Today I make a public confession. I want to be authentic in my weakness so that His strength shines through to you, can I do that?
A few days ago, the Lion of Judah walked into my room. He walked in – a majestic lion – perfect in form, a beautiful golden-brown, so noble in His bearing.
Without words He said to my heart, “Come away with Me for awhile.” He asked me to walk with Him because He wanted to show me something important, as He often does whenever He appears to me as the Lion.
He stood there watching me, patient, waiting. And without skipping a beat this headstrong wilful “godly woman” (hah!) said, “No. I’m too busy right now.”
He stood there looking at me for a long while, His expression so gentle yet sad and grave. Then He silently turned and walked away.
I felt His sadness – it was weighty but unimposing. He was gentle and wouldn’t force me where I didn’t want to go. It seemed so easy to turn away from Him.
I was so caught up in my busyness that I only realized my wrong when Alex, upon hearing about my day, asked with the most incredulous look on his face, “You said NO to the Lion of Judah?! GOD appeared to you, gave you a PERSONAL INVITATION, and you said NO?!!”
Whump whump. If ever there was a right moment to use OMG, that would’ve been it.
I had rejected His heart, yet He didn’t devour me. He had chosen to share His secret with me, and I had said “no thank you” with the petulance of a self-absorbed child.
I’d taken what other warriors had fought so hard to win, and tossed it aside with the flippant indifference of a child.
And I am so sorry.
I had been taking Him for granted for a really long time and thought it was spiritual piety.
I had been living like these ones Jesus spoke about — “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.” (Matthew 15:8)
I’d just launched the abide + thrive collection, but obviously had so much more to learn about abiding + thriving.
I am humbled once more.
I woke up yesterday to His clear, gentle, powerful voice: “Don’t be so busy doing things for Me your whole life, only to wake up one morning to find that we’ve become strangers. Don’t let what was started in the Spirit to end in the flesh (Galatians 3).”
And I think? We need to speak about this a little more.
We the Bride of Christ have gotten so accustomed to doing that we forget the being. We are program/process-driven, and not enough presence/purpose-driven.
A.W.Tozer puts it this way — “If the Holy Spirit was withdrawn from the church today, 95 percent of what we do would go on and no one would know the difference. If the Holy spirit had been withdrawn from the New Testament church, 95 percent of what they did would stop, and everybody would know the difference.”
I don’t have the answers + solutions to this age-old struggle between the flesh and the spirit. There’s fasting, praying, reading the Bible. But I think we need Holy Spirit to breathe Life into all these things for them to bear fruit.
So today, I just want to say a prayer. Feel free to join me in it.
“Forgive me Lord. I don’t want to work my whole life for You, only to wake up one morning to find that we’ve become strangers. I don’t want what was started in the Spirit to end in the flesh. I’m so sorry Lord. Help my heart to shake off its shackles and draw closer to You. Help me abide in Your presence even as I run after Your vision. Show me how Jesus did it. Amen.”
Do you struggle with making time for God in the midst of ministry + life? How do you make room for Him? Share your words in the comments so we can pray along + encourage each other!
I can really relate to this as well. Often I can find myself so busy doing things for and in the Kingdom of God, that I totally forget spending time with the One I am doing it all for-God. Thanks for the reminder. It was really needed!
What a lovely reminder, especially at this time of year. Your post prompted me to make time for Jesus today. I plan to pray as I drive on my way to errands this morning. Thank you!
Oh My! Your words are so poetic and so true! Thanks you for being vulnerable…we all mess up but so thankful you are now using it to help others hear truth. Let us never put aside our time with Jesus for anything else! Love this!!
Sharing it on my page today + Pinning!!
Wow. The words to describe the power behind this escape me. I’ve heard the quote by A. W. Tozer before, but it’s like the realization of it settled in today. Life does get crazy and our day can become so full that we neglect our time with God because he is so gentle in drawing us. We put him off because we think that can wait when in reality it should come first. This post has made me think. Amazing work.
Doing and being are two different things! Sometimes in my world I get them mixed up and they wind up mingled all together. Thanks for the beautiful word of encouragement!
As always, a beautiful and thoughtful post. Thank you for this!
Some days I struggle. I’ll have really good seasons and then I’ll let business creep in and wear me out, then I struggle. Putting God first really changes the days and weeks.
To be honest this is also my confession. I just don’t know how to do it. Sometimes I realize that I don’t even make time for myself. So I have to make time for myself and my relationship with God.
Thanks for sharing your heart with us.
Your ability to humble yourself and chase after authenticity inspires me- and really speaks to me, because I’m on the same journey.
It can be a real struggle to “make time” for God in my busy days. Whether I’m forgetting to be intentional with prayer time, or am not reading His words… I will feel drained if my spirit isn’t being fed. I guess right now, I’m working to realign my own focus and let God’s grace catch me. Because sometimes I’m also too far on the other side, working to be a “good Christian” and start doing things out of vain ambition, not FOR Him, or because He leads me to.
“I don’t want what was started in the Spirit to end in the flesh.”
I don’t want to not do what God instructs me to do. But I also don’t want to get caught up in “doing the good deeds” just for my own benefit or out of self-focus. I need to spend time with my Father and be led! Be a Mary, not a Martha.
It’s a vast subject, and a challenge to exercise. But oh so worth it, this journey of faith. 🙂
as we do His works, we must be remembering Him as well
Well said! I used to always desire that burn in my heart, the yearning to be in God’s word. Like something I couldn’t live without, a compulsion each morning. It took me 29 years of being a born again believer before I actually knew that feeling. For me personally it was a sin problem, and finally surrendering to God’s will. Now my day cannot start without time in the Word and intentional prayer. Praise God for second, third…fifteen chances 🙂
Its so easy to slowly be drawn away by things that make us busy. I am really mindful in this area. I make talking to God the first thing I do in the morning and asking him to order my focus and steps for the day.
This is the first time I’ve been to your blog. Found you this week.
This was so beautiful. So sadly true of my own life at times. We need to be Kingdom minded always and not allow busyness to sway us. The timing of this post was perfect. Thank you for sharing your heart.
I know so many people in ministry who have been through this, or need to be reminded of this.
Thanks so much for an honest and precious post.
This is such a needed post! It is so easy to get caught up in that and forget what is most important. Thanks for the much needed reminder!
Thanks so much. This was a much needed post. In our busy lives we should take out time to thank the Almighty.
Wow Godly Woman dont beat yourself up. Some of us dont even get to HEAR and SEE the LORD in any shape or form. We wouldnt recognize him if he slapped us in the face as a chocolate brownie. Why? Because we have become strangers. We are so busy being busy claiming to do His work while distancing ourselves even further. I am quite touched by this story and also in awe of you. The Lord chooses to appear to you As The all Powerful protector yet gentle in every way…To say I am envious would ruin it all. So I will say I am in awe!
Would you believe I was just studying this in my Bible last night and I JUST wrote a post about it this morning?!? I love when God confirms what it is that He is saying to me through other people.
Thank you so much for sharing this with me (or us I guess).
Such a blessing!
I will be sharing this on my page today!
Samantha, I loved how you expressed this. Every morning I wake up I say I just want to be with You today, Lord. And then I get sucked into busyness. Lord help us to be still.
What a great to the point post! I notice that we all seem to struggle here. Praying for God’s grace of reminding! Thanks again for a timely post.
This is so true. I love two parts most. First, our Lion of Judah is such a gentleman. He will wait for us to willingly enter into his presence, and I love the reminder that we are not to be too busy doing things for Him that we wake to find one day we are strangers. Thank you for your transparency.
It’s so important not to overlook the Lord when we are busy. I love the Tozer quote…and he’s so right!
Samantha thank you for your authenticity and transparency. This is so beautiful, powerful and true. Such a realigning word and so very timely. Thank you for sharing I’m so very grateful.
Some ways I try to stay abiding in Him (although I still have a ways to go in this area):
1. writing helps keep me focused on him
2. researching on what I’m writing about in the local seminary library where there’s not a great deal of distraction
3. limit my computer time — unless I’m writing Bible studies, then I can be on the computer as long as He’s inspiring me to keep writing 🙂 and limit my SMM platforms to 1 main one, plus 3 supplemental ones
4. say “no” a lot. lots of folks ask me to help with various “good things” but knowing what I’m to be about, what God has called me to do, helps me say no to anything outside that and yes to things related to that
5. no more people-pleasing!!! 🙂
6. realizing that time in his presence is better then “a thousand elsewhere” is knowledge that has grown in me over time.
Stay abiding!! Blessings, Jody
We need to slowly and daily build a one-to-one relationship with God. This is done through prayer. Through talking to Him, and most important, through listening.
Wow! Such a powerful and amazing post. I could imagine Him walking into the room with your beautiful words. I have too had encounters that I stopped because I was too busy! Isn’t that crazy? But oh.. how He pursues us. Wow. He pursues us. The God of the universe want’s us. hmm.. thank you. For your thought provoking words and prayer. I’ll be finding you on instagram as I am leaving your space so inspired. Be Blessed always. Misty.
Dearest Samantha,I took a moment to look at and study the Lion of Judah picture. Did you draw that? He reminds me so much of Aslan from the Chronicles of Narnia. And as I looked at that magnificent, ferocious beast, and looked at his capacity for power and at the same time his meekness and gentleness, something shifted within me, and tears welled up from within. This gentleman would wait, and to think that the King of Kings would allow himself to be cast aside and deprioritised by his creation, a mere mortal such as ourselves.
I pray you will reach many through this godly womanhood ministry, because you have certainly reached me and God has touched me through your visioning workshop, prayer and word of encouragement.
Thank you! Glad you enjoyed the recap and the episode! And I'm really happy to hear that I influenced your opinion of Jack a little bit (that's one big reason why I write–because I enjoy helping people sometimes see a different side of things!). 🙂
THANK YOU! for being so transparent & volenable…In ur quiet time & secret place with the King, May He continue to share the treasure’s of His heart & ETERNAL vision…Shalom.