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The people who know their God will be strong and carry out great exploits. Daniel 11:32b NKJ
What does a really “great exploit” look like to you? What image does the word “strong” conjure up in your mind? For me, the definition of these words varies from day to day. On those bone-dry-so-tired-I-can-hardly-stand days I think a really great exploit consists of facing down yet another load of laundry, dishes and a grocery list. Yet there are other mornings my feet hit the floor and I am ready to take on anything! Perhaps you’re the same way. Sometimes being strong is having the strength just to keep functioning, other times it consists of Herculean feats.
The Lord penned this verse through His servant Daniel. Interestingly, that was the Lord’s message for His people during a time of bondage and captivity. Is this a day full of Herculean strength or a just-help-me-keep-going day? For Israel, it was a number of just-help-me-keep-going years! They were in captivity.
Is there anything holding you captive today? Guilt? A broken relationship? A bad habit? Bitterness? Whatever it might be, the Lord still says to you, “know Me and you will be strong and carry out great exploits.”
Some years back when I was in desperate need of some strength injected into my life, I bemoaned my out of control schedule and circumstances to a friend and sister in the Lord. Her quick reply to my wailing was, “what attribute of the Lord are you forgetting?” Excuse me? Hello? I was telling you about the finances, the schedule, my dying loved one! She repeated her question and she was right. Embarrassingly enough, I have this tendency to forget that God IS God and that means He is the One in control– maybe you do too! And when I remembered that He was still sitting on His throne, sovereignly sifting the events of my life through His loving hands I could rest and even thrive despite the circumstances.
Those who know their God…. The key to having the strength to carry out those great exploits of life from laundry to touching eternity lies in knowing God. That word know is yada, the same Hebrew word describing the act of intercourse. This is not a casual, brief once a week, small talk kind of relationship. It is an intimate, sacred one. Does this describe your relationship with God? Or do you have a once a week, small talk kind of relationship with God?
Some people compartmentalize life. One situation goes in the business file, another in the family file and so on. If your relationship with God has been compartmentalized and consists of just putting in your time once a week on Sunday morning, there is something you should know: God doesn’t fit in a file! He doesn’t fill an hour and a half on your scheduler. If He seems distant, maybe it is because you are holding Him at a distance. Seek to yada Him and see the great explosion of exploits He works in your life.
By April Motl – Motl Ministries
Charina @ Pondered Thoughts says
April thank you for the blessings of this post!
“Those who know their God…. The key to having the strength to carry out those great exploits of life from laundry to touching eternity lies in knowing God.” – so true. !
Just posted about letting go of bitterness in my recent post…stop by when you can 🙂 http://charinabrooks.wordpress.com
Hi Charina! Thanks for the kind words! I’d say letting go of bitterness is a “great exploit”! May the Lord continue to use you to encourage others! Blessings!
Wow!! What a great reminder! Maybe when I am in the midst of a dilema I need to step back and seek out the peace that only he can offer! Search my heart for any places that I’ve caused my own discomfort and trust that “He Has It All In Control”…..then patiently wait. That is the hard part…the waiting for change, for the emotions to calm down, for a new perspective.
Thanks for this post 🙂
Hi Eden! Thank you for your thoughtful comments! I agree – waiting for things to change in His timing is SO hard! And a new perspective… well, perspective is just about everything, isn’t?! May the Lord continue to grow both of us in the grace to wait and His perfect perspective!
Becky M says
I used to be a strong woman — physically doing whatever was required and comfortable moving around. Now — physically, following treatment for breast cancer, most days are a physical challenge. I am saving your post — to remind me God knows and is with me. Even when first diagnosed I knew He was in the midst of it all — but some days now I let that slip away. Thank you.
Beth Williams says
Praying for His strength, grace, mercy to surround you daily as you battle cancer.
Know that I am working with Relay for Life to help find a cure for this horrible disease!
Becky! My heart is heavy for you even though I don’t know you personally! We have some very dear friends who are struggling with their own cancer battles. I will be lifting you up to our Lord while I pray for them. May His grace and strength sustain you, dear sister.
Sometimes life just gets in the way, and it is hard to remember. God knew we would have days like that and that is why he gave us great friends such as yours to call us back.
Wow, I love this perspective and the so hard but so good question your friend asked!
Thanks, Holly! It’s a question we all need to ask ourselves, isn’t? Blessings!
Liz Gauthier says
Us mom’s/women (and men too!) understand those “bone-dry-so-tired-I-can-hardly-stand days” and those times we managed real greatness and knew inwardly we conquered some sad reality that called us to lift ourselves and that situation up into a greater plan. So good when we have the friend or we can be the friend to encourage us to be part of the solution (sometimes one we don’t yet see but wait and trust in) and not part of the problem; when we see that God is in our lives and we stay strong in faith.
So true! Thanks Liz for your thoughtful comment! Have a great weekend!
“I have this tendency to forget that God IS God and that means He is the One in control.”
Yup. Me, too, as much as I don’t want to admit it sometimes!
Thank you for the reminder that what keeps me going is knowing God, not doing all the things I try to do so that I *appear* to have it all together.
Well said, Mandy! And I’m with you about how terrible it feels to admit once again that I forgot Who was in charge! May God grant us His grace to grow in our vision of Him! Blessings <3
Beth Williams says
“What does a really “great exploit” look like to you? What image does the word “strong” conjure up in your mind?” Two very good questions to ponder.
A great exploit to me is completing a task/job that I don’t want to do, but do anyway to show God I trust Him.
Strong people endure hard times, circumstances, finances without much grumbling–saying “The Lord will see me through this”! I liken it to people suffering, perhaps with cancer and treatments-yet they smile in the midst of it all!
This year my hubby and I made resolutions to be better spouses and Christians. I started by having us do a daily devotion together. We rarely miss a day and when we do I make it up the next day. It has truly helped us stay on track with our thought life & actions.
Liz Gauthier says
I don’t expect someone to smile in the midst of cancer and suffering, sometimes they do and that is a gift, but we should be with them in their tears and not ask them to go the journey alone without being allowed to share their fear, grief and turmoil; God made us human and that means tears and all. Some great exploits are not seen, they are in the heart.
So true, Liz! I think some of the greatest exploits I have seen God work in me have been the ones in the secret places of my heart! God doesn’t expect us to be happy-plastic people. Even Jesus cried! And to be honest, many of those great exploits He accomplished inside me were accompanied by quite a few tears!
Thanks for your insightful comments, Beth! May the Lord continue to grow you and your hubby as you seek Him together!
Wonderful post April!
wow!its fascinating how you and i both belong to different religions and beliefs but the circumstances in life teach us how God is there to strengthen up our souls no matter what our beliefs are about Him.i identified God after broken heart and shattered dreams.when the greatest of worldly desires was gone from my life,i felt most painful but with time i realized that God created a new man in me .a new heart with a desire beyond the scope of this world to fulfill my thirst.and in identifying the true love of God,i realized that that is the purpose of our life actually..to identify God,not in books or religion but in our very own heart.and that is what i just posted a few hours back on my blog.the 5 stages of journey to eternity ,a doorway to heaven..the stages are
a- for a partner
b- for god
in my blog,(www.amimakhter.blogspot.com)ive explained how we move through these stages in life.
GOOD WORK.KEEP IT UP
Julie Sunne says
There’s so much depth in the words of your post, April. To know God is to have the key to not just life but really living. I use to compartmentalize, now I live! Blessings to you.
Thanks, Julie! Well said, “to know God is the key to not just life but really living”! So true! Blessings <3