Webster defines the word resist as this;
To fight against, to try and stop or prevent, to prevent yourself from doing something that you want to do.
Why in the world do we fight against something we want to do? As I wrote this question I also asked myself why I often resist the very things I pray about, talk about and seek God’s guidance about. When I hear the word resistance my mind goes to working out because in that world it is a good thing; it builds your muscle and makes you stronger. Today I’m not talking about that type of resistance, I’m talking about the kind that is laced with disobedience, fear and thoughts that make your dreams, callings and steps to move forward become like concrete within our hearts.
The antonym for resistance is submission. We don’t like being told what to do or how to do it, but for some reason we allow our busy schedules, chaos, and secret sins to control our every move. Realigning our hearts to God’s heart requires a level of surrender, repentance and submission. There are no formulas or shortcuts to gain God’s grace or direction. It’s simply surrendering all you think should happen in your life to gain God’s intimacy no matter what the outcome is.
In Genesis 32 I love reading the story about Jacob wrestling with God. One line of a verse in particular has rocked my world.
30 So Jacob called the place Peniel,[g] saying, “It is because I saw God face to face, and yet my life was spared.” 31 The sun rose above him as he passed Peniel,[h] and he was limping because of his hip. 32Therefore to this day the Israelites do not eat the tendon attached to the socket of the hip, because the socket of Jacob’s hip was touched near the tendon
HE WAS LIMPING
When we resist something we want there is always an aftermath. Something reminding us of the chaos that took place. Jacob walked away limping and he wrestled for a blessing. When the sun came up he had a reminder from God as well as the Israelites. If I’m honest, my limping doesn’t always come from wrestling with God but instead with the enemy. My limping isn’t a reminder of God’s power, it’s a reminder that I am not good enough. It’s a call for me to stop trying, a call for me to submit to the fears that surround me. I recently started reading an incredible book by Nicki Koziarz, 5 Habits of a Woman Who Doesn't Quit. When we try to accomplish the things in our lives that only God can, that is when quitting becomes an option for us. We must not allow those areas of defeat to dictate our next steps or we will find ourselves limping with regret.
What are you resisting? For me it’s writing. I haven’t blogged since May. Not because I don’t have anything to write about because I have thoughts written in my journal and stirring in my head. I even have time each week carved out to write but my disobedience (resistance) is in the way. I am not having writers block, I am just refusing to write. I asked myself why for about two months now and this morning (only because I promised my life group I would) I pushed myself to write something.
BECAUSE OF HIS HIP
I loved serving in Honduras this summer. I was stirred with a longing to keep going and a deeper desire to spread the name of Jesus. I was walking up (hiking a HUGE mountain in my eyes) a hill to go and share Jesus. The view was overwhelming at the top. Several houses made with mud scattered over the hills surrounding the village. It was breathtakingly beautiful. God knows every girl, boy, man and woman that walks those trails and hills daily and their struggles. As we came down the mountain I lost my footing and slid all the way to the bottom and scratched my leg. It bled and it hurt, but I refused to let a tear fall because I needed to be tough. When we returned to the bottom we cleaned it up. The ointment stung, and I stopped caring about the dirt in it or the blood being contaminated with flies trying to land on it. I was ok just bleeding.
My leg was sore and the scab is just now beginning to heal. I may or may not have a scar on it after it’s all said and done. This will forever remind me of that time I fell down a mountain, but even more it will remind me of the sweet kids I talked to about Jesus and the woman who gave her life to Christ at the top of that mountain. Jacob’s hip was touched by God and the limping reminded him of it. In this season I believe God is touching me through conviction. When we encounter God, change has to follow. He blesses us, stirs us, molds us, pushes us, cleans us and sets us in the direction for others to see Him in us. Just like the Israelites chose to no longer eat the tendon attached to the hip, our surrender and submission can cause those around us to see God clearly. Our stories of redemption highlight God’s power. I have allowed emotions to get the best of me and push me to not write, yet I’m realizing emotions are not reality but triggers to either walk in pride or to walk in God’s perfect way no matter the outcome.
Today I want you to really seek God in the area of resistance. Are you using excuses like I have been? I asked God to touch me and He sent conviction in the form of grace to cover me and give me this word to pass along to you!
Submission is the opposite of resistance. It’s time to stop fighting and start letting God do what He does best, making you look more like Him.
About the Author: Holly is a pastor's wife, mom of two teen girls, church planter, speaker and ministry leader. She and her husband, Richard, founded Revolution Church in North Carolina where she's also the President of Unbound Ministries. Holly also serves CKM as an itinerant speaker.
She is passionate about helping others surrender to God's beautiful grace. She has experience freedom from her own struggles with self-image and desires to help others experience the same freedom in Christ that comes through surrendering to His grace.
She loves to share her story with youth groups and at ladies events. She specializes in encouraging messages about freedom, identity in Christ and embracing God-sized dreams.
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