Tag: Sober Living

When Christians Hurt with Words…

Are we helping or hurting with what we say? Are we truly walking in God’s righteousness as He has called us to? I see and hear the word idiot and other harsh words about people and things out of our control quite a bit, so today on I want to focus on words. I think most of us have heard how powerful our words can be. The words we speak can bless and bring life into the hearts of others, including ourselves, or we can speak hard or hard words and word curses that hurt others. Did you realize that these types of words can also create strongholds in our own lives? Did you realize that they can block God’s blessings? So, I have to ask. Which words are you choosing to speak?

I will never claim to be a perfect Christian, but I have learned how to NOT be a blessing blocker — as much as humanly possible. I have learned some difficult and painful lessons in my journey, and as someone who used to be a blessing blocker more than not, I must put this out there. I know of several Christians (many that I care deeply for) that are in need – some are in desperate need of breakthroughs. For example, some need restoration, physical healing, financial, or emotional healing. I have seen some things that have triggered concern and I am being led to put this out there for others to seriously consider – please be aware that the words we speak (think and write–God knows all) may keep us in bondage if we are not choosing our words wisely.

Our mouths can really run away from us and I think it can happen easily if we are not spending enough quality time seeking God with our whole hearts. Some of us try to squeeze God into our lives but it never works because we never have enough time when we do not keep Him as priority time. We might make a better effort to be with Him only once in a while, but then the busyness of life usually gets in the way. We might praise Him in the good times and try our best to praise Him during the hardships, but sometimes we are just too weak to do it because we are operating under our own strength which cannot compare to His. We then humble ourselves and pray in the name of Jesus, and then we wait, and wait, and wait some more for the breakthroughs to come. When it seems that nothing is happening, we start to wonder how long we must wait for an answer – we may ask, “Does the Lord really hear me?” Sometimes the wait seems forever and we have no idea that we might be the ones causing the delay.

If you feel that you might be at this point, I want to encourage you to not give up. Do not lose hope. Do not lose heart! But know that it is a must that you still yourself before the Lord more than once in a while. You might even do what I like to think of as a self-check. If you cannot see what might be wrong in your life, ask God. You can ask something like, “Lord, am I getting the way of Your blessings? If so, please show me and give me strength to change. I want to bring You glory.” If you go to Him wholeheartedly, He will listen and He will answer. But you need to be still and listen. This is also a perfect opportunity to grow in your trust relationship with the Lord. For me, I am so grateful that I have learned to make it a constant practice to do a self-check because I certainly do not want to ever block the blessings of God. Been there, done that. When I am on the right path, I grow stronger in my wait for the Lord. When I am not on the right path, He shows me and lovingly corrects me. It is a win-win for me.

Remember, the invisible enemy is behind the temptation to run off at the mouth so as it is written in James 4:7 (New Century Version): “So give yourselves completely to God. Stand against the devil, and the devil will run from you.” Amen! The enemy and his minions always run in terror in the name of Jesus.

How can you learn to always be mindful and speak in a way that brings glory to God? IMMERSE YOURSELF IN THE WORD OF GOD. Do it day and night. If I sound like a broken record to some of you who know me, I am glad. I speak the truth from love and I speak it from experience of a 7 year journey (and counting) of many trials and triumphs. I am so thankful that I have learned many things the hard way because God has used it all for good and has made me confident and bold in what I share. And just like my wonderful and loving spiritual leaders, I now get to lead by example and I am extremely grateful for the gift to share my heart.

The more time you spend soaking in God’s Word instead of participating with the harshness (to put it politely) of the rest of the world which is Satan’s snare, the more you will desire to change your words and your ways. You will not be able to help but be drawn in and grow in knowing and loving God and wanting to glorify Him more and more in everything you do. You will be living out Scripture (God’s Living Word!), like it is written in James, for example. James taught us about becoming “doers” of God’s Word, not just listeners. I encourage you to read the entire epistle of James. It was a part of this inspired writing.

God wants to bless us abundantly, but it is hard for Him to do when we do things that His Word clearly tells us not to do. If you have a problem controlling your tongue, you are not alone. As a side note, I love how Joyce Meyer shares about her struggle with her tongue. I am sure she must have a book on it. Controlling our tongues may seem impossible at times, but with God, ALL things are possible and we can do ALL things with Christ who strengthens us, Amen? Do not let it hold you back from God’s best in your life.

I am praying for those who struggle with this. I am praying for your breakthroughs. The saying is true — change your words, change your life. Remember, in Christ Jesus we are Kingdom builders but we are not going to be able t draw people in for God with words that tear people down.

God will do His part, but you need to do your part in breaking the strongholds and enslaving yokes today. Stay out of His way. Choose to speak words of life. Just do it. You will be much better off (just like when you forgive). I will pray that the floodgates of heaven pour upon you like never before – I believe breakthroughs are in store! Thank You, Lord!

To God be the glory, forever. ♥

“God’s righteousness doesn’t grow from human anger.” James 1:20 (The Message)

19 Understand this, my beloved brothers and sisters. Let everyone be quick to hear [be a careful, thoughtful listener], slow to speak [a speaker of carefully chosen words and], slow to anger [patient, reflective, forgiving]; 20 for the [resentful, deep-seated] anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God [that standard of behavior which He requires from us].” James 1:19-20 (Amplified Bible)

Because I want the world to know why I have HOPE in a dark world.

Taking a chance with my heart…

I hope someone will click the above link and hear with their whole heart. I hope for more rejoicing in heaven, no matter what the cost is for me. Please pray that more will hear the Spirit call them to come to Jesus as they are — to come and see, come receive, come and live forever. May more have everlasting life with Christ my King…My Savior, my Hope, my reason for living. 

 

It does not matter what the world says…

I thank God for rescuing me from this present evil world. If I were still believing and listening to what the world has to say, I would still be a worthless, depressed, suicidal drunk. I am eternally grateful that over six years ago, godly people came into my life who have taught me how to seek God with all my heart so I can find out for myself that He is as real as the air I breathe. He really is. He was so real that I put down the bottle and picked up a Bible. The Spirit of God has touched me powerfully. I discovered that Jesus is real and now He is truly alive within me. He is my Savior and Lord. He is my way. He is my truth. He is my life. He is my only means of going to the Father (John 14:6). Jesus died so that I may live and I am grateful I that I choose to live today! I am sad that not everybody believes this enough to choose life in Him like I have. The god of this world has so many captive through confusion and blindness and I am not going to give up praying for those hearts.

Anyhow, I shared last year that I was wondering if I was a bit crazy for becoming a part-time freshman in community college at the age of 49. At 50 I am still pressing on and I am only half way there. Or maybe I should say that I am already halfway to transferring to a university so I can someday earn my undergraduate degree…that certainly sounds more encouraging to me. I try not to allow myself to get too overwhelmed that I am getting older, growing more tired, and have such a long way to go, and even though I do struggle at times, I push through and it is so worth it.

The world may think I am nuts for doing this, it probably seems pointless to some. I just read an article today that mentioned the 20 worst bachelor degrees to get in today’s world of business. Dare I share that my major is psychology and that according to this article, it is the second worst degree to go for? Nice. I knew I should not have read that article, but what is done is done. I can let it bring me down and cause me to give up, or I can keep pressing on. I am choosing to keep pressing on.

Now, prior to my faith-walk with the Lord, I would have let that article discourage me enough to consider quitting on my delayed education once again. But that is not going to happen this time around because my faith has becomes super strong and I have learned not to care what others say or think (total freedom!!). I have come too far and have overcome too much to quit now — that would be crazier than anything else that I can do. I did not muster up the courage to return to college for my own sake or to prove anything for my own life. God has become the center of my life and He is the only reason that I am going for it because I believe His Word that all things are possible with God (Matthew 19:26). I truly believe.

So even though I admit that it bothered me for a minute, I choose not to care what the article says because it is of the world and about the world’s economy. I happen to be walking and living in God’s economy, not the world’s. My God always supplies to the full my every need according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19). He truly does. I am not in this for the money. I am in this because my heart’s desire is to shine God’s light in the darkest places. Secular college is where He wants me right now so that is where I will be until it is time to move on to wherever He may lead next. I believe the goal is for the degree to open some doors where I can work with others struggling with what I used to struggle with and perhaps have opportunities to minister to those hurting souls. I wish I had someone ministering to me in the darkness that almost took my life, but then again, I would not be where I am today if I did not go through everything that I have gone through. I am blessed!!

I do believe that I certainly would be crazy to try any of this on my own. I am forever grateful that I have learned to commit my works to God and entrust them wholly to Him. It is He who is effectually at work in me and causes my thoughts to become agreeable with His will so that my plans shall be established and succeed (Proverbs 16:3; Philippians 2:13). How incredibly awesome is that?! I am “doing” His Word! I take Him for His Word, and His Word never returns to Him void but always accomplishes what it is sent to do (Isaiah 55:11).

I so love God’s Word. I pray that His Word and promises that never fail, will encourage someone else’s heart like He has greatly encouraged mine.

Do not let the world discourage you in your journey. It does not matter what the world says about you or about what you can or cannot do. It only matters what God says. Nothing is impossible with God and nothing is too hard for Him to do. My life is proof of that. Never ever give up because where He guides He provides. Do not quit and miss out on His best for you!

Be encouraged. God loves you.

Father, be it unto me (be it unto all of Your beloved) according to Your Word (Luke 1:38). In Jesus’ name, amen. ♥

His name is Steven and God loves him too.

How many times do we walk past those who appear lost, broken, and dirty because we are too much in a hurry to go about our daily business? I’ll be honest, I am guilty of it more than not. In the last couple of years alone, I have probably stopped (reluctantly) to speak with someone who society usually tends to ignore only three or four times. That is a sad truth. For me, most of the time it is because I am simply afraid to. Afraid of the unknown of what the person might say or do or being afraid of not knowing what to say. Fear has caused me to shy away from saying anything at all. I am tired of being afraid. More and more on this miracle journey to heaven, I am recognizing where my fear is coming from and that is from the devil. He uses it to keep us from helping others. He uses fear to keep us from spending time seeking God with our whole hearts. He does not want us to move forward in our lives, he wants to keep us captive to fear and sin. And of course he uses fear to keep us from praying because he knows how powerful prayer to the Lord God Almighty is for those who believe. Just like the Scripture says, “When a believing person prays, great things happen.” (James 5:16 TLB) Great things of God that is. That is why I believe we must fight fear like a plague, I do not want to keep letting the enemy win that battle and finally I am at the point to where he is losing more and more.

Today as usual, I was in a hurry as I was leaving the grocery store. As I was exiting quickly with my basket, I happened to look to my left and there was a young man sitting there. I could tell he has been living a rough life for who knows how long. He looked at me and I am not sure if he was trying to say something to me or not, but all that came out of me was “hi” as I kept walking toward the parking lot. That was it. Just “hi.” Well, I am grateful for my connection with the Lord these days because He was not going to let me off that easy. I knew I could not leave without going back after I loaded everything into my car. I won’t lie, I was reluctant as usual. I said to the Lord, “what can I do? I am afraid to speak to him. He’s not going to listen me. He’s probably going to give me a hard time if I talk about You, God.” Can you believe how I was trying to talk myself out of it? I can believe it, because it is usually what happens. Or I find myself relieved the person has walked away out of view and then I feel I am off the hook and say “well I was going to but they’re gone now…oh well, next time.” Next time turned out to be today since that actually just happened to me about a month earlier.

So I mustered up the courage. I grabbed a bottle of water and instead of taking the easy way out (I could have placed my cart next to where I was parked), I walked my cart all the way back to the store building where the young man was sitting. All the way there I had absolutely no idea what I was going to say, but in all my training with the Lord, I suddenly had His boldness and strength in me. I felt confident that He would help me say whatever it was that this young man needed to hear. I did have a thought that maybe I am just supposed to give him a bottle of water, but thankfully God had more in store. The young man watched me coming toward him and I was still wondering what I was doing. I put the cart away and I looked at him and said “What is your name?” As I was handing him a bottle of water he softly spoke and told me and said “God bless you” to me. I immediately became overwhelmed with the Presence of God over both of us. I know this was a divine appointment because the tears started coming from my eyes even before I was able to speak. I got choked up because the love of God was not only pouring out of my heart, it was pouring out of this young man’s heart too. That was the first time that had ever happened to me in the few times that I have mustered up the courage to speak to a soul going through hard times. I got down on my knees so I could be eye level with him. I put my hand on his shoulder without a thought. He opened up to me and told me about what landed him on the streets. I could tell that he had been “roughed up” a bit because he had cuts on his face that had not quite healed yet. He said that he had been jumped a couple of times. He said “today is the day I am going back home to be a man for my family.” He mentioned that others had prayed for him and that he finally had surrendered to God. He said he had been stubborn for too long and he had given his heart to God. He said he needed to go help his mother who was having a hard time. He had already lost his wife due to his choices, but I was so amazed about how he took responsibility and did not blame God or anyone else for his consequences.  I shared my testimony of how God rescued me too and he smiled. Mostly, I think I was there to listen and reassure him of God’s love for him.

I will never forget today — how God moved. This was such a good lesson in seeking God for guidance and letting Him lead. He gives us what we need right when we need it. There is no fear when God is in control!

I thought I was supposed to be a blessing for this stranger who looked lost, broken, and living on the streets for too long, but God turned it around and blessed me more than I could have ever imagined. I cannot believe the emotions that came out of me as I was speaking to this man, but it was God’s incredible love pouring through wanting this man to know that he is a child of God and is loved no matter what he has done. The cool thing is, he already knew. Someone else had already broken through and told him. It seems that I was just supposed to be the one today who watered the seed a little more and I trust God will send someone tomorrow and every single day and will keep drawing this man in and will restore him.

On my drive home I cried happy tears thanking and praising God for allowing me this experience. A Natalie Grant song “Clean” played on my radio and I started to cry even more. If you haven’t heard it, please look it up and listen, I believe you will be blessed by it like I was.

Please pray for this man, his name is Steven. I never expected to be blessed the way I was with what happened today. Thank You God and thank you Steven (wherever you may be). There are so many Stevens out there, please pray that they will hear, see, and believe that God has not forgotten about them either. There are so many like me out there, the difference is that I still have a roof over my head. That does not make me better than anyone else.

We see shattered, broken, and dirty but God sees whole, and beautiful. There’s nothing too dirty that He can’t make worthy. He washes us in His mercy and makes us ALL clean. Thank You, Jesus. ♥