When the battle is at your door

Technophobic grandmaHelen Calder finished the conference with another message involving a man who fell short, and allowed a woman to overcome on the day of battle. Men do have responsibilities in life … serious, important responsibilities … but when a man falls short of these, God is quite willing to use a woman to stand in his place. Deborah, the prophetess from Judges 4 gave Barack a word from God, to take 10,000 men and conquer Sisera the oppressor. He would not go unless Deborah went with them. She did, but told him the honour of the battle would instead be given to a woman.

Long story short, the woman to whom Deborah was referring, Jael, went against her husband, and while the wicked Sisera slept, Jael stabbed him dead with a tent-peg, and showed him to Barack when he finally caught up with them. The battle honour was certainly due to this Bedouin housewife. In Old Testament times, her role was that of an enforcer of the Law. But, today, in New Testament times, we must be enforcers of Grace.

In a crisis, when a miracle is needed, we are not supposed to just go with the status quo, we must be dispensers of grace. Helen taught 5 truths to remember when the battle comes to your door:

  1. With God in your life you are powerful. Even one woman, Jael, with God, was the majority and overcame the battle. We may look like we are nothing of value to others, but with God on our side we become mighty victors.
  2. You are significant. It is not about our position, our personality, our part, or about the others around us. Jael was not a thermometer that rose and fell as she went up and down. She was a thermostat – she set the temperature. She wasn’t going to entertain this evil oppressor even though her husband wanted to. 
  3. You have everything at hand you need to succeed. And if the battle seems to be overwhelming, you only need to call out to God and praise Him. He will be with you.
  4. You place is significant. You don’t need to be anywhere else. God has put you in the exact places He wants you to be, to fulfil His desires.
  5. You have options. Are we going to flee at the first sign of difficulty? Or will we be the grace enforcers God wants us to be? We get to choose. Impact others’ lives with the message of good news, or say it’s too hard and leave it for someone else?

Women who find themselves ‘by themselves’ don’t have to fear that they will not cope with life’s tragedies alone. We have a kind and loving Father in Heaven who is ready and willing to stand beside us and support us through the trial. He has placed in us from conception, the seed of significance that no-one can take from us. Choose to rise up today, and claim your rightful place, not in the worldview of ‘feminism’ but in God’s view of equality and joint heirship with His son.

Rapunzel’s Story

Beautiful young woman looking in the mirrorWe know the story and the line … “Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your golden hair.” The handsome prince climbs up – I used to cringe at the thought of his weight pulling on her hair! But do you remember why she was in the tower in the first place?

She was there because she had been tricked into believing it was not safe for her outside the tower. She was a self-imposed hostage. Have you ever put yourself in a safe place where you dare not venture out from, lest you get hurt? Have you kept your distance from people because you were scared of intimacy in relationships? Have you not put yourself forward for a promotion because you couldn’t bear the shame if you missed out?

It is not a good place to be, with a “mark down” label. Other people seem to love it at sale time, when they get the benefit from someone else’s “mark down”. But if you are the owner, you definitely feel the pinch each time you sell an item under cost!

So, how is it that some people can bounce back from hard knocks in life, while others feel permanently scarred from them? The simple answer comes in the knowledge of knowing who you are, and knowing how valuable you are. Your value is not at the whim of the market place. Your value is tied up in your whole being; you were valued as an heir right from birth.

Helen Calder spoke more wisdom this morning at Harbourside’s “Free To Live” Women’s Conference. Speaking from Judges 1:12, when Caleb offered his daughter Aksah to the man who could capture a named enemy, his younger brother took up the challenge, and Aksah was given over to him like a chattel. But later, when she asked her husband to ask more from his brother, Caleb, he hesitated. But God does not want us to be affected by others around us who may hesitate in their spiritual walk. Caleb himself asked Aksah what she wanted, and it was given to her – in a double portion. She stepped out of the limiting mindset of the tower, and was able to get the springs to water her inheritance.

Can we look at limiting factors in our lives today, and step out of the limiting mindset we have, to gain a fresh perspective?

I know for myself, I had been held in a limiting mindset for too long, and Helen’s message this morning encouraged me that my decision to break free was a wise call, and in God’s will for my life. Be blessed and walk free, like Aksah.

NB Helen also explained that ‘Aksah’ meant shackles and bondage. A woman with this name could have taken on the attitude of a victim, but instead, she took on the true attitude of an heir.