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U R My Provider (laying down what you want for what you need)

When faced with laying down the treasure of his heart, Abraham obeyed.

He rose early, took his son Isaac whom he loved, and went up to the mountain to offer him as a sacrifice. When his son questioned him and there was no answer in sight, Abraham proclaimed, “God himself will provide.”

Mountains

If he had to lay down the treasure of his heart, he would lay it down. In the thicket of the biggest war he would ever fight — the battle he waged to hold on to what was his — he was willing to lay it down.

When he raised the knife to sacrifice the one he loved, the Lord called: “Abraham! Abraham!” Twice. “Do not lay a hand on the boy!” You do not have to do  this — I will provide another way — and now that I see you have my heart, I will bless you.

Sometimes we must be willing to give up the thing we want to hold on to in order to learn the greatest lesson of all – that God will make a way. That it’s not up to us. That anything we hold on to on this earth lacks weight compared to our hearts becoming like His.

With the audacious faith of Abraham, I am willing to lay down the thing I want to hold on to: my ministry. We have looked into me getting a different job — and I’m laying it all on the altar, believing The LORD will provide. If God, in the darkest, scariest moment of Abraham’s life, gave Abraham what he needed, why wouldn’t he do that for you and me?

Say it with me: Lord, you are our Provider. We stand audaciously, courageously, boldly believing, and we will not stop believing. We will take you at your Word. We will stand upon the mount of your promise.

I stand now, on this mountain of testing, upon this truth: I have sought first His kingdom, and all things will be provided for me as well. I stand on that promise.

Sometimes we think he will provide in dollars and cents — and he does — yet much of the time it is deeper than that — it is audacious faith he his after — the surrender, the obedience, the perseverence that produces the greatest riches within us.

I’ve been searching for the answer to what I cannot see. But just because I don’t see it, that doesn’t mean it’s not there. It is.

When I raise my knife to sacrifice the one thing I want, he calls to me, twice:  Jen! Jen! 

I stop. Trust. Wait.

The sun rises the next morning, and He says to me:

[pullquote]”May he send you help from the sanctuary and grant you support from Zion. May he remember all your sacrifices and accept your burnt offerings. May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed. May we shout for joy over your victory and lift up our banners in the name of our God.”[/pullquote]

The tears run quietly down my face.

[pullquote]”Now, this I know: the Lord gives victory to his anointed. He answers him from his heavenly sanctuary with the victorious power of his right hand. Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. They are brought to their knees and fall, but we rise up and STAND FIRM. (Psalm 20:2-8)”[/pullquote]

He’s going to help you, friend. He’s giving you support. He’s granting victory. He’s protecting you. He will give you the desires of your heart and make your plans succeed. Stand firm. Stand on the mount of those promises. 

In faith, Abraham:

  1. heard God’s voice
  2. said yes to to thing he didn’t want to do
  3. spoke with authority to his son: “The Lord will provide.”
  4. was willing to sacrifice what he loved
  5. heard the voice of the Lord, twice
  6. obeyed, once again
  7. was blessed beyond measure –along with his descendents

So If your son or daughter asks you today, “How will this be?” You assure them: “On the mount of the LORD it shall be provided.” (Genesis 22:14)

If God tells you to lay something down, lay it down.

He may do what he did for Abraham, and for me: tell us to pick it right back up again. it could be a test — to see if you have his heart.

Believing for More,

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About the Author: Jennifer

Jennifer Strickland is a wife, mom, TEDx speaker, and former professional model. She is the author of Girl Perfect, More Beautiful Than You Know, and Beautiful Lies, among other books and Bible studies that teach women their worth in God’s eyes. Since leaving the modeling industry, she founded URMore.org, a non-profit ministry that provides resources to hurting women and girls. Her favorite moments are found working on the family ranch with her husband, who she calls “the Cowboy”; in her kitchen, concocting a new version of her famous spaghetti; or spending time with their three precious children.

WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING

Jennifer is a captivating speaker. She keeps the listener hanging in wonder of what’s coming next! Her presentation is not only absorbing, it reveals the truth of God’s power to heal a wounded spirit.

Barbara Brown

Barbara Brown, Former Stonecroft Ministries Regional Representative, San Diego, CA

“The ‘P’ word [perfection] may be the heaviest burden women bear. All the misguided things we do to attain it can keep us away from what we need most – the unconditional love of God the Father. The Girl Perfect Study Guide gives you a map to the wholeness you were created for.”

Nancy Ortberg

Nancy Ortberg, author and former teaching pastor at Willow Creek Community Church

“The Girl Perfect Study Guide shatters the lies girls and women believe and points to the ultimate truth, which really does set us free. I am confident that this study will help thousands discover a beauty, purpose, and worth that truly lasts. Thank you Jen for exposing the ‘perfect life’ and inviting girls to experience God’s ‘perfect love.'”

Allie Marie Smith

Allie Marie Smith, Founder of Wonderfully Made

One of the best testaments to what Jennifer is doing for the young girls and women of today is a comment from my eleven-year-old granddaughter: “Grammy, I want to read this book and hear her again. She’s good and I learned a lot.” This is exactly what I experienced from a grown-up perspective when I was introduced to Jennifer Strickland’s amazing story. Read it and see if you don’t get the real story from an icon model and a powerful speaker of truth.”

Thelma Wells

Thelma Wells, D.D. (Hon), President of Woman of God Ministries
As a teacher, participator, and observer of public speaking for most of my life, I’ve come to realize that many speakers make one of two mistakes when interacting with their audience (especially when that audience is mainly teenagers.) They either expect their audience to climb up to their level (which feels unattainable to the crowd) or they step down to the level of their listeners (which feels cheap and pandering.) The best speakers meet their audience where they are and lead them up to where they want them to be. This feels genuine. This is what Jennifer did over the last few days at our school.
Jennifer Strickland is a funny, engaging, dynamic speaker. She shares truth with authority and credibility that comes from both experience (her story is powerful) and an obvious depth of study in the Bible. The ideas she presents about Value, Identity, and Purpose are truths everyone needs to hear.
I heartily recommend her for your conference, school retreat, or any event where you want your people to be encouraged and challenged with deep, impacting truth.

Andrew Doan

Andrew Doan, Concord Christian Academy, Concord, NH

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