I have been working on a painting for several days. Last week I went to the Aldersgate Renewal Ministry Methodist School of Supernatural Ministry. While there I discovered who the GOD in me IS and who He wants me to BE. He asked me to surrender all at His feet and I completely and totally emptied myself out only to be filled again with the fresh, clear, refreshing Living Water that only He can provide.
I was like Hagar at the stream… only I was running TOWARD GOD and not away.
Hagar was Sarai’s slave. Sarai was unable to conceive children so she had this wild idea that she could do it through Hagar. So, she gave Hagar to Abram and they conceived a child together. So when Sarai found out she got mad and mistreated Hagar so badly that Hagar ran away. In Genesis 16 we the Angel of the Lord talking to Hagar near a stream in the desert.
The Messenger of the Lord found her ( Hagar by a spring in the desert, the spring on the way to Shur. 8 He said, “Hagar, Sarai’s slave, where have you come from, and where are you going?”
She answered, “I’m running away from my owner Sarai.” 9 The Messenger of the Lord said to her, “Go back to your owner, and place yourself under her authority.”
She was running away. How many times do we run from the things that fear us?
Even though Hagar was doing what Sarai told her to do-Sarai’s jealousy got the worst of her and it sent Hagar running away from what she had done instead of facing up to it. What Hagar didn’t know was that the Lord saw it all and He had a plan. Here it was:
10 The Messenger of the Lord also said to her, “I will give you many descendants. No one will be able to count them because there will be so many.” 11 Then the Messenger of the Lord said to her,
“You are pregnant,
and you will give birth to a son.
You will name him Ishmael [God Hears],
because the Lord has heard your cry of distress.
12 He will be as free and wild as an untamed donkey.
He will fight with everyone, and everyone will fight with him.
He will have conflicts with all his relatives.”[a]
Hagar went to the desert to cry out to God in her distress and even though what she did was wrong- God heard and answered her cries. He sees it all no matter where we try to run and hide- He is always there. I find it interesting that Hagar went to the stream and it was at the stream that she found her life. I don’t think she expected that to happen- do you?
I see this story as a woman who was parched and needed a drink, a hope, and a plan. Many of us are this woman. Where are we running? We might think we are running away, but really our distress sends us reeling into the arms of our Creator. Our distress forces us to seek the Lord with all our heart, mind, soul and strength. In that moment-God hears, He responds and we receive a drink that refills, refreshes and renews us from the inside out.
This is what I received. A deep long, refreshing drink from the stream of Life. God took me to my knees in ultimate obedience. He forced me to drop the very thing that had brought me there-my paintbrush. I think He was saying-how much do you love me Donna? Do you love me enough to put the brush down and walk with me through my covenant heart?
I was undone.
Now I am whole and new again.
PRAISE THE LORD!
God is an unexpected God and He can show up anyplace ( even through a brush and some paint) He pleases, at anytime, through any circumstance or any person. He uses the least, the lost and the lonely to perform miracles, signs and wonders and when that happens people EXPERIENCE WHO GOD IS in a new way. Then they can’t stop talking about Him!
What about this angel? I found this in my research: “This is the first appearance of the Angel of the Lord in the Hebrew Scriptures. This is a unique person. He is called the Angel of the Lord 58 times and he is called the Angel of God 11 times. This is never a common angel, but the second Person of the Trinity, Jesus Christ. This is always a reference to the pre-incarnate Messiah. The rabbis teach that the phrase the Angel of the Lord is sometimes used to denote God himself.”
So, God himself shows up and meets Hagar in her distress. He calls her by name and then tells her to go back to Sarai and place yourself under her authority. She was her slave and Sarai owned her. Hagar had gone to the desert to die, but God met her in her neediest time and he brought her up and out of her distress. What did she do? She listened, obeyed and then glorified God.
She said: “ “You Are the God Who Watches Over Me.” Genesis 16:13
God is with us always. When you seek him with all your heart you will find Him and when you do- He will give you the desires of your heart. Your desires will change into HIS.
I met Jesus face to face last year through a renewal event that ARM does. Ever since then it has been the desire of my heart to be involved with ARM and I have prayed about it for the past year. Last week I was honored to be a part of the leadership team at MSSM. Thank you!
God does hear us and he changes us from the inside out. He sends angels to watch over us, to minister to our needs and to point us back to our Father. Today I am thankful for the God who watches over me, who leads, guides and makes me fall to my knees in humble obedience and to surrender everything-even my paintbrush.
So I thank the Lord for the things He has done inside of me. I know this is just the beginning and I feel His mighty fire raging in my belly. My heart pounds like wild horses galloping across my chest and God is longing for me to let HIM out and BE who He made me to be-to come under complete authority to HIM and only HIM.
So, what about you? What is God saying to you in this season of Lent when we give things up. But are we really giving things up….or are we surrendering ourselves to God and putting HIM ON?
Think about it….