Beware: The Wall

September 4, 2012

by:  Staci Stallings

Now I don’t know why this happens, but I want you to be prepared for it because when it happens, it can be downright dis-spiriting.

It goes like this:

You’ve been sowing God Seeds and things have been going very well.  One person that you’ve put God time and effort into is starting to really get it.  They are moving ahead, taking great leaps of faith, and then all of a sudden BAM!

It’s like you slam into a wall going full speed.

Again, I don’t know why this happens, but I can assure you, it does and it will.

First, understand that this is normal.  It is not something you did.  In many ways, it’s almost like peeling an onion a layer at a time and then suddenly hitting a layer that just doesn’t want to move.

I think for the most part what is happening is that the person has gotten down to a layer they didn’t think you–or anyone–could reach.  It’s a layer they’ve protected for a long time, and a layer they are terrified to see underneath.

Let me tell you “the wall” is going to take a LOT of patience and love on your part because most of the time, defense of the wall comes out as an attack against you.  Suddenly the person will pull away or act hurt or angry at something you’ve done (or not done).  This is not about what you did or didn’t do.  This is a passive-aggressive way to tell you to “back off.”

Our problem is, often we are dealing with our own hurts and places in our Spirit Gardens that need weeded, and this rejection can really blindside us.

The best thing I have learned in this situation is to back up.  Don’t pursue!  Don’t get desperate to find out what you did.  Don’t attack back.

Just breathe and back off.  Be patient.  Go to God.  Talk to Him about your own hurt over the situation.  Pray for the person by putting them in the Holy Spirit’s hands over and over–every time you think about them.

Walls take an unbelievable amount of patience and unconditional love–more maybe than you even feel you have to give.  That’s okay.  Remember, “I can’t but God can, and He will… if I let Him”?  Well, now’s the time to use that in spades!

When you see the person, smile, make small talk if they seem willing.  Don’t push.  Let them come to you.

It may take a very long time (and that time will seem even longer to you!).  That’s okay.  You and God have an eternity to convince them that you’re really serious about loving them even when they are being quite unlovable.

Stand in love.  Just stand, believing in God’s love for you and for them.  And you will be amazed at the walls that will eventually fall at your feet.

*~*

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Change: Another Sower’s Challenge

August 16, 2012

by:  Staci Stallings

Not long ago we spoke about change and how others will try to block your change.  This is true of others who you are working with as a Sower of God’s Seed as well.

Change is difficult.  It takes time.  It takes work.

Mostly it takes willingness.

If you are not willing to change, you won’t.

In fact, I think that is the biggest sticking point many people have with God.  They think that if God is God and can do anything, then why doesn’t He just change things–to be better to be more peaceful.  After all, He’s God.  What’s He waiting for?

Well, I will tell you… He’s waiting for us to be willing.

Have you ever been so angry with someone that you weren’t willing to forgive?  Maybe you weren’t even willing to entertain the thought of forgiving the other person.  You didn’t think they deserved it.  You thought that you deserved to be angry.

That’s okay.

God will wait.

And you as a sower will have to learn to wait as well.

No matter how much you may want another person to change, only they can decide when that will happen.  You can pray.  You can gently point the right direction, but you cannot force them to change.  That is their decision alone.

And oh, is that hard!

Because you and I think if they would just X… forgive, let it go, work harder, be kinder… whatever… then things would be better.

Often when you are working with someone, change is going to look VERY slow and sometimes non-existent.  But that’s where you have to get a different perspective, a God perspective.  From God’s perspective, He has eternity to work on your heart and mine and theirs.  He’s a patient God, a loving God who will never force you or them to be anything you or they are not ready to be.

The “trick” is for YOU to BE (remember that from last time?).  Be peace even when they are not peaceful.  Be kind even when they are not.  Be generous even when they are not.  Meet them all the way over and over again until they are willing to take a step toward you.

Oh, this is hard.  I’m not going to lie to you.  Change is hard.  Those rocks are heavy.  The pavement is hard.  The thistles and weeds have thorns and you are going to get hurt. I can almost guarantee it.  But you are no longer looking to the world or to others for your peace.  You are now looking only at God.  And He will teach you how, how to be peaceful in the midst of turmoil, how to be merciful in the face of “they don’t deserve that,” how to love unconditionally… in all circumstances… no matter what.  He’s teaching YOU as much as He’s teaching THEM.

Know that going in, and determine that this soul is worth your effort, your patience, your time, your belief in them… because Jesus did all of that for you… and more. In fact, that’s ultimately what Jesus did for us.  He showed us how to be a Sower of God Seeds into souls by being the First Sower.  His love changed things–in personal lives and in the world.  It still does in the hands of Sowers who know that change is not easy but it’s always worth it.

*~*

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August 16

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Seed Stories: The Sower & The Prophet

August 2, 2012

by:  Staci Stallings

In our last conversation we spoke about the circular nature of the seed and sower story from Luke.  We talked about how a person first is the soil where the Jesus Seed is planted and how he or she then grows up in their Christian faith and becomes the sower–planting Jesus Seeds in other people’s lives.

Well, the Bible also has a name for these people.  They are called “prophets.”

Prophets are those people who speak God’s Word into the lives of others.  You probably know some of them by name:  Jeremiah, Isaiah, Ezekiel, John the Baptist.  These are men who at great risk to their own lives and often forfeiting their own lives over it, chose to spread God’s Word to as many people as they could.

The Seed of God (Jesus, but for John the Baptist, had not yet arrived) was planted in their hearts, and they did everything they could to tell as many others about Him as possible.

Now, I think there were prophets after Jesus as well, but we called them by the name “saints.”  People like St. Paul and St. Barnabas, St. Peter and St. John.  These men wrote about the Jesus Seed, the spoke about the Jesus Seed, they witnessed about what the Jesus Seed had done in their lives.

And because of them, the Jesus Seed began sprouting up in all kinds of places like Greece and Macedonia and to the far ends of what was then considered “the earth.”  It has spread, literally, for over 2,000 years–through sowers and harvests and seasons, all the way down to us.

I remember once hearing Mike Warnke, a Christian comedian, say that if he was alive during the rapture, he was going to grab one sinner by the collar in one hand and another in the other hand, and he was going to say, “So, do you get saved now, or do I let go?”

Maybe not so dramatically, but I think that’s what we’re all called to do:  take as many people with us as possible.

How do you do that?  By becoming the prophet you were always meant to be.  And how do you do that?  By nurturing the Jesus Seed in your own heart and then sowing it into the lives of those around you.

Becoming a prophet sounds hard, but it’s really not.  It’s extending forgiveness and grace into someone’s life.  It’s holding someone’s hand and giving comfort.  It’s encouraging people and being a living (not just talking) witness to what God has done in your life!

Come to think of it, I think sower is synonymous with prophet, which is then synonymous with Christian.  In your Christian journey, are you consciously spreading the Word and inviting other people along?  Or like the third man with the talents, have you hidden what you have hoping no one will try to steal it?

I challenge you today to be BOLD in your faith.  Step out and share what you have been given.  When you do, the harvest really will be amazing!

*~*

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White Knight
~ The Courage Series~
Book 2

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