15 years is a long time. A long time to feel aimless, a long time to feel lost.
But that’s exactly what happened to me. I wandered spiritually for so many years, and never thought I would make any progress. I prayed and prayed, but I couldn’t get anywhere. I felt so unfulfilled and frustrated, until one day I got what I had been looking for. I finally reached out in faith, and received my answer.
The emptiness and frustration I felt for so many years is gone, and I’ll never look back.
First, A little background.
I was baptised in the Holy Spirit in 2002, without even realizing fully what it was. I had heard about it, and knew that speaking in tongues was a part of it, but not much beyond that.
I was going to a small family church in Florida at the time, and they had a guest speaker on a particular Sunday. I don’t remember what exactly the message was about, but it had something to do with the Holy Spirit. He asked at the end for anyone to come up that was interested in receiving the baptism of the Holy spirit, and I got up without thinking too much about it.
Little did I know what was about to happen. I went up, and as he prayed he told us (maybe four of us total), to start praying in tongues. I had no idea what to do, so I just started talking, and the words were foreign to me. I had no idea what I was saying, and I didn’t feel anything. But when I walked back to my seat, an older gentleman grabbed my arm, and told me that my life would never be the same. I smiled courteously, and said thanks.
Little did I know how right he was.
Almost immediately I had a supernatural ability to write very clearly about the biblical principles.
I had been studying the Bible and listening to different pastors for a few years at this point, but I never saw things so clearly. It was like every verse I had ever heard was shifted into place, and I could see God in each and every one. For the first time in my life, the Bible actually made sense. It wasn’t confusing anymore, and I understood things I had read a hundred times before like it was the first time.
It was awesome. I felt like I understood things so much better, and the Bible really made sense to me for the first time in my life. I could see connections between passages and how things fit into a bigger picture. It was the thing I had always wanted when I was younger sitting in church wondering what the pastor was talking about.
I loved writing. I did it as often as the spirit of God would show me something, which was quite often. When I first started writing, I used steno pads and I could fill an entire notebook in just a couple weeks. Sometimes it was at church, and sometimes it was while I was doing normal day to day stuff.
Looking back now, it is painfully obvious that this is the gift that God gave me and that it was where my focus should be. But for some reason, I didn’t see it then. It bothered me.
And I was always looking for something else.
I would pray and ask God to show me what my purpose was and how He could use me, but I was always met with a bitter silence. It was bad. I was angry and frustrated. Very frustrated.
Now that I have come full circle and realized that the gift God has given me is the ability and clarity to write, I can see so clearly why I missed it for so long.
It is a simple but powerful lesson that I hope will help you so that maybe you won’t make the same mistakes I did. And as always, the truth came from God’s words.
Be doers of the word, and not hearers only. Otherwise, you are deceiving yourselves. Those who hear but don’t do the word are like those who look at their own face in a mirror. They look at themselves, walk away, and immediately forget what they saw.
So for almost 15 years, that’s where I lived. Hearing the word. Hearing good teaching. And writing, lots and lots of writing. But after I would finish, the notebook would end up in the drawer until the next time.
I was hearing. I was writing. But I wasn’t doing. Meaning I wasn’t doing anything with everything I had been given.
And knowing the nature of God, and His words that command us to give what we have been given, I was the one taking the light I bad been given and putting it under a table. (Actually in a drawer).
Give as freely as you have received!
No one lights a lamp and then hides it or puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where its light can be seen by all who enter the house.
It was obvious to me that I wasn’t doing anything with what I had been given, but there is another dimension to this verse that really put me over the edge and helped me see exactly what I had been doing.
The verse says that the one who doesn’t do the word is like a person who looks at himself in a mirror and when he walks away, forgets what he saw.
So for me, I could look in the mirror of God’s word and see the gift I had been given. But then, as I walked away, and put my notebook away, I would forget what I saw. So I was looking elsewhere for the plan of God, because I was not doing anything with what I knew.
It’s called deception.
I was believing something that wasn’t true. I was believing that my purpose was something other than writing. So I wasn’t looking at it. I was looking elsewhere for something that was right in front of me.
All of the frustration and feeling confused and angry was my fault. I forgot what I had been given the moment I put my pen down.
It came one day while I heard this verse being read in a message. It hit me like a truck.
Those that hear, but don’t do the word (what they hear and know), are deceiving themselves into believing that they don’t know what to do.
In thinking we don’t know what to do, we are always looking outwardly for it, never realizing that the gift we have has been deposited inside us. Meaning we really aren’t looking for it, but have been looking past it.
Once I saw that, I knew it immediately.
When we are shown the truth, but choose not to do it, we open ourselves up to be deceived.
I had been deceiving myself. I convinced myself that I didn’t know what to do. I would say I didn’t know what to do. I would think it, and I believed it year after year. I was genuinely ignorant of it. I truly didn’t see what was right in front of me. I agonized over it constantly. I always felt and knew that I was supposed to do something, but I didn’t see it.
When I really started learning about faith and how to use it, I set out to get the answer once and for all. I prayed and believed according to Mark 11:24 that God would show it to me.
I tell you, you can pray for anything, and if you believe that you’ve received it, it will be yours.
I asked for Him to show me anything I had ignored or not payed attention to. And I asked for forgiveness for not seeing and valuing what He had already shown me.
Then a few days later, while I was thinking about it and fully expecting that I would get it, it came to me. I remember exactly what I was doing and even where I was standing. I’ll never forget it. The witness was unmistakable. When I thought about writing, I knew without a doubt that it was right.
It was like someone shined a spotlight on my mind and I saw what I had been looking for for a very long time. I got my answer. God was faithful to do what he said. I prayed and believed that I had received, and a few days later, I did receive. I was so excited, but also so heartbroken and angry that I had missed it all these years.
None of that mattered now. I knew. Finally, after all these years and through all the frustration and feeling lost, I finally had it.
I thanked God for days afterwards, and my faith was strengthened. I had put faith to work, and it did work.
Someone will say, you have faith, I have actions: prove to me your faith apart from corresponding actions and I will prove mine to you by my actions.
After that, I prayed for specific direction. I got out all those old notebooks and also started to organize the 3+ years of notes I had taken and stored in the notepad app on my phone.
I laid it all out and saw my purpose right in front of me. I knew I had lots and lots of work to do.
Over the next week’s and months, I had a good leading and settled on what to do.
I decided to catalog my notes and started typing them out. It became even more clear that these were blog posts. The length, format and content fit perfectly.
Even before I started the site, I had more than 75 articles already written.
I knew I had a lot of work to do, but for the first time in my life, I wasn’t searching inside. It was such a good feeling to know that I no longer had to search. I had found what I was supposed to do.
And the same way I received the answer to what I was meant to do is the same way I treated every part of the work after that.
I would pray for direction on which articles to start with, what to include and not to include, what the titles should be, and every other thing I would need to really get it going. I believed that I would know the right choice when I saw it, and I did. Every time.
Even the design of the website itself was from a leading of the spirit. Not like I was hearing voices, but the still small voice inside every believer that tells you what right. That’s Him. That’s what you need to follow.
He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth.
He leads humble people to do what is right, and he teaches them his way.
I am so grateful that struggle is over. I had experienced Matthew 11:28 and 30.
Come to me, all of you who are struggling hard and carrying heavy loads, and I will give you rest…My yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
Even now, with all of the work to be done and the hours and hours of writing and editing and website design, I don’t feel burdened. I feel excitement because I know it is the load that Jesus has given me to replace that overbearing and heavy load I carried for so long.