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March 16, 2011

Know Who You Are!

Light Through the Trees

Greetings, Dear Friends! Susie Larson here...

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 give away a $10.00 Starbucks gift card to someone who posts on my blog. So leave a post, share an insight or story, bless lots of people, and just maybe you'll win a jolt of java for you and a friend!
One more quick note: Hop over to our Faith Radio webpage. I post a blog there more than once a week. Plus, we have some POWERFUL shows for you to listen to! And, with one click of a button, you can share a show or blog post with a friend. One of my favorite recent shows this past week was with author and theologian David Timms. Click here to listen!  (you'll love his Aussie accent and his deep love for Jesus).  If the link doesn't work, just check out my show page and scroll down; David was my guest on March 10th. 

Now on to my topic...

One day while reading 1 Samuel, chapter 15, I was intrigued and unsettled about King Saul's decline. He started out as a strapping, handsome, capable, unassuming young man with a respect for the things of God. But he evolved into a prideful, insecure, hasty, territorial leader who valued his opinion above God's direction, and this led to his demise. 

In one particular instance, God had commanded Saul to destroy a town because of its utter wickedness. Saul only partially obeyed. And when confronted by the prophet Samuel, Saul was full of excuses, and even threw his own people under the bus by telling Samuel it was their fault. 

Let's read Samuel's response to Saul (from 1 Samuel 15:17-19):

And Samuel told him, "Although you may think little of yourself, are you not the leader of the tribes of Israel? The LORD has anointed you king of Israel. And the LORD sent you on a mission and told you, 'Go and completely destroy the sinners, the Amalekites, until they are all dead.' Why haven't you obeyed the LORD? Why did you rush for the plunder and do exactly what the LORD said not to do?"

Saul had a wrong view of himself and of his importance. And so often, we commit the same sin. When we underestimate the call on our lives, we begin to value our opinion more than God's. We then elevate our emotions, our territory, our wants, and our desires way above our mission and our eternal significance on this earth. 

And what was Saul's response?

He initially denied his disobedience (ever do that?), made excuses (how about this one?), and blamed his fellow comrades (yup, I'm guilty). 

But when Samuel refused to let Saul get away with his side-stepping, Saul finally came clean. Let's read his response because it exposes his wrong thinking:

Then Saul finally admitted, "Yes, I have sinned. I have disobeyed your instructions and the LORD's command, for I was afraid of the people and did what they demanded...

When a person loses sight of their value and their call, here are some of the side effects:
  • Low level of obedience
  • Pride and insecurity 
  • Fear of other's opinions 
  • Loss of eternal perspective 
  • Loss of the fear of the Lord  
We must understand how VALUABLE we are to God and that we are DIVINELY CALLED to listen to His voice, to obey Him moment by moment, to change the world for His Name's sake, and to bear fruit that lasts long after we are gone. 
We are treasured in God's sight. We are equipped with all we could ever need to do great things. We are covered by His promises and guided by His precious Holy Spirit. We know His voice and we follow Him.
When we see ourselves as God sees us, we will:
  • Walk in a holy confidence (a knowledge that we are something special to God)
  • Walk in a holy dependence (a knowledge that apart from God we can do no good thing) 
  • Embrace a Kingdom passion (a heart to build God's Kingdom and not our own) 
  • Embrace a Calvary love (a heart that grows in its capacity to love others)
May you remember once again how important you are - because you were designed and called by God. May you hold loosely your emotions, your opinions, your territory, and your imagined rights, that you may cling tightly to God's promises and His place in your life. True humility is simply having a right view of ourselves in light of eternity. We are small; we are nothing without Him, but everything to Him.
Have a blessed week!
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Je sais orge Alec Baldwin, ses cheveux clairs ou foncés semble bon, comme un acteur fort, si cela est nécessaire dans son rôle, il a très bien fait!

Susie, this touched me so deeply! I have been struggling with insecurity and allowing it to affect just how much I was willing to obey Him. He has called me to speak and I have walked through open doors but then I've waited on pins and needles to find out if "they liked me." Such a wrong attitude since my worth is in God.

God is just incredibly amazing. He called me to study in depth 1 Samuel about a month ago. He has opened up a whole new understanding of the bible and has shown me that His wisdom is not just set aside for the Billy Grahams and Beth Moore's of this world. If we seek wisdom, we will receive it and He has proven that through my study of 1 Samuel. I just had to laugh when I saw your post because I knew it was for me.

I've decided insecurity is really a sin because it's not believing God. It's not believing who He says I am. It's not believing He can equip me to do His bidding. It's not believing that I've accomplished something if I don't receive the feedback expected.

Thank you for your words of wisdom and sharing the gift He has given you.

Susie - I just read Kathy's message and gasped when I saw my name! :) I did just share my "Everyone Has A Story" message today and I couldn't believe when I read this how similar it is with what I shared. I am so thankful to be walking this road with you! I am going to send you today's message with the "forgotten" message - will send it out tomorrow. Thanks for continuing to allow His love to spill out onto all of us!! Love you!


Susie, I will be starting to lead a study on The Uncommon Woman this Sunday. I have been spending hours in chapter one praying for the Lord to internalize it's message that we will get the greatest benefit.

I was speaking with some of my ladies last week about Psalm 37:4, which I have heard you talk about several times and it struck me, "have I spent time meditating on and pursuing that "pampering"?"

Now I am on question #5 Where we know (intercourse) and rely on the love God has for us. I wanted to ask you what you have done in your life to appropriate that pampering. Really relying on the love of God. I am assuming it is a combination of time with him(intercourse), proclamation of truth over your life, and time/experience.

Then I came here and read this message and it seems to sum up your ministry..."Know WHO you are (in Christ) and WHOSE you are (beloved of God).

I have often looked at Saul, and his demise coming through his fear of man, his insecurities, and his low-vision. It is the demise of all those who "sell their birthright." and I pray, "Keep my eyes on YOU Jesus, may my sights be fixed on Heaven!!!"

May the Lord continue to prosper His message through you Susie!! I see that it is multiplying! Jami Kaeb and I sat together at the She Speaks conference in 2008, and as you probably know, she is speaking today, and it sounds like an Uncommon Woman message...
I am honored to be on her prayer team. How cool is that? :)

I loved all of this. Here's the part that God has been bringing to my heart as of lately...

"May you hold loosely your emotions, your opinions, your territory, and your imagined rights, that you may cling tightly to God's promises and His place in your life."

I feel like God has been placing on my heart more and more about the importance of "knowing my place", and trusting God.

I always want to fear God's response more than people's responses. As someone who delights in people pleasing, by nature, God has been opening my eyes to this side of me more and more lately. He places on my heart to say something boldly, compassionately, and with love. I feel good about it, and I feel like I have been obedient in my combination of vulnerability and boldness. If the response is not 100 percent positive I immediately go into this thought of, "OH! I should not have said/done that" and start doubting that I did something God was not really calling me to do. I think, "I need to apologize now, just IN CASE if I hurt anyone's feelings". I want to preserve the value of fellowship among believers so bad that I have been "side-stepping" at times as to not step on their toes. I'm learning. My prayer right now is that I will be able to discern more and more when it is God urging me to do something, and when it is just my feelings speaking, and then to stand strong, trusting God to do his work. The truth is, if we are speaking God's truth about the way we are to live, people's immediate response is not always going to be favorable because sometimes they just don't want to heart it or they want to save face, but I should trust that God is at work, because I am being faithful to Him. Even now, I feel like apologizing for rambling. :) Thank you Susie. You know who you are in Christ, and it is absolutely stunning! Blessings on you today as you faithfully serve God by blessing others with a pure heart. YOU are LOVED like crazy.

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