Today, I had the privilege of going to the Joint Women’s Leadership Symposium, here on Guam. Let me just say, I went into the conference with a hopeful head on my shoulders, ready to learn and take note of all the ways the speakers, that were chosen to lead us, had overcome obstacles, tackled tough situations and managed the service members and civilians under their command. I left feeling completely empowered, motivated and impressed upon. I was honoured to be taught by some of the most outstanding and successful military officers and leaders in the United States Armed Forces and I did not leave disappointed, by any means. I was completely fulfilled. I was reminded of the scripture that reads, “my cup overflows” as I meditated on the event. I could’t help but pass some of the things that I learned today on to someone!
As I began writing this today, I realized that there are so many different routes I could take that would leave you satisfied, as a reader. But, to be honest, I don’t want, in anyway, to satisfy you. My desire, for you, is to be filled with and satisfied by the Holy Spirit and allow Him to transform your heart, mind, and way. It will always be my prayer that God would only use me as a vessel for His Kingdom and His glory. So with that being said, I believe that the following passage will bless your life, in Jesus Name. Allow the Holy Spirit to speak to you, as He uses me to write to you this day.
My question to you is this: What do you bring to the table? What do you bring to the fight?
It’s an interesting question. It’s close to impossible to answer for yourself. For my fellow believers, it’s so important that you know the answer! One of the speakers today said these words, “program yourself so that someone else doesn’t program you!” She used such passion in her speech while she said these words and the Spirit of the Lord quickened my spirit saying, “Let Me program you!” How powerful! The answer to such a difficult question lies with The Father. He knows you better than you know yourself! By the end of this blog, I hope we can learn just a few of the contributions and attributes, if not all, that we bring to the fight! But more importantly, I want us, together, to go ahead and step right into the fight head on, with courage, knowing that God is in control and will use us in mighty ways according to His calling and purpose for our lives.
Here’s where you must begin. It is absolutely critical that you have a foundation. Not one of us can start building if there is nothing to build on! Let me give you the answer to the test. The foundation is, and always will be, Jesus Christ! The Bible says, “for no one can lay a foundation other than the one that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.” Body of Christ, the foundation has been laid for you! The first step, to a successful life in Christ, is already taken care of for us. I don’t understand why I have ever thought that I needed to do anything other than to build up and grow. Why is it that we, so quickly, forget Jesus in the equation of life? He is the foundation set for us. In the book of Matthew, chapter 7, it is made very clear that if we hear Jesus’ teachings and DO what He says, we will be “like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew, but it did not fall…” Why? “…because it had been founded on the rock.” Jesus is the rock! You cannot build on anything other than the Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
These next few points were all things that were said today that The Holy Spirit really impressed on my heart. I’m going to let God open your eyes to see where you are on track, and where you might be missing the mark. He certainly opened mine today! Five points that I won’t harp on, but definitely want to mention:
- Find your voice and use it
- Don’t box yourself in
- Don’t box God in (as if you were even capable of doing so)
- Figure out what motivates you or what your passions are and use for the Kingdom
- Pay attention to what others bring to the fight! (You aren’t in this fight alone. AMEN)
Once you figure those out, it’s time to grow. Honestly, I think, growth takes place as you are learning more about those things because truthfully, it’s a never ending process. Moving on. Several times, today, I heard the words, “sprout where you have been planted.” All I can say to that is “AMEN!” One of the most motivational and truly mindset altering pieces of wisdom given to me, today, came from the Commanding Officer of Naval Base Guam, Capt. Anderson. He was talking all about opportunity and he said that success and growth come when “opportunity meets preparedness.” Those words set me back for a moment. God was all over that one! I know that He was up there, in Heaven, looking down saying, “Bethany, are ready?” Ministry and the gospel have everything to do with God and nothing to do with you, except for one crucial part. You must be prepared to speak life into people! ALL people! Another speaker stated that “we serve anybody and everybody.” How true is that of the Body of Christ? You are a servant of Father God and He has specifically called you to live a life worthy of the gospel and worthy of ministering that gospel to the world! You’ve got to be reading the Word of God! You have to know what His Word says and apply it to your life. We have to arm ourselves in the Lord so that the Holy Spirit can use us to lift people up and turn their eyes to Jesus. 2 Timothy 3:17 says, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” The word, straight from the heart and lips of Father God, is what equips us to be more than capable to do the work He has called us into. Every difficult situation is covered in His word. Every moment of weakness, each opportunity to witness or speak life into someone, and even challenging moments when you feel led to call someone out on something; it is all in the Word.
Read over Ephesians 6:10-20
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. 14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, 19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.
My final point is this: Jesus MUST be the center of everything you do, and in all that you are. I’ve told many people this and still say the same thing now, “I’m not me without Jesus.” It is my prayer that those words reign true in your life, as well. We can’t do the mission without Him. There is no gospel, no mission without Jesus.
Never forget that YOU have value! More value than you could ever understand. Ephesians 3:20 reads, “Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us.” You are so important to the Kingdom of God. You might not ever grasp how special you are to our Father, but you can’t let that stop you from doing His work. He handmade you and molded you “for such a time as this.”
God has given you the gifts, the tools and the opportunities…