Christine Duncan

Precepts & Life Preservers

Tag: winning

5 Promises For Your Battle

5 Promises For Your Battle/ preceptsandlifepreservers.com

I bet we could use some good news right about now.

Need a little relief.

Ready to make camp somewhere far from the battle grounds of life.

What if I told you that we have more than just deliverance from whatever battle we’re in right now, but that we have freedom that comes from someone taking the champion title for us years ago.

That there’s a powerful difference between the two.

And that we just need to believe it and live it.

When I heard speaker and writer Christine Caine preach that very thing at Passion 2016 a few months ago, it was like a huge curtain of deceit had been pulled away. The enemy would love us to think in terms of deliverance from this one battle we’re in, in the moment… and settling or wishing for immediate deliverance, instead of realizing the full potential of the freedom already given us.

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When Things Hit Close To Home

I sit in my writing nook and my mind is filled with all the things that seem to be hitting a little too close to home today, not to mention the last couple of weeks, even months.

We gathered around the t.v once more and felt shock and took note and gasped prayers and felt speechless and looked at each other. An unwanted routine lately.

And the temptation is to let it all settle on my heart and my mind, and without thinking, allow tremors of fear and ripples of heartsickness seep into my being. Those things will always find a reason to try to lurk there anyway.

But the longer I sit here, with tragedy and drama and panic so close to home, the more I am certain that to let those things take up residence is to let those things win.

And doesn’t that apply to anything hard or tragic? It doesn’t have to be radicals on Parliament Hill. It can be our cancer battles. It can be the ruins of our reputations at work. It can be the hurt-filled separation. The forever-long custody battle. The chaos of Superstorms. Trauma still awake in our hearts from our past.
Any awful thing.

And in my heart, while I type this out with shaky hands, I make a firm decision. That despite what evil thinks it has, I ultimately get to choose what it will do to me. To us.

So it cannot take root where Hope dwells, where Faith gleams in its tiny mustard seed mold, where Right is threaded into our very fabric, where Light casts its net and sends shadows away.

And the only shadow I’ll accept is the gentle shadow of His presence, where nothing is so big or scary that we can’t find assurance and peace. Where He asks me daily, “Will you trust me still?” and knowing the story He’s written me into already, and having already learned He Is Answer Enough, I always declare “yes”.

A hard yes. Hard because we want Him to sweep in and with arm outstretched clear the surface completely. Zap every enemy. Stomp every obstacle. Clear up the disease. Look like the hero we think we deserve.

The way they thought He would over 2000 years ago.

But Hope, and Faith, and Right, and Light aren’t for magic wands. And His mandate has never wavered. And like 2000 years ago, He’s still all about the heart of the matter.

And when the heart of the matter is where He resides, nothing else can persevere. Nothing.

We turn the t.v off, gather around the table, eating stew and being thankful we’re just here. Despite the hits the world keeps taking, there’s a kind of reverent solace in tidying kitchens and working in garages and writing tomorrows blogs.

A solace and a deciding of what wins. Of who wins.

And it’d be silly to deny it. I will worry, I will flinch, I will weep, I will shudder.

BUT.

I will choose not to own it, or be owned by it.

For I already belong to the Great Overcomer, the Psalm 27:1 God.

The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? ”

That is what’s mine. And that’s a lot to have at the end of the day, as I sit here and type.

I don’t know how many more things will hit close to home this week, this month, this year, this decade.

But those things can’t win.

Not when we keep Him closer still.

Not when He keeps us close to Home.

One Thing

If I could tell you one thing today, what would it be?

The weekend is coming and it’s been a week with some ups and some downs and we want to leave it on a good note, and so what could I say for today that might do that?

Here’s what initially comes to mind….

Don’t compare your battles to someone elses.

Oh, if you’re anything like me, you’ve maybe even done that already today. And when you do, one of two things happens.

It Becomes A Competition

Yep, it can become a game. Who has the biggest problems today. Who has worried the most, who lost sleep over it, who stopped eating the longest, no one has gone through the pain I’ve gone through. ¬†Our mantra for life becomes, “You think THAT’S bad, wait till you hear THIS!”
And pretty soon you’ve convinced yourself that no one understands, and now you can honestly say you’re all alone, and your pit you’ve dug for yourself is so deep you will never see the light of day again.

Well congrats. You’ve become the James Cameron of the Titanic of issues. You can declare yourself “king of the world!”

And we all know how THAT story ended.

I highly doubt we want that. Let’s look at the next option.

You Conclude Your Trouble Doesn’t Count

This was my approach for the longest time. It sounds like this,
“Lord, it’s been hard not functioning well for days, and all, and feel like the lowness will never end but what is my struggle to leave the house today compared to all the war-torn countries?”
Or it sounds like this, “Father, the depression taunts me all day today, and it makes me want to cry… but that lady on-line today who just lost her job, that’s a REAL problem, and I guess I’ll just hope for the best, since now I remember what a REAL problem looks like…”

Whew! Now we’ve got our perspectives right. If before, our hardships were Oscar worthy, NOW they’re the B roll. We’re the cuts on the editing room floor, we’re the fluff that just takes up valuable time and space. We’re not even worthy to line the director’s trash can with.

I could go on and on. If you look close enough and long enough, you’ll always find someone with hardships greater than yours. So we stop mentioning our own legitimate battles, we ignore when we ourselves need help, and we talk ourselves into being totally unimportant.

It’s often one extreme or another.

So what do I want to leave you with today? Two simple words.

You. Matter.

It’s true. The complex things about you and the simple things about you. The big achievements and the small steps. The huge hurdles and the most delicate worries. The battles won, the battles lost, the battles lived right now. Your head. Your heart. Your soul.

Your life.

You matter. That’s all you need to remember today. Write it on a dozen sticky notes and place them up around the house wherever you’ll see them. Tweet it, post it, text it, shout it. You matter!

The Bible says you matter to the Creator of the Universe and the Father of all Life. Look closely through scripture and you’ll see that He knit you together, He knows every hair on your head, He sees our comings and goings, we matter more than the sparrows He provides for, He takes us as His heirs, He calls us by name, and He never leaves us or forsakes us, despite what the world would have you believe.

We matter. Two words that speak something magnificent to our souls. Two words that can soothe, and comfort, and delight. Two words that will boost, and enlighten, and encourage.

YOU AND I MATTER.

That’s the one thing I can leave you with this week.

The best thing.

Never let anyone tell you different, okay? Good.

image by c.duncan

image by c.duncan

P.S.
If you had the chance to tell people just one thing, what would it be? I’d love for you to leave it in the comments below…

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