By Zatoyia Jones Colquitt
Did you know it’s never too late to experience God for yourself or invite Him into your heart?
I always saw evidence in others’ lives of how God changed their situation, which made me believe that He is honest and does exist.
But did you know it’s never too late to experience those signs and wonders yourself?
What Was Holding Me Back
Throughout the past couple of years, God has awakened my senses.
On that day, I was at my last straw, and I asked God to show me why and what I was doing wrong.
I wanted to feel valued.
I wanted to feel worthy.
I wanted to know that I made a difference.
There were things and people in my life holding me back from walking in the purpose God had for me. I knew there was something more to this life than just observing what God was doing for other people.
But what was holding me back was…. Me!
Lost, But Hungry
See, I had an encounter with God long ago, but what I didn't know was that He was revealing Himself to me.
During my first fast, I was thirty-five years old. I was lost, but hungry and I had a desire to learn and understand who God is. I had been to other places and churches, but the teaching hadn't register until I met a pastor who taught with insight and clarity.
That year, I found a place where I could comprehend what it means to feel the Holy Spirit and not be afraid to shout about it!
It was clear, I needed a change in my life.
I needed to make better choices and decisions.
I needed help.
I needed God!
All I Knew
“And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes” Daniel 9:3 NIV.
So there I committed to a fast even though I didn’t know what I was doing or what was happening in my life.
All I knew was that I wanted to commit to something other than a job for the first time.
I had done the twenty-nine-day fast earlier that year, but the three-day fast at the end of the year was different. It consisted of a complete fast.
I could abide in God, listening to worship music, meditating on His Word, staying obedient, attending prayer, and fasting from distractions. But, no, NO Food!
At 3 pm, the pastor asked each of us to come up so that she could pray over us individually.
She anointed my head with oil, and as soon as she placed her hand on my forehead, I immediately felt it – a charge! The only way I can describe the charge is to compare it to the movie Frankenstein when he flipped the switch to bring life back into his wife.
I could feel the charge move through me, reviving my insides, and I couldn’t control the jolt reflex in my body.
I Could Fight
Later that evening, I went back to service, and the pastor called me up again.
This time when she placed her hand on my forehead, I felt a flow of water gushing through my head like a woman whose water just broke, as if it was time for delivery.
I was drowning in the gush of water entering my head, affecting the movements of my body like a need to grasp for air.
I didn’t understand it then, as I do now, but God was revealing Himself to me.
It was my first breakthrough.
John 16:21 NIV reads, “A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born, she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world.”
God birthed something in me that needed to come out.
'Once the water breaks, a woman begins to experience uneasiness, contractions, and a desire to push.
With the help of fasting and prayer, I could fight through the uneasiness of spiritual contractions that produced hunger, headaches, disappointments, heartache, frustration, anger, and hurt. With this new discipline, I could invite new life to bust through.
"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11 NIV).
When I surrendered my will to God through fasting and praying, I invited Him to break layers and release things in my life that were holding me back from walking in purpose.
I See Success
That was only the beginning.
The seed had been planted, and I would learn to break away from fear to teach God’s word throughout the years that would follow.
Although the process, the contractions, and the labor have been REAL, the breakthrough I continue to experience helps me learn more about myself. Now, I recognize how to make the necessary changes to become a better version of myself in HIS image!
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding Proverbs 3:5 (NIV).
This walk is not for the laid-back or for those who choose to blame others.
You won't always be ready for what God points out about you, but if you trust and abide in Him, He will help you be learn to be accountable and responsible. You'll become a better steward of what He has given you, and the changes that take place in you, will happen for His Glory.
I don’t want to talk about it anymore. Instead, I want to walk and live a life of stewardship every day.
God’s plans for my life haven’t changed.
As I go through each transition of my life, inviting Him into every area of my life, I see the changes.
I see success, and one thing is clear: He is not done with me yet! And the same is true for you! Keep going!
Aside from the natural roles as a wife, mother and pastor’s wife, Zatoyia holds two master’s degrees: one in Business Administration and the other in Adult Education and Training. Her passion is to teach and help others develop spiritually, personally and professionally while leading them to Christ and empowering them to get healing from the inside out through a personal relationship with God. In her free-time, she enjoys watching movies, spending time with her boys and family, bowling, and learning to praise dance from her nieces.
You can connect with Zatoyia on Instagram @queenzcol.