THANK YOU for journeying through the iTHRIVE series with me! I hope that it has been a blessing to you. We only have a few more weeks to go and I believe that we will all be revived to THRIVE as a result of this journey!
There are so many images that come to mind of what strength looks like. Strength looks like mountains and strength looks like trees. Strength looks like my mom and dad praying on their knees. Strength looks like bodybuilders with bodies cut firmly and toned and it looks like construction workers scaling buildings at heights alone. Strength looks like activists marching through streets, holding signs, and chanting "we shall overcome!" Strength looks like the child in the spelling bee, a little nervous but determined not to be outdone. Strength looks like the waves of the ocean crashing on the beach shores. It looks like the physically challenged coming through any door. Strength looks like cancer survivors and patients fighting for their life at any age and at every stage. Strength looks like the brokenhearted man or woman who tries to love again... and again. There are so many images that come to mind of what strength looks like to me. And unfortunately, because strength can often be spoken of or depicted as merely physical, we might tend to discount the strength we have mentally, emotionally, and even spiritually.
Friends, in order for YOU to THRIVE, you must harness your own strength! This is not the same as discovering your purpose or having knowledge of your gifts and talents. To harness your strength is to pull from the depths of who you are as a whole person - beyond your physical body - in order to be steadfast, unmovable, and always abounding...thriving... in the work that God has called for you to do. This is really what it means to be strong. Strength can look like all of the images that I shared a few sentences ago and so much more. But my challenge to you is to draw from the strength of your entire being in order to THRIVE in every area of your life. And if it is in God that we live and move and have our being, in essence, you must learn to draw from the strength that comes from God and manifests in and through you. Harness your strength!
Now, we all have moments of weakness, vulnerability, laziness, BUT do not let these moments and the foolish or not so well thought out actions you took in those moments define you. YOU ARE STRONG. And you are strong, not because of what you look like or what you have been through or where you believe that you are going. You are strong because at all times and in all spaces, God is ordering your steps to keep moving forward and to THRIVE. We can do ALL things, endure ALL things, through Christ who gives us strength! So, harness your strength!
Do not ignore the "super" power that you have access to by the grace of God! Everything that you have been through and will face in the future is in some way working together for your GOOD. There will be GLORY after THIS... in this life and/or in the life to come. Friends, you must not be distracted or paralyzed by the images of strength that are projected all around us. Those images, just as my illustrations above, are not the only images of strength and until you agree that you are already STRONG enough for your journey and that you are getting stronger everyday, in spite of what it might look or feel or sound like, you will always underestimate the "super" power that wants to work through you. So, harness your strength!
[Yes, I am going back to our theme passage... with a small twist lol]
Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.... AND YOU ARE STRONG. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. [Ephesians 5:15-17]
Today, I pray that YOU will be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might! I pray that you will put on the whole armor of God and agree that you are an image of strength. I pray that you will encourage someone else to harness their strength and be a witness of how you have done the same. I pray that when you are overwhelmed by pictures or conversations of what strength looks like around you, I pray that you would not be paralyzed by any of that, but prayerfully reflective on how His strength is made perfect in your weakness. You can do ALL things and endure ALL things through Christ who gives you strength. So, I pray that you would harness your strength and THRIVE! In the Name of the ONE who IS, HAS BEEN, and WILL BE our Strength.... AMEN!
GOD LOVES YOU and I DO TOO!
Blessings, Glory and Sunshine!