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Q. Is God still your promise keeper or just the keeper of your promises? Holding back blessings.

One of my little ones at school I would observe playing with his broken toy. Now it didn't seem to bother him, as he never asked for something different, but for some reason it baffled me. Day after day, I watched and waited. Finally I approached him and asked him if he wanted me to fix it. As he looked at me, I could see the internal battle going on. On the one hand, his eyes lite up with the prospect that his favorite toy could be fixed, but there was an obvious hesitation as he slowly placed his toy behind his back. He would slowly bring it from his back then put it behind him again as I tried to convince him that I could fix it for him. I told him, I just want to fix it for you, I promise I'll give it back. And there was his conflict, can I trust her promise to give it back.

So today I ask, is God still your promise keeper or just the keeper of your promises? Scripture says, in Numbers 23: 19, God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?

Many of us, like my little kindergartner, are so afraid to trust God with our hopes, dreams, and desires because in our heart of hearts we believe he might not give it back to us. We become content to go through life with what's broken, rather than handing it over to God, because something is better than nothing.

The question went on to ask if I ever felt God was holding my blessings back? Intellectually, no, but our actions or lack there of, speaks truth when we won't. It is, after all, the overflow of the heart. Whatever area of your life that needs Rebounding is that area, that broken toy, that you are refusing to trust God with.

My heart, was one of my broken toys. It had been hurt deeply so often that I chose to hide it behind my back, pull it out periodically , but when someone came too close, I'd pull it back for "safe keeping." All while praising God, studying his word, preaching his word, and yes loving him. But it wasn't with the fullness, the intended joy, God had for me, because I was cutting off my blood line. My mind said I trust you Lord, because in the protected prison of what I had created, I did. I had taken up residence in my pain and grief.

God directed me to I Sam. 16: 1-2, "The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you mourn for Saul, since I have rejected him as king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil and be on your way; I am sending you to Jesse of Bethlehem. I have chosen one of his sons to be king.”

Our broken toys are the things we are mourning over. Lost loved ones, lost opportunities, promotions, houses, you name it. They come in all shapes and sizes, but they all give us permission to mourn. Samuel was in mourning over Saul, disappointment and sadness loomed. The scripture does not give us a time frame, but God allowed him to mourn.

I Sam. 15: 34, Then Samuel left for Ramah, but Saul went up to his home in Gibeah of Saul. Until the day Samuel died, he did not go to see Saul again, though Samuel mourned for him. And the Lord regretted that he had made Saul king over Israel.

But whatever the mourning time frame, God eventually calls Samuel out of mourning. How long have you been mourning what God has rejected. If you didn't receive a job you felt strongly you should have gotten, God is saying, move on, because He closed that door. A failed marriage, release it, because God rejected it for your life. He cannot move you forward if you are determined to hold on to the past.

Saul had been a detour in God's plan for his people. Many of us have been holding on to the detours in our lives and God is rerouting us to get us back on track. From the beginning Jesus was coming through the line of David not the line of Saul. Saul had to be removed in order to set God's plan back on course.

When I began to see that God was setting my life back on course, I could let go of my broken toys. They no longer served their purpose. I was now free to choose my way or God's way.

It took a week before my little one actually handed over his toy. But everyday he would visit me, thinking about it. I continued to try and convince him that if he gave it to me I could fix it and I promised I'd give it back. Even his friend started to say, "Mrs. Foster can fix it and she'll give it back, won't you Mrs. Foster?" as I nodded yes. Finally he handed it over. I fixed it, he smiled the most beautiful smile and ran off to play. I can't help but marvel at how much time in sadness was wasted. One week for him, but years when I look at my own holding on to broken toys.

I'll never know the reason for his holding on so tightly: maybe it's the last toy he received from his mom who is no longer with him, maybe it reminded him of happier times. Whatever it was, it was real and it was deep -just as our reasons are real and deep, but at some point we all come to the same crossroad as this 5 year old, do I trust and surrender or continue to hold on to what's broken?

God is not holding out on us, but he is realigning us with our destiny. Positioning us to receive our blessings.

Are you living life in the detour lanes wondering where you are and why it's taking so long to reach your destination. Let God remove the road blocks that are hindering your journey.

How long will you mourn what God has rejected.

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