Have you ever received instructions from the Lord, and it made sense and didn't make sense at the same time? Makes sense? (smile)
People often approach the new year with excitement and anticipation of newness and renewal. But what we don't understand is that how oftentimes we defeat the purpose by taking old things (habits, ideologies, emotions, thoughts, thought-processes, etc.) right along with us in the new year with an indirect attempt to recycle those hindrances (in essence) into something "new."
And all the while, God is saying, "GET RID OF IT."
That was me, unknowingly. Year after year, I indirectly carried old things, feelings, habits into each year. Disappointments, visions unfulfilled, dreams that were totally out of sync with the will of God.
How did I carry those things, you might ask? With the written word. My journals.
January 2, 2016. Just two days into the new year, and I wanted total newness in every area of my life, starting with my mindset-how I think, speak, write, operate, etc. That Saturday afternoon, the voice of the Lord spoke to me, telling me to burn my journals. All three of them, one of which was still practically new. And pretty, too, I might add.
It was so profound, I was like "WHOA. Burn them?"
We have no fireplace and no direct access to one. Well, my sister has one, but how I could ask her about using her fireplace to burn some journals?! How weird is that? Plus, it was a personal matter.
So, leaning to my own understanding (insert the side eye), I reasoned within myself:
"I'll just shred them, that will be okay."
"That's not what I told you to do."
MY GOD. So clear. So resounding. So DIRECT. I got that feeling in my stomach, that feeling when I KNOW it's the Holy Spirit speaking and leading me. So I toiled within myself like "what am I going to do?" I didn't want to disobey God; but, I was like, where in the world am I going to burn these journals?
So I went outside, tried to create a makeshift fire pit with some old bricks. It was so cold and windy outside. It's January in Michigan. I struck a match, wind knocked out the flame. What am I going to do?
So, I had to talk to Mom. I told her what the Holy Spirit gave me to do. She, of course, didn't understand it and probably wondered if I lost my marbles. Nevertheless, she didn't want to stand in God's way.
She told me to get the old galvanized tub in the basement, place it in the sink near the faucet in case the fire got out of control and burn them there.
That's an image of my journals being destroyed by fire. I had three journals that spanned ten years.
Ten years of words written about my life: my desires, my disappointments, negative things I said about myself out of my disgust and frustration with my life. Words of depression, anger, and unknowingly curses, littered those journals. And year after year, I carried those things. They had to be destroyed by fire.
Burning the journals was a symbolic method of destroying every negative, idle word written over my life. It was a cleansing and purging. After the smoke filled the basement, I took that tub outside and finished the burning. I doused the last smoldering pieces of paper and it became water and soot. I poured it on the ground of a vacant lot, away from the house.
The relief and RELEASE I felt after that was unimaginable in the greatest sense. And little did I know what would happen in just a matter of months. Read my last blog posts entitled "ELEVATING" and
"The Power of VOICE ACTIVATION." You will have a better understanding of the power of words (written, thought and spoken) and WHY those things had to be destroyed by fire. If you read Deuteronomy 12, you'll see that even God instructed the children of Israel to destroy and burn things that were dedicated to other gods. The following is an excerpt of a footnote about Deuteronomy 12:2-3 from the
Life Application Study Bible:
"When taking over a nation, the Israelites were to destroy every heathen altar and idol in the land. God knew it would be easy for them to change their beliefs if they started using those altars, so nothing was to remain that might tempt them to worship idols...These may be activities, attitudes, possessions, relationships, places, or habits-anything that tempts us to turn our hearts from God and do wrong..."
I had a habit of unhealthy journaling. Journaling is great, when done the right way. Holding onto those journals could have held me captive to continuing unhealthy journaling. There are things we must get rid of in order to embrace the next phase of our destiny. Before "taking over our nations," possessing new territories, we must get rid of every thing that will defeat our purpose. I had to repent to GOD and give that thing over to the fire. REPENT, AND BURN IT UP.
After I burned those old journals, I didn't journal anything until February 2017. I went an entire year of healing, restoration and reshaping my mind before I thought about purchasing a new journal. When I felt like I was ready to journal again, I bought the one pictured below, sitting on my Jesus Calling devotional.
DISCLAIMER: I don't knock anyone's style of journaling, and I'm not telling you how to journal; this was something God dealt with me on. Everyone's path is different.
The focus of this particular blog post is to make you aware of things you may unknowingly be carrying that's hindering your advancement to the next level.
Are you carrying "attitudes, possessions, relationships, etc." that's indirectly turning your heart from God? My heart would have completely turned callous towards God had I continued to journal the way I did!
Yes, that place of disappointment I dwelled in was very bad and I had to snap out of it quick.
That's why it's so good to be rooted in Christ; when you're rooted, you're immovable. You may sway from side to side with the winds of life, but you're grounded enough to stand in spite of.
Take this time to thoroughly inspect your life. "BURN" those things that could turn your heart away from God.
In His love,