By Dawnielle Materre
ASCEND Advisory Board
I don’t know when He will come through. I don’t know how He will come through. I don’t know what’s to come. I don’t know. But, I do know God and I know that, “God is not a man that He should lie; or a son of man that He should change His mind; Has He said, and will He not do it? Or has he spoken, and will He not fulfill it (Number 23:19)?
My feelings tell me to respond and react differently. My body tenses; breaths shorten; tears well up; I snap at those around me; or I suppress my anxiety and unacknowledged anger. I lose patience with others because I am impatient with the unknown. I hear the enemy saying everything the father of lies wants me to believe. I determine to either feel the moment out: overwhelmed by uncertainty, despair over the circumstances and frustrated with lack of answers…
Or my faith rises up like a warrior lit ablaze and I say, “NO!” I snatch hold of my fears and anxiety and lay my burdens down before the Lamb and say, “Help me! I can’t on my own, but You can, Lord. You will, Lord. And I will believe You. Give me strength to be kind hearted and patient with others no matter the circumstances. Though you slay me yet I will praise you.”
Both instances happen to me. There are days where my strength is small; and there are days when I ready the horse for battle, certain the victory belongs to the Lord.
This takes courage. Courage doesn’t always mean we feel that way. Courage is a choice we make, to rise above what could destroy us, consume us or scare us away from destiny. Someone special to me said, “the devil can’t steal your destiny, but he can make you give it away.
Courage wraps its cloak of boldness around us, hands us our weapons of warfare and says, “Rise up “warrioress,” and live. Run toward your promise regardless of whether you can see the road ahead or not. Go!” Sing a victory song in advance and wave your banner high, charging into the future with brave determination to TRUST God. To believe I will have all that’s intended in His providential time, regardless of how long the waiting hour prolongs.
Waiting is a long road called hope, and the bold companion to courage is praise. Praise filled with unceasing prayer. Praise says, “He is unchangeable, and who can turn him back? What he desires, that he does. For He will complete what He appoints for me, and many such things are in His mind (Job 23:13).” Praise opens her mouth and voices unspeakable joy. Praise is a weapon, a strategic sword held against the weight of doubt and enemy’s sparing tactics. Praise requires authenticity, discipline, training and boldness. And praise, even when wounded, doesn’t give in or give up. And praise remembers, it remembers all God has done and completed before the present season of the unknown.
But this one thing I know with Courageous Praise – “He knows the way that I take; when he has tried me, I shall come out as gold. (Job 23:10).” And the result is stated in Zechariah 2:3 “And I will be to her a wall of fire all around, declares the Lord, and I will be the glory in her midst.” Ladies, Courageous Praise will take you there.