Tag Archive | Fear

Converging Pathways

 

I heard the song, “Tell Your Heart to Beat Again,” on the morning drive. I had to work really hard to keep my eyes clear (from tears) and focused on the road.

This song is EXACTLY where I am. This is why I have to trust God to help me write. I can’t do it alone. As confusing as my story has been, it’s starting to make more sense.

I’m not alone in the struggles I’ve faced (though the enemy would like us – YOU and I – to THINK so.)

It’s time to step into the Light of Grace. I’ve followed God’s Light it for too long and not recognized I need to claim it; it’s time to GRAB onto the hand God is holding out for me AND hold it.

Each stanza in the lyrics of this song take me to a specific time and place in my past.

A place where God was guiding my hand and leading me toward the future- toward today.

Sometimes God walks us through situations that we will only understand in hindsight.

God is amazing. He has provided me with what seems like extraordinary experiences that allowed the healing process to begin. This is a process that has happened, without my actually knowing it.

That is Grace.

But the real power of God’s Mercy is my writing about it.

God used Jesus as his divine tool to fix a broken world… But, just like Jesus sweat tears (as of blood) in Gethsemane I too have been reluctant and fighting my purpose. Without putting in my own sweat equity, the results of my healing will be limited.

It is on this pathway that He will do something far beyond healing the scrapes and bruises that have shaped ME.

He wants to use these battle scars to help others to believe: He is the Great Healer, Physician and Counselor.

So, this is a small initial Thank you to all who have ever encouraged the “Writer” in me. As Mikayla said, (the day this blogging process started): God is into Restoration and Redemption. He IS Faithful.

Tell Your Heart to Beat Again – Danny Gokey

 

With God,

Everything is possible.

With God,

Everything Matters.

 

Blessings to All!

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Writing for the Right Reasons

When was the last time you looked yourself square in the mirror and thought about the truth?

What if the truth is a double edge sword?

What if the truth would set you Free, but Fear holds you back?

It’s very easy in this fast paced, high technology world for the majority to lean towards finding the easiest path…whether or not it’s the right direction. With plentiful access to

Fast cars

Fast computers

Fast Food at the same place you find

Faster internet connections

Fast, Fast, Fast: the only words that seem to count anymore

Fast, Faster and Fastest…doesn’t always get the job done, thoroughly or the right way. Does anyone reading this recall the childhood tale “The Tortoise and the Hare?” But I digress….

A Conference & A Critique

A few years back when I was still participating in a local writers group, I decided to sign up to participate in a regional writer’s conference. I figured it would be good practice before going to a National Conference.

Part of our registration included having a sample of our work critiqued by a published author.

I spent weeks working on a manuscript I’d started. Weeks was all I had left. I think I might still have it buried under a pile of papers but I almost hope I never set eyes on it again.

When I sat down that day to receive my critique, it was nearly one of the worst days of my life. The first words out of my reviewers mouth were: “I don’t know where to start.” The second set were “I hated it. The character, the personalities, all of it.”

Though I hadn’t “tuned out” to their review after those two sentences, I believe I’d entered a state of shock. My head spun, I felt dizzy. I had no appetite even as I sat down to lunch after.

I remember mentioning to my fellow writer friends that my writing career was already over, and I hadn’t even made it to the starting gate yet. I remember all 3 (or 4) of the ladies begging me not to give up. Not to give in. That I could make it past this set back. And one bad review does not a writer make.

It’s been at least 3, but maybe 4 years since that happened. But what I’m realizing is that while I had attempted to write romance and adventure…I was barking up the wrong tree.

I’ve heard many times I should write Dystopian or Post Apocalyptic or some kind of fiction that deals with chaos. The reading public is gobbling that up right now.

Set-Apart

What I’ve ignored up to now are my own strengths. Thinking that I should write what will sell. Thinking I should write what people want to read. Problem is, if God made each of us unique and I try to mold my abilities around someone else’s success or around “what’s hot”– what does that say about me? What does that say about my unique, God given gifts. Worse, with all the life experiences He has provided – if I don’t write about those, who benefits?

We are surrounded by darkness. But God put his people here to help keep his light shining.

I was first introduced to “darkness” when I was about 6 years old, though I didn’t realize it at the time. The first time I vividly remember “darkness,” I was 15. Years later I tried to talk about it and write about it but unlike many topics today, the topics I was ready to discuss were hushed and taboo.

I bring writing up today because I am especially fond of reading books and movies. I’ve read a couple of Harry Potter (seen all the movies), read the Hunger Games trilogy (seen movies). I just finished reading Twilight (today, in fact)  and part of Breaking Dawn (seen all the movies), Divergent Series (seen movies).

Each of those characters was unique but something was missing for me. I don’t know what it was. I’m still figuring that out. Writing is a very difficult process. Each of us brings our own skill set. Each main character is unique and had to come from somewhere within the authors creative force…I’ve liked all the books I’ve read, in one way or another.

That being said, I don’t want to write just to fill a niche space. I want to write out of passion for my topic or from first hand experience. Lots of people are scared of the dark. Scared of the skeletons in their closet because it’s hard to recognize when you’re in the trenches that exposing Fears and cleaning out the closets actually creates light, freedom and peace.

God whispered to me not long ago that he would heal me, but only IF and When I was ready to let him work with me here on the blog.

So be it…Writing is a process. Finding peace is a process. Show me the way, Lord. And so the journey begins anew.

Thanks for listening,

-Kenzel

Maybe We’re Afraid?

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Are we afraid to escape the fears that bind us?

Or

Are we afraid to find freedom and truly live?

 

 

We weren’t given life to hide in the shadows or darkness

What is your passion? What drives you? Motivates you?

 

If you don’t know, ASK the one person who knows you…

better than you know yourself:

 

GOD – JESUS – HOLY SPIRIT

 

 

 

Take his hand. Trust H-I-M.

You have NOTHING to lose.

He didn’t create you to live in fear.

He’s given you a voice.

He’s given you gifts.                      

Gifts that are WASTED if not USED!

Be afraid of NOT KNOWING what your GIFTS are –

 

ASK God what your GIFTS are and

to show YOU how to use them.

 

Psalm 34:4

“I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me, freeing me from all my fears.”

 

Be Blessed and Encouraged tonight…

Seek Him and F-I-N-D Rest,

-Kenzel

My “Pep Talk”

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How about OUR Pep Talk: Come along for the ride!

I am flat out exhausted. Frustrated. But, I refused to be discouraged. (As a child of God, discouragement is not a virtue)

I was recently (officially) diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis – Hypothyroidism. I’ve known I’ve had it the last 6 months, so how it only became official – that’s beyond me. I digress.

I am so wiped out right now. I am ready to nap.

I try to nap, only to realize, that’s not going to happen.

Instead, I sit down to work on the last of my Embroidery projects from Christmas (yes, I am sending them out late. Remember, Christmas is something we ought to live out EVERY-day, right?)

But as I sit down and start up my machine, I hear it. God’s whisper: ‘write”

When God whispers, it’s like a vintage E.F. Hutton commercial from the 70’s/80’s:

When HE talks, YOU LISTEN!

So, here I go:

I had a blog post I wanted to write yesterday and never got to it. So, not unlike my Christmas gifts I will “play” catch-up now.

I was guided to reading 3 bible verse passages:

Romans 8:31

Psalms 46:1-3

Luke 1:37

Luke 1:37 is the verse that I want to remain with me for the rest of this year.

I NEVER want to forget it.

“For nothing is impossible with God.”

Six simple words. Yet such profound meaning.

I struggle to write this blog. I can sit here for hours and fumble around with it.

I’ve been studying the art of blogging. One of the guidelines in this “sphere” of influence is to blog regularly; build your platform, build your audience.

But I have tried that. I have tried posting everyday, every other day, from weekly, to twice a month. I even took an unintentional hiatus of nearly two months to search for answers. Only to find out one simple TRUTH

God’s TIMING – Trumps ALL

It’s all about God: my existence

It’s all about God: He directed me to start this blog.

It’s all about God: My tender heart (the one he gave me to share)

Writing isn’t for the faint of heart; yet, it remains one of the desires of my heart. I feared recently that this dream might be over. Yet, God keeps calling to me to write. No matter what I do, he keeps fertilizing and nurturing it. What gives?

Well, what God is teaching me is that to write well you have to dig deep. What does that mean?

A fellow author/friend told me this time last year, “Let it flow. Let yourself bleed on paper.”

I still get chills when I reflect on them. I am tearing up just thinking of the implications.

Anyone can write a book. A fair number of people have tried. But the essence of writing doesn’t come in just hitting the publishing button or in submitting a book for digital upload.

I am learning that his encouragement was inspired by God. But for me the meaning is most profound in reverse order.

If I want to be a “stellar” author (maybe not best-selling) but worth remembering. I am going to have to (figuratively) allow myself to open deep wounds, and expose my scars for what they are: #Damage.

My damage doesn’t have to end with me. That wasn’t what God intended. He brought me here for a reason, His purpose.

I already started this writing project. It is bar none the most challenging work I’ve ever done.

As I have begun to look back “on paper,” I see that I have started the process of bleeding on paper. It’s not pretty. It is tough, it’s gritty. But it has been F-R-E-E-I-N-G.

I never looked at the gift God gave me to write as a Spiritual Gift, until recently.

I can’t let the writing flow  –  until I TRUST God enough to help me heal in the first place.

And I have to believe, that every experience I have gone through was much more than just about “getting by.”

Our Spiritual Gifts are not to be wasted. If Christ died on the cross for me, it wasn’t a waste.

I’ve been much like Jonah though. Hearing God and running:

Running from who He designed me to be.

God was ready to equip Jonah for his purpose.

And Jonah responded in fear.

Jonah 1:3  King James Version (KJV)

But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.

God never intended us to live in fear.

I guess I need to learn to repeat, “For nothing is impossible with God,” every hour because God has already won the war. I am giving the enemy a toe hold by my thinking otherwise.

The enemy is scared stiff of my figuring out the Power I have by speaking in the name of Jesus.

I suppose it’s about time I release the chains that bind me and reach for freedom, because I am ready for Joy!

I LOVE this song! I can’t help but toe tap along with it. (occasionally, I sing along too, but that might be TMI)

#NoFear #NoRegrets #ChildoftheKING  #Amen!

May your cup overflow with Blessings,

-Kenzel

Timeliness

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My last post was 10 days ago. I feel really “blog parched.”

I was on assignment. I wrote. Tough writing.

I faced my worst fears from the past (at least some of them.)

I promise you, it wasn’t pretty.

That being said, Nanowrimo ended today. The goal was to write 50 thousand words in 30 days.

I fell short of 20k, by 3 words.

F-A-I-L-U-R-E

But then I went to Church today. And I learned about someone I’d never heard of. Mephiboseth.

And I cried.

I am Mephiboseth. Maybe you are, too? Maybe we all are!

The more I read the word, the more I identify with so many of these legendary people.

These people weren’t so different that you or me.

And here we can read about them.

Learn about them, study them and understand what we should be doing!

They had fears. They had joys. They loved and they mourned.

What they didn’t have, they didn’t necessarily need.

But what God wanted them to have, He gave them and gave them plenty!

KNOW This

God is Good. He is my provider. He is my ROCK.

I probably could feel crushed by not having completed the 50k word WORLDLY Nano goal.

But, I won’t. Because I know God’s not done yet.

He’s watched me grow the last 3 weeks. He’s dried tears. He’s typed words for me when I knew I couldn’t

Maybe His plan wasn’t for me to finish, because it’s not my time to be there yet.

I’ve come to realize we learn the most when we are still, and yet remain focused on Him.

His message to me over the last few weeks was that I needed to start healing; it’s imperative.

So, the lesson I learned this month is summed up well by this inspirational meme:

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I am on the road to becoming just who God wants me to be. That is the only strength I need.

Maybe His message to me, to us, is that even if change is scary it’s important. We don’t grow unless we do.

Sometimes we have to #Shake things up a bit to discover who we are!

May you be Blessed this week and feel God’s love surround you!

-Kenzel

 

A View of Hell

 

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Hello Friends,

I ran across a video testimony yesterday, that really struck me.

I am posting it here this morning, but only after I have had time to pray and consider it’s implications.

The subject of this video is suicide. I have written about this before.

Click this hyperlink to read, Suicide: The Big Lie.

I do not take the subject lightly and I encourage you to read the above post I wrote earlier this year, if you feel so inclined.

The following video is a woman’s testimony of how the enemy works so hard to deceive us. She provides a description of what Hell is like, also Heaven. I am sharing because her description of Hell is INTENSE.

Most people want to believe in Heaven. They at least want to believe there is something better than “this” waiting for them after. Unfortunately, there are too many more people who don’t want to worry about Heaven or Hell. They prefer to put off talking or thinking about it, just like Death and Taxes.

And while some may hope to end up there when our purpose here is accomplished…we really and TRULY do not want to end up in Hell. Whatever you might think about the “cards you’ve been dealt” on Earth…Hell is not something to mess with; even jokingly. Do not just hope you are Heaven-bound, set yourself up for success.

Make sure you HAVE your ONE WAY ticket ready…..

This interview runs 6:30.

As controversial as it may seem to post,

I WANT to focus on it for its encouragement.

We need to see this as a warning NOT to mess around with our destiny.

View of Hell

There is a Heaven and a Hell.  Suicide does not lead to PEACE or Heaven…..

God LOVES YOU. Find HIM, Love HIM BACK!

Find your purposeGet RIGHT with God

And Take A Stand!

Halloween: Lighting up the Night

Halloween

Alabama Sunrise

My carnal nature wants to stay inside my house tonight, turn the lights out and forget about

“All Hallows Eve.”

There were a number of years I decided not to be home to pass out candy.

Instead I went out to dinner.

There were also many years that I did the reverse.

I’ve had to do a lot of soul searching the last few weeks about tonight.

But it was while at Church last Sunday that the decision was effectively made.

God and His Holy Spirit spoke to my heart, mind and soul.

And this is WHY:

The Code: What Matters Most

 

The Code is the set of values held by LifeChurch.tv.

The Code is different than the Church’s statement of faith—which has more to do with focus and perspective.

As the church has grown and changed over the years, we realized that God had given us certain strengths and governing principles that we really felt passionate about. So, we set out to put words to those passions and complied our list of core values. It was prayerfully created, intensely weighed, checked, and double checked before it became just the right set of guiding principles for our ministry.

Now, it helps shape almost everything we do. The Code gives leadership something to look toward, employees something to model, and attendees something to be encouraged by.

 

(Please notice the values I have highlighted in BLUE)

1. We are faith-filled, big thinking, bet-the-farm risk takers.

We’ll never insult God with small thinking and safe living.

2. We are all about the “capital C” Church!

The local church is the hope of the world and we know we can accomplish infinitely more together than apart.

3. We give up things we love for things we love even more.

It’s an honor to Sacrifice for Christ and His church.

4. We wholeheartedly reject the label mega-church.

We are a micro-church with a mega-vision.

5. We will do anything short of sin to reach people who don’t know Christ.

To reach people no one is reaching, we’ll have to do things no one is doing.

6. We will lead the way with irrational generosity.

We truly believe it is more blessed to give than to receive.

7. We will laugh hard, loud, and often.

Nothing is more fun than serving God with people you love!

8. We always bring our best.

Excellence honors God and inspires people.

9. We are spiritual contributors not spiritual consumers.

The church does not exist for us. We are the church and we exist for the world.

10. We will honor Christ and His church with integrity.

If we live with integrity, nothing else matters. If we don’t live with integrity, nothing else matters.

 

If I don’t live with Integrity – Nothing ELSE Matters?!

Yes, I could huddle inside my home and just watch TV.

But I write a blog about “Shining A Light in the Darkness.”

How am I living with Integrity (#10) if I ONLY Shine my Light on this blog?

Yes, I hope I’m making a contribution to God’s Kingdom when I write…but I’m supposed to be the hands and feet of Christ….

There is no other night of the year when I have the chance to REACH OUT without having to go LOOKING for it!

Everyone is handing out Candy. I need to be doing what everyone else is not.

I need to hand out CANDY and INVITE cards (1 Corinthians 12) –

 

All it takes is

ONE CARD,

ONE connection,

one encounter with Christ,

to change someone’s life and destiny #4-EVER!

 

I need to surrender my uneasiness associated with this evening of Spiritual Darkness…

I need to allow God to MAKE this night into something: BIGGER & BETTER than I can SEE.

I need to TRUST. I’ll find out later what kind of footprints I leave behind.

 

More than anything, I want to know that I did what was pleasing to God.

Because I’ve learned that running doesn’t please Him.

 

So, yes. Today I Shine my Light in words.

Tonight, I will Shine my Light in the Darkness…because Light always wins!

#TakingaStand

#LightTRUMPSdark

 

 

Dear God,

Thank you for your Abundant Grace and the Blessings you give so freely. We are FREE because of all you have done! We pray that today and tonight you will Bless those who do not know you and free those (all of us) who are chained in bondage. We don’t have to be consumed by Sin and I ask that on this night The Light of who you are is revealed to ALL that need it.

Protect us and our children, cover us in your mercy. And All God’s Children said, Amen.

Thank you for stopping by…and I wish you an safe and fun-filled evening.

Blessings,

-Kenzel

Inadequate

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I am staring at a blank canvas.

I don’t know what to do with it.

This is part of the reason why I hadn’t blogged the last two months.

I thought God wanted me to take time and breathe.

True, I have been adjusting to eating differently, but that wasn’t ALL of it.

I was questioning my worth. My purpose.

Not my life – that’s not something I need to question.

When God asked me to lay down my “book” dream recently it thrust me into an unknown.

A “black hole,” so to speak.

If I’m really a writer, why is He having me blog?

I’m not complaining, I’m confused.

When I started writing as a girl I wrote for fun. For the love of it. Just because.

The worst part of what I thought was my life-long quest and “dream” to write a book, was that I actually  started writing it, twice.

The first story I worked on is sitting in a slush/recycle pile. And that’s where it will stay.

The second story I have mapped out in different word documents in the last year. Each scene is something that I thought God gave me in different visions. Visions I saw repeatedly, and finally wrote them down.

Then He asked my to lay down the dream. So, there’s no point in printing the scenes I have because they are all disjointed. The aren’t organized, they make no sense. Talk about discombobulated….

I feel like my brain has gone into a time warp status and I am caught in a black hole of thoughts.

There are a laundry list of things I can and should write about. Things that aren’t being addressed in the news. Things that have heightened my sense about where the world is headed and what we need to understand.

I don’t begrudge God about asking me to lay down “my dream” of writing a book. I know HE knows what I’m feeling. What I guess I’ve come to realize is THE book I had on my heart to write was filled with the wrong motivations:

The first book was filled with selfishness. Deep down, I knew I wasn’t in line with God’s Will. I was free to write it and do so in “fun” – but it would never reach the eyes of anyone beyond my own computer screen.

Invisible Nudges

A friend (and you know who you are) told me to start this blog. She also told me that when I get “raw” and “real” in my writing it is really powerful stuff. The problem is getting raw and real is draining.

But two things have happened this week to make me realize God is getting me ready to write what I’ve desperately tried to keep hidden.

I went to a Young Living Essential Oils meeting. At the meeting I took a Zyto scan. It was interesting, not too surprising but certainly a wake-up confirmation. My scan indicated that I had two zones out of “sync” both related to emotions and feelings. No surprise there.

The reality is I am facing a huge battle of spiritual warfare. I am being kept hostage by the enemy. The memories that haunt me are festering. I am a big believer in the concept that the body can heal itself (if given the right platform). Well, I’m starting to see that I am the one in the way. The only way I am going to be able to be emotionally WHOLE ever again is to write it OUT.

I have received feedback several times since I started this blog that I AM A WRITER and I have an amazing gift for writing. I am completely overwhelmed each time I hear that. I almost can’t believe it. The mere compliment brings me to tears. So why does it not spur me on to tackle my own demons?! Simple…again it’s the enemy. He is strangling me with fear of my own shame.

What I realized when I took a Compass Zyto scan this week is that the LONGER I allow pain, the fear, the anger, from manipulation-deceit and betrayal to remain inside – the greater the likelihood it will EAT me ALiVE.

If I don’t let it out and ALLOW God to work through me, the enemy will get what he wants. He will have won. By keeping his lies locked away I give him the advantage. That was never what God intended for me. He intended me to STAND – with HIM. By STAND-ing up and out I WILL be able to have power over Satan. I will be the VICTOR.

 

The title of this blog entry was Inadequate. Why?

Because I have been wanting to write about topics that relate to what’s happening around us and are affecting our everyday lives. Wanting to write about everything from the Blood Moons to the Shemitah. But I am not a Bible scholar. I have no formal education. I am just a mere human being, imperfect, sinful and full of shame. I have hidden myself from the blog-o-sphere lately because I feel inadequate to write.

And THAT is WRONG….

I had forgotten that God directed me to start this; to SHINE HIS LIGHT. Forgotten that HE alone trusts me to follow his directions. Do I feel adequate? Yes. But I needn’t. All I have to do is go back to my little instruction book and pay attention to:

Moses

Noah

Esther

David

Mary

and the big book of players to know WHAT the GREAT I AM expects me to DO.

There is no way I am comparing myself to these heroes/heroine’s of the Bible…but at least I know that as this journey continues I am not alone. Just as they did, I HAVE to TRUST.

I have to believe this is a safe place to write and lay it all out and down. To place it all at the foot of the cross.

I need to be made NEW. I’m tired of the old.

 

 

Father,

I’m scared. Who among us isn’t? Help us to take these fears and surrender them to YOU. The time has come for us to find out who you MADE us to be.

Allow us to find PEACE. I pray that YOU will help me to dig deep from here on out. Help me to release that which binds me and has kept me captive for too long. It’s time to let it go.

Bless me, bless all of us with your Grace, mercy and never ending LoVe.

In Your Name, we pray…Amen.

-Blessings,

Kenzel

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Canoe Part II: With God in the Muck – “In The Center of It”

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“Mike, I dislike muck. I really can’t stand the stuff. It creeps me out.”

(The muck I was talking about was the green, grassy, “stuff” that is commonly found along the edges of a lake or pond.)

Mike was my canoe instructor and while I don’t remember much about his reply, I’m sure it was something along the lines of

“Well, it’s there. It’s kind of hard to avoid”

As much as I wasn’t thrilled to hear it. I knew it was truth. I just had to do my best to avoid it.

 

Later that afternoon

We jumped out of our canoe and waited for the other team to practice their maneuvers. Fortunately the water was warm…so hanging by the canoe (literally, by one arm) was actually really nice. At least, for the first few minutes.

“Mike, were getting close to the edge of the lake.” Mike glanced over briefly and continued with training.

I continued to hold onto the canoe. But 5 minutes (or more) went by and my joints and muscles started getting tired of one position. I decided to try shifting and reposition myself.

The gentle breezes had continued if not picked up and as such had caused the boats to float even closer to the edge; closer to the muck. Except I didn’t know just HOW CLOSE we were.

Instead of just switching arms and maintaining face contact with the canoe. I turned away from it.

I should have maintained boat contact. I should have. I didn’t.

The moment I turned my body and let go of the boat and I became my own floatation device – the gentle breeze swept me “muck-ward.”

I didn’t like that one bit.

I was wearing a “shorty” wetsuit and thought it would be protection enough. Until…

I felt a soft and mushy grass like substance “glide” against the calf muscle on my leg.

THAT WAS IT, that was all it took.

I jerked and gasped and then, I screamed.

“Mushiness” and I don’t mix. My jerk reaction caused me to lose focus from getting AWAY from the muck.

I jerked again out of sheer fear. But the more I reacted the closer I seemed to float “muck-ward”

My gut reaction had told me the jerking motion would set me free. It would help me escape. But as I was kicking and jerking to escape the muck, I sensed double trouble.

In my haste to vacate the grass, reeds and what-not…I felt something I didn’t like against my shoe.  A rope, a net…

My mind reeled as I fought against an invisible something I couldn’t see. The more I kicked, the more my foot got wrapped up in it.

Fear turned to PANIC. I was being “swallowed” by the muck and reeds and rope.

I’ve got to get out of here. I thought to myself. How do I get out of this?

My panic intensified. I could feel the situation worsening.

My muscles contracted. My mind flew in a million directions at the speed of light.

There was something going on behind me with the other boats but I couldn’t make sense of it.

I couldn’t hear much beyond the screaming between my own two ears: only my own thoughts of Panic. Fear. Isolation.

I swam harder and kicked like hell to get away from the net; to get OUT of the muck and mire and my FEAR.

I tilted my head from looking at the edge and the slope and the watery green mushy mess that was just shy of consuming me. I laid my head back – against my life jacket. I positioned my eyes toward the Heavens as if searching the sky, but I couldn’t open them.

My breathing was so shallow.

Breathe” – I heard.

So, I repeated the word:

“Breathe”

I heard myself say the word and continued to repeat it REALLY loud. Over and over again. As I repeated the WORD breathe, I could feel my foot escape the bonds of the netting and the grasses.

My heart raced. I felt it for the first time.

I was disoriented and my head spun as I tried to gaze around me. I looked at the boats and closed my eye.

Exhausted. Exhaustion. Whatever was left of me, I just wanted to float. Float and breathe and find calm.

 

AFTER-math

I swam to the dock ever so slowly, got out and laid down…

  • I couldn’t believe that had just happened.
  • I wasn’t sure WHAT had happened.
  • I spent the rest of the trip and training trying to piece together WHY that had happened?

I am good swimmer. A strong swimmer. How did that happen?

Another reality hit me. I knew that if I hadn’t had my life jacket on me, I would likely have gone under.

The basic water safety rules had kept me alive and safe, but I was dumbfounded by what had transpired. I’d been rendered speechless.

I reflected as the hours passed and got the answers in bits and pieces.

Here was the summary of what God shared with me:

  • You made your fear bigger than ME.
  • I AM (God) bigger than ANY fear.
  • Your fear would have consumed you, I made sure you faced it on MY TERMs.
  • You couldn’t have failed the test because you were wearing a LIFEvest.
    • the physical vest saved your life
    • your spiritual vest was refined during your learning process
  • Your fear was self-imposed and becoming over inflated.
    • it was holding you back
  • This happened to prove I AM with you whenever and wherever. ALWAYS.
    • YOU aren’t alone and NEVER will be.
    • That you can TRUST ME.
    • That I Love YOU
  • And yes, it was MY voice you heard.

 

Follow UP

I have been out on the water since then. I have assisted at an event and am looking forward to doing more.

What I’ve realized is THAT experience was a blessing in disguise.

I still don’t like muck. Yuck, Ick, Blech.

But what I recognize now is that my fear is a tactic of the enemy. See, I like being out on the water. I like canoeing and kayaking a lot. It’s a perfect combination of fresh air, sunshine and exercise to put my soul at ease.

But had I not faced that “trial by fire” under those circumstances, I might not know how to deal with a situation like that in the future. (Not that I want to)

Now, I have an idea of what could happen and I might be able to respond differently. I might be able to build on the lessons of that afternoon.

Training is a beautiful thing. Not only did I go out there and receive my level 1 canoe certification but I learned that GOD is BIG. He NEVER leaves my side.

Most of all our FEARS aren’t bigger than GOD even if they seem bigger to us.

The trick is are we willing to TRUST God enough to allow us “FEAR-growth” moments.

The LIFE we live. The life GOD has given you and I, is just as much about change as it is about blessings.

Do we face change alone and isolated or give GOD a chance to show us that with HIM on our team – ANYthing and EVERYthing is possible (Matthew 19:26)

Don’t let the sun go down on today or face your next trial without having Christ with you to walk you through it.

 

I really love this Chris August song. And I hope you’ll take a moment to listen to it. Cause I was trapped in the center of the MUCK & MIRE: But HE was THERE.

 

When it feels like I’m going crazy,
And it looks like nothing’s changing,
Come sun, come rainy day,
You are still the same…..

 

…..When I rise, when I fall,
You’ll be there through it all
At the start, at the end,
In the center of, the center of it….

 

 

 

 

God NEVER fails. SEEK HIM. FIND HIM. TALK to HIM. HE’s waiting for YOU.

Don’t miss HIS boat.

Blessings,

-Kenzel