Freedom In The Process

We’ve all been in situations when we’ve defended ourselves, or wanted to. Maybe someone heard us wrong, and we tried to explain that we didn’t say what they thought we said; or that we didn’t do what they thought we did. Maybe they misinterpreted our intentions-and we’re frantically trying to convince them that our heart isn’t evil and we could never intentionally hurt someone. 

A little tid-bit about me: my personality is very fun-oriented. I enjoy adventures and time in community. My love language is quality time. I am extremely extroverted and am energized by groups of people. One of the things that pulled me into church in the beginning was the community and fellowship. I loved this idea that we could be a part of something meaningful-something bigger than us; A place where we love those who are hurting and lost. Knowing that about my personality, helps me to explain that I don’t like being at odds with others. I don’t like when I know someone is upset with me, or has misinterpreted an action of mine. I don’t like knowing that I’ve upset someone, and I immediately want to go and apologize to them and make things right. I instantly want to defend my actions and explain myself.  

I believe that God places us in situations to break us out of habits that cause us to depend on ourselves more than Him. Sometimes we miss it, and continue to depend on ourselves. But if we are able to capture that intentional lesson, it can be life changing. I’m sure that God has tried to teach me this same lesson multiple times, but there was one time in particular when it stuck. I found myself in a situation where I knew someone had misinterpreted my actions. I knew that someone had spoken wrongly about me, but I couldn’t defend myself. 

In these situations we tend to feel even more bound, when God’s heart for us is to be free. I wonder, how often do we do this to ourselves?  How often do we feel bound by the process that God is doing in our hearts, rather than freed? This particular situation taught me a lot. It taught me how to let go and allow God to defend me. It also taught me how to say forgiveness over someone-even in the midst of my hurt, and to pray over that person as well. Every day I prayed this same prayer: that God would soften thier heart, that He would defend me, that He would help me to forgive them, and would forgive me as well. Every time I thought about this person, I would say “God, I forgive them.” These were just a few scriptures that I remembered when doing so. 

1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 

Ephesians 4:31-32 “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”

Matthew 6:12 (From the Lord’s Prayer) “And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.” 

God is in the process. There is so much freedom in allowing God to fight my battles rather than worrying about what everyone is saying about me. At the end of the day we need to ask ourselves, “Who am I trying to please? God or man?” If we are more worried about people pleasing than we are about doing right by God, then we have made that person an idol. It took a long time for me to realize that even friendships can be an idol. Find solitude in knowing what Romans 8:31-38 says. 

Romans 8:31-38 NIV “What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare His own Son, but gave Him up for all-how will He not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died-more than that, who was raised to life-is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love if Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: ‘For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.’ No, in all things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any power, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. 

I see this image of a skilled potter at work, with someone reaching over their shoulder (who has no knowledge) trying to get their hands in this masterpiece that the potter is working on. I see them getting their hands unnecessarily dirty, only to make things worse-rather than better. Wouldn’t it just be easier to watch the potter at work? To allow Him to form His creation into what He wants rather than what we want, or what we think He wants? 

The lesson that I learned is that it’s important to allow others to have space to heal. I don’t always need to try to pick up the pieces myself. It’s important to allow God to work in the process. I learned that it’s important to forgive in the midst of my hurt and mess, rather than to let bitterness and anger fester. I learned that when I allow God to work His process, then I don’t need to get my hands dirty. Though things may not work out in my own time frame, they do work out in God’s. It’s important to be willing to give up the control in my own life, and to trust that God will do what He said He would. There is so much freedom in the process, there is so much freedom in forgiveness, and there is so much freedom in letting go. 

Are you allowing God to work in the process in others as well as yourself? Are you watching the potter at work, or reaching over His shoulder and getting your hand unnecessarily dirty? Are you forgiving in the midst of your hurt and pain? Do you trust God enough to let go of-whatever the situation may be?
 
 
 
 
Written By:
Pastor Harli Bellamy-Doss

4 Responses to “Freedom In The Process”

  1. Sharon Chauncey says:

    Thank you so very much. I have just got home. after what hss been a stress filled week and I really needed to read that sometimes we judt need to give space for healing.

  2. Sheila Swilley says:

    That was very well said. I know I have a hard time letting things go. I also have a hard time forgiving. So please keep me in ur prayers

  3. Jada Wallace says:

    I love this article!! I was once told that ,” you can’t control what people say.” Anytime i hear someone say something that i know isn’t true, always turn to God and let him handle it. Someone will always say something. Sometimes a person can misinterpret what someone says too, and then you have the snowball affect but God can take care of that snowball too!This article is filled with wisdom!!We love you Harli!

  4. Elizabeth K Werner says:

    Thank you so much for this article. It hit home so strongly. It was something I desperately needed to do.

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