Last weekend we were in church as Paul and Hannah McClure led us in a worship song they wrote with this amazing chorus:
“Jesus, Jesus, how I trust you
More than anything I’ve heard
Jesus, Jesus, how I trust you
I will take you at your word”
As I sung out the words, I had a few moments of inner dialog…"do I really know that I can take Him at His word?”
Because sometimes it feels like there’s a disconnect between my head and my heart. In those cloudy moments I have to be careful, because I’m susceptible and vulnerable to the thoughts that try to creep. If I’m not careful, I’m only one choice away from agreeing with the fear, doubt, anxiety, and worry that are trying to kick down the door and make their home in my head (kind of like that Mucinex commercial with those nasty phlegmy cartoon creatures that set up their home in a person’s lungs!). The lies are trying to get in, make themselves at home, and jack with our identity and our security in knowing who we are and who’s we are. Voices that try to get us to cower, shrink back, and play small. Voices that try to pull our focus away from what we do have to what we’re lacking. Voices that try to isolate us and then use their uncontested access to reach out and tear down any part of our identity they can get their creepy hands on, always trying to pervert and twist truth.
For example, a week into launching Yes&, and I’m already doubting myself. If I let myself get caught up in the measurements of the world–likes, follows, shares, clicks, page views–I feel like a failure, a futile voice lost in the sea of established voices. Yes, that’s how I feel at this moment, & just because I feel something doesn’t make it true.
At all times, there is a Superior Reality, something that holds MOST TRUE and trumps the laws of the physical and tangible world we see and feel. As a storyteller, I think it’s why our hearts tend to gravitate towards fantastical movies where we can physically see an epic battle between two combatting worlds. Deep down it resonates, because we know –there’s a disconnect between the world we see, interact with, and feel and the way things should be.
Bill Johnson has a great quote, “We will always reflect the nature of the world we are most aware of.” The times when I take the bait and agree with the lies, I immediately begin to reflect (outwardly manifest through action and behavior) the nature of the lies that have taken up residence - despair, hopelessness, anxiety, worry, jealously, self-protection, comparison, offense, loneliness. Really, they are all the fruit of fear. I get depressed, mopey, and lackadaisical. I get short with my husband and snippy with my kids. I get cynical and judgmental and start to take offense at words spoken to me, misconstruing what is being said. I begin to think and assume the worst instead of trusting and believing the best. It really is a downward spiral. A black hole that sucks us in, each lie giving power to another and before we know it, we’re caught up in a cyclical vortex where we feel powerless. But His faithfulness isn’t swayed by the how we feel!
At any given time, we’re only one declaration away from shifting our perspective and our trajectories! I don’t say that as Christian cliché and I’m not simply giving lip service. Believe me, I’ve been over boxed-in Christianity for years, I’m not wasting my time with what sounds good or appears religious, no I say it because it’s true and I’ve experienced His faithfulness even in the pit of despair! No matter our circumstance, our feelings, or our situation, we can take Him at His word. We can declare Truth over ourselves, speak hope into a seemingly hopeless situation, and contend for stability in what feels like shifting ground. As we speak out the truths of the Superior Reality, our gaze travels off ourselves, perspectives change, the chasm narrows, and security and identity are restored. There is power in the words we speak to (and over) ourselves!
In my declaration over my heart, my family, Yes&, LGHtv, and the books I'm trying publish this year, I have made this my background on my laptop:
Trust in the Lord and do good. Then you will live safely in the land and prosper. Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires. Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust him, and he will help you. He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn, and the justice of your cause will shine like the noonday sun. Be still in the presence of the Lord, and wait patiently for him to act. Psalm 37:3-7
I encourage you to go to His Word, let the Spirit speak to you and then speak those words and promises aloud. Maybe you’re asking, “Does it have to be aloud?” The answer is, “Yes!” :) There’s nothing hokey or mystical about it, there’s simply power in verbally expressing something aloud. We don’t walk around simply thinking how much we love our spouse, our kids, or our family, no, we actually speak it aloud. We speak it so they hear it, and once they hear it, they begin to believe it, and ultimately they end up knowing they are secure in their belonging and cherishment as our beloveds. It’s the same with ourselves, we say it aloud (without feelings of shame or a spirit of self-judgment) in order that we might begin to believe and know our identity, security, and belovedness. Some things you might need to say with gusto in the privacy of a bedroom, the shower, or a car. Other things you might need to meditate on and whisper to yourself multiple times a day until it begins to sink into your bones. Either way, grab hold of promises, embrace His unfailing love, and know that He’s faithful. He’s good and He delights in you, His Beloved! You can take Him at His Word!
Here’s some words you can start with for those Yes& places…
But as for me, I will sing about your power. Each morning I will sing with joy about your unfailing love. For you have been my refuge, a place of safety when I am in distress. O my Strength, to you I sing praises, for you, O God, are my refuge, the God who shows me unfailing love. –Psalm 59:16-17
He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west. –Psalm 103:12
I am counting on the Lord, yes, I am counting on Him. I have my hope in His Word. – Psalm 130:5
To all who mourn, He will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. – Isaiah 61:3
“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen. If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me. I will be found by you,” says the Lord. “I will end your captivity and restore your fortunes." – Jeremiah 19:11-14
“So don’t worry about these things….seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.” – Matthew 7:31-33
“I am leaving you with a gift–peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” –John 15:27
Three things will last forever–faith, hope, and love–and the greatest of these is love. –1 Corinthians 13:13
Yes&…Take Heart Dear Sisters!
Morgan is a storyteller at heart. After running an NGO in Uganda for 7 years, she and her husband, Dave, currently record a weekly podcast called Chasing Unicorns, produce and host The FIND series, run the CB Ideas design agency, and mange Yes& Collective. Morgan also co-authored the newly released children’s book, The Girl Chronicles: A Story of Good. She’s a mom to two middle schoolers, Asher & Jadyn, and so when she’s not driving them around, she fills herself up with yoga, reading, air-popped popcorn, and all things coconut flavored. IG: @MorganHansow & @HansowFamily www.HansowFamily.com