Saturday, June 11, 2011

Identity

The last few weeks I have been realizing how much I put my identity in what man thinks of me verses who I am in God. A couple weekends ago I was around several people that I struggle standing up to and tend to be manipulated by. I hate conflict and I hate people not liking me or being mad at me. A part of that fear leads me to allow manipulation and not stand up for myself. I want to trust people and think that they would not treat me in a manipulative way. I know I have always struggled with this but I feel like God wants to bring this to the surface of my heart and bring healing and freedom in this area. It is a hard lesson that I think will have to continue for awhile. The same weekend I was struggling through being around difficult people, Darrin spoke on freedom over idols. That message spoke right to me and I felt like "Okay God I get it..." I realized my idols are acceptance, approval, and fear of man. I loved how Darrin brought up that we need to walk in the Spirit and that giving up our idols and following him doesn't happen over night. We need to continually surrender. I want to be so grounded in who I am in Christ. I am his daughter, beloved, vessel, and bond servant. I want to be used by God. I want to be done with living a life in fear of man and what they think of me. This keeps me at times from sharing who I am in Christ, and sharing the gospel and hope to other people, especially people I work with. I want to be a humble but bold vessel for the Lord.

God please help me to continually lay my idols at your feet and surrender myself before you. Abba, give me strength and confidence in You. Help me to learn to hear your voice clearly and to follow you with all that I am :)

Another thing I have noticed lately is how awesome the Old Testament is. Growing up in a Christian environment, I heard the Bible stories many times. I never really dove into and read the Old Testament that much. Recently, I have been reading the stories of Joshua, Gideon, Sampson, Saul, David, Ruth, Esther, and Samuel. Now that I have been reading them I noticed how messed up, raw, and real these people were. I always tended to hold these people on pedestals as the heroes of the Bible. I realize now they are just like us today. They struggle, doubt, disobey, and question but God wanted to use them. He loved them and did not stop pursuing and using them. He even considered David a man after His own heart when we could look at David and consider him a murderer and adulterer. I also loved that even though Gideon need continual reassurance from God, he did step out in obedience and God continued to reveal Himself to him. I love that even though we do stumble and fall, God will continue to pick us up and use us. We need to have hearts of repentance and surrender and to walk in the Spirit. Thank you God for Your forgiveness and faithfulness to us and for using us to further Your kingdom!

6 comments:

  1. This is an awesome post about finding our identity in God. Like that session we had a few weeks ago, who we are is found in Him, and we share in His glory. I also want to be sensitive to His presence, that I will not get confused or doubt in who I am - that who I am is completely dependent on who God is. Reading about David has been a real encouragement to me as well. Even after what David did, his life was reoriented to God, and David never lost focus of who he was. As our Father continues to mold us in our lives, I want to always be firmly rooted in Him, and never lose sight of who He is.

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  2. Honestly I have always loved the Old Testament over the New one. I think personally I can just read and connect with the writing of those books because it is more like a story. It is crazy to think about some of the feats these people have done in the stories of old. I'll be praying for you about your idols as well. That definitely is something that can be hard to work through and I am glad to see that you have recognized it :)

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  3. Ashley! Your beauty radiates from the inside out. I am super annoyed with those who manipulate you. I never wish you to feel doubt or worry about what others say or think of you. BECAUSE YOU ARE AWESOME and a blessing & I really appreciate you. May God reveal His love to you and may you better understand the way that He sees you. Have a great week. Can't wait to see you on Saturday!!!

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  4. i just want you to know that i read this last week and then again a few days ago and then again right now. every time i read it, i start to write a comment but then my mind clouds up for some reason, so just know that i'm praying for you, loving you and caring about you. let's get together and spend some good quality time soon!

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  5. This hits my heart because I feel like so much of the time I do the exact same thing... Although I consider myself somewhat bold, I still have such a problem with acceptance and people pleasing. I want to make everyone happy but on the other side of that, I also become frustrated with others easily and feel taken advantage of or stepped on. I think it is a complete surrender to Christ and letting Him approve of us (which HE DOES!) and not letting man get the best of us. He is all that matters, after all. And when we care more about what God thinks, and we step out in the boldness and strength that He provides, people will notice and give glory to God.

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  6. Hello Ashley

    My name is Raymond. I am a member of the communications team at Port YWAM in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. Our ministry deploys ships to reach isolated people in the Pacific Islands with the Gospel and medical aid.

    I am seeking people to staff our medical office. I saw that you have a nursing degree and have completed a DTS. We need someone with your training to help increase the capacity of our medical outreaches.

    We need people to help recruit medical volunteers and oversee their application processes to serve aboard our ship, the m/v PACIFIC LINK. We are doing medical outreaches aboard the ship in Papua New Guinea. We need to reach new short-term medical recruits and help coordinate their stay on the ship and we believe medical professionals like yourself could have a great deal of influence on people's decision to go. We would also ask that you go on one outreach every year for one or two months to bless the people with your medical skills.

    If you were interested in joining full-time as YWAM staff and moving to Kona, this is a volunteer position and you would need to raise your own financial support. Living expenses at Port YWAM are very cheap by Hawaii standards. Staff pay $400 per month to live on our campus, which includes breakfast and lunch. A plate of food at dinner is $2. The fees aboard the PACIFIC LINK are $400, including all meals.

    If you have further questions, call 1 (808) 757-9150 or email placement@ywamships.net. Below, I have attached a volunteer application along with a link to tell you more about our ministry and the Kona location. Please pray about this opportunity.

    VOLUNTEER APPLICATION LINK
    https://ywamshipskona.formstack.com/forms/staffvolunteerapplication

    OVERVIEW OF PORT YWAM KONA
    http://ywamships.net/port-ywam/


    God bless you,

    RAYMOND BILLY
    Communications Department
    YWAM Ships Kona
    e: raymond.billy@ywamships.net
    p: 1.808.757.9150

    SAIL . STUDY . SERVE
    www.ywamships.net

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