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Monday, February 20, 2017

Growing through or just going through?

Every now and again, a quote comes across the social feed that just catches my eye and holds my heart. One such is that by Toby Mac: "If you saw the size of the blessing coming, you would understand the magnitude of the battle you are fighting." We SEE the battle raging around us. We EXPERIENCE the torment of the fight. We DELIBERATE over the choices we must make.We AGONIZE over the complexity of the circumstances. Yet, in all this, we don't ever really know the true size of the blessing just around the corner!

You have armed me with strength for the battle; you have subdued my enemies under my feet. (Psalm 18:39 NLT)


Who arms us for the battle?  God himself provides the armor, sends in the legions of angels who battle in heavenly places, unseen by our naked eye, but there nonetheless. Who gives us the strength to put one foot in front of the other when there is no human strength left to put forth?  God himself renews our energies, not just physical, but spiritual and emotional, as well. Who has the plan that will set our enemies to flight?  God himself orchestrates not just the "pushing back" of the enemy lines in our life, but the complete annihilation of those opposing forces.  

If we saw the size of the blessing - would we fight harder? Maybe, but could it just be that God wants us to trust him and fight just as hard even without knowing what awaits us just around that corner? I think God wants us to fight, not because of the blessing, but because we trust him with all that is within us - even if the blessing weren't to come!  Right now, the battle seems too great to handle because we are "going through" what we are meant to "grow through".  No battle is without purpose - it is designed to grow us.

There is a vast difference between "going through" something and "growing through" it. Growth requires active participation. The plant must open its leaves to the sun, send its roots into the soil, take up the nutrients and drink in the refreshment of the water provided. The plant doesn't do all the work, but it does put forth some "effort" in order to realize growth. The same is true for us - the battle isn't just endured - it is fought! The battle isn't just "around us", it is "in us", "with us", and "against us". To "make it through" the battle is one thing - to come out victorious is quite another.

Too many of us are so focused on "going through" that we forget all about the purpose of "growing through" the battle. We put all our energies into just "staying afloat" and forget that God provided that which keeps us afloat, not so we will just survive, but that we might "arrive" at the place he intends for us to be at in the end of the battle. I don't know the magnitude of your blessing, but I see evidence of your battle, my friends. I don't "get" why the blessing has to come this way, but I know the faithfulness of the God who is keeping you afloat through it.

We might not want to go through this today, but if we change our focus to growing through it, I wonder if our attitude toward the battle would take on a different perspective?  Just askin!