At the time of this journal entry our life was unravelling. We sold our family home, in hopes of paying off all our business suppliers. We renovated and moved into a condo that we owned, only to have to sell that as well within the coming months, and moved into our RV for the summer while trusting that the Lord would provide a place for us to live come winter.
During all of this, God had placed the word “unencumbered” upon my husbands heart. We had never heard of nor used this word before, so we had to look it up to see what it meant, and one of the definitions definitely got our attention; not impeded, slowed down or retarded; free to move, advance, or go forward.
It was at this point of our lives, as we helplessly watched everything we had and knew implode around us, that God became very very personal to us. He was quite literally the only thing we had left that we could hang onto that could not be taken away from us. I think that the very thing that saved us was that together we made a conscious decision & commitment to trust Gods path for our lives regardless of our understanding or foresight.
We chose to believe that God was allowing us to be “unencumbered”, so that we could serve him better…even if we couldn’t see it at the time.
It was a difficult and painful journey, we watched our debt load soar and our earthly belongings disappear, but even in the midst of it, we had a strong sense of God himself in the midst of it. We have learned that just because we are walking on the path God has for us, the focus is not always clear nor the destination discernible. We could not see how God was answering our prayers from 2018 to prepare us for a time like 2021. Little did we know how rapidly our lives and our world around us, would be changed in the coming three and a half years.
3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ. 4 Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. 5 God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. 6 So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son. 7 He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins. 8 He has showered his kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding.9 God has now revealed to us his mysterious will regarding Christ—which is to fulfill his own good plan. 10 And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth. 11 Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for he chose us in advance, and he makes everything work out according to his plan.12 God’s purpose was that we Jews who were the first to trust in Christ would bring praise and glory to God. 13 And now you Gentiles have also heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you. And when you believed in Christ, he identified you as his own by giving you the Holy Spirit, whom he promised long ago. 14 The Spirit is God’s guarantee that he will give us the inheritance he promised and that he has purchased us to be his own people. He did this so we would praise and glorify him. Ephesians 1: 3-14 NLT
Thank you for Your Word. Thank you that EVERY word of scripture is so personal and spoken to me at just the right time, as my own individual yet collective roadmap for life. Thank you Lord, for helping me to see ALL that You have provided for me. Thank you for allowing me to learn; that unlike this world we live in, we don’t need more… shinier… or faster… to impress You.
When You chose us as Your Children, You gave us everything we need to please You. You invited us to share in Your goodness, and be a witness to Your mighty power, so that others might be drawn to You as well.
Thank you Lord God for the most important gift of all… Your Spirit living in me. Giving me the ability to deny the evil desires of my sinful nature and the strength to resist the enemy and his attempts to distract me from Your perfect will and Your plan for my life.
Help me Lord as I continue strengthening my faith in You. Stay close to me as I stay close to You in Your Word, as well in my time with You in worship and in prayer. Help me Lord, to produce the fruits of Your Spirit within me: to be kind and understanding to others who do NOT know You or Your ways. To have self-control and patience, to truly care and Love others as You have loved us.
Forgive my tendencies of selfishness, focusing inward on self, rather than outward on others. Teach me Lord, I pray, to Love others better and thereby show them the depth of Your Love for them.
Lord God, I desperately want my life to be both useful to You and to have a deeper meaning than what this world offers. I want my life to reflect Jesus and to be able to bring others to know You as well. Forgive me Father for the times I forget the HUGE sacrifice You made to forgive my sins, to cleanse me from the past and all the detestable things I did in Your eyes.
Thank you that You have removed all of that from me and You do NOT remember them or hold them against me any longer. Help me Father to never forget or minimize what You did for me and how great that sacrifice was.
Finally, I want to Thank you Lord for choosing me , for calling me to You. I will never understand why You chose me and adopted me into Your precious family, but I am so very thankful that You did. I choose Lord, to keep my eyes on You. I pray that You would keep my feet firm on Your path for me Father.
Guide me in this day, and every day You have planned for my life Lord, so that in the end, when You return and I stand before You… I will hear those all important words from You, “Well done, good and faithful servant”.
In Jesus name ❤️ Amen.
Wow… all I can say is Wow, God is so good! It is such a powerful thing to sit down and be reminded of Gods faithfulness to His beloved children. As I read through the passage above from Ephesians in light of where we find ourselves in the world today, I am filled with such comfort. But more about that later…
Three and a half years later (August 2021), we are able to see how that message God gave my husband on being “unencumbered” would become our greatest blessing. If you’ve been tracking with me for awhile, you will know that we took a ministry position 10 hours North of our home to serve people that lost so much in a flood.
Three amazing things that have come out of our being “unencumbered” were;
1) we were actually able to pick up and relocate, after only 72 hours to make a decision.
2) we had empathy for the material losses these folks were feeling, as we too had to go through and grieve those losses as well the prior two years. As well as the most important of all…
3) we knew the Faithfulness of our God to deliver us through the storm with both a Hope and a Future, if this was true for us it would also be true for others that were placing their trust in Him.
When we first arrived, the chaos, fear and confusion of the C19 Pandemic was travelling around our world. The fear in the high density cities was palatable, the news took that fear to new heights ,and out of fear and government orders people isolated themselves from the world around them.
When we were first asked to come North our first thoughts were not, “Yeah God that’s awesome”. In fact, they were quite the opposite as “our” plans had us moving to warmer climates and water in the West… North didn’t even exist on my roadmap.
But it didn’t take us long to see the blessings we received in trusting Gods path and being obedient to His calling rather than our own. The Northern community that God had called us to live in was a God-fearing and God-trusting community. They believed in the commands to “Love thy neighbour”, and they were a very wise and discerning people, that believed trusting in Gods plan was more important that trusting in the plans of the world around them. We had no idea how blessed we would be to be welcomed into a community like this at a time like this.
There are many more stories to share, but those will be for another time… suffice it to say, God is good all the time, even when its painful. In our pain, we chose to seek His face and pray BIG prayers… prayers that He would use us, inspire of our failures and human condition. Prayers that Mike and I could serve Him together in Ministry. God has not only heard those prayers but answered them in abundance… Thank You Father.
I have so many favourite Bible passages, some stay in the forefront of my mind for a season and then recess back only to be brought forward with a new understanding for our times. The first chapter of the book of Ephesians is one of those passages.
Verses 1-6 are all about God choosing US, His Children to be adopted into His family… the family of God. He did this for HIS pleasure even while knowing our human condition would fail him.
Verses 7-9 are how He redeemed us through Jesus Christ, giving us the greatest gift we could ever receive. and my personal favourite verses for 2021 are smack in the middle of this passage in verse 9-10: here He tells us the “WHY” and the “WHAT” of life.
9 God has now revealed to us his mysterious will regarding Christ—which is to fulfill his own good plan. 10 And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth.
Verses 11-14 tell us the HOW, that He gave us everything we need in and through Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit living in us to navigate the turbulent times we live in.
Folks if this isn’t encouraging in the time we are living in, I don’t know what will be. He is reminding us that His ways are not our ways, but He WILL fulfill the plan He has put into motion. What is that plan? That everything on heaven and earth will come under the authority of Jesus Christ.
Not sure about what you see when you observe the world around you… but I see a world that believes it is under it’s own authority. The world (our educators, scientists, medical specialists and government) has removed Jesus from almost every single aspect of it. The enemy gleefully believes he is winning… but the truth is, It is not so!
We were born at an exact time for a specific purpose that God created us for… at such a time as this!
Jesus came, died & rose again, overcoming death to put God’s plan into action for the world that He had overcome… for such a time as this!
His plan is that finally ALL things on heaven and earth would be put under His authority… friends this is an exciting time to be alive.
Never before in History has everything been put in place, where all the prophesies that foretold of Jesus return, could be fulfilled.
Let me be clear, I am not saying I know when He will return, as no one but the Father himself knows that… what I’m saying is He WILL return… and the way this world is becoming… It could be SOON.
So what do we do with this knowledge? We live our lives in a way that ALL would see Jesus in us. We live in Trust that HIS roadmap or plan is perfectly running on time. We keep doing life, all the while watching the signs, and studying Gods Word for ourselves.
Friends, did you know that out of ALL 66 books of the Bible, only 1 comes with a specific blessing on reading and learning from it? This is the often ignored Last book of the entire Bible… the book of Revelation… but don’t take it from me, read the promise for yourself…
Blessings, Janet ❤️
Do you know Jesus?. I’d love to tell you about him… just click the clink and it will redirect you to another page.