Thursday, 30 April 2009
There is something about another birthday that causes one to be introspective and muse...
So here are some of my ramblings, join yours in and lets talk...
I felt that today is a new day a gift from my Abba, He has given me this day to do with as I wish. I can choose to grow in it or waste it, either way what I do with it is important because I have exchanged a day of my life for it.
You see when tomorrow comes today will be swept away on the river of rememberences and therefore I pray that I will not in any way regret any of the price I have paid for it.
Another thing that was so upmost in my thought today was Tommy Tenny's statement that, " Favour is what happens whe PREPERATION meets opportunity and success is what happens when PREPERATION meets poetntial.
Lots of chewing on that statement.
What are you chewing on...what things are directing your pathways?
Last but not least...NEVER FORGET:-
GREAT CAPTAINS ARE NOT MADER ON CALM SEAS BUT IN STORMS!
I SALUTE YOU MY FRIENDS, GREAT CAPTAINS AROUND THE WORLD!
Thursday, 23 April 2009
Sunday, 19 April 2009
Rejoice I say rejoice.....Words kill...words also become self fulfiling prophecies...............
What a testimony to be accused of loving the Lord too much.....what a testimony when people revile you and despise you for the sake of the gospel. Yes it hurts, yes, you shatter, BUT GOD....say in Psalm 23, "Yea though I walk through "yes through"the valley.... you will pass through...
No matter what your circumstances today...no matter what report you have received.....no matter what the world may say, remember Jesus chose YOU, yes you, before the begining of time........."They said.... let us create" The ruler of the universe chose you...........
So today whose report will you believe.............I BELIEVE THE REPORT OF THE LORD, AS FOR ME AND MY HOUSE WE WILL SERVE THE LORD.
Beloved friend, look to the Son and the shadows will stay behind you.........
Remember we love you and pray for you
Today and always
Wednesday, 15 April 2009
Tuesday, 14 April 2009
Ask Angie: I am finding it hard to trust my husband again. We've been married for 31 years. this Valentine's day and in year 28 I found out he was heavily into drugs, which he now claims to be free of, but I still have a hard time believing him because of the extent he wants to hide his use. All the lies, deceit, and now the unwillingness to discuss it with me, leaves me with many unanswered questions.
He denies that other women were a factor in the drug use, but I do not believe that is true, because our intimacy is non-existent, and has been for some time. He claims to be unable to perform. I don't buy it. So here we are, I don't trust him and I constantly look for clues to make sure he's not using. I hate living this way, I am a born-again Christian, and I pray for God to guide me and help me to truly once and for all forgive, and I will think I have, and then he'll be late or not acting like he normally does and I find myself watching him.
Marriage Guidance: Your situation is very typical for married couples when one is addicted to a substance. You are so emotionally and mentally attached to the actions, feelings, and behaviors of your addicted husband that it is driving you crazy…the not knowing and the fear of being “out of control”.
Although it is sad to see anyone waist away their life in addiction, the truth is you cannot control what the addict says or does – it is impossible. The first thing you must understand is that you cannot “be in control” of what your husband does, which means, who he sees, where he goes, when he comes home, what he says, and how he treats you.
You can’t overpower addiction…the more you try, the more it will swallow you up with it. And that is what’s happening to you. Your husband’s addiction is literally taking you down with him. I’m going to throw you a life preserver, grab onto it and allow God to pull you into the shore. Neither I, nor anyone else can pull you into safety…you have to have the willingness to do so and to trust in Jesus to pull you into safety. OK?
God Grant Me The Serenity To Accept The Things I Cannot Change
Ask God to give you the strength to accept, that which is out of your control. God grant me the serenity to accept that my husband’s addiction is something I cannot change. How does a wife accept that she can’t stop her husband from using drugs or drinking? By backing off and giving every aspect of addiction over to God. It can be difficult to do at times, especially when the addict is abusing you in some way, which happens often in homes where addiction is present.
Most loved ones of addicts want to throw out the booze, throw the drugs down the toilet, Take the car keys, scream and yell for the addict to stop in their addiction. But none of these efforts will do any good whatsoever. Addiction is more powerful than anything a mere man can try to do to stop it. Overcoming addiction and the affects of what addiction can do to a family can only be overcome through the power of God working in our lives.
Even to your old age and gray hairs I am God, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you. Isaiah 46:4
The problem is we’re trying to rescue our loved ones instead of handing that responsibility over to God. Only God has the power to save us from the temptations of this life and only God can save us. Without God we are nothing. Wives and husband's who try to rescue their spouses from addiction become so entangled within the insidiousness of the addiction that they become mentally, emotionally and spiritually sick with the addict.
When a wife is spiritually sick how can she even begin to see clearly enough to help herself. Don’t allow yourself to get pulled into addiction one more second. You are finding it hard to trust your husband again because you can’t trust your husband. As long as he is wrapped up within the web of addiction there is no trust. The reality is you can’t trust addiction so how can you trust the person who is addicted?
I realize it hurts to think that the man you married has been with other woman. Addiction makes us do crazy things. So knowing that should we blame immoral behavior on addiction. Yes, we should! Does it mean that once the user quits using their substance of choice they will not behave immorally? Of course not – that would be ridiculous to say it would. But it means that being addiction free he can now make proper and right choices for his life. It is at this time that a wife can support, encourage, and influence her husband and help him to turn his life around and stay addiction free!
Courage To Change The Things I Can
So now that you know you cannot change one iota about your husband or the addiction, lets take a look at what you can change. You can stop looking for clues that he has stopped using. This is not going to change anything. You can stop worrying about his inability to perform. This is not going to change anything. You can stop living for the addiction and start living for Christ. This WILL change your attitude. Ask Christ to give you the courage to change those things that you can.
…I can do everything through Him who gives me strength! Philippians 4:12-13
When we begin to find positive things that we can change in our life, it will make us feel better. You cannot change what your husband does, but you can change what you do about what he does. You can change your reaction towards what your husband does or doesn’t do. Learn to detach from his miserable behavior. You can change the way you think about your husband. You can change your attitude about addiction and know from the bottom of your heart that addiction is something you have no power over, whatsoever.
You can choose to forgive, even though you will have to continue to forgive his addictive actions every single day. By forgiving you will be freeing your heart and mind of pent up resentment. You can start to take better care of your spiritual, mental and emotional self by detaching from the addiction. You can choose to allow Christ to pull you into safety and trust that He will keep you safe from addiction.
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
These changes are changes that you have the power, through Him, to change. You can do everything, through Him. They are all things that involve you and your attitude toward your situation and toward your husband. Once you make these small, but sometimes-difficult changes you will discover a sense of peace within yourself that will actually be supportive to your husband. Whether or not you see that now or not doesn’t really matter. What matters is having hope that your husband can become free for good from addiction.
Understand that once you stop trying to be responsible for your husband’s actions you will feel a big burden lifted from your shoulders. Jesus Christ has lifted that burden from you and gave you a sense of peace in the midst of turmoil. You allowed that burden to be gone from your heart and mind. Now that you are on the shore and out of danger of drowning with your husband you can help him.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loves us. (Romans 8:35 –37)
And The Wisdom To Know The Difference
Do you now understand what you cannot change and what you can? If it has anything to do with your husband and the addiction you cannot control it or change it. Give it to God and let Him change it. Give up the burden of responsibility and all aspects of addiction. Let your husband know that you love HIM, but you do not love the addiction.
Change your attitude and begin to take better care of you, through Him. Change what you can about yourself and that will make a big difference in your husband coming out of denial and getting help for his addiction. Only after you help yourself, through Him, will you be able to help your husband. Let God pull you into safety.
May God Bless,
“Thought the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed,” says the Lord, who has compassion on you. Isaiah 54:10
Thursday, 9 April 2009
Jesus was physically exhausted and in danger of going into shock unless he received fluids (which he apparently did not). This is the man that the Roman soldiers tortured. Having previously been beaten by the Jews, it was now the Romans' turn.
In addition, Jesus was forced to carry the wooden beam on which he would die. Imagine the effect of carrying a heavy weight if you were in that condition.
Crucifixion was a common mode of punishment among heathen nations in early times. It is not certain whether it was used by the ancient Jews; probably it was not. The modes of capital punishment according to the Mosaic law were, by the sword (Exodus 21), strangling, fire (Lev. 20), and stoning (Deut. 21).
This was regarded as the most horrible form of death, and to a Jew it would acquire greater horror from the curse in Deut. 21:23.
This punishment began by subjecting the sufferer to scourging as discussed earlier. In the case of our Lord, however, his scourging was before the sentence was passed upon him, and was inflicted by Pilate for the purpose, probably, of producing pity to avoid a demand for further punishment .
Hung completely naked before the crowd, the pain and damage caused by crucifixion were designed to be so devilishly intense that one would continually long for death, but could linger for days with no relief.
Medical examiner, Dr. Frederick Zugibe, believes Christ died from shock due to loss of blood and fluid, plus traumatic shock from his injuries, plus cardiogenic shock causing Christ's heart to fail.
Our Lord uttered memorable words from the cross, including “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34). “Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise” (23:43), as well as John 19:26, Matt. 27:46, Mark 15:34, John 19:28, Luke 23:46, and John 19:30 (“It is finished.”).
Wednesday, 1 April 2009
ROMANS 12:17--21 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," says the Lord. On the contrary: "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head." Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Conflict often makes our beloved seem like an enemy. We can easily begin to think, "It's me against you!" when we're supposed to be on the same side. Yet when we start picking a fight with our spouse and, in effect, try to take vengeance by getting our own way, we're certainly not trusting God to fulfill his promise to work in someone's life. If we're supposed to give food and water to our enemy, then let's resolve our conflicts with our best friend--our mate! Here's how to identify the four main kinds of conflict and what to do about them:
1. Faults and Weaknesses. Everyone has faults. Faults aren't sins. Faults could be based in the weaknesses of your spouse's personality. A person who seems to talk too much is a gregarious kind of person. You may judge that she talks too much, but that's because you may not talk much at all. She is most likely thinking you don't talk enough. This is not a conflict about sin; rather, it is a lack of compassion and understanding about who God created your spouse to be.
If your conflict comes from trying to change your spouse, remember that only God can change someone. It isn't your job. Don't allow conflict to separate you emotionally because of his fault or weakness. At the same time, you can gently point out how too much talking prevents both of you from contributing to the conversation. Speaking "peaceably" means inviting a dialogue--not haranguing your spouse for what you perceive is wrong. Ask God to make any changes that he wants. Believe it or not, he might not plan to change that person at this time, and you can relax and eliminate the conflict knowing that he has his perfect timing.
2. Unintended Emotional Injury. When someone hurts your feelings and he didn't intend to (although we might think he did), we can easily fall into the trap of blaming and taking it personally. Each person thinks he is right.
It's important to express your hurt by saying something like, "I know you didn't intend to hurt me, but I felt . . . [and share your feelings]." Give your spouse the benefit of the doubt. He loves you, and most of the time, what you think is meant to hurt you isn't intended that way. It was most likely a misunderstanding, or he inadvertently touched on something that is a wound within you, possibly even from childhood.
Acknowledging the underlying causes of why this "triggers" you is essential. Most often, things from our childhood are at the root. For instance, a wife was neglected by her father, and so any slight by her husband takes her back emotionally (without her knowing it) to those longings of wanting her daddy to love her. Because of this trigger, she will need to take responsibility for her own reaction. The person who inadvertently hurt his or her spouse can remember this: "The purposes of a man's heart are deep waters, but a man of understanding draws them out" (Proverbs 20:5). God wants you to compassionately invite your spouse to address her hurt and possibly her wound from the past.
The "offending" spouse will need to walk "peaceably" by not reacting in kind with anger or hurt. By keeping your cool, you will cover the situation with a calming balm. Proverbs 15:1 urges us, "A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger."
3. Preferences. During your courtship, you most likely appreciated the differences that completed you as a couple. If one of you is outgoing and friendly, the other person is most likely more reserved. You liked how your spouse made friends easily so that you didn't have to put out so much effort. But now that difference has made him or her into an enemy. You may feel that he is so friendly with everyone else that he ignores you.
Living peaceably means recognizing that a preference isn't sinful. Just because you think one way doesn't mean your spouse's opposite thinking is wrong--it's just different. Different isn't wrong. Your conflict is based in thinking that there's only one way to think about something or do something. But look at Proverbs 27:14: "If a man loudly blesses his neighbor early in the morning, it will be taken as a curse." If because you're an early riser you think it's pretty close to a sin to sleep in late, the Bible says you're cursing your friend. Some things just aren't in a sin category.
If your spouse thinks strongly about something, then it may be even more of a conflict if you feel that you're going to be forced to abide by your spouse's preferences. That's why you need to try to feel his passion or preference. That doesn't mean you need to change your preference, just understand how much it means to him. You may both choose to do your "own thing" separately if one person doesn't enjoy the desired activity, but leave room for both of you to do what you want at some point. Or take turns. If your conflict is about where to go on vacation, decide that one year you will go to the lake and the next year you will go to the mountains. Or find a place that has both a lake and a mountain.
If you feel that your own preferences aren't ever honored, first look at the word ever. Is that really true? Or is your spouse giving in on some things thinking she is pleasing you, except that particular thing isn't that important to you so you don't give her credit for her effort? But when you say "You never let me" or "We don't ever," your spouse may point out something that she thought she was doing for you but you hadn't noticed because it's not your important preference. This is why it's important to communicate what's valuable to you. And if your spouse tells you you're not really hearing what she says, listen! Really listen and try to feel her passion. Understand that just as your activity is important to you, so also is her activity to her.
4. Sin. When your spouse sins, he can certainly seem like the enemy. Yet Romans 12:17--21 tells us we have a choice whether to live peaceably with our enemy. That doesn't mean overlooking his sin or doing nothing about it, but it does mean having an attitude of good that isn't overcome by evil. And most of the time in conflict, evil means being angry. Being angry means that you're trying to be in control instead of allowing God to be, and that won't get you the result you want. Yes, you'll still need to call your spouse's attention to the sin. If it's horrible and terribly painful, like adultery, and your spouse refuses to remove himself from the sin, then you may need to separate legally. But most of the time, we're dealing with sin that is grievous but not liable to end the marriage. What then can we do?
God calls us to righteousness if we are the offended party. This is not a self-righteous, I'm-better-than-you attitude, but a humble heart like the one 1 Peter 3:8--9 describes: "Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble. Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing."
Compassion means thinking, "I could do something like that, and even if I haven't, I've done something equally bad or pretty close." Sin is sin. Regardless of the degree of sin that we have committed, we've all fallen short. We all stand on equal ground before a holy God who has forgiven us. In those moments, Galatians 6:1--2 is a good reminder: "Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ" (NKJV). We could have done the same thing if we were tempted in the same way.
Compassion also means forgiving our mate, but forgiving doesn't mean we're saying the sin didn't happen or that he or she shouldn't suffer the consequences of sin. But it means releasing our anger and our need to take revenge. Then set up a plan for accountability and strength for your spouse to turn from the sin so that the two of you can be reconciled.
How Others See It
Henry Cloud and John Townsend
Agree on a follow-up plan. "If I notice something again, how do you want me to help you? What do you want me to do?" This way you become a team member to deal with the problem and not a police officer. You might want to talk to him about bringing other resources to the problem as well, such as friends to hold him accountable. The important issue is that you are together as a team to fight the reoccurrence.
Becky and Roger Tirabassi give seven motivators for forgiving others:
To forgive someone benefits you.
To forgive doesn't mean you allow the person to continue to hurt you in the same way.
Most people don't intentionally try to hurt you.
God wants us to forgive others.
It won't be long before you will need to be forgiven.
Forgiveness becomes easier when you look for similar behavior in your life.
Forgiveness is not a feeling. It is a decision!
This article originally posted on November 5, 2007.
What's in the Bible for Couples © 2007 by Kathy Collard Miller, D. Larry Miller, and Larry Richards, Ph.D.