Jennifer Kostick– Jennifer has been married for twenty-three years to her high school sweetheart, Paul. She is the mother of three children, Paul IV (22), Samuel (6), and Grace (6). She also has six babies residing in heaven. It is those six tiny souls who have propelled her into women’s ministry. She is a conference speaker and author of the book Nothing to Hold but Hope (one woman's journey through miscarriage, stillbirth, and infertility). Jennifer blogs at www.Jenniferkostick.com and is passionate about encouraging women through a godly message of mercy and hope.
Stillness comes through submission and submission requires trust.
Throughout the years, the word submit has become an ugly word. However, it takes choosing to say, “Okay, God, I give it all to You. Both my failures and victories, I place them in Your hands. Every dream I’ve ever dreamed and every tear I’ve ever shed are Yours. I trust You.”
All too often, I’m aware that the only witness in the room is God. He knows my comings and goings, my rights and wrongs, He sees what no one else can. There isn’t a soul in the world who knows me like He does, and that’s over-the-moon-amazing and forever frustrating all at the same time.
I can hide nothing.
I serve a God who knows me better than I know myself. And, yet, I’ve been born into a life of resistance trying to do things my way.
It took the Israelites having the Ark of the Covenant stolen, and a hard pressed hand in war from the Philistines, before they listened to Samuel and finally put to death their already dead Gods. After they did away with all that threatened their lives and heritage, they went to Samuel and asked him to cry out to the Living God.
Following an offering and faithful pleading from a willing servant, the Israelites finally drove the Philistines back. And because what flesh and blood often sees as dead stones, in actuality, marks living territory, Samuel placed a stone on a very important piece of ground and named it Ebenezer saying, “Thus far the Lord has helped us.”
He helps us.
Wherever you are, you aren’t there alone. Thus far the Lord has helped you and He will never stop helping you. Never.
I know it’s easy to feel alone in the middle of battle. And it’s possible you can’t identify with the Israelites and have, long ago, already submitted and put to death already dead Gods in your life.
Maybe it’s the deep pain of a situation that keeps you from moving and operating in your gifts inside the stillness of God.
You might have deep wounds with blood that refuses to coagulate, but those same deep cuts will be healing to another. Inside the most painful experiences lives hope for another soul and healing for your own.
Over the years, I’ve learned that, sometimes, I need to submit to the ugly of certain circumstances by telling God I’m willing to live in the deep of the pain if it means His will be done.
And, yes, I’m aware that nobody is willing to shout Amen to that.
But here’s the thing: sometimes we must live through the ache of death and sickness and even hurt caused from someone who hasn’t loved us well, in order to be molded into the beautiful creations we were born to be.
Just know this: when it comes to stillness, Thus far the Lord has helped us. We can move within His presence when we allow Him to take the lead.
And because the word of God is living and active, the word helped isn’t intended to stay past tense. He helps us, He’s helping us, He will always help.
When we submit to the will of God we find stillness; we’re able to move in freedom, and we have hope in His rescue.
Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!
(The story of Samuel comes from 1 Samuel chapters six and seven.)
PS: In honor of Write 31 Days I’m having a special giveaway. If you subscribe to my blog via email, Amazon will send you a kindle edition of my book, Nothing to Hold but Hope, as a gift. The offer is good through October 7th 2015.