Celebrating the Biblical Feasts is life-changing because they so powerfully reveal who God is and how He sees us, which impacts our every thought, emotion, word, and action today! They even expose lies we may believe about God deep in our hearts, that we’re not even aware of! The Feast of Sukkot (or Tabernacles), a 7-day feast taking place this year from October 16th through the 23rd is a great example.
The Feast of Sukkot is a time when we rejoice and give thanks for God’s provision, protection and presence. Traditionally, a sukkah or a hut is built in the backyard or on a balcony where meals are eaten during the holiday. In Israel, families actually live in the Sukkah for the entire week. Sukkahs represent the tents where the Israelites lived in the desert, and reminds us of God’s faithfulness to provide for our every need. Remember, their shoes did not wear out even after walking in the wilderness for 40 years, now that’s a miraculous provision, especially for us women! God’s presence was always guiding them throughout their journey, in a pillar of cloud by day and fire by night, He never left them unprotected.
To sum it up, the primary theme of the Feast of Sukkot (or Tabernacles) is “God dwelling with us.” This is such a significant truth because it reveals the passion of God’s heart to always dwell in intimate relationship with you, and is the only thing in your life that will never change! Ever since the beginning when God walked with Adam and Eve in the garden, He has always sought to make a way for you to experience intimate relationship with Him, and that is still His heart for you today. However, you may not always feel that way. Do you ever feel distant from God, or that He’s obviously not listening because He just won’t answer your prayers? Maybe you’ve felt that He must be disappointed in you, that you can’t live up to His expectations or that basically He has just plain “had enough” of you? Whenever you feel this way, it’s critical that you ask God to show you what lies you’re believing about Him. He hasn’t distanced Himself from you, it’s the lies in your heart that are at the root of your feelings. He never stops desiring intimacy with you, in fact He desires you and delights in you more than you could ever think or imagine!
Now whenever you think about lies, it’s important to remember who is the father or source of lies, it’s the enemy himself! He wants you to believe lies about God so that you won’t experience intimacy with Him. Here are some other lies that I’ve believed about God, ask Him to show you if you ever believe the same:
– He’s unpredictable, not always there when I need Him
– He wants me to carry these burdens
– He wants me to be miserable
– He’s watching, but not involved in the details of my life
– He’s with everyone else, but not me
– He’s upset with me
Oftentimes, we believe these lies because we are putting “someone else’s face on God.” For example, I felt that I had to be perfect for my dad to love me. I can’t imagine even being in his presence or sitting close to him if I was not perfect. In fact, even when I was perfect, I still felt that I wasn’t good enough! Eventually, I put my dad’s face on God, which meant whenever I would mess up or not be “perfect,” I’d feel that I needed to hide from God for awhile, and that He was so disappointed in me, He would want nothing to do with me. In fact before I was a believer, I went through some hellish experiences but I never thought about seeking God for help, after all, He wouldn’t want anything to do with a “bad girl” like me, He’s just interested in perfect church people! Oh the lies we believe!
This season, allow the Feast of Sukkot to encourage you with the truth that no matter how you may be feeling about God, He desires intimate relationship with you! He enjoys being with you, delights in you, can’t stop thinking about you and can’t take His eyes off of you! You’re beautiful to Him even in your weakness and there’s nothing you can do to stop His love from coming toward you. Only He, no one else, can provide you with this kind of perfect love that will never change. In a world that’s so uncertain, that’s an anchor you can hold onto!
To learn more about Jeanne Nigro and her book, Unshaken, click here!