I love "a-ha" moments. Those rare occasions when I have a flash of absolute clarity and everything suddenly seems so simple. One of these moments came through a 7-year-old and a 9-year-old. Sophie and Izzie. Two spunky, adorable sisters.
Their mom, who is one of my dearest friends, casually mentioned one day that the girls have a Declaration that they have memorized and they say aloud each morning before school. When I asked them if they would share it with me, they happily obliged. I was blown away by the length of it, for starters, and their ability to remember all the words, but more than that, the words they were saying struck a chord deep in my soul. Sophie and Izzie's Declaration is a profound affirmation of who they are as daughters of the King. Listening to them that day, I thought of how different this world might be if girls were given mantras like this at a young age, reinforcing their value and worth in our Creator's eyes, acknowledging a choice to be kind and respectful and loving.
They inspired me to write my own Declaration, which I have memorized and rehearse in my head almost daily. And I have to say it makes a difference! It helps me when I'm conflicted over a decision I have to make or when I'm tempted or anxious or afraid that maybe I don't have what it takes. Many nights I fall asleep silently reviewing these words. It somehow puts my mind at ease and keeps me from going into problem-solving mode after getting into bed. Most of the statements are taken directly from Scripture, a combination of the New Living Translation, the New International Version, and the Message.
My encouragement to you is to come up with your own Declaration. Feel free to take parts of this one. It doesn't have to be this long. Personalize it. Pray first. Ask God to reveal to you how He sees you. What He has called you to embrace. Then open your Bible and have your journal and pen ready.
I am a child of the Most High. I am cherished, chosen and celebrated. I am His work of art, His treasured possession, a sanctuary in which His Spirit dwells. I live to know Him, to be known by Him, and to make Him known.
I am strong because my God arms me with strength.
I am confident because He goes before me and makes my way perfect.
I am victorious because He trains my hands for battle and gives me His shield of victory.
This life I call "mine" is no longer my own. My ransom was costly but has been paid in full with His blood. My old nature has been crucified with Christ and it is no longer "I" who live, but Christ lives in me.
Therefore I choose faith over fear. I choose forgiveness over bitterness. I choose to give thanks rather than complain. I choose to be the change I wish to see in the church and in the world. I choose to dwell in the current of the Living Water, allowing the Wellspring of Life to wash over me, flow through me, and splash wildly over all those around me.
I will embrace my calling to refresh the weary, to feed the hungry, to shine light in the darkness, to proclaim His glory to the younger generation, and to love well.
I will be an authentic, life-giving vessel set apart for His sacred use. I will fight for His kingdom on my knees.
I gladly take my place as a sold-out, Spirit-filled, laid-down lover and worshipper of the Lord Jesus Christ. Where He leads me, I will follow. When He says "come and see", I will trust Him. I can laugh at the days to come because He holds my future in his hand.
He has invited me to join Him in the dance, and I say YES!