Sunday morning found me heading out to church with a rather non charismatic spirit. I was pretty much out of it from cleaning the church the day before, so I was just simply trying to put one foot in front of the other. When I arrived I honestly could not for the love of me get into the spirit of praise my mind kept drifting off to the dumbest thoughts like giraffes and boneless buffalo wings. Though two praise songs went by with me wrestling with mind and spirit, the worship drew my attention back to the Lord.
There’s just something about the fact when you experience God all the more because you just weren’t feeling it, or because you were just “so out of it.”
That morning we spoke on one of the names that is very dear to my heart.
Which means the Lord is My Banner.
Its crazy to look back at this time last year. At this time last year Australia was just a vision off in the distance. (Now through the work of God, my departure to Australia will be in the second week of July.)
A vision coming to its fruition. God patiently and carefully revealing parts of His master plan. Breathing life, and promises. Through that journey of fervently and passionately seeking God for his continual guidance, and revelation His voice came….
God knows us. He knows us better than we know ourselves. He knows our fears before we do, and during that time he knew mine. My fear: failure.
So His voice did come. In a whirlwind of passionate tongues, that I could not understand. That night found me praying to the Lord, words I do not remember. And in this passionate array of words and sentences God began to bring down tongues of fire. I remember distinctly my lips crying out… “Nissi, Nissi, Nissi…” At this time in my life I had never heard the word. So I decided to so some research. And God led me to the significance. “Jehovah is my banner.” Which means we have victory in Him. Victory is in Him alone….
This discovery than led me to the book of Exodus, to the chapter when the Israelites are fighting with the Amalekites. And Moses goes up the mountain to pray, and as long as he keeps his hands up Israel prevails, and when he drops his hands out of exhaustion the Israelites loose. Moses exhaustion leads God to send two men up to Moses to keep his hands up for him… and the victory is brought to the Israelites. And Moses ends up naming the place, “Jehovah Nissi,” the Lord is my Banner!
One of the many messages that I got out of the story was simply, “don’t drop your arms.” Don’t give up during the battle, even when you grow weary in exhaustion for the Lord will deliver you. Keep believing, keep hoping, keep fighting, for the Lord is your victory. He will deliver you…
So when we spoke on Sunday morning on this particular passage, you better believe that the memory of this event flooded back to my mind… just when I needed to hear it again. I needed to remember where the Lord brought me out of, the strength and promise He had imparted. Because I had begun (and still at times) began to truly get discouraged, and becoming afraid of failure. God brought me back to that sweet place of remembrance, to that same place of his gentle voice and spirit. To that mountain where I laid it all down in physical exhaustion, to the place where He remembered me.
Our pastor that morning spoke on Old Testament Culture. Raising hands was a way to pray. To release that which you could not handle, and in return receive grace, strength, of the Lord & obtain confidence. I don’t know about you but we get the better end of the deal. ;)
So as a new season begins to emerge, I realize God may have to take me to the things of old (his promises, moments, teachings) to help me in the present. To remind me of the true source of strength, life, and perseverance. He is Jehovah Nissi, among many, many other powerful derivatives. He is true means of strength and victory.