Inspired by Pastor Steven Furtick & Lauren Daigle.By Tayla Santos
Living with an illness is tough. It’s especially tough when the doctors can’t even tell you exactly what it is that you have. “It must be some type of Autoimmune deficiency”, they say, and I leave the doctors office again with no answers and a series of antibiotics. Ive been sick on and off for three years now. Im great for about three months and then bed ridden for the next month with out warning. It’s tiring and its gotten to the point where all motivation to figure out what’s wrong with me has dissolved.
So why am I telling you guys this right now?? Because for the last week, my symptoms have resurfaced and after a night in the ER with no answers, I was laying in bed last night feeling so alone and so hopeless. There’s this fear in me that this could be what kills me, and i’ll never even know what it is, or have the opportunity help myself. While I laid there in the dark last night, unable to sleep, watching fall styling videos on youtube, a sermon popped up titled “When the Battle Chooses you” led by Pastor Steven Furtick. I knew it was God speaking to me right away but I was like, its already 3:30 am and this video is 50 minutes long…not happening! I scrolled past it, but you already know how God works…I ended up watching the whole thing. and took notes. Im glad I did though, because It changed my perspective on this battle that I am facing with my own health.
God doesn’t expect us to face our tough times alone. I know I’ve said that here on my blog before. He doesn’t want us to feel like we are alone, but he also doesn’t want to force anything on us either. Making the decision to rely on him and grow our personal relationship with him is 100% up to us. No one else can do that for us. Something that really stuck with me in Pastor Stevens message was his analogy of having a best friend who can fight. He talked about how when you’re younger and you might be smaller than the rest of the kids your age, or not as tough, so you strategize and make friends with the tough kid who no one wants to mess with. That way, if they mess with you, they’re messing with your friend…and they can fight. This is kinda like having God on your side haha. If anything or anyone is going to try to mess with me, it has to get through God first, cause He’s my protector and my friend and He can FIGHT! He doesn’t allow us to handle anything that is too big for us.
“You do not have to fight this battle. Position yourselves, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord. He is with you, Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid or discouraged. Tomorrow, go out and face them, for the Lord is with you.”2 Chronicles 20:17
In this story, Johoshaphat is facing a big battle! There was no way he could have seen it coming, and there was no way he could prepare a strategy in time to successfully defeat these three armies that were after him and his people. He is cornered in a battle that he didn’t even get himself into. He has no strategy, no plan and no upper hand. When the people had told him that a vast number of people were out to fight against him, it says he was “afraid, and he resolved to seek the Lord”. He turned to God in his time of weakness and listened for His next steps.
I feel like a lot of times we pray for God to just take away our troubles. To just erase the bad things so that we don’t even have to deal with them. However, over the years, I’ve learned that sometimes we go through these battles so that God can show his deliverance and grace and we can be reminded that He is on our side. He will send armies to rescue us in our hardest fights and this is exactly what he did for Jehoshaphat and his people. When he approached God, The Spirit of the Lord spoke to him and said, “Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast number, for the battle is not yours, but Gods” (2 Chronicles 20:15). Yes, I pray all the time for my troubles to just be taken away from me, but after reading this story, I realize that that may not be part of Gods plan.
The end of this story is amazing! God tells Jehoshaphat that this isn’t his battle to fight, however, he still does have to show up the next day and face it! We may not have to physically fight these battles, but we do have to face them and that can be the tough too. I may not be in control of whatever type of illness I’m dealing with, but I have to face it and in facing it, trust and have faith that God is behind the scenes fighting this battle for me. He is already crafting up a way to turn this around and make something positive out of it because that’s what he does. He can take the crappiest situation that the enemy throws at us and He can turn it into the most beautiful story. God brought Jehoshaphat to the fight and sent down an army to ambush the enemy and win the battle!
This story couldn’t have come at a better time for me. Side note: Last Sunday I was supposed to sing the song, Rescue by Lauren Daigle, in church. Of course, I got sick a couple days before and wasn’t able to do so, but it was all part of the plan. I now have a personal connection to this song and it means so much more to me after my 2 hour long conversation with God last night. I may just be Tayla Santos, but my God is willing to send armies after me in my darkest nights. He is willing to fight my hardest fights and he hears my quietest whispers when I feel like I have nothing left.
Thank you Steven Furtick and Lauren Daigle for Supplying the tools I needed to receive this message!