I’m not dead!


I’m not dead!  I can’t believe that I haven’t written a blog post in such a long time!

I want you all to not lose hope – I am not dead….. this blog is not dead…. I will not abandon it.  The friendships I have here are too important to me.

I have bee n going through a lot recently, and I have not been on my computer as often as I have been since my birthday.  That, plus the hectic nature of my job (gotten even more busy….)  I have not had the time to sit and craft new blog posts.

Please pray for me.  And remember I’m not dead!

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Happy Birthday To ME!!!


This is a shameless post (singing)… it’s my birthday and I can post if I want to, post if I want to… you would post too if it happened to you..  (Ok, I have NO idea where that came from!)

Just a short post today…  Now I accept well wishes, gift cards, cars, houses, land, credit cards, frequent flier miles as birthday presents!  Be creative!

Love you guys!

Life Together: Showing Mercy


Almost done this series! Continuing onward we’re going to look at showing mercy.  The title of the devotion was “Life Together: Don’t be Reluctant to Show Mercy”.

You can read the devotion here.

Rev Warren comments that,

“In real fellowship people experience mercy. Fellowship is a place of grace, where mistakes aren’t rubbed in but rubbed out. Fellowship happens when mercy wins over justice.”  

I mentioned an example of this in my second last post on Authentic Friendship , where my church came around me and supported and accepted me when I confessed a sin to them.  That’s just showing mercy in action – true fellowship!

I like what he says here:

You can’t have fellowship without forgiveness because bitterness and resentment always destroy fellowship. Sometimes we hurt each other intentionally and sometimes unintentionally, but either way, it takes massive amounts of mercy and grace to create and maintain fellowship. 

How about marriage?  I’m sure my wife would agree with the above statement right now – massive amounts of mercy and grace….  “Fellowship” is usually seen in the context of friends, or a small group, or a church… but reading that above statement,  I’m sure that the family should be a microcosm of true fellowship.  You have to forgive to maintain any relationship.  

Quoting the Scripture, Rev Warren continues:

The Bible says, “You must make allowance for each other’s faults and forgive the person who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others” (Colossians 3:13 NLT).

The mercy God shows to us is the motivation for us to show mercy to others. Whenever you’re hurt by someone, you have a choice to make: Will I use my energy and emotions for retaliation or for resolution?

It’s easy to retalliate, hard to choose to forgive – but God says it’s necessary.  (Did I just say that?  Lord, help me to obey!)

I like the contrast he makes between forgiveness and trust:

Many people are reluctant to show mercy because they don’t understand the difference between trust and forgiveness. Forgiveness is letting go of the past. Trust has to do with future behavior.

Forgiveness must be immediate, whether or not a person asks for it. Trust must be rebuilt over time. 

Trust requires a track record. If someone hurts you repeatedly, you are commanded by God to forgive them instantly, but you are not expected to trust them immediately, and you are not expected to continue allowing them to hurt you. They must prove they have changed over time. The best place to restore trust is within the supportive context of a small group that offers both encouragement and accountability.

“Forgiveness must be immediate….trust must be built over time”  I’m working this out in my own marriage right now… it’s not easy rebuilding trust… and every slip back jepordizes the whole process.  I’m pushing ahead, though, with my friends and loved ones who are like Aaron and Hur, holding up Moses’ hands so that Joshua could win the battle

The passage is from Exodus 17:10-13:

 10 So Joshua fought the Amalekites as Moses had ordered, and Moses, Aaron and Hur went to the top of the hill. 11 As long as Moses held up his hands, the Israelites were winning, but whenever he lowered his hands, the Amalekites were winning. 12 When Moses’ hands grew tired, they took a stone and put it under him and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held his hands up—one on one side, one on the other—so that his hands remained steady till sunset. 13 So Joshua overcame the Amalekite army with the sword.

I’m Joshua, fighting my battle against the Amalekites – my flesh and demonic oppression – but I have awesome friends and family who are like Moses, Aaron and Hur… interceding to heaven on my behalf!

…..

Now I have been fortunate, and I have been exposed to some of my readers’ and online friends’ struggle with spiritual abuse.  I know that some reading this may be going through a mix of emotions as they deal with memories, reading how things should be and remembering how they were treated and abused…. just let me say that THE LORD LOVES YOU!  No matter what others have done to you or with you…. just know that God loves you.  Also, I want you to know, in the words of one of my blogging buddies, that you are safe with me.  I know that trust takes a while to build, I know that people who promised to love you abused you… but here, you are safe.

My encouragement, then, is ask God to help us all to forgive, and to show mercy towards each other – that is true fellowship!

Thoughts?