The Loft is open, come on up!
Graphic by Kerry Messer
Today is POTLUCK day at The Loft. As I prayed over what the Lord would have me share, He took me back to a post that I offered after a speaking engagement last year. It was a time where God put His Holy Highlighter on the issues of obedience and submission. I pray today’s potluck offering blesses you.
In Scripture, God clearly promises blessing to those who obey Him. Do I believe that? You better bet I do, because I watched it happen this past week.
Allow me to give you some background. In the summer I was contacted by the event coordinator for a church in middle Georgia about speaking at their ladies night out event. After getting the go ahead from God to accept the invitation, I said yes and began praying about the topic. This is SOP (standard operating procedure) for me. I always tell event coordinators that God has the final say on my speaking topic. I’m happy to work with their theme and requests, as long as the Lord gives the holy thumbs up to it.
I had never spoken at this church, and desperately wanted to speak on the topic of legacy. It is my signature topic, but God had no interest in my wants this time. After a few weeks of asking Him what the topic would be, He made it plain that it would be obedience and submission. Honestly, if He had written it in the sky, His choice for the topic could not have been any clearer to me.
So, I began preparing the message, and praying like a crazy woman. The focal passage was 1 Samuel 15: 1-23 where King Saul fails to be obedient to God’s command to completely destroy the Amalakites. As a result of his disobedience, Saul loses the kingship of Israel. The key verses for the message were 22 and 23. The more I wrote, the more I knew this would not be your average women’s event topic, and the more I prayed. God had some business to do in hearts, and my heart was on top of the list.
Fast forward to Thursday, November 14th. I was acutely aware that God had major plans for this event. I arrived at the church in Sandersville, Georgia, after having prayed for most of the 3½-hour drive that He would go before me and prepare hearts. I desired souls for the kingdom from this event, and was convinced that God had a mind to make it happen.
Once I had my resource table set up, I sat down and watched the ladies arrive. It was a sold out event. The variety of ladies stunned me. There were teens, 20-somethings, 30-somethings, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80-year-old darlings. I was thrilled, but I was also a bit miffed at God. In fact, I was miffed enough to go into a back room while dinner was going on and ask Him OUTLOUD, “Are you sure I can’t talk about legacy? Why, Lord? These young women need to hear about legacy. I don’t understand.”
I’m sure God was sitting up in heaven, shaking His head and thinking, “Really, Leah? Take off the Mrs. God badge and trust me on this one.”
So, I did. As I stood to speak, I was shaking, which never happens to me. I have spoken publicly for 20 years, so it is as natural as breathing for me. I think I was shaking more in anticipation of what He was up to.
I delivered the message on obedience to His commands, and submission to earthly authorities (er, umm, that would be husbands) that He gave me to over 100 beautiful faces. Part of my closing invitation was to ask the ladies to take sheets of paper that had cows, goats, and sheep on them, (see verse 14 of focal passage) and write any area of disobedience that the Lord had convicted them of that evening. I asked them to bring them forward, lay them on the altar, and ask the Lord to help them turn from their disobedience and walk in obedience to what they knew He was asking. I anticipated a handful of ladies would participate.
What happened next had me in tears on the stage.
God had shown up in unimaginable ways and spoken to the ladies through the message He gave me. Scores of women laid their papers before God signifying their desire to walk in obedience to Him.
In the days since the event, I’ve had text messages and emails relating story after story of how God worked in the hearts of the women.
Remember I said I was convinced God had a mind to bring new souls into His kingdom? FIVE ladies indicated their desire to accept Jesus as their Lord and Best Friend. PRAISE YOU JESUS!! It had nothing to do with me, other than my willingness to be obedient and share the message He desired, rather than the one I desired. I think I was blessed more than anyone at the event.
Did God work in my heart? OH YES, HE DID!! He reminded me that obedience pleases Him more than anything. Even when it doesn’t make sense…..OBEY HIM!
So, friend, are you being obedient to whatever He is asking of you?
Next Week’s Topic: “Blogging” (The floor is open! Some ideas are: Tell us why you started blogging, your blogging goals, needs, how we can help you. Share your favorite blogging tips and tricks. Woo-hoo!)
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