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Disordered Results Come From Big Picture Blindness

Disordered Results Come From Big Picture Blindness

Why is it so hard for us to seek the Kingdom of God first?
Why is it so hard for us to break the things that were programmed into us as kids?
Why is it so hard for us to see the “big picture, when we make choices?

These are things that have been on my heart. My boyfriend was talking to me about his job and we got on the subject of how much his job means to him. I’ve always seen in him that his job and money are his number one priority. I have felt like I was the number one person in his life, but not the number one thing. His behavior shows it is his job and/or money that’s number one to him. He said the way he looks at work, is because of the way that he was raised. He was raised to “work hard or not eat”, “work hard to provide”, “work hard to make sure his wife and/or family have nice things”. That all sounds well and good, but it can be a form of idolatry.

When anything that is not of God or of His Kingdom comes first, then it’s idolatry. To some it’s their work, others it’s what people think of them, compliments/praise, how they look, what they wear, social status/success, how their kids/family look, the grades gotten at school, TV, videos, many things can become idolatry in our lives. Pity and selfishness is idolatry, because they can take over our lives and consume us, we are so focused on us, we are out of balance and it becomes idolatry.

“But seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and then all these things taken together will be given you besides.” Matthew 6:33 AMP

We don’t always see the big picture when we make choices. I asked my boyfriend about the way he was raised–to work many hours and be the provider, etc. I wondered where that came from, he said that his Dad worked many hours when he was a kid and he was taught that’s what men did. I asked him what kind of relationship his mom and dad had; what kind of relationship his dad had with each of his kids, his answer was that his dad didn’t have a relationship with any of them. The relationships were non-existent. That’s the big picture, if you take the work habits from your dad, you are going to get the relationship stuff too, it is all one big package, it goes together, somehow we get blind to that. We get the “disordered” side of the behavior too, it comes with it.

Parents do their best to mold and shape morals and values into their kids. I know my parents grew up during the depression and it was hard for my dad to throw away anything that was good. I have some of that behavior as well. However, there is a balance to everything and we can find that balance in our lives with God’s help.

“Be well balanced, (temperate, sober of mind,) be vigilant and cautious at all times; for that enemy of yours, the devil, roams around like a lion roaring (in fierce hunger), seeking someone to seize upon and devour. Withstand him; be firm in faith (against his onset–rooted, established, strong, immovable, and determined)…” I Peter 5:8-9. AMP

If we have balance in our lives, it’s spiritual warfare which helps us to fight off and resist the devil at his onset. It is so easy for us to get out of balance with things, even ministry and what we call “church work”. The devil would rather see us busy and out of balance, even with work at the church, attending groups, bible studies, prayer meetings, etc. than to spend quality time with the Lord.

This next week, I challenge you to look for the “big picture” behind your behaviors. What are you doing that brings undesirable things into your life, or leaves out the quality things that are desirable. What areas are out of balance?

Until next time, God bless you and stay balanced.

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Making Excuses to God

Making Excuses to God

It was a day just like any other day, except it was really hot and humid. I came home from work, laid underneath my ceiling fan and put in a movie. It wasn’t too long and I got a call from the Pastor of my old church. He and I had been really close, I was the church secretary and we would spend a lot of time talking. He was there for me the first few years of my Christian life and got me going on the right path.

He called wanting to know if he could refer someone to me that is going through a time in their life like what I went through in my past. He wanted me to share and minister to this person. I felt honored, that God wanted to use me in this person’s life. All the pain, heartache and struggles that I went through were not in vain. God is going to use those to help others in need! I love to minister to others, to see someone who is hurting and struggling find hope and healing. There is no greater joy than to watch that transformation happen.

As we were talking, we were catching up on each other’s lives. I updated him on a few things and he asked me questions that no one has asked me lately. Things like: How do you feel about that? Where are you in your walk with God? How is your soul? After I got off the phone I got thinking about his questions.

I am the kind of person that needs a sounding board, someone just to listen to me as I talk about my feelings, emotions and thoughts. It helps me to figure out what’s really going on. If it’s ok, I’d like to use this forum as my “sounding board”.

I realize that I am at a place in my life that I’m making excuses to God for my sins. I’m not being accountable or responsible for the way that I’m living. I am blaming my past experiences for my current behavior and choices. I really love God and want to be obedient, but, I am afraid to do what I know is right. I don’t trust my discernment and my ability to make right I am currently living with my boyfriend and I know that I should marry him, we talk about it, but yet due to a previous marriage/divorce I am afraid to make that step. We both love God and have given our lives to Him. My boyfriend has a history of DWI’s and addiction, I have a history of addictions as well. I’ve been straight for almost 5 years and never have slipped. He’s had a slip just recently and is in the workhouse serving time for a DWI. I know that God has gotten his attention and is working on him.

I got delivered from my addictions by God in a supernatural way, and have a hard time remembering that some people have to be healed step by step. I know that we are transformed from glory to glory, and I need to have the grace, mercy and patience to allow God to know the timing that is needed for each individual. This is a learning experience for me because my deliverance was immediate. It was a miracle in my life. I know that God is using my boyfriend (and maybe this other person that my Pastor is referring to me) to teach me the various ways that God works.

The Bible says “Not that I have now attained (this ideal), or have already been made perfect, but I press on to lay hold of (grasp) and make my own, that for which Christ Jesus (the Messiah) has laid hold of me and made me his own. I do not consider, brethren, that I have captured and made it my own (yet); but one thing I do (it is my one aspiration): forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the (supreme and heavenly) prize to which God in Christ Jesus is calling us upward.” Philippians 3:12-14 (AMP). Also, “Therefore, if any person is in Christ he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old (previous moral and spiritual condition) has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come!” II Corinthians 5:17 (AMP). Both of these verses tell me that I am not to look at the past to get a picture of the future. The past is exactly that, the past. Joyce Meyer (spiritual teacher and conference leader) often says that the way you start is not as important as the way that you finish and the start does not make or break you at the finish when it comes to spiritual matters. God can and does transform everyone and anyone.

The Bible also tells me “Now the Lord is Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty (emancipation from bondage, freedom) And all of us, as with unveiled face, (because we) continued to behold (in the Word of God) as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are constantly being transfigured into His very own image in ever increasing splendor and from one degree of glory to another; (for this comes) from the Lord (Who is) the Spirit.” II Corinthians 3:17-18.(AMP) Also, “”Do not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewal of your mind…” Romans 12:2. These verses tell me that we are changed from “glory to glory” and by the renewing of our minds. I know that this is true, my anniversary for being straight is in August and it will be 5 years. I think of how far I’ve come and I’m amazed. God is truly an Awesome God.

Thank you for allowing me to use this as a sounding board, I pray that this article has given you something to think about in your own life. If you are like me and using excuses for your sin or using your past to judge the future, join me in trusting the future to God, trusting our own and other’s transformations to God, (nothing is too big for Him!), confessing and repenting our sins, knowing that God will be and always has been faithful. He is there for us, He loves us and we CAN trust Him.

Bless you.

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Reduce Me to Love

Reduce Me to Love

It’s been on my heart lately to really work on my love walk. To be Jesus in the skin in this world. I allow my pride and impatience to get in the way many times. I’m always in such a hurry, I don’t really need to rush anywhere, I just want to be efficient. I have that type of personality. I’m a person who can be thinking about one thing, talking on the phone about another, and writing something completely different. I am efficient. This leads to impatience and I know that impatience is a manifestation of pride.

Pride shows itself in my life these ways: (1) impatience, like I already pointed out; (2) being critical or judgmental, someone is not doing something as well as I think they should, or as well as I think I could; (3) being late frequently, I’m important, they will wait for me before they start; (4) arrogance, being insensitive to other people

I’m sure that pride shows up in many other ways, conceit, bragging, haughtiness, etc. But, pride in my life is mostly this list of four. I don’t really mean to be cold or insensitive, I just come off that way because of my impatience and that drive that’s in me to be perfect and efficient.

I’m reminded of Mark 8:22-25 “And they came to Bethsaida. And (people) brought to Him a blind man and begged Him to touch him. And He caught the blind man by the hand and led him out of the village; and when He had spit on his eyes and put His hands upon him, He asked him, Do you see anything? And he looked up and said, I see people, but (they look) like trees, walking. Then He put His hands on his eyes again; and the man looked intently (that is, fixed his eyes on definite objects), and he was restored and saw everything distinctly (even what was at a distance).

I’ve been seeing people that look like trees lately, I find myself looking right past them or through them. I am not focused on definite objects, I am focused on what task I am doing at the time. I see many people daily in my job, and I’m not being sensitive to them as people. I’m not being Jesus in the skin and I’m not walking in love, I am just doing my task.

The following poem is my prayer.

Reduce Me To Love

Lord reduce me to love,
The love that’s from above.
Let there be nothing left inside of me,
Except Your love, for others to see.

I pray Your love shines so bright,
That others are attracted to the light.
That we may all have love for each other,
And not hide continually under cover.

Reduce, refine, workout the changes,
To be made until we are blameless.
A church without blemish or spot
Is what Your blood has bought.

You paid by dying on the tree,
Long ago at Calvary.
For believers, You promise to return,
For that day we all yearn.

Until then, Reduce Me to Love…

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Weakness Can Be Strong

We’re taught that weakness is not good,Christian Writing Ministry
To always be strong like we should.
But there’s a limit to what’s inside,
To how much pain that we can hide.

We go through life, stuffing and denying,
Until it comes easily, without trying.
We turn to liquor, drugs and beer,
To avoid the feelings that we fear.

Life seems good, for a while,
We learn to function and to smile.
But then one day the bottom crashes in,
And we realize this isn’t how to win.

We’ve tried and tried with all our might,
And still the end seems out of sight.
We know that we can’t do it alone,
And we turn to God to lead us home.

After we’ve been clean for some time,
Those old grievances and pain come to mind.
Now is the time that we face them head on,
Learning sometimes, weakness is really being strong.

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The Battle Within

Lord, help me with my struggles of flesh,Christian Writing Ministry
Satan wants to use it to make a mess.
Keep me focused, keep me clean
So that my life can be serene.

The dark places in my soul,
Need light to make me whole.
Satan works with the dark,
Plants an idea for a start.

The battlefield is in the mind,
The thoughts I have, are the kind
That my flesh like to entertain
But following through would be insane.

For the action would bring struggle
To my life, turmoil and trouble.
I know this is a test I can pass,
With my focus on You, it can’t last.

Give me strength to see me through,
Transform my mind to be like You.
For that’s the only way to win,
This battle that rages within.

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12 Steps to Abundant Living

Spiritual Recovery WritingTo “work the steps” the first time shows,
How far I have yet to go.
But, without the Lord walking me through
There isn’t much I can do.

With Him, is where I can be strong,
To really look at what is wrong.
And to realize how far I’ve come,
The “pit” He delivered me out from.

Step One, I realize the power I lack,
To get “the monkey” off my back.
It took the work on Step Two,
To know this is something I can’t do.

Step Three requires giving up control,
Turning over my life and soul
To my Lord who knows it all
With Him, I can tear down my wall.

Step Four is one that’s hard for me,
My character defects, I have to see,
My strengths I have to look at too,
With Jesus, this step, I’ll get through.

Step Five, I take my list from step four,
And reveal myself, down to the core.
To God, myself and someone I trust,
For healing this confession is a must.

Step Six to be willing from within
To let go of my defects and sin.
Step Seven; God, my mind renew,
Transform me to be like You.

Step Eight, I list those I’ve hurt,
And I pray not to feel like dirt.
Again, I need a willing heart,
To make amends and do my part.

I make direct amends to those people in Step Nine
After I do, I really feel Christ’s love shine.
Another personal inventory is Step Ten,
I feel like I’m doing step four again.

Step Eleven, I make Jesus my best friend
Pray for His will and strength to send
Step Twelve, I’m on fire to spread the news
So that others can experience Him too.

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Step 6

My prayer is for a willing heart,Christian Writing MInistry
I believe that’s the place to start,
Make me willing from within,
To let go of my defects and sin.

To give them to you for you to heal,
Straight-up, no strings, without a deal.
My previously developed coping skills
I now exchange for Your will.

Mold me, shape me and purify me,
Put me through the refiner’s fire.
To live a life like Jesus Christ,
This is my true desire.

The process is painful, this I know,
But, serenity is on the other side,
Your blessings You freely bestow,
To those willing to give up their pride.

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God’s Puppet

Christian Writing Ministry“I surrender all” is what I sing
But am I willing to be God’s puppet on a string?
To let go of all my fear and to trust,
To be obedient to the Spirit, it’s a must.

Months ago, on the altar, I put my shoes.
To signify that what He says, I will do.
Since then, my life has not been the same,
I’m no longer playing that old fleshly game.

The Lord is continually working with me,
Floating things to the surface for me to see.
Then we work on the issues together,
My character defects, He helps me to sever.

He’s pouring out the old and filling me with the new,
The pain that accompanies it, He helps me with that too.
He’s truly my Master with a plan for my life
To ease my burdens and rid me of strife.

My sins are gone, as far as the east is to the west,
In my Heavenly Father’s arms, I have finally found rest.
I’m dying to self, becoming a new creature in Christ
Because before He knew me, He died to pay the price.

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Disordered Results Come From Big Picture Blindness

Why is it so hard for us to seek the Kingdom of God first? Why is it so hard for us to...
article post

Making Excuses to God

It was a day just like any other day, except it was really hot and humid. I came home...
article post

Reduce Me to Love

It’s been on my heart lately to really work on my love walk. To be Jesus in the skin in...
article post

Weakness Can Be Strong

We’re taught that weakness is not good, To always be strong like we should. But there’s...
article post

The Battle Within

Lord, help me with my struggles of flesh, Satan wants to use it to make a mess. Keep me...
article post

12 Steps to Abundant Living

To “work the steps” the first time shows, How far I have yet to go. But,...
article post

Step 6

My prayer is for a willing heart, I believe that’s the place to start, Make me...
article post

God’s Puppet

“I surrender all” is what I sing But am I willing to be God’s puppet...
article post