Monday, August 24, 2015

A Season of Restoration

I would like to say for someone my age, I have been through a lot in my life. There are many experiences (some great and many others, not so great) that have truly defined me, shaped who I am, and built the platform that I stand on today. 

But I can absolutely say, that the platform I speak of has been a never ceasing, wobbly experience for as long as I can remember. The ups and downs have helped develop it, and that is not always a good thing. It has taught me to stand on insecurity instead of the Word of God, for far too long.

Have you ever felt called to something? And you know that you know, that you were created to be fully engaged in that calling, but then you are knocked down in life and your whole outlook changes. The enemy takes your knocked down state and twists it from being a lesson God is trying to teach you, to turning that into a insecurity of what you can't do, and who you aren't created to be.

The enemy has done this in my life over and over again and for the longest time, I let that insecurity be the platform that I wobble on instead of the rock that keeps me standing firm and strong. God is my rock and my peace (2 Samuel 22:3) and it is on Him alone, that I must learn to stand.

Now, you must be thinking to yourself, "Danielle, what the heck are you talking about?" Let me explain it a little better through my actual experience.

God has given me a voice. And not just any voice, but a loud one that can shape opinions and help build dreams. I felt that from a very young age but as a child I used my gifting, as a child. I spoke loudly, down to people. I spoke fiercely, about other people. I spoke swiftly, without any real knowledge. And as a child, I got whacked off of that pedestal really fast.  

God, I know now, was simply trying to teach me a lesson. Help me to understand that I was using my gifting wrong. But that disgusting enemy....he got straight up into my ear and whispered every nasty thing about who I was not and will never be. So I became reclusive. I stopped talking in large groups (and to be honest, alot in private groups as well) and the things that started to come out of my mouth were things I knew people wanted to hear. 

The enemy used my lesson from God and turned me into a people pleaser instead. And when I made someone mad (even for the right reasons) I felt sick to myself inside. I had "ruined" another relationship. I was a failure. And I should just quit saying and doing all things because all I ever do if make people hate me. (An obviously over dramafied statement, but very truly how I have felt at times.) 

But God is a redeemer....not just that, He is MY redeemer. And several months ago, He started piecing together a multitude of shattered sections of my heart. He took the overwhelming insecurity that had rendered me unworthy and ill equipped, and He started to write His truths on my heart.

This blog, has been a long time story of my redemption from the stolen voice the enemy crawled off with in the night. It is not the enemy's. It is mine, given to me by my creator. But I have still felt a lacking in that confidence.

Last night we had incredible church service where our senior pastor explained that there is a difference between redemption and restoration. And it hit me all at once, that restoration is the last piece of the puzzle that I have been missing. God may have redeemed my voice and forgiven me from my childish ways, but I was never allowing Him to restore me as I clung to the deep seeded insecurity that filtered throughout my system. 

During our service I closed my eyes, and sent up a prayer to Jesus, "I am no longer allowing fear and insecurity to hold me back. God, restore my heart." 

And I very clearly heard Him whisper back to me, "Do not be afraid to speak any longer. I have given you your voice. It is a gift. You were stripped of it as a child because you used your words wrong. Now use your voice for me. I gave it to you for my glory." 

My pastor then began to speak and to sing, "It is your name above every other name, Jesus. There are some people in this room who have lost their voice, but you are restoring their voice to them tonight." And my heart wept with joy and extreme gladness. He hears me and answers every prayer in my heart. Peace washed over me. 

I will no longer be afraid to speak the words He has given me. To share life with others and bring them joy with the voice He has given me.

What are the things the enemy has stolen from you, that God is trying to bring restoration to today? Allow Him into your heart, to restore those broken pieces and say goodbye to fear!
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