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Monthly Archives: June 2012

Forgiveness

Our Father, which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy Name. Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, As it is in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, As we forgive them that trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, But deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, The power, and the glory, For ever and ever. Amen.

Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father who is in heaven will also forgive you your transgressions  Matthew 11.25

 

A question was asked recently.  What things are you having a hard time giving to God?  I first wrote down a question mark.  I honestly thought to myself that I have given everything to Him.  I first met God at a cross roads of nearly committing suicide.  I was looking out my window thinking how I could kill myself and not survive.  My TV was on in the background and woman screamed at the top of her lungs ‘Nothing is impossible with God!’  That day I made a choice to believe in Him, I said to Him that I was not sure if He was real, but I had nothing to lose and everything to gain by believing in Him.  My life began to change and began to take on shape and for once in two years I had hope again.  I felt I walked very closely with God and He had so carefully walked me through trusting Him with my finances, with my future, my relationships, and my safety.  I thought I was good.  As I began to dig deeper with the question to myself,  I realized that the one thing that I had not given over was forgiving my parent who had hurt me for most of my life.  I had gotten to such a point that I could not bear to hear their voice.  One day I was struggling so bad that I prayed to God to show me them through His eyes.  When I prayed the prayer, I really did not know what to expect and I basically went about my business not giving it much thought.  It was 3 days later I had a vision and I saw my parent being surrounded by what looked to be pit bulls and they were growling at her and they were getting ready to attack her.  I knew that the symbolism was that they are surrounded by the enemy and I believe that they are powerless to the things that they say and do.  I believe it was the next day I got a download from God and this is what He gave me.  He said, ‘If your parent’s mother were to pass away today, your parent would never know what unconditional love is’.  I immediately broke down and cried – my heart was broken that my parent is close to 70 years old and all they know is rejection, abuse and anything other than love.  You see I have been part of a generational cycle that has come from my grandmother.  I am not certain what her mother or father had done to her.  My grandmother is still living and there is still time for God to do a miracle in their relationship.  My prayer for my parent is that they would know what unconditional love is.  Today I see my parent much differently.  It does not justify anything that has been done, however, I find it easier to forgive through my understanding and seeing them as God sees them.  I believe God’s heart is broken too.

 I know you have been hurt too and on this path to healing we must forgive those who have sinned against us if we want to experience the fullness of healing.  Perhaps like me the thought of forgiving someone seems impossible.  God is a God of love, mercy and forgiveness and He has forgiven you and I of much.  Forgiveness does necessarily let them off the hook, but it frees you.  Unforgiveness affects everything about you.  It affects decisions that you make, it will poison your relationships and even make your body physically sick.  I once read a quote from a doctor, ‘that most people could leave the hospital if they would forgive those they have hurt and those that have hurt them!’  Let’s decide not to allow them to affect us negatively or have any more destructive power in our lives and that begins with forgiveness.  I love you and I believe in you.

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Posted by on June 29, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Divine Carpenter

Every week I write a daily devotional for a Celebrate Recovery group — you may not be in recovery, however, the revelation that God gives is relevant to all.

“Is not this the carpenter’s son? Is not His mother called Mary, and His brothers, James and Joseph and Simon and Judas?  Matt. 13:55

A carpenter has the skills and knowledge to cut, fasten, carve, and design objects made of wood and other materials, they also repair and design new structures.  Did you know that the frame work of a house is one of the most imporant foundations of a home.  The frame work is a structure that is put in place to not only secure the structure and protection of the outside of your home, but also the inside.   It does not surprise me that Jesus was a carpenter by trade before he was in ministry.  Jesus, like his earthly father was a carpenter and the same is true for him today.  Jesus is just like his heavenly father.  I believe that God is showing us a picture so that we can understand who he is and who our heavenly father is.  Metaphoically speaking, Jesus in our life comes that he would repair, rebuild and even create new things in our life.  We have broken relationships, we have hurt others, others have hurt us and we have missed opportunites and dreams.  Jesus as our heavenly carpenter can repair, restore and build new beginnings for us.  As we are walking out this journey of recovery we trust that those things that are broken and lacking wil be restored to us by allowing Jesus to be the skilled carpenter in our lives.  As I mentioned above, Jesus is also like his heavenly father.  It is written that Jesus said, if you have seen me you have seen the Father.  Jesus reflecting our heavenly father is one of unconditional love, grace, mercy and forgiveness.  Today I encourage you to trust God with your fears, anger and anything else that you are holding on to and allow him to reconstruct, repair and build a new foundation in your life so that you can be and have everything that God intends for you.  Also, do not let your hurts, habits and hang ups be in vain, you will meet people on purpose who will be going through something that you can relate to and you will be the arms and hands extended of Jesus. You can lead them to a heavenly carpenter’s love and divine reconstructive healing.
God loves you and so do I !

 
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Posted by on June 24, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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He is strong through me

When I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:10

Jesse “The Body” Ventura once body-slammed religious belief. “Religion is a sham and a crutch for weak-minded people,” he said. Later, he tried to clarify his remarks, but this former wrestler had put into words how our world wrestles with faith.

“Strong men don’t need religion. They make it on their own,” our world says. “People believe in God when they can’t handle the pressure. They reach out for some higher power and never develop the strength and stamina, the guts and determination needed to make it on their own.”

To oppose this view, some Christians celebrate strong men of faith. They put Samson in the ring with Jesse Ventura.

Billy Graham, however, took a different approach. When asked if Christianity was a crutch, Graham is said to have replied, “All of us limp.” Rather than hide from human weakness in a boast of manly strength, Graham stated the obvious truth; in some way, “all of us limp.”

It may be in your relationship with your son. After years of trying, you still can’t get break the silence. It may be at work, as personal conflicts prevent a fair evaluation of what you do. It may be an internal battle with recurrent bouts of depression, something you live with, yet never mention. What’s your limp?

To some, a limp means your wrestling days are over. But not to God. In fact, God himself calls people to follow, even with a limp.

Satan once claimed this world and all who live in it as his own. Yet Jesus came and fought for you. He fought to the death and rose victorious, claiming all those wounded by Satan as his own.

The apostle Paul could never forget the days he persecuted Christians. Yet memories of his sin only caused him to cling more strongly to God’s promises of grace.

This is the wrestling match of faith. Bruised and beaten, bleeding, exhausted, Paul rises and continues to fight. Not in his own strength but in the strength of God. “When I am weak, then I am strong,” he says. Even though he limps, he walks with God.

All of us walk with a limp. But we make our way forward, not with boasts and bravado, but by faith in the gracious strength of God.

Strong Savior, when I limp, draw to near to me, that I may walk with you. Amen.

 
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Posted by on June 18, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Confession is healing

When I refused to confess my sin, I was weak and miserable, and I groaned all day long.” (Psalm 32:3 NLT)

Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much” James 5:16

I wanted to send this to our group this week because I wanted to emphasize the power of our small groups and how effective it is for us to share not only our sins but the sins against us. The purpose for me finally taking this leap of faith and entering into a step study again solely for my kidnappy is because the trauma is not meant to be held in my body. The pain of my dysfunction has finally after 12 years become greater than the fear of facing my pain. The enemy has been lying to me for a very long time and I will explain. When I would share my story with anyone I would begin to experience chest pains and then I would become afraid and I would not share any more about what happened to me. The lie that I began to believe is that ‘if I were to release the pain of what happened to me, even in the smallest of amount, that I would experience extreme physical pain and potentially cause my body much harm and even possily die!” The enemy silenced me for 12 long years and because of that I have paid a costly price for that. So much has been stolen from me because of my silence. My physical body now has many limitations that have kept me from have the abundant life that I am to have. But God’s word says in James that if I confess — or in other words if I do not hold this in that I may be healed!!! The second lie that I had to over rule is that God is greater than the enemy. I gave the enemy so much power over my life, but God is greater and He is in control of my life and I can now trust Him with my pain that He is my strong tower, my refuge and I will not die by facing and releasing the pain that is trapped inside. As I was in God’s word last night, this is what He gave me and I want to pass this on to you as your promise! Joel 2:25 “I will make up to you for the years that the enemy has eaten and stripped away”!

Confessing my sin is good for my health; any psychologist will tell you this. It’s good to clear your conscience and get things off your chest. Your body is not made to hold it in. When you hold guilt inside you, it’s like shaking up a soda can with the top on. It will blow eventually. If you don’t talk out your problems, your guilt, your bitterness with God, you’re going to take it out on your body. Doctors say a lot of people could leave the hospital today if they knew how to get rid of guilt or resentment over things they’ve done to others and things others have done to them.
 
For I will restore them to health and heal them of their wounds” Jeremiah 30:17

God loves you and he wants you healed !!!

 
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Posted by on June 11, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

What am I doing?

For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate.  Romans 7:15

 I have recently gone through another broken engagement.  It was my choice because I felt that we were headed down different spiritual paths and felt that it would complicate things for us in the future.  Nonetheless I am still upset, but know I had made the right decision.  The biggest issue is that we work together.  I understand his feelings, but have a hard time dealing with his actions towards me.  I am seeing someone else and am getting flowers from this individual and I am certain that this has a lot to do with the dynamics at the office.  Most recently I noticed that we are no longer connections on a professional network site and it shocked me.  I realized that I had recommended him on this site for his customers, so I felt that if he did not want to be connected with me, then he would no longer need my recommendation.  As I was about to click ‘delete’ I felt the nudge of the Holy Spirit – don’t do it, you do not do as the world does.  I ignored the prompting of the spirit and instead of having peace, I had guilt for the rest of the day – in fact I had no peace.  There is a reason that our sin is seemingly like its under a microscope and everything is magnified…..it’s for us to be mindful of our actions and to have it marked as a place of remembrance that next time we make a different decision.  All day I battled with what I had done, I did the very thing that I did not want to do and I was grieved over it.  I woke up the next morning still thinking about it and praying for God to forgive me.  I began to cry and as I cried out to God, I prayed to be more sensitive to the spirit and to yield to his promptings and to make more decisions out of love rather than making decisions based on wounds and emotions.  I began to get very encouraged because I am going through a recovery process and this week we start doing inventory of our past…….I am so excited because I know the things that God will be purging from my past is going to give me a greater capacity for the things of him.  For instance, I am full of hurt and fear and when God removes those wounds, I will have more room for love and mercy.  My heart’s cry to Him is that my desire is to love.  For once, my desire is not for something that is material or tangible.  If my desire is to love, then that will affect any decision that I make, because it will be rooted in love and hopefully I will begin to do more of the things that I want to do rather than what I despise doing.  God’s word says in Psalms that God wants to give us the desires of our heart, but I believe it is Him who gives those desire to us so we become more like Him.

What things do you do that you do not want to do?  Be encouraged that Paul asks a question at the end of this chapter.  Who will set me free from this body of death?  Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!!!

 
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Posted by on June 6, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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God looks at the Heart

Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers [do not make mismated alliances with them or come under a different yoke with them, inconsistent with your faith]. For what partnership have right living and right standing with God with iniquity and lawlessness? Or how can light have fellowship with darkness?     2 Corinthians 6:14

 I went to a bible study last night that I have been attending since 2004. I was so glad that I went because it had been at least 2 years since I had attended. The leader so inspired me and I was grateful to be there because I felt the Holy Spirit really reminding me of the woman of faith that I used to be. I really miss her and want so bad to be her again. My faith used to be so strong that I was moved very little by my cirumstances and if I was hit with something negative, I would respond as Jesus and reply with a ‘it is written’ response. My faith has certainly been diluted and I waiver a lot more now. What has happened? In 2006 I lost a job that I loved, we had gotten notice that our doors were closing and I was devastated. God is so awesome and he opened a door for me before this one closed. I was getting used to being in my new job and it was not long that I began to notice a really cute guy on my team. One day our team went out to lunch and he sat next to me and the rest is history. I began dating him and I noticed right away obvious red flags, but I just ignored them……I wanted to date him. My new interest was Catholic and believed in God, but we certainly did not share the same beliefs. I noticed that as I continued to date him that I gradually quit going to church and I seldom spent time alone reading my bible or worshipping God in quiet time. I found myself gradually easing more into a compromised lifestyle and I would let him talk me into doing things that I did not want to do, but at the same time I wanted to please him. I remember on a rare occassion I got into God’s word and this is what I received:

But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7

 I knew exactly what God was telling me, he has rejected the person that I had chosen for myself, but later I would learn more about what God was trying to tell me. I was getting the message, but I was refusing to obey. I began to notice that the times that I would go to church that I was losing my sensitivity to the Lord, when worship music began to play, I could not even muster a tear…….my heart had hardened and my life was in a very dangerous place spiritually. I would never admit it, but I was very unhappy and I missed God and I felt very dry and empty, but I did not want to stop rebelling. By this point in my relationship a lot has happened and too much detail to even share, but the second part of the scripture in 1 Samuel was about to be revealed. All this time I had been focusing on an outward appearance instead of looking at the most important thing which is the heart. God revealed something to me that devastated me about the person I was in relationship with. I had up to this point spent nearly a year and a half with the person and we lived approximately 2 miles apart. How could he be living a double life!!!??? How did I not know????? This was more than just someone cheating, all at once I recalled so many shows I had watched and listened to someone describe that the person that they were married to was not that at all — I was shocked, but realized, how easy it is to be deceived!! This was God’s son and He loves him very much, but God knew his heart, he knew what he was doing behind my back and he knew what he was capable of. God had probably given me that scripture a dozen times and every time I just ignored him and pursued my will and now I am devastated, shocked and deceived. I broke up with this person and he stalked me and I feared for my safety for another 2 years!! I had to go through another devastating loss before I was able to get my hard heart broken enough so that it would be so tenderized for the things of God which now I am so grateful for. I don’t ever want my heart to harden towards God or the things of God. I am gradually growing back into that woman I once was, because I had separated myself from God and from His word and teachings that were my armour. You know I have friends who are in marriages, they are not going through what I went through, however, they are unequally yoked and it does present a lot of problems. I have heard my friends say that they are lonely because their husband does not share the excitement that they share. Their husbands try to keep them from tithing and they don’t enjoy going to church or even serving and chalk everything up to coincidence rather than divine appointments. When God put the scripture in the bible about being unequally yoked, he did it because he cares for us and knows the issues and struggles a couple will suffer for being unequally yoked……but like my situation, God wanted to reveal to me that he also knows a person’s heart and that is the first place he looks, rather than appearance, etc. Knowing that God knows everything, I want Him to choose my partner for life, rather than me choose because I overlook what is most important and what can save me a lifetime of hurt. I hope you were blessed by this and seek God about your friends as well as who you date and even marry.

 
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Posted by on June 4, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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