Tuesday, February 2, 2016

It's not just for her...

In my morning devotions, I read Psalm 30 and the whole chapter had my attention, but as I read verses 11 and 12 thoughts turned to my friend, Wendy Blight. Today is a big day for her...her new book/Bible study, "I Know His Name," is being released. To learn more about it, click HERE. This is a project she began a few years back and includes countless hours of work. And I'm guessing even a few tears. Really, it goes back farther and deeper than that...years ago Wendy was attacked by an armed man and experienced things no woman ever should. She dealt with pain and battled fear, but God through His Word and Holy Spirit brought freedom, wholeness and healing.

So it's no surprise these words made me think of her...

David says, "You turned my wailing into dancing;
You removed my sack cloth and clothed me with joy,
that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent.
Lord, my God, I will praise you forever."

I've read Wendy's story and heard it too...there's no doubt God has turned her wailing into dancing. He has given her joy after an experience that left her wondering if she'd survive, let alone be happy. He did this for a reason...so she would praise Him and not be silent. She's doing that as she's sharing her words with readers across the world. 

After reading David's Psalm I too praised God for the work He has done and is continuing to do through Wendy. I lifted her new book to Him and prayed for all who will be pointed to His Word through it. 

I finished my prayer and after the pause, a new thought entered my mind. God was whispering to my heart, "Jill, those words are not just for her. Think about what I've done in your life. Remember the pit I pulled you from? Don't forget the wounds I've healed. The pain I've helped you overcome. The transforming work I've done in your life and heart. I've taken your sorrow and replaced it with my joy. You can praise me and speak for me too."

Friend, these final verses in Psalm 30 are for you too. It's great and Biblical to celebrate our sister's success, but we need to strive for our own as well. It's important to see the work God has done in another, but we can't forget what He's done for us. We can and should speak words of encouragement to the ones we love, but use the same strategy for yourself, one God loves. 

That doesn't mean you need to write a book about your life or author a Bible study, but we do need to speak up and share our story and shine His light. We must proclaim who God is and testify about the work He does. 

As I read others share their gratitude with Wendy about her obedience and faithfulness, I'm reminded of a quote from Henry Blackaby, "Anytime someone thanks me for being obedient and writing 'Experiencing God' I respond, 'What do you think God could do if you said yes and obeyed as well?'" 

A day that involved celebrating for a friend has also included a bit of conviction for myself. You see there are things God's asked me to do and I'm dragging my feet and I'm not being disciplined, which means I'm being disobedient. Just like Psalm 30 isn't just for my friend neither is God's grace, power or plan. 

Friend, He has work for you and for me. He's given us a message and a story that nobody else can tell. An audience too. Be faithful and obedient and do what my friend did...sacrifice, draw near, search the Scriptures and speak up. You'll be blessed, others will witness and God will be glorified. What a way to praise Him!! 


Unknown said...

Praising God on the mountaintop for all God is doing in and through Wendy and her new study... and for YOU because I know God is calling you to exciting new territory... and for me because- you're right Jill. He calls all of us. His words aren't just for someone else. This is beautiful. What a day of celebration!

Wendy Blight said...

Jill, thank you for sharing a bit of my story and my new book here, but most especially thank you for sharing how God USED my story to speak into your heart. Because that is what brings purpose to our trials. It's what makes them bearable sometimes ... because we know God promises to use then for our good, for His glory and to comfort and equip others. So many times in my life I have asked why her and not me? And it's because I have not asked, prayed or believed!! Such a great message for us all to here today. Thank you for bringing the Word alive today.



Jill Beran said...

Thanks Noelle! Asking Him to give you just the words you need today. Praying you will run after Him and do all He leads you to do!

Jill Beran said...

Thanks for stopping by Wendy...grateful God gave you a glimpse of His purpose for your trial. Thank you again for being an example of obedience and voice of encouragement. Congrats again!

Anonymous said...

Jill, it is sooooo good to read your post again. I've checked Spam off and on, but it wasn't there, so thank you for sending. I bought Wendy's book and the DVD that goes along with it. I am so excited to get into it. I am so looking forward to what God is asking of you. I just read in FIRST5 that God desires for His people to give themselves to Him first and then to others. I thank God that you are truly giving a Heart Gift. Have the "bestest" day in the Lord!!!
Mema Jeanne

Jill Beran said...

It's good to see your name here as well Mema Jeanne! I trust Wendy's study will bless you and grow you in BIG ways!! Thank you for your kind and encouraging words...needed them tonight! Blessings to you!