for a long time now. My friend SS almost scolded me silly and shared this verse with me:
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. James 1:17
Well after that I began to believe better and pray better too. Pray a prayer of belief knowing fully well and trusting that God has already began to answer my long time prayer. I will thank Him for He is at work. I will share with you soon the answer to my prayer.
Unrighteousness is unbelief, belief is righteousness!
But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Matthew 6:33
The steps of a RIGHTEOUS man are ordered of God. Psalm 37:23
This may be read as:
The steps of A PERSON OF FAITH are ordered of God
So, let God deal with you. Once He starts He brings it into completion.
Submit to God, resist the devil and the devil will flee!
Oh Victory in Jesus!!! I am so excited because God is dealing with me.
The Lord will lead me on paths of righteousness for His name sake!