The Lost Year

We may consider 2020 a lost year, but our Lord considers it a time of growth and reclamation. We don’t seek discomfort, pain, or loss, but when it arrives it becomes a learning moment in time.

~ Lisa Blair

Posted on  by Lisa Blair


While skimming through the news the other day, a thought became perfectly clear. God is reversing life as we know it. He is placing first things first. The conglomerates are losing power as the pandemic continues to cleanse life as we know it by fire. There are no stones that will be left unturned. Life as we knew it are gone. 

This is a lost year, and quite often transitions occur in the darkest of moments. Yes, we are losing and lost, personal freedoms, family, homes, jobs, in short, our normal way of life. Nations were insular and citizens and economies differed. Then the pandemic hit everyone and everything in the world. We have become victims of the same sweeping pandemic. We have all been placed in the same or similar circumstances, life is foreign to all people. We are in the midst of a global tectonic shift, physically, economically, and most importantly, spiritually, it is uneasy terrain to navigate, but life goes on.

God, where is this leading?

In the year of lost time, that is – time requiring the least out of us physically and mentally, where should we invest our time? Do we dwell on the problems, or spend time strengthening our relationship with the Lord, and investigating who we really are in Christ? Was our past life (life before COVID) devoid of Christ? Did we spend time with Him or give lip service? Did we share our Christian story with others or keep it the best kept secret? Have we shared Christ with our children and other family members? Did we delve into the Bible and study the Word?

Trisha Bernal wrote, “I have not chosen this path, but for some reason God allowed us to be here.” The point is, we are here. Why, only God knows, but what do with this time? Do we see it through spiritual eyes as a gift, a time for growth, or do we see it through the eyes of disaster? There are stories in the Bible where life changed forever. People were Led or fled from their homes, their farms, the cattle and sheep ranches. They were separated from family and friends; they lost loved ones; and didn’t know where to sleep or acquire food. They were broke and devastated. Many of us find ourselves in the same or similar circumstances brought on COVID19.

This is a time to look at the stories in the Bible, learn how people persevered despite the gravest of circumstances. Did they fall into depression, many did. Did they see the way to milk and honey, no. Did their faith strengthen and ground them, perhaps, at some point most were affected as we are today. Did we choose this path, no. Most of us went to bed one night and awoke in a different, frightening world. A world with an invisible, deadly enemy. The world all but stopped upon its arrival.

The reality is that the world is not and can not go back to the ‘old’ normal. It is forever gone. Lingering in thoughts of yesterday only weakens our prospects for today and tomorrow. An important scripture to post around the house is, “Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own trouble.” Matthew 6:34 NKJV

Holding on to our faith despite what we see with our human eyes is the pivotal change that will impact our future. We can waste this (valuable) time and spend time worrying, or we can trust that God will do what is best for us and praise Him in this time of waiting. Brenda Walsh wrote, “Living in limbo is stressful if you’re not walking with Jesus. Sometimes God allows us to have cloudy vision, where we can’t see where our next step is, in order to bring us to a place where we are totally leaning on Him.”

It is during these times that we must persevere in patience through faith. We have been called to a time such as this. I know we are tempted to grow weary, angry, and desperate. When we reach the point of total loss, cry out to God and tell Him You don’t know which way to turn, and the Lord will respond, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give your rest.” (Matthew 11:28 NIV) our Lord will never leave us or forsake us, “the eyes of the LORD your God are always on it (the land) from the beginning of the year to the end of the year.” (Deuteronomy 11:12 AMP)

Once we reach this place in our walk, we will have tried all the things we know to do to salvage what has been lost, to no, or little avail. We will fall to our knees and surrender to our Lord wholeheartedly. We will become dependent upon Him and He will respond in love, He will restore what we lost, perhaps in a different form and prepare us to walk in His brave new world.

We are told to pray and not be a coward, faint, lose heart, or give up. We must run the race that God has marked out for us. In prayer He will guide us, direct our path, meet our needs, love us and comfort us.

So, back to what do you plan to do during this lost year? It is a year where introspection will not get placed on hold, nor will it get side-streamed. Whether you are sheltered-in-place by yourself, with your spouse or significant other, a pet, or children. God has given you the gift of time. He carved it out of the disaster the pandemic has caused. We can either give up and give in as the evil one strategically manipulated to separate us from everything we have acquired, or we can stand strong in our faith, establish or re-establish our relationship in the one and only God who lived on this earth, took our sin an our burdens, was beat on the Cross, loves us and has countless times before, made a way out of no way, leading us to still waters, and green pastures.

Closing thought – Brenda Walsh wrote, following God’s will usually leads us out of our comfort zone—which teaches us to be totally dependent on Him. Despite how we arrived where we are, we are definitely out of our comfort zone. We may consider 2020 a lost year, but our Lord considers it a time of growth and reclamation. During this time of sequestered life, don’t sit and fret, spend time with the Lord and grow your faith. He will walk all who follow Him into the new tomorrow.

Resources – Trisha Bernal, FaceBook. Miracles for Malachi; Germaine Copeland, Prayers that Avail Much; Brenda Walsh, Strength for Today.

Scriptures – biblegateway.com

Images – Google Images; LAB Photos

Women In The Bible Rock

The women of the Bible are our archetypes. Jesus was theirs, as He is ours today.

~ Lisa Blair

This was written by Wendy Lim-Ferrero, a Bible Study Fellowship leader. She posted this on FB. Worthy of sharing.

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To All Women of Faith in Christ

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Be an Esther, bold and courageous enough to stand for the truth, to voice your opinion and fight for the good of others, even when it means to sacrifice yourself. If God has put you in a position, it is for a purpose. Never be afraid to heed to that inner voice.
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Be a Ruth, loyal in all your relationships, walk the extra mile and don’t quit when things get tough. Someday, you’ll see why it was all worth the effort.
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Be a Lydia, let your homes be open, let your hands be generous, let your hearts be big enough to help anyone in need. Joy is greatest when shared.
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Be a Hannah, never cease to pray. It will never be in vain.
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Be a Mary, humble and submissive. You don’t have to be great for God to use you, you just need to obey.
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Be a Dorcas, use your talents, however small it may seem to bring a smile on someone’s face. You’ll never know how much it can mean to someone.
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Be an Abigail, remember how each decision can turn your life around for good or bad. Be wise.
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Be an Elizabeth, never doubt what God can do. Miracles do happen.
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Be a Mary Magdalene, never let your mistakes and judgments of other people stop you from experiencing true joy in Jesus.
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Be a Rebekah, never forget that true beauty lies within. Draw your man closer to God through your character.
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Be a daughter after Gods likeness;
Be pure hearted;
Allow your inner Beauty to overshadow your outward appearance.
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“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that He might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom He predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom He justified he also glorified.”
Romans 7:28-30

Use Your Words

As we tell children, use your words. Words have creative power. Speak to yourself. Speak to the Lord, and believe what He promises you. Stay in agreement with the Lord, hang all hope on His Word. God will never leave you or forsake you.

I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart.
Jeremiah 1:5, NLT

Be strong. Take courage. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t give them a second thought because God, your God, is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; he won’t leave you.
Deuteronomy 31:6, MSG

It is comforting in knowing that He will never leave us or forsake us. This truth allows us to stay in faith when we are suffering through whatever circumstances are prevalent in our lives. Always focus on the truth – God will bring you out. Through faith, even if we do not see what He is doing, we know that He is working behind the scenes for our good. God orchestrates the outcome long before we are aware of the prevailing circumstances.

Don’t wallow in despair, which is what most of us want to do in times of stress. It is important to continuously stir up our faith, especially when you want to give up. Remember God is always working, especially when we are weary. Faith reinforces our stamina, it girds us up. Jesus carries us when we cannot take another step. This is the time to stay in prayer and use our words to verbally seek our Lord.  Which words you ask? The Word of God, the scriptures in the Bible. God enjoys our relationship with Him. Feel free to speak His words back to Him asking for guidance and deliverance.

Faith is the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not seen.
Hebrews 11:1

Our future is always greater than our expectations

Expect a supportive outcome, it may not be what you expected, but it will be one that moves you forward. Speak to the expectation/outcome, whatever it is. Don’t speak failure or despair. In other words, do not harp on being fired, speak to the next step, a new job or career path. Ask God to show you the way and put you in the right place at the right time. Be open to new adventures. Give God your attention and He will reveal how his promises operate in your life. You ask, when will I see my next step, when will I have a clear vision? You may see it either through revelation before it manifests or after the manifestation when you have the opportunity to look back over the given episode in your life and you are able to say ‘ah-ha’, that is where God moved in my life.

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In review, this post began with Romans 8:18 and covered the entire chapter. Take time to read Romans 8 after completing this post and reviewing the summary below. Ask God to show you how He supported you in your life to this point, how opportunities arose, health was reclaimed, spiritual maturity developed over time, how your family prospered, and your career took a turn that led to a success that you could not imagine.

The entire chapter directs us to keep our mind centered on the things of the Lord. These points will help you on your path

 

  • The Holy Spirit resides in us and therefore lives in us.
  • It highlights that we have been adopted into God’s family, which leads us to spiritual maturity, and is our inheritance.
  • We are no longer orphans, God adopted us into His family.
  • Belonging to God’s family means we should no longer be frustrated when suffering through our own experiences, or by what we see in the world. because we have hope, which is part of our inheritance.
  • God’s purpose is for us to succeed here on earth. He gave us the Holy Spirit who intercedes for us and guides us as we pray, and He ensures that life’s circumstances work out for our good, no matter how painful they may be.
  • God always sees us through the dark days.
  • God’s love is real and manifests in us in the form of the Holy Spirit, who is the very life of Jesus Christ.
  • Nothing can separate us from God’s love.

USE YOUR WORDS

Tell yourself, I have God’s favor, nothing can hold me back. I am standing fast to my faith, even in the darkest hour. My God is still in control. If God is for me, then who or what can be against me and succeed? My God is a good and faithful God. His glory in my life is His promise to me.

Images – YouVersion, Bible.com; LAB Photography

Scriptures – Biblegateway.com

Resources – Hayford’s Bible Handbook. Jack Hayford, General Editor, 1995. Nelson’s Quick Chapter-by-Chapter Reference: Bible Commentary. Warren Wiersbe,1991.

Thank you for spending time on my sites, if you like what you are reading, follow me, lisasdailyinspirations.wordpress.com and receive the daily inspirations in your inbox, or visit my other site, youngchristianwarriors.com and subscribe.

Renewable Spirit

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God’s Promise – I will renew your spirit day by day.

What a blessing, the inward man is renewed daily. Our lives are temporal, but our spirit is eternal. Despite what lies before us, the internal hidden man of the heart, the new man is in a prosperous condition; our souls are in good health; the work of God is comfortably carried on in us; we have sweet and repeated experiences of the love of God; we are growing in grace, and in the knowledge of Christ; and, like the palm tree, the more weight is hung upon it, the more it thrives; and, like the children of Israel in Egypt, the more they were afflicted the more they grew.

Image – YouVersion, Bible.com

Resource – John Gill Bible Exposition, paraphrased, Biblestudytool.com

Thank you for spending time on my sites, if you like what you are reading, follow me, lisasdailyinspirations.wordpress.com and receive the daily inspirations in your inbox, or visit my other site, youngchristianwarriors.com and subscribe.