Learning How to Stand

warrior women series Oct 12, 2023

God's Warrior Woman - Amanda's Story

The sun hadn’t come up yet. As a matter of fact, I don’t even think the moon had disappeared from the slowly emerging break of dawn. I looked out the living room window as if I expected to see someone
walking toward the house to help me.

I wished there had been. In my heart, I knew I needed help, but I didn’t know how to tell anyone about the nightmare my life had become.

This was the only time of the day that I felt safe. I sat down in my favorite chair and opened my bible.

“God, I need your help,” I said with a tremble in my voice and I began to read.

I opened to Hebrews 13:6 which says, “So we can confidently say, ‘The lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?’  ”Did you ever read a scripture and then wonder if it was easier for everyone else to believe it than for you? In the quiet dawn of an unmarred morning, I wondered why it was so incredibly hard for me to trust God. I knew what He had done for those He loved.

He was faithful in every story of the Bible. And I knew that those promises were for me too, but the monster that was about to awaken any moment and shake my world apart felt more real than those promises.

As I prayed through the tension of these two opposing truths, struggling to escape the cords of doubt that were pulling me away from my faith, God spoke to me.

It wasn’t a loud booming voice that He used, it wasn’t a whisper either. It was as if someone had put a microphone in the very center of my heart somehow and the person using the microphone spoke inside of me. The words were rich and crisp, reverberating loudly in my innermost being.

Jesus was speaking and I knew all at once it had to be Him. 

No human voice sounded so intentional, so filled with love, and at the same time so powerful and filled with authority. “I am the shield about you, your glory, and the lifter of your head”, the voice said.

"I am the shield about you, your glory, and the lifter of your head."

I knew I had heard these words before, but in the moment I couldn’t think or reason, all I could do was believe Him.

It was the most amazing thing how these words echoed through me, gaining strength and volume as their frequency exalted before slowly fading like a mist. 
When He spoke these words I knew what they meant. He was telling me to lift my gaze. To stop looking down in shame, to raise my eyes to see His.

As He spoke it was as if He reached out His hand and lifted my chin so I could look directly at Him. He was with me. He was for me. I could believe that I was no longer alone!

Although I had grown up going to church I had never met Jesus. I heard a lot of rules and saw a lot of people who said one thing and did another. When I was old enough to make the choice for myself I stopped going to church. I hate to admit this, but I made fun of people who believed in the Bible.

I thought they were weak. In a way I was right. We are all weak.

What I didn’t know was that God rests His strength on our weak places when we offer them to Him. 
I didn’t accept Jesus at church. I was in my own home. It was just Jesus and me. But I can tell you that everything changed that day.

I began a transformation that is still happening. God had plans for me and back then I couldn't even conceive of how big and good and purposeful they would be. Isn't it funny when we look back we can see so clearly how God was working in every part of our life, especially the times that we didn’t see Him?  

Let me explain my predicament.

I met and married someone without asking God about them. To be fair I didn’t ask God about anything at the time. God and I had this weird relationship. As a young girl, I thought that God was mean and scary and so I avoided Him. After a while, I had convinced myself that He wasn’t real.  

This man I married was my second husband. Evidently making choices without God’s opinion didn’t work out very well for me. At first, I was head over heels in love, but as time went on I began to realize what I thought was love was something else. We had a codependent relationship and he became emotionally toxic, so I guess in the end what we had was a trauma bond.

Growing up I had some difficult relationships that I know now were unhealthy. This is when I learned how to pick my people and my picker was definitely broken. I chose person after person who treated me as I felt when I was young. I didn’t know what was wrong with me or that any of this could change.

But God had a plan for my life and it was good!   
“But God” are my two favorite words in the Bible other than “Jesus rose”.

In every instance when something looks impossible God interjects His presence with a “But God” and changes the trajectory of people’s lives. I call these times Holy Plot Twists. We have to be open to the fact that God is able to do anything.

We can't just say He can do the impossible, we must find the faith to believe it.

As the sun began to shine through the window the light fell onto my lap and my bible was aglow. This time when I saw the promise that the Lord was my helper something had changed. I believed this truth with every fiber of my being.   You see the chair I was sitting in was the farthest point in the house away from the bedroom where my husband was asleep.

About a week after I received Jesus as my Lord and Savior the man I had loved began to show signs of being bipolar. Once these mood swings started he began self-medicating with alcohol and our family was suddenly on an unending rollercoaster ride.

This was the chair I would pray in as he screamed obscenities at the top of his lungs in a drunken stupor. This is the chair where I would beg God to turn my heart into Teflon so the things he was saying wouldn’t stick. This was the chair where I prayed God’s promises out loud in my strongest voice. And this was the chair where I praised God and worshipped Him even when I was being verbally assaulted.

It was in this place that I learned to fight. It was in the quiet that I lifted my spiritual weights and strengthened my voice. It was in this place that God met me and healed me wound by wound until I was able to stand.

It was in the quiet that I lifted my spiritual weights and strengthened my voice. It was in this place that God met me and healed me wound by wound until I was able to stand.

And each day I put on my armor, carefully tightening my breastplate of righteousness, securely fastening my belt of truth, slipping my feet into my shoes of peace, placing the helmet of salvation on my head, picking up my shield of faith, and grasping my sword of the spirit in my hand tightly.

And then, I stood. I stood firm. I wielded my sword releasing the truths of God’s Word into my home and I stood firm believing in the power of those words.

This is when everything in my life began to change, when I truly believed that the Lord was with me fighting the battle for me and protecting me with all of the weapons I needed to not only survive but to begin to fully live.

Today I am a Christian writer, speaker, and podcast host. I am no longer married. I have two amazing children who also love the Lord. And my greatest joy is to share the hope and love of Christ in every way I can with anyone who will listen.

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Amanda Schaefer is a podcast host, author, and speaker. She carries with her the goodness of looking through a lens of gratitude. The “A Cup of Gratitude” podcast is global, reaching more than 96 countries and 1650 cities.

As a speaker, Amanda teaches the Bible while challenging audiences to live the way God intends. She has a way of making scripture come alive through everyday examples. Amanda’s books include, “Crumbled, A Place for Broken People” and “Daily “Inspiration”. Her books are down to earth and packed with biblical truth.

Connect with Amanda at acupofgratitude.org, Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram, YouTube.

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