"Use Your Voice! You Are Significant!"
By Anne Ballard
In the month of June, God is drawing people to His presence and reminding us that He is our safety and security. He has called His people for such a time as this and is inviting us to take small action
steps, to re-anchor ourselves in hope and to put our full trust in Him—no matter what is happening in the rest of the world. Be empowered to trust Him and do your part to influence the world around you. You are significant and your voice has the power
to change the world. It's time to take steps of courage and of faith.
No Such Thing as “Insignificant"
"Do not despise these small beginnings, for the LORD rejoices to see the work begin..." (Zechariah 4:10 NLT)
Recently, I was at Costco searching for two of my favorite items. Unable to find them, I talked to an employee and they suggested I put in a request for the products to come back. It was a simple experience but it got me thinking. How often
do we complain about a situation without taking any action? This wasn't the first time I'd been frustrated when one of my favorite items disappeared from stores, but it was the first time I'd considered doing something about it.
we experience frustrations that feel out of our hands. We can feel overwhelmed by the size of a problem, so we choose to do nothing rather than take the small step in front of us that we are able to take. It's easy to feel like we won't make a difference,
so why even try? But our actions are significant. There is always something we can do. We simply need to remember that we have the ability to influence the world around us and be willing to take the often inconvenient action to bring about change.
Throughout history, God often "...chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong" (1 Corinthians 1:27 NIV). He didn't always use a large army to win a battle; sometimes He used those who
seemed insignificant. He reduced the size of Gideon's army to three hundred men. He told the Israelites to sing into battle with King Jehoshaphat. Both times, God's power brought about victory. God chose David, the youngest and most insignificant, to be king.
In essence, God's ability is far more powerful and significant than yours or mine alone. His favor can open doors before you that no man can shut.
God is inviting us to partner with Him. If you have felt small or insignificant, this word
is for you. Ask God to lead you into your action step. Maybe it is taking one small step or rallying other people to also take that same small step. Maybe it's signing a petition, filing a complaint or a suggestion, or volunteering at your local election polling
station. Maybe it's writing to your representative or senator about how you feel about some legislation. Or maybe it's speaking the truth from whatever platform God has given you (social media, your Mom's group, your book club, etc.).
is leading you in the things you've been contending for and showing you that you are significant, and that what you do does make a difference. You are NOT INSIGNIFICANT and God has given you a voice to speak for a reason. You plus God equals a majority.
For Such a Time as This
"...And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?" (Esther 4:14 NIV)
I think everyone can admit that the past two years have been unlike
anything we've seen before. We are truly living in unprecedented times, with bare shelves, riots, masks, skyrocketing inflation, exposure of corruption, battle between Ukraine and Russia, losing loved ones, division, mandates and more. It's overwhelming.
In so many ways, it can feel like we've been transported into an alternate reality or a novel from a dystopian future. This is certainly not the world that I grew up in. As much as many of us have longed for things to return to normal, we
have been chosen by God to be alive for just this time.
Acts 17:26 (NIV) tells us that God "...marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands." That means that He's given us what we need to live during this
time, and we get to tap into it. When things feel hard (as they often do right now), pray that the Holy Spirit would increase your discernment and that the "...eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called
you..." (Ephesians 1:18 NIV). Trust that God is at work in your heart and mind as you've asked Him to be. Then, when you receive some unsettling news, ask God to show you the truth so that you can partner with Him—the Spirit of truth (John 16:13).
God Is Our Provider
For example, perhaps you go to the store and they're out of your staple food item that you need (or multiple staples that you need). Rather than getting depressed or frightened that you won't have enough,
ask God to show you the truth. God's Word tells us over and over that He is our provider. He clothes the lilies of the field and provides for the birds of the air. Therefore, will He not do the same for us? Make that into a declaration and speak it out in
faith. "So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" (Romans 10:17 NKJV). Declare, "God is my provider, and I shall not want!”
Expect God to provide for you. Scripture says that "...He who promised is faithful"
(Hebrews 10:23). In whatever situation you find yourself, do what you can to be a good, responsible steward, but also know that you don't have to do it all yourself, for you are a child of the Most High God.
God is meeting you as a good
provider, and He is also increasing your faith. However, this is a partnership! You also are responsible for building up your faith. God's Word says that it only takes the faith of the mustard seed—which is incredibly small—to move a mountain (Matthew
17:20). Have faith that He's got you in the palm of His hand. Read Psalm 91 as often as necessary. Trust that He will meet you as you've asked Him to, and that He's always speaking.
If you have been feeling hopeless about the state of
the world, this word is for you. You may be paralyzed by fear, anxiety or panic—don't believe the bad reports! For every negative headline, God has a solution, but you must actively pursue truth in order to find what it is.
off the negative news and focus on what God is doing. Surround yourself with truth tellers. Trust that He will meet you as you've asked Him to, and that He's always speaking. Guard your heart and your mind and do your best to take every thought captive. Speak
truth over your situation and don't get caught up in your feelings. Be careful what you speak with your mouth. Bring your words into alignment with the truth of God's Word. Your words are powerful and create atmospheres, therefore be intentional to speak life!
You have been called for such a time, therefore live with this purpose and intention.
God Is Our Protector
"You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in
the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday. A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you." (Psalm 91:5-7 NIV)
Most of us love a sense of safety and security, and we invest in
things that give us the level of security we think we need. There are many things we can add to our lives to make us feel secure—things like a security system, a gate around our property, certain relationships, financial investments or money in the bank.
Although there is merit in being a good steward of what God has given us, we must also be careful not to put our security in these things instead of God.
The reality is that God is the one who protects us. God is the one who provides for
us. We must be rooted and anchored in Him so that when the storms come, we aren't "sleeping safely" because we have a security system set or a cushy savings account, but rather because we know the One who holds us in the palm of His hand. We can rest in the
security of knowing that no matter what comes, He is with us. No matter what comes, He will take care of us. When we are able to take our eyes off of our fears and put our faith and belief in trusting God, the circumstances around us shift to align with the
reality of Heaven.
God is inviting us to take our eyes off the distractions, the external threats and the things that make us afraid. He is inviting us to put our hope, our trust and our belief in Him above all else. If you have been battling
anxiety and fear, this word is for you. If you've been experiencing uncertainty and upheaval in your life, take heart. Uncertainty may have brought fear about the future, but God is the God who holds your future and your present.
are struggling to take your eyes off of your fears, then shift your focus to the promises in God's Word. Psalm 91 is a great place to start. Read it out loud until you believe it. Write out declarations of hope and faith to read over yourself everyday until
you renew your mind with truth. Build up your faith!
Through Adversity and Challenges
"...'Because you loved Me, delighted in Me, and have been loyal to My name, I will greatly protect you. I will answer your
cry for help every time you pray, and you will feel My presence in your time of trouble. I will deliver you and bring you honor. I will satisfy you with a full life and with all that I do for you. For you will enjoy the fullness of My salvation!'" (Psalm 91:14-16
During times of uncertainty, we can get caught up in all of the unknowns. However, we must dwell on the truth of Scripture and God's character. Psalm 91 is a beacon of hope, comfort and reassurance. Take time to reflect on what God
tells us He will do for us.
Throughout this Psalm (which is compiled by David, and whose authorship, according to Jewish tradition, is ascribed to Moses), the author reveals characteristics of God. It speaks of how we are hidden in His
strength (v. 1). He is our hope and stronghold that shelters us (v. 2). He will rescue and protect us from everything that could harm us: false accusation, deadly curses, demonic danger, powers of evil, illness, disaster and stumbling. This doesn't mean that
we will never experience adversity, but rather that God is with us and will protect us through every challenge.
In the last three verses, the psalmist explains that because we have loved Him and delighted in Him and been loyal to His name,
He will protect us, answer every cry for help, allow us to feel His presence, deliver us, bring us honor and satisfy us with a full life so that we might enjoy the fullness of His salvation. Basically, these verses are the promise of God's protection and covering;
the promise that God will dwell with those who love Him and protect His children from evil. Through adversity, challenges or danger, God is with us and will cover and protect us. Hold onto these promises when you experience fear and anxiety over your safety.
This month, God is reminding us of all the promises He's made to us in His Word. He is highlighting Psalm 91 during this time as a reminder of what He promises to do when we're afraid or facing challenges, illness and hard times.
If you have found yourself more focused on the size of the problem you're facing than God's ability, this word is for you. You may be battling anxiety, fear, sleeplessness, panic attacks, illness or stress, but God is bringing you peace through His Word.
Without knowing it, you may have been giving more voice to lies than to truth.
When you feel anxiety or fear coming on, stop and spend time in God's presence. Ask Him to reveal the truth to you and ask Him to allow you to encounter His
presence. Meditate on the truth found in Psalm 91. Read it daily until it soaks into your heart and the truth of it bypasses the lies you've been believing. Memorize it and meditate on it until it transforms your mind.
• I am significant and my voice changes the world.
• I have been chosen by God for such a time as this.
• I am placing my trust in God above any external thing.
• God is my safety and my security.
am anchored in hope.
By Anne Ballard
The Crowning Jewels
528 Ellsworth St. SW
Albany, OR 97321