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ENCOURAGEMENT - jan 2023 - unearthly thing.jpg

A Story of Resolute Resolutions...

Recently, I went through a gut wrenching, soul-aching couple of weeks.  God was doing some deep, dark sifting through my intellect and spirit. He was really taking out the garbage.


I ask Him to do this nearly every day. I ask Him to help me remove any thought, attitude or action that I have which might come between us.


He certainly took me up on this request. The Creator of the Universe cleaned out some of my modes of thinking, and he showed me how they were not what He had in mind for me. They were hurting me and my relationship with Him.

It felt like an open wound that needed some time to heal. Depression came over me while I grieved these old ways. But they had to go.


Hindsight is 50/50, I say. I don’t always remember the lessons I am so graciously taught. My husband, Tim, recorded the melody of a new song he was working on and gave it to me to write lyrics for it. The Divine Clean-Out issues will be in the lyrics for the new song. I am sure to remember my lessons since I will be singing them over and over. The song is called “When God takes Out the Garbage.”


I only have the chorus lyrics written at this point:

“When God takes out the Garbage

He rips off the pretty bandage

It hurts for a time, but there’s healing inside

When God takes out the garbage”


The vocals and feel of the song will most likely have a street rock/punk attitude, but it will forever be in my repertoire of songs, so I will never forget what God did for me.


Almost all my songs come from insights that God has shown me, good and bad. God is good to use music to cement His work in my brain, heart and soul.


I took notes of all the things God spoke to me during this time through devotionals and Joyce Meyer podcasts. I have a lot to pull from when I write the verses for the new song.


I realized these areas of concern had been ingrained in me for years, so I needed to make sure these weeds and garbage God pulled out of me didn’t grow back. I will perpetually ask Him for help with this. I will do my part by making a list of resolutions of areas I resolved to change...for good.


Is the timing a coincidence that right now a new year begins? No. I don’t believe in coincidences. I’ve never really been one to have a list of New Year’s resolutions, since they seemed flippant, and easy to dismiss if they don’t come to fruition. My new less-garbage-filled resolutions were serious sanctification. But I like that it is a new year, for my new thinking, so I went with it.


So here are the “areas of improvement” resolution list God put on my heart:


*Seek to be “famous” in Heaven, not on Earth.

I have published four novels and many short stories. I had been harboring a low-level grief and anguish over not achieving some measure of success with these publications yet. No “Best Selling Author” title appears before my name. I had not been able to fund my cosmetics and shoes penchants with the money I made from writing like I hoped would happen.


But God used the books He gave me to help people in their spiritual walks with Him. Several people made decisions to invite Jesus as their Savior into their lives through the novels.


That is far more important than any accolade the world can offer. “Time here on earth is like a grain of sand in all eternity,” Joyce Meyer said in her “True Greatness” podcast.


God really made sure I realized this. Ouch…but in a good way.


*Know who I am in Christ.

Sounds simple right? Especially for someone who has been in a close relationship with Jesus since 1991. But I had too much self-doubt and a sense of worthlessness for someone who is covered in the blood of Christ.


God showed me I needed to know I had value, worth and security in Him. I was deceived into thinking I needed to do “important things” in the world in order to be deemed significant or worth anything to myself or to other people.


“You will never be more important, or loved by Christ, more than you are at this moment,” Joyce Meyer also said in her podcast.


This statement blew my mind and melted my heart. Jesus is the essential and most loved person to me. To learn that I am so valued and loved by Him as well is a lot to wrap my head around. Yet it is so simple. I am still reflecting on this.


*Learn to serve others

I have served in many church ministries through the years. My husband and I have been worship leaders at various churches for over 15 years. But God is calling me to serve others like Jesus did:  at all times and regardless of circumstances.


God gave me a purpose right where I am, and He strategically placed me there for His purpose (as He has done for everyone on Earth). His purpose for us is to glorify Him and expand His kingdom. Priority number one.


Everything is in God’s hands, including me and the gifts and abilities He has given me. I read in a YouVersion App devotional about overcoming self-doubt and unworthiness that I should be like a garden hose connected to the water spigot, like being connected to Father God. “And then the Holy Spirit is like the water that flows through us and the books we write in order to water, refresh and help many people.” So beautiful.


So, me, this connected garden hose, one who is loved by Jesus right here and right now, will let the living water of God flow from me through novels and stories, and songs, to do God’s work, to reach people for Him, and not for me.


Such a comforting and glorious resolution. And so freeing.


Angela Dolbear is the author of contemporary Christian novels, such as THE GARDEN KEY Series, and THE TORMENTOR’S TALE, as well as many short stories. Her novels are available in paperback, Kindle and audiobook formats on Amazon. Angela writes real, relatable, and reverent fiction. She loves reading, writing prose, as well as writing and recording music with her husband Tim in their studio in Nashville, TN--listen to their music on Sound Cloud.  Please drop by and sign-up for news and to read new stories and hear new original music at Blessings to you!

When God Takes Out the Garbage
by Angela Dolbear
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