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April 01, 2009

High Places For You and Me...

Capitol

Greetings, Dear Friends!



And to those visiting, I say welcome! I post every Wednesday and my sole purpose is to nourish your soul along the way.

Each month I giveaway a $10.00 gift card to someone who posts on my blog. So leave a post, share an insight or story, bless lots of people, and who knows, maybe you'll win a treat for you and a friend.

This month's gift card is from Starbucks and it's time to announce the winner for March. Drum roll please...Cathy Messecar! Congratulations! Here's the catch: you have to email me to claim your prize (I'm so sorry, I don't have time to track you down!). Email me at: [email protected] and leave me your address. Thank you, Cathy for your wonderful insights.

Now on to today's topic...

During my prayer time this morning, I meditated on this wonderful passage:

He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; He enables me to walk on high places. He trains my hands for battle; my arms can bend a bow of bronze. You give me YOUR shield of victory. YOUR right hand sustains me. YOU stoop down to make me great. YOU broaden the path beneath my feet so that my ankles do not turn (Psalm 18: 33-36).

God has high places for you and me. We're going to look at three of those high places:

  • The High Place of Humility 
  • The High Place of Influence 
  • The High Place of Your Heart's Desire 

Just yesterday my husband and I returned from Washington D.C. where we had the privilege of attending the Global Prayer Gathering for the International Justice Mission. My friend Sara once said, "Everyone should experience these two things in their lifetime: Disney World and the Global Prayer Gathering."

It's been years since I visited Disney World and I honestly don't remember much, but I heartily agree that everyone should experience IJM's Global Prayer Gathering! Referring to the Psalm 18 passage above, God used the GPG to lead us to the high places, to train our hands for intercessory battle, to assure us that He is on our side, and that we can thus count on HIS shield of victory and HIS hand to sustain us. Everyone felt the power and strength in numbers and yet such a personal sense of responsibility for the poor, the oppressed, the widow, the orphan, the slave and the human trafficking victim. 

Somehow the folks at IJM managed to make a gathering of nine hundred people feel like an intimate, personal, and profoundly important time.  

Once the GPG ended, a few of us stayed on and went to Capitol Hill to lobby for a bill designated to the rescue of children from human trafficking and slavery. Walking the halls of power was a surreal experience. Advocating for the voiceless was humbling beyond measure. Asking the government to pay attention to this issue reminded me that we all have God-given spheres of influence that seem out of our reach. 

So, just what are those high places God has for us? Here are a few:

The High Place of Humility...

The high and lofty one who inhabits eternity, the Holy One, says this: "I live in that high and holy place with those whose spirits are contrite and humble. I refresh the humble and give new courage to those with repentant hearts (Isaiah 57:15 NLT).

The Lord distances Himself from the proud, but draws near and gives grace to the humble. As we walk closely with Him, we're repeatedly reminded of our need for Him. We get too big for our britches when we go too long without regarding the greatness of our God. When we forget how big He is, we forget how small we are. We're never more powerful for the Kingdom than when we're painfully aware of our desperate moment-by-moment need for the Lord. He considers our humble heart and high and privileged place to reside. Imagine.

The High Place of Influence...

He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; He enables me to walk on high places. He trains my hands for battle; my arms can bend a bow of bronze. You give me YOUR shield of victory. YOUR right hand sustains me. YOU stoop down to make me great. YOU broaden the path beneath my feet so that my ankles do not turn (Psalm 18: 33-36).

Here's that passage again. When we dare to take God at His Word, He takes us to high places - places we're not qualified to be, but as far as He is concerned, we're equipped for. He wills that we have influence but not for ego's sake (absolutely not!). He gives us influence that we might help others. We're made strong to strengthen the weak. We're comforted that we might be comforters. We're set free that we might help the captive. He puts gifts in us, and then makes a way for us. His gifts bring us before Kings and people of even greater influence. What a mighty God we serve!

The High Place of Your Heart's Desire...

Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you your heart's desires (Psalm 37:4). 

I once did a word study on this passage and what I found amazed me. While I don't have time to delve into it today, I will say that the essence of this verse is beautiful. The word 'delight' means to be in deep relationship with - to remember and dream together - to enjoy life together - to pamper yourselves together. Sort of reminds me of a healthy, thriving marriage. All too often we come to God and list our needs. But to pamper ourselves in the Lord is to say, "I just want to be with You because You're You. I love who You are." When we dream with God, and recall the ways He's come through for us; when we enjoy sunny days with Him in mind; and when we make the time for restful, intimate moments, we are truly delighting in God. And when we delight in God, He uses all kinds of creative methods to get His gifts to us. He knows where we live. He knows what we love. And He loves giving good gifts to His children.

It's a pleasure and and an honor to walk the high places with God. To which high place is He calling you right now? 

I'd love to hear from you!

Have a blessed week.

PS ~ If you haven't signed up for my quarterly E-zine, you might want to! Each quarter I do a great book giveaway, offer some devotional insights, great book recommendations, and a few other things. Here's the link in case you're interested:

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Comments

Doreen,

I'm glad! That's the best compliment you could give me! Whenever we dig into the Word and study on a deeper level, we find a treasure of riches beyond measure. Bless you!

Thanks for the prayers, Helen. I really needed them. I think the finished product is going to be great, though (by the grace of God). :)

Dear Rebecca,

Be sure to give us an update on the National Day of Prayer. We'd love to hear about your experiences. Bless you, sweet Rebecca.

Anna,

Great post. It's such a great transition when we move from an 'ought to' mindset to a 'get to' one. When we delight in the Giver more than the gift, the gift just becomes an added blessing and not a necessary one. Bless you!

Stephanie,

Bless you for admitting such a thing. You know, every single (honest) Believer goes through humbling, refining seasons where we are reminded once again that we are nothing apart from God...and yet everything to Him. God bless you in this place! Be blessed and be at rest.

Kathy,

I've been on the road a bit this spring and have fallen behind on replying to these posts. Forgive me! I'm so inspired by your work with young women. You're taking the ashes from your past and turning them into jewels fit for a crown! What a brave woman you are. :)

Lucia,

First of all, please forgive me for my delayed response to your incredibly encouraging post! Wow. Your words blessed me greatly. And may your friend find healing and wholeness under the shelter of the Most High God. Blessings to you both!

Dear Anna,

I'm with you. I love the idea of delighting in God and leaving my cares with Him! What a relief! :)Bless you.

Reading your post Susie makes me really want to do word studies on Scripture and take delight in the Lord!

My dearest Susie,

I'm glad I peeked at your blog today. Yes that song is great... go to elizabethhunnicutt.com and the whole song will play for you. (That is if you can wait long enough to listen to it before you switch over to iTunes to buy her CD.)

It looks like your deadline is today! I'm glad they were willing to grant some grace. I will pray about your books impact, Sweetie!

Dear Helen,

Love those lyrics from Elizabeth's song. Isn't it something how God leads us in ways we do not understand but are perfectly suited for us? It'll be great to hear your insights on this time, a year from now. Believe it or not, I needed an extension on my deadline (which is tomorrow). Please do pray that God will take my little 'lunch' and multiply it to meet the needs of the multitudes. Blessings to you~

I'm so amazed at all God has for us. We want to see Jesus high and lifted up! Let it rain, open the flood gates of heaven!
as Michael W Smith sings.
I have the privilege of being apart of the Global Day of Prayer and the 10 days before Pentecost.
Our hearts cry and prayer is found in
2 Chronicles 7:14-16
if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place. I have chosen and consecrated this temple so that my Name may be there forever. My eyes and my heart will always be there.

We have so much to be thankful for, but especially as Christians looking forward to celebrating Easter, in freedom. Praise the name of Jesus Christ!
God bless you and your ministry Susie!

Thank you so much for these reminders, Susie! One of the things I have to relearn every few years, it seems, is how to resist the "should" mentality and delight in God's plan for my life, and for His presence. It being one of those seasons for me, He is treating me to the joy of looking for the fulfilling "desire of my heart" that He has in store so far as my next job/mission in life . . . how good of a God, to want us to enjoy HIM!

God is calling me to humilty. It is humbling to even admit that via this blog. He is faithful to cut through the layers of my emotions and glenty prod me on. How awesome that He disciplines with love and knows right where I am.

Called to a high place teaching young women/girls about purity~when I come from a place of failure.

I have journals (which I have used in gaining credibility w/ the kids) from when I was 16... It is hard to remember what I had been blessed to forget, but also, being a new creation, I find great joy and even compassion for the "old me"...

Leading a Bible study about faith when mine was nearly shipwrecked at one time.

How good is my Jesus!

I do so love your inspiration. Thanks again, Susie!

Forgot to mention; of course I told her to race out and get your book!


Today, I was able to use the wisdom I gained from your book, "The Uncommon Woman," to guide a friend.

I read your book only a month ago and it is one of the most profound books I have ever read. I pray that you will start a consortium of book/study clubs all over the country for women to study and be exposed to your powerful message.

Back to today, a wonderful woman friend is finding her family at the center of cruel gossip. I immediately went to my computer and typed up 3 or 4 quotes from your book about the lowness of gossip, but our beautiful opportunity to rise above it forever with the help of Jesus, friends, faith and inner strength.

Nothing I could formulate could have come close to the clarity of your thoughts (with help from the Bible of course) I felt that I was passing on a healing drug, or precious solution, and I was.

Your message reached me, and I was able to reach out with it in my hands, and pass it on.

And so it shall be.

Thanks,

Lucia Paul

Susie, What really great insight--- especially the last portion of really delighting yourself in the Lord...I'm inspired to spend my quiet time tomorrow doing just that! Thank you!

I just wanted to cry reading about the GPG, and your subsequent trip to Capitol Hill. (I planned to attend, but the Saturday was our son's fifth birthday, and I didn't want him to have to celebrate it without his mama and papa!) I knew the Gathering would be the kind of amazing that is nearly impossible to describe.

But I got a very sweet "consolation prize" on Friday when I attended Elizabeth Hunnicutt's CD release concert.

You asked how I've been... I'm still "adjusting." A line from the title track of her CD, On The Way, will tell you where I'm trying to put my head and my heart:

"This is not what I expected, it's not everything I planned

But there's beauty in this mystery I don't have to understand

I just have to keep on moving not with vision but with faith

I'm learning how to see on the way."

I can't wait to see you at the benefit next month! (I know I keep saying that, but I really can't wait!)

Also, I hope your book deadline came and went as you smiled in blessed assurance. I think it will have a wonderfully freeing affect on many women bound in many ways.

xo, H.

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