This weekend I sat under anointed men of God who spoke powerful and timely words to listening ears. One of those words was that the Holy Spirit gives us the power to fulfill our mission in life.
That is a powerful truth! So often, I find my heart struggling with fear and anxiety about achieving my purpose, or not knowing what the next steps should be. And I see and speak with enough women on a daily basis to know that I am not the only one who struggles with this fear. To hear that the Holy Spirit – Who has been given to me, Who dwells with me every day – knows where I am headed, and holds the power to get me there despite my ignorance, was liberating and relieving all at once!
Yet, at the same time my heart was leaping for the joy of this truth, I received a sad revelation: it is not ignorance that keeps us from completing our mission and reaching our destiny, but pain.
As I sat in the room, swelling with hope, I caught – for just a moment – a glimpse into the people’s lives and journeys. And I felt heartache. I felt disappointment. I felt betrayal. I felt intense wrestling with pain that threatened to overwhelm everything about them. So much so, in fact, that purpose was clouded. Mission was a far-reaching reality that was not accessible because of the presence of so much pain. My heart was grieved for their grief. Not just because they were hurting, but because God had allowed me to see that their hurting had kept them from what God had appointed for them.
I reflected back upon my own life, and the lives of those I know personally. And I could see so clearly how pain had often come crashing in on us, derailing purpose and mission. It seems, so often, that pain puts a giant pause on the life we were meant to live, and sometimes we forget to push play again.
I am definitely a believer in making room for grief. I belief that grief is one of God’s gifts to us, allowing space and time to process pain with Him, and to make room for a new revelation of truth and His presence in the midst of difficult times. But I am also a believer in the Holy Spirit, and in His mission to move us ever onward and upward, from faith to faith and from glory to glory. I believe, even in our times of pain and grief, He is present and active, intending to move us not only into, but through the pain and mourning. He is always mindful of the other side, and seeking to propel us closer to our destinies, especially where pain comes with the potential to disrupt and derail.
What about you, Dear Woman of Breakthrough? If you were to stand back today and take a good look at your life, at your journey, where would you be if your pain was removed from the equation? If you could erase, not the wounds, but the fallout of the wounds, from your journey, would you be where you are, or would you be much closer to your destiny?
I believe with all my heart that pain can be a catalyst, thrusting us deeper into the presence and purpose of God. But I also know, from experience, that pain can be a great deterrent, holding us back from the very things God has waiting for us. The difference lies in our ability and willingness to trust Him, and to move with Him. Neither are easy choices to make, especially in the face of pain. But His Word assures us that we have His help:
“For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases Him.” Philippians 2:13 (NLT)
Dear Woman of Breakthrough, are you willing to face your pain with a new determination today – that it will no longer be a weight, holding you back? Instead, are you willing to let it become an instrument in the hands of your God, propelling you forward, into the destiny and purpose God has for you? We can’t always see, on the front end, how God can take painful, devastating things, and cause them to shape and mold and make us ready for His purposes. But His Word promises that He will do just that, if we will only trust and obey in the midst of the pain.
Would you set your heart to not only endure your pain today, but by the power of the Holy Spirit, to see and believe your pain is God’s instrument to somehow make you more like Him? Then you will be able to access the strength He gives to want what He wants, and to trust and obey Him through the refining process He has led you into.
This much I know is true:
He will not cause pain without allowing something new to be born! (Isaiah 66:9, NCV)
So my challenge to you today is this: rejoice in the plans He has and the power He has put within you, and reach for all that He has purposed to be accomplished in and through your pain.
It’s time for your story to change!