Archive for life

Life Hurts ~ God Heals ~ Recycling My Pain

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 14, 2013 by greatvictories

This is the last of the “Life Hurts ~ God Heals Recovery Series.” I am sorry it has taken me so long to get the last one out to you. I do pray you have been blessed and helped by what you have read.

recycle pain

R.E.C.O. V. E. R. Y

“I have seen his ways, and will heal him; I will also lead him, and restore comforts to him and to his mourners. I created the fruit of the lips; Peace, peace, to him who is far off and to him who is near, Says the Lord, And I will heal him” (Isaiah 57:18-19).

No matter how we behave, God WANTS to heal us. He wants to use our experiences to help heal other people. He will use your pain to help others too.

Part One ~ “R” Realize we are not God…

Part Two ~ “E” Earnestly believe that God exists…

Part Three ~ C  Consciously choose to commit all our life and will to Christ’s care and control.

Part Four ~ “O”  Openly examine and confess our faults to ourselves, to God, and to someone we trust.

Part Five ~ “V“ Voluntarily submit to every change God wants to make in our lives and humbly ask Him to remove our character defect.

Part Six ~ “E” Evaluate all my relationships and offer forgiveness to those who have hurt me and make amends for harm I’ve done to others except when to do so would harm them or others.

Part Seven ~ “R“ Reserve a daily time with God for self-examination, Bible reading, and prayer in order to know God and His will for your life and gain the power to do it.

Part Eight ~ “YYield myself to God to be used to bring the Good News to others by both my example and my words.

WHY GOD ALLOWED MY PAIN IN THE FIRST PLACE …

1) He gives us a free will ~ We all either help or hurt others. “Behold, I set before you today a blessings and a curse; the blessing, if you obey the commandments of the Lord your God which I commanded you today, and the curse, if you do not obey the commandments of the Lord your God, but then turn aside from the way which I command you today, to go after other gods which you have not known” (Deut. 11:26-28)

2) To get our attention ~ God uses it to wake us up. Pain should be an alarm in our life.  “Blows that hurt cleanse evil away, as do stripes the inner depths of the heart” (Proverbs 20:30).  “Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that your sorrow led to repentance” (2 Cor. 7:9).

3) To teach me to depend on Him ~ “It is good for me that I have been afflicted, that I may learn Your statutes” (Psalm 119:71). “Yes, we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead, who delivered us from so great a death, and does deliver us, in whom we trust that He will still deliver us…” (1 Cor. 1:9-10).

4) To give us a ministry to others ~ “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God” (1 Cor. 1:4).

God NEVER wastes a hurt. Being someone He can use is NOT being perfect! In our weakness, He is strong.

HOW TO USE MY PAIN TO HELP OTHERS…

“But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear…” (1 Peter 3:15).

“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” (Gal. 6:2).

Openly and honestly share your testimony with others just like someone has shared theirs with you during tribulation.

We cannot get out of our pain without the help of others.

No high points are possible without the low points. Share one high point and one low point.

We are all in need of recovery one way or another. God wants to recycle our pain.

Are you willing to share and help others?

Just be humble, be honest, be real and don’t lecture, just be a witness.

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Life Hurts ~ God Heals ~ Repair Relationships

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 29, 2013 by greatvictories

forgive

R.E.C.O.V.E.R.Y

“Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you” (Ephesians 4:31-32).

Part One ~ “R” Realize we are not God…

Part Two ~ “E” Earnestly believe that God exists…

Part Three ~ “C”  Consciously choose to commit all our life and will to Christ’s care and control.

Part Four ~ “O”  Openly examine and confess our faults to ourselves, to God, and to someone we trust.

Part Five ~ “V“ Voluntarily submit to every change God wants to make in our lives and humbly ask Him to remove our character defect. Allow God’s Spirit to guide, direct, mold and make us into the image of Christ.

Part Six ~ “EEvaluate all my relationships and offer forgiveness to those who have hurt me and make amends for harm I’ve done to others except when to do so would harm them or others.

Trying to right a wrong doesn’t always go the way we would like it to go, but we need to offer forgiveness and also ask for forgiveness. We are imperfect people, asking other imperfect people’s forgiveness.

You never have to forgive others more than God has forgiven you.

WHY FORGIVE THOSE WHO HAVE HURT ME?

1) Because God has forgive us ~ “…bearing with one another and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another, even as Christ has forgiven you, so you also must do” (Colossians 3:13).  “And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors” (Matthew 6:12). We must remember how much God has forgiven us.

2) Because resentment doesn’t work ~ “For wrath kills a foolish man, and envy slays a simple on” (Job 5:2) ~ “You are only hurting yourself with your anger” (Job 18:4a) It only hurts us if we don’t forgive others. It hurts us emotionally, physically and mentally.

HOW DO I FORGIVE THOSE WHO HAVE HURT ME?

1) Reveal our hurt. Get real with ourselves. Own up to what they did. Start with disclosure. Make a list of those who have harmed you and what they did.

2) We need to release our offender. Quit holding on to the hurt. Let it go! Write a letter to those who have hurt you, even if you don’t give or send it to them (Matthew 18:21-22).

3) Replace our hurt with God’s peace. Let God settle the score. He is going to make everything just. He can put the pieces back together again (Colossians 3:15).

WHY MAKE AMENDS WITH THOSE WHO HAVE HURT ME?

We have to do life God’s way, not our way!

“…looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God, lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled…” (Hebrews 12:15).

HOW DO I MAKE AMENDS WITH THOSE WHO HAVE HURT ME?

1) Make a list of those we have harmed and what we did. Do you have a debt? Have you broken a promise? Are you over controlling? Hypercritical? Lying? Abusive verbally? Emotionally? Physically? Forgetting? Unfaithful?

2) Think how we would like others to make amends with us. “Do to others as you would like them to do to you” (Luke 6:31).

There is a right time. “Because for ever matter there is a time and judgment, though the misery of man increases greatly” (Ecc. 8).

You have to have the right attitude.  Don’t try to justify it, just resume responsibility. “…but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head ~ Christ~” (Ephesians 4:15).

Never underestimate a sincere apology.

Is going to that person appropriate? The right thing to do? Ask God to help you! “There is one who speaks like the piercings of a sword, but the tongue of the wise promotes health” (Proverbs 12:18).

3) We can refocus our life on God and His will for our life. “If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men” (Romans 12:18).

God wants to help us replace our hurts with His peace regardless of our actions. recognize the peace and freedom God wants to bring into your life. Open your heart and life to Him.

Life Hurts ~ God Heals ~ Coming Clean

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 24, 2013 by greatvictories

Coming Clean-man

R.E.C.O.V.E.R.Y.

How to get your person put together so your world looks fine.

“I have seen his ways, and will heal him, I will lead him also, and restore comforts unto him and to his mourners. I create the fruit of the lips, Peace, peace to him that is far off, and to him that is near, saith the Lord, and I will heal him” (Isaiah 57:18-19).

Part One ~ “R” – Realize we are not God: We admit we are powerless to control our tendency to do the wrong thing and our life is unmanageable. Naturally we do evil…In Christ we’re delivered from this body of death. That which we do we allow not. What we want to do is right but what we do is sin that dwells in us (Romans 7:15-17).

Part Two ~ “E” – Earnestly believe that God exists, that we matter to Him, and that He has the power to help us recover.

Part Three ~ “C” – Consciously choose to commit all our life and will to Christ’s care and control.

Part Four ~ “O” – Openly examine and confess our faults to ourselves, to God, and to someone we trust.

“Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile” (Psalm 32:1-2).

Reasons for this step of, Openly examine and confess our faults to ourselves, to God, and to someone we trust:

“He that covers his sins shall not prosper, but whosoever confesses and forsakes them shall have mercy” (Proverbs 28:13).

1) Guilt destroys my confidence. “What if people really found out. What would they think of me?”

2) Guilt damages my relationships. “Causes me to react with impatience, anger, spoil or indulge people.”

3) Guilt keeps me stuck in the past. “Look out the windshield, not the review mirror.”

Guilt can’t change the past and worry can’t change the future.

How to take this step to house cleaning spiritual discipline:

1) Take personal moral inventory. “Let us search and try our ways, and turn again to the Lord” (Lamentations 3:40).

Get alone with paper and pen, ask God to help you uncover them, confess them to God. Take your time and be honest with yourself and with God.

Search me, O God, and know my heart, try me, and know my thoughts, and if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalm 139:23-24).

2) Accept responsibility for it. “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us” (1 John 1:8).

We are good at fooling ourselves and allowing “stuff” to rule over our lives. Wherever we go, there we are. We cannot run  from it (sin). Don’t minimize it or blame others. Admit we messed up.

3) Ask forgiveness from God. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

Take your list to God, confess your sins. Don’t beg God to forgive you. Don’t bargin or bribe Him. Just ask and believe that He is going to forgive you. Be humble.

“Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord, though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow, though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool” (Isaiah 1:18).

4) Admit your faults to another person. “Confess your faults one to another, and pray for another, that you may be healed. The effective fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much” (James 5:16).

Who? Someone you can trust. “This is who I am.”

What do you say? Take your list and be honest.

When? As soon as possible.

5) Accept God’s forgiveness and forgive yourself. “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:23-24).

“There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit” (Romans 8:1).

STOP packing those burdens of guilt! Christ died so we can be FREE!!

God wants to heal us of our guilt.

Life Hurts ~ God Heals ~ Where to Get Help When You Hurt

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 14, 2013 by greatvictories

Life hurts-God heals band aids

How many suffer in silence from pain of the past? Being hurt by someone? What problem in life have you been denying or controlling?

Part One we looked at the first steps to R.E.C.O.V.E.R.Y. Realize we are not God: We admit we are powerless to control our tendency to do the wrong thing and our life is unmanageable. Naturally we do evil…In Christ we’re delivered from this body of death. That which we do we allow not. What we want to do is right but what we do is sin that dwells in us (Romans 7:15-17).

Now we will look at step two. “E” ~ Earnestly believe that God exists, that we matter to Him, and that He has the power to help us recover.

“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6).

Where there is a design, there is a designer. Where there is a creation, there is a Creator.

1) Acknowledge God’s existence. Believe He DOES exist.

“For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse” (Romans 1:20)

“Only fools say in their hearts, “There is no God” (Psalm 14:1).

2) Understand God’s character. Not just believing He is out there. So many of us make God in our image instead of letting Him make us in His image.

“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation” (Colossians 1:15).

* God KNOWS all about our situations. The good, the bad and the ugly. He knows every fear, tragedy, inadequacy, hurt,  and joy.

“You number my wanderings, put my tears into Your bottle, Are they not in Your Book?” (Psalm 56:8). God has an interest in every pain, every tear.

“Oh God, You know my foolishness, and my sins are not hidden from You’ (Psalm 69:5).

* God CARES about our situations. He wants to be the father you may not have had.

“As a father pities his children, so the Lord pities those who fear Him. for He knows our frame, He remembers that we are dust” (psalm 103:13-14).

“But God demonstrated His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

* God can CHANGE us and our situation. Sometimes through crisis, confrontation or catastrophe.

“…which He worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at the right hand in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 1:20).

Don’t focus on the past all the time! God gave us power to change us and the situation! NOTHING is impossible! (Luke 18:27).

3) Accept God’s OFFER to help you. “For it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure” (Philippians 2:13).

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7).

Things work best when they are plugged in 🙂

How to plug into God’s power…BELIEVE, and RECEIVE His help! Humble yourself to ask and receive help. It takes risk, pain and humility to experience TRUE life. (Isaiah 43:2)

Where are you hurting today? Plug into God’s power. Don’t deny your pain. Diligently seek God (Hebrews 11:6) each and every day.

Step down and let God heal you without judgment but with much grace and mercy.

The Better Life ~ Wisdom From God’s Word

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 20, 2012 by greatvictories

“The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10:10)

Everybody has their own spiritual journey through God’s wisdom, no matter where you are in life. Be open to everyone’s own personal wisdom journey ~ God’s Word continues to teach each one of us personally (Proverbs 4).

The world considers the good life ~ Fast cars, bigger houses, wine, women and song, head knowledge, the more, the bigger, the merrier.

What do you consider the good life? Family, fishing, no worries, peace,  no pain,  financial security,  opportunities to learn,  info commercials (we’ll throw in two for the price of one), sunshine, Jesus in your life?

Do you experience God’s wisdom and power? Is God’s power evident in your life?

For the Lord gives wisdom, from His mouth comes knowledge and understanding (Proverbs 2:6). Happy is the man who finds wisdom and the man who gains understanding (Proverbs 3:13). Wisdom is the principle thing, therefore get wisdom. And in all your getting, get understanding (Proverbs 4:7).

So, how do you go from the good life to the better life?

Strengthen your faith. Read God’s Word and get to know Him personally. His purpose is to build you up. “So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified” (Acts 20:32).

Gain God’s wisdom, it will help…

Guide your decisions. “Your Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path” (Psalm 119:105). Gaining God’s wisdom is to benefit us and guide our decisions, to light our path. When we walk in darkness, we hurt ourselves and others.

Enhance your life. “He also taught me, and said to me; Let your heart retain My words, keep My commands and live…Take firm hold of instruction, do not let go, keep her, for she is your life” (Proverbs 4: 4-13). God’s wisdom is the key to our lives.

We should reflect upon God’s Word in a thoughtful way, appropriating its truths personally and applying them to life (Joshua 1:8).

Be rich in your relationship with Him, not in material things that will one day be no more.

God’s wisdom will…

Change your heart. “For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper that any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Hebrews 4:13). God’s Word and wisdom is available and will set you free.

Let God cut away excess baggage. Its not easy, it will be miserable and hurt at first (like going through surgery, they have to cut you to get you better), but it will be worth it.

Some things that can keep you from understanding God’s Word: Difficulty~ There are many different translations are out there available that can help you understand. Familiarity ~ Familiarity breeds contentment. We don’t approach it with God’s wisdom and power. Priority ~ Read a Proverbs a day. DON’T let God’s Word lose its power in your life or breed contentment.

Prioritize God’s Word in your life.

Approach it with enthusiasm. “As new born babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby,” (1 Peter 2:2). What is it you desire (crave) in life ~ coffee, chocolate, popcorn, vacationing? We must feed on the Word of God.

Experience it with consistency. “Bereans were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so” (Acts 17:11). It is not a matter of a period of time, it is being consistent. The devotional “The Daily Bread” is a great place to start, or reading a Proverbs a day. Keep it simple, yet DO IT everyday and your appetite and enthusiasm will grow. Just engage His Word consistently.

Discuss it with others. “These words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down and when you rise up” (Deut. 7:6-7). Share what you are learning. We all come from different backgrounds and we gain great insight hearing another share.

Act on it with immediacy (immediately). “Be doers of the word, not hearers only, deceiving yourselves…for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was” (James 1:22-24). The only way God’s Word can transform us is by applying it to our lives, to act upon it. What can I do with it today? How can I apply it to my life today?

Engage in God’s Word and see the appetite He gives you for His wisdom.

God’s Word is not information, it is transformation. It is not just to make us smart and wise, but to change us. It has the power and ability to change lives! Let Him and His wisdom show and teach you how to live the better live.

A Fresh Start

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 11, 2012 by greatvictories

But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God ~ and righteousness and sanctification and redemption…(1 Cor. 1:30)

What changes when God gives us a fresh start?

1) We get a new clarity about everything in life. “For God is not the author of confusion but of peace…” (1 Cor. 14:33).

We see everything differently in relationships, family, friends, trials and tribulations, and even our enemies. “For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face…” (1 Cor. 13:12).

We are going to have trials and tribulations. “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).

If you are not seeing God working, maybe you have closed your heart to see Him at work in everything?

2) We get a new confidence about our future. “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).

We all have fears and insecurities.  We try to be God ~ doing what He come to do for us ~ living in our own strength. We can trust God to work out the details of our life. We can be confident because we know God will give us strength for whatever we face. He has a purpose for our life and a future for us in heaven.

3) We get a new connection to God. “…we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation” (Romans 5:11).

He did not come to establish a religion, but a relationship.

“…where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all in all” (Col. 3:11).

God Almighty wants a relationship/connection with us as His friend ~ He wants us to get to know Him, love Him and become His friend. “You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that i heard from My Father I have made known to you” (John 15:14-15).

Would you like a fresh start? Faith in Jesus is what matters and He is here to give you a fresh relationship with God. The power of the resurrection is available to everyone of us.

“For this reason I bow my knees to the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, from whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in the inner man, that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width, length, depth and height ~ to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be all the glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen” (Eph. 3:14-21).

Seeing God’s Purpose in My Problems

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 25, 2012 by greatvictories

Seeing through God’s eyes ~ Part 3

How do you respond to problems? Do you look to God or to someone else? Do you whine and complain? Do you blame God? How do you see your problems?

God has a purpose for our problems. We just don’t understand where they come from…us, government, marriage, circumstances, etc. God uses our problems to bring good into our life, to prepare us, not punish us, and for His glory.

Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you, but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy (1 Peter 4:12-13).

1) God uses our problems to direct us…Sometimes it takes a painful experience to make us change our ways (Proverbs 20:30 GN)

Sometimes God has to take us on a detour because we are heading in the wrong direction. Do you obey or do you go your own way?

A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps (Proverbs 16:9).

It’s like planning a vacation,…the direction you will go…then you run into a detour. What is your first reaction? Thank You Lord or Oh man?

God uses our problems to bring us back to Him. When we are low is when we usually turn to Him. So, when you see the detour sign, be wise, follow where He leads and change your direction.

Now I rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that your sorrow led to repentance. For you were made sorry in a godly manner… (1 Cor. 7:9)

In the midst of your problem, ask God where this problem is leading you?

2) God uses problems to inspect us…I, the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind, even to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his doings (Jeremiah 17:10).

We are usually satisfied with what “looks good.” Like the pink slime hamburger and many other products in our grocery stores…it “looks” good, but is not good for us.  All the ways of man are pure in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the spirit (Proverbs 16:2).

We are like tea bags, we have to be put into hot water to see what is inside. And sometimes God puts the squeeze on us like we squeeze fruit to inspect it. Behold, I have refined you, but not as silver, I have tested you in the furnace of affliction (proverbs 48:10).

And you shall remember that the Lord your God led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and test you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep his commandments or not (Deut. 8:2).

How do you respond when problems come? Do you feel like giving up when you don’t get your way? Ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand what this problem reveals about you.

3) God uses problems to protect us…Surely He will deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the perilous pestilence. He shall cover you with His feathers, and under His wing you shall take refuge, His truth shall be your shield and buckler (Psalm 91:3-4).

Shepherds sometimes have to break the leg of a sheep to protect it and keep it safe from things it does not see or understand.

What looks to be suffering can be our protection  ~ our salvation. Have faith and trust God in the midst of your problems. It is His specialty to make good out of evil. But as for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive (Genesis 50:20).

A man’s step are of the Lord, How then can a man understand his own way (Proverbs 20:24)?

Ask God how this problem is protecting you and how you can trust Him through it. Ask Him to help you see yourself, others, and your problems from His perspective. Only He can bring good out of bad.

Ask God to help you see your problems through His eyes.