For a few very hard years this word was my mantra.
The word means
-undismayed; not discouraged; not forced to abandon purpose or effort
-undiminished in courage or valor; not giving way to fear
But the truth is, I was often dismayed by everything that had taken place, and I did battle discouragement. I battled fear and doubts. I hurt and was angry, and sometimes "undaunted" sounded more like a mockery than a mantra, and I was determined to be real about all of it in these posts, thus the name, Undaunted Reality. More than that, though, I was determined to live undaunted, not because I'm so great or strong, but because my God is, and no matter what this world looks like, He is the only reality that matters.
I pray I live the reality of Him beautifully undaunted.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Real Faith

The word "prophecy" sounds ominous, but really, it isn't. Prophecy is simply knowing God's heart. It is asking for His heart, getting still to listen, taking time to learn His voice, and telling folks what you hear. That is it.

For whatever reason, God has chosen to give me a prophetic gift. What that means is I know things there is no reason I should know. I know things about people that sometimes they don't want me to know, but God wants to talk about so He can heal something and get them out of a prison. Really, that is God's heart. Getting folks out of prison, getting them set free, get them living in His Son where eternal life is found. That is always the heart of God.

For me, my gift also means God and I talk all the time, about everything. People ask if I hear God talk, and that is kind of hard to explain, but, yes, He is very kind to share a lot of His heart and mind with me. And I confess, that has been priceless the last few years especially. When all the hard things came, I didn't know the specifics about where we were headed, but I had a general direction. I often knew what we were working toward and what the end goal was. There is peace in that. Granted, it takes faith to walk in that kind of knowing. It requires faith to believe that what God has said will come to pass. It requires faith to know that if I miss it, He will correct me and not just let me walk off a cliff into hell for eternity. It requires faith that He is capable of doing what He promised as well as faith that He really cares enough to bring it to pass. Sometimes I'm good with that faith. Sometimes, not so much.

A few weeks ago I was in Hebrews reading. "Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."

I asked a question: Is my faith really faith for things hoped for and unseen? I hope for promised things, for where I know God is taking us, for outcome He has shared as His heart. Is that the same thing?

In the last two weeks a lot has happened, and I find myself once again in situations that stretch me. They stretch me physically as I work on the covering for the deck and put up headers and joists. They stretch me emotionally as I deal with the reality that a part of my life I thought was gone and settled isn't and now has to be addressed all over again. They stretch me mentally in ways I could not begin to put on paper. Altogether, I have five situations that are beyond what I have done. As I told a friend of mine yesterday, I won't say I am drowning because I am not, but I am in over my five different oceans.

Four of the situations are challenging, and I have to constantly choose to trust that God has everything in hand and will get us to where we are going. I know the outcome, and I know He will get us there. It's just that sometimes that means the road runs right by my bed where I kneel and pray multiple times a day, but even as hard as that can be, I'm good with that. I know His character, and I know He does not abandon or leave. I'm solid.

Then there is this fifth ocean. And I don't get it at all.

I don't know why I'm in the ocean. I don't know what I'm supposed to be learning in the ocean. I don't know what I'm supposed to be doing in the ocean. I have no idea how to get out of the ocean.

I am lost.

But I'm not.

Because this is not the faith that is looking for an outcome. This is the faith that is trusting Him no matter what comes.

Certainty of things we hope for. Evidence of things we do not see.

Certainty of His presence, of His helping me, of His not letting me walk right off a cliff into hell.
Evidence that He is faithful, He is kind, He is gentle.
Evidence that He is loving.

Even when we don't know where we are going.
Even when we don't know what He is doing.

Evidence of Him.
Certainty of Him.

Faith isn't set on where we are trying to reach, but Who is reaching us.

And sometimes instead of figuring out all those things we don't know, He simply wants us to figure out that all we need to Him.

That is faith.

I have no idea what the purpose of this "ocean" is. I have no idea where we are going, what I'm supposed to learn, or what I am supposed to do. That is different for me. Some folks call it "blind" faith. I understand why, but I'm not blind. I clearly see Him.

When the disciples were in the boat and the storm came up, they were terrified. Then they woke up Jesus, and He rebuked the storm and everything settled, and He admonished them. "Why did you have so little faith?" I understand now.

Their faith was figuring out the how of getting through. Not the Who. The how was impossible, but the Who still had a plan that had to be accomplished. If they had focused on the One who had the plan that demanded fulfilling, would they have been overcome by the lack of how?

I'm not trying to wax poetic. I'm asking the Lord a real question.

Certain of what they do not see.
Sure of what they hope for.

Certain of Whom they do not see.
Sure of Him for Whom they hope.

Instead of drowning in all the things  I do not know...standing solid in the One I do.

Dear God, hone my faith until the only certainty it rests on is you.

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