Written especially for Supernaturally Fabulous Magazine (click here to see):
How many of you are at a point in your life where you feel stuck, lost, or frustrated? You have a vision, goal, or burning desire to do something extraordinary ; but the harder you try, the more things go wrong. This is a familiar place in this journey of life. Oftentimes we feel hopeless, worthless and ready to throw in the towel. It is even easier to feel insignificant when you factor in the world’s ever changing, seemingly impossible standards of success. Oh, but I want to encourage you today that God has the final say!
Did you know that you serve a God that specializes in broken pieces? God roots for the underdogs and seeks them to be used specifically for His purpose, power, honor and glory. No, I am not saying that to sound poetic or prolific; I am sharing with you the word of God!
Acts 27:43b-44, KJV : 43b . . . and commanded that they which could swim should cast themselves first into the sea, and get to land: 44 And the rest, some on boards, and some on broken pieces of the ship. And so it came to pass, that they escaped all safe to land.
I encourage you to read the entire chapter but the following are a few points that will put things in perspective and immediately lighten your spirit:
- Apostle Paul was traveling to Rome as an Apostle to do the work of the Lord. Although he had a powerful message from God and was on assignment, he traveled as a prisoner under arrest!
- While on his mission, Paul experienced a storm: this was not just any storm, but was on the level of a hurricane. A wooden ship + the open seas + a hurricane = destruction + danger + wreckage
- Are you still reeling from the aftermath of the storms of your life, struggling to catch your breath?
- The water weighed them down; in order to survive they had to choose which things to throw overboard to lighten the load and spare their lives.
- What things are weighing you down that you refuse to let go of? Pray for the wisdom and strength to release them or it just make cost you your life—your life of peace, purpose, joy, fulfillment, effective use by God, etc.
- They fasted and prayed for 14 days.
- This is not the first option many of us choose in our storms, but some things are only destroyed by fasting and prayer.
- Fasting and prayer is significant because it is the denial of one’s self and total focus on God (Note: Deliverance from your storm or situation will cost you something.)
- Those that could not swim were left in a vulnerable position.
- This seemed to be an appropriate time to apply the adage “survival of the fittest. Logically, one would surmise that those who knew how to swim had an advantage over those who did not. However, swimming is exhausting (especially in stormy seas). Both groups had to rely on God to save their lives. If you think about it, the swimmers were the ones who were truly disadvantaged. They might be deceived into thinking it was their skill, endurance and abilities that led them ashore; those who survived on the broken pieces of the shipwreck knew that it was no one but God! What about you?
Beloved, do not be deceived today: God is in control even when your prayers appear to go unanswered and you do not see the fruits of your labor. The world would ask, If God controlled the wind, the seas and everything in heaven and on earth, why did he allow this to happen? The sailors and entire ministry team were shipwrecked, snake bitten, cold and wet; wasn’t it enough that they were imprisoned while on their mission from God? Answer: All of it was a part of God’s perfect will and His timing; God used the storm to bring Paul to the Island of Melita to preach the gospel and heal the sick there.
Side bar/reflection: Is your peace of mind, life, and comfort more important than the souls that God is trying to reach through your testimony? Is their soul not more valuable than your struggles as a servant of God? He already has you under His protection and the fight is fixed. You are destined to win. Let go and allow God to use you, especially your broken pieces!
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.–Jeremiah 29:11, NLT
–Alesha Brown, The Joy Guru
Empowerment Coach, Motivational Speaker and Best Selling Author
CEO, Alesha Brown LLC