I had a vision in church of a person standing on a massive empty beach. They stood right down by the water as wave after wave crashed in and the surf rolled up over their ankles. They stood in front of the ocean just absorbing the atmosphere, the energy and smell of the ocean. I have done this and so know from my experience that there is something freeing about standing there letting the wind swirl around you, feeling the vast broad open space around you and just breathing in the goodness of the sea air and sunshine. In fact I am often asked when I get the chance to take vacation what I am going to do and usually my plan and my response is “I am going to watch water”. Generally people chuckle but I sincerely mean it. There is something about it that breathes life into my heart and soul. Today as I prayed about the vision I saw I could tell that God wanted to say something more to me. As I have prayed through the day He spoke and told me “It’s not the broad spaces that need the light”.
He gives us these places to recharge us but so often we tend to think that we belong there permanently. God came to give us abundant life but He also called us to be His stewards. He wants us to take our place as His children and to bring life into the dark and challenging places. Sadly we often miss the true broad spaces because we stand on the beach too long. My pastor has shared several times that God didn’t call us to a playground but to a battleground. God will always give us times of refreshing but when we take our seat with Him and war the right way, using the authority Jesus paid for, we will see people come out of darkness and into freedom. This will fuel our spirits so much more than a trip to watch water. We need to rise up as the church and ask God where He wants us to be planted, even if on the surface it doesn’t look appealing. God needs people in hard places to show others that there is freedom, life and blessings! I have found over and over that when life changes and I am confronted with challenging circumstances that they only remain challenging if I complain about them or spend my time pleading with God to rescue me from them. If I take a step back and ask Him why I am in this situation and what He wants me to do, the circumstances change from challenging to exhilarating because I know I now have a ringside seat to something He wants to do.
I can’t tell you how many times He opens a door to have a real and deep conversation with someone about how much they are loved by God. I am always humbled by these opportunities to see Him move in someone’s heart. I regularly have to remind myself if I stayed in the broad places I would never have seen His movement to ransom someone like He ransomed me.
Visit the broad spaces when you need a time of refreshing but long to live in the hard places for that is where captives are set free!