Find the light; to Make Our Burdens Light

John 8:12 (NIV) When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.

The darkness consumes my mind; it reminds of those times of feeling worthless. The pictures in my head of the past; the feeling of terror the thought of wanting to yell “STOP” but being paralyzed by the pain nothing comes out.

Then comes the loss of time and the feeling of not wanting to wake up again begging and pleading for the pain, the voices and the suffering to just stop please take it away from me. Nothing.

Happiness eludes me; why me? The idea of peace enters my mind then goes away again in an instant. Peace no more. Then I awaken not knowing how much more of this darkness I am able to take. I just want it to end.

Then in the moment of desperation and wanting to regain control of my life while being exhausted from not sleeping for days. I see where this is coming from. I crawl out of bed; pointing directly straight out of the house. Then I proclaim loudly, “Satan, I rebuke you from this home, from my heart and from my mind! My salvation is with my Savior Jesus Christ! I am saved for His glory; not yours! I rebuke you!”

Sheer exhaustion consumes me however there is still a battle to be fought in my mind; it just won’t shut off I decide to make it my purpose to regain what has been lost.
Time to go back to bed but again the continuation of my mind racing won’t stop. I have been fighting all day and I just want to sleep. I feel a hand on my arm; it is my husband desperately trying to keep me in bed quite aware of my exhaustion he just wants me to sleep. Then all of a sudden the break through moment begins; I am seeing the clouds of darkness shifting and the ray of light peeking through the clouds. Then begins the conversation with Jesus which should have taken place days ago begins;  I begin to pray giving Him the highest glory and honor. I am not worthy of His mercy and grace however I still receive it.

The exhaustion still consumes me in this moment of desperation I give Him praises for all of his blessings He has bestowed on me, both good and bad. Yes, the bad things in life because He continues to show me his redemption time and time again.

Then all of a sudden the feeling of my heart literally breaking in two. I don’t understand completely the circumstances of the situation I was praying for only there would be a new journey for those people I was praying for. I prayed so hard so hard for them and in the end all I could ask for was HIS WILL TO BE DONE. There is the bigger picture. His WILL be done. Then all of a sudden a peace falls upon me. The feeling of the Holy Spirit has me wrapped up and I hear His voice, “I am in control.” “I have you.” “Just sleep” my sobs were so hard it woke my husband; I reassured him I was okay. By this time I am saying aloud, “Thank you Jesus” “Thank you-“ I tell my husband to just lay here, can you feel Him, He is here with us; He is always with us; He is always faithful, He is in control; our Lord and Savior is in control. He is in control….”

Then the sleep finally came upon me finally my burden was light; I could feel the work of the Holy Spirit putting my heart back together making me stronger than I was before. Would this be the last time I encounter the darkness hard telling but, I knew in my heart Jesus had a message for me.

During this period of darkness it was scary, times of begging for peace to come upon me. But the peace came when I was completely exhausted. He allowed the darkness to remind me I need to continue to place my faith and trust in Jesus. Have the relationship with Him to allow him to be in control. This message was so resounding; I woke the next morning so full of the Holy Spirit I didn’t want to miss out on worship service. The message begins, Who is in control? You or Jesus? Wait? What? Is this really happening right now? Everything I had discussed with Jesus his message was being repeated at Sunday morning service. Jesus knows my heart He knows how I need to hear his message so, why not remind her, “She is not in control I am.”

Matthew 11:28-30 (NIV) “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29) Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30) For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
There is a lot of people who face pain, uncertainty, sorrow and those who have great joys to celebrate.
In Matthew Jesus promises there will be rest for the weary. He wants for us to place our burdens on Him and allow him to be in control.
With the pain we feel at times there is no light in the forefront; then I remember the one light I can always count on is the Light of Christ. We must realize through the storm clouds, rain and valleys there is hope with our faith in Christ.
All too often we want to handle the situation on our own. We don’t need help from anyone. But Jesus tells us in verse 29, when we take His yoke upon us and learn from Him our burdens will be light and then we will have rest for our souls. By doing this we will grow spiritually in our relationship with Jesus. He wants that relationship to be at the center of our lives when we do this the burdens, sorrow pain and celebrations in life are shared with Him. Then we praise him in all things good and bad.
Praise Him in the storm; watch the storm clouds clear and see His light; He is always there faithful and true.

Darkness_Light

 

Pulling Weeds

One day I was sitting in Village Inn waiting for my car to get serviced at Wal-Mart, the condition set by Chris if I wanted to go to Lansing to see my father.

I was alone, and I just started writing. I always knew what the title of my next blog would be and the subject matter I just didn’t know the direction I was going to have it go in. So here it is.

Every parent has a goal for their children. Here are some of my goals:

  1. Having a relationship with Christ
  2. Falling in Love
  3. Know unconditional love
  4. Enjoying making memories
  5. Have a full and successful life

As parents we can help our children attain some of these goals. The one goal I am focusing on is making memories. Our children have childhood memories these memories can be good ones and bad ones.

I know growing up in a home with multiple children each child will have different memories of how they view the way they grew up. This especially happens when there is a generation gap.

In 2007 my mother passed away from a glioblastoma brain tumor. Having someone close you go through this isn’t easy, she put up a fight and I know in my heart she did this for our family.

Our relationship wasn’t always roses, we were after all, mother/daughter. There was nothing I wanted more was for my mother to just love me for who I was, everything I believed I did  to please her.

In the final days before she died, she told me I would be fine. I know she loved me, there was never a time she wouldn’t tell me she loved me even in a heated moment of anger or should I say disappointment, she would say “I love you, bye” not once did she hang up the phone without telling me she loved me. She told me she did this because if she died tomorrow there would be no doubt that she loved me.

But, it doesn’t change the negative-I remember the tantrums me storming out of the house not understanding why she didn’t like me, what did I ever do to be treated so badly I didn’t get it, these memories flooded my mind. Then I remember when I was pregnant with my daughter how mom was so loving, understanding and supportive.  Before she passed away she asked me what my favorite memory was, I explained it was the night I fell asleep on the living room floor and she laid next to me; wrapped her arm around me feeling Erikah kick. This memory resounds through my mind often; I hold onto this memory because I choose to remember the loving moments in my relationship with mom.

When I think of my mother I also remember how she drilled into my head, “Bad association spoils useful habits.” this is a scripture 1 Corinthians 15:33(NWT) Do not be misled. Bad association spoils useful habits. She always wanted better for me, I didn’t understand this I was a teenager seeking guidance and direction. I saw how strong my mother was when faced with adversity. Then I remember, Proverbs 31:25 (NIV) She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.

I didn’t always agree with my mother; however she was my mother and I respected her as my mother. I loved her the best way I knew how. I want to focus on the good memories so I can be free and enjoy those memories. I am working hard on pulling the weeds; the negative memories so I can focus on the good.

My children will have good memories and bad ones as well. My prayer for them is to one day realize I am human afterall, I did falter and fail often but, I did my best to raise them to become the individuals they are today. I pray one day they will reflect and decide to pull  the weeds, focus on the good times.

 

Unconditional Love =Forgiveness

Young relationships have a lot to learn about forgiveness and unconditional love. The greatest gift any child could give a parent is when they call and say, “I get it, I understand what unconditional love is.”

So let’s talk about the truth, forgiveness and saying I’m sorry.

John 8:32 Then you will know the truth and the truth shall set you free.

The truth can set us free. I use this statement to discuss the importance of forgiveness. Asking for forgiveness and forgiving.

Recently I ran into my husband with a laundry cart at the Laundromat. First words out of my mouth was, “I’m sorry.” this statement was the nudge I needed to write about forgiveness and how this relates to unconditional love.

No matter the situation when you say I’m sorry you are asking for forgiveness. I have found recently I have been saying these words a lot because even though my words are unintentional I do not like to cause pain to a person. If I see someone hurting, I want to help by wishing I could absorb their pain. So I say I’m sorry you feel this way is there anything I can do to help ease the pain. This is a way of showing someone empathy and compassion.

I have also found that when you show empathy a person is more likely to trust you and will allow you to take a sneak peak into their heart. Unconditional love, allowing the person to have ownership of their feelings which leads to the beginning of healing.

In 2006 I wrote, “Often times this is how forgiveness works, having the power to forgive without being asked is a sign of unconditional love for others.”

Have you ever had to forgive someone with out them asking for forgiveness? For me this was the hardest thing to do in my life. I had a person in my life who was very abusive to me and one day with the help of my loving congregation I learned who to set myself free and I ended up saying out loud I forgive you.  There was a long list of people I had to forgive, those who disappointed me and not being there for me when they should have been. The ones who assumed they knew what I was going through and called me horrible names. I learn my normal was not normal at all, I was living the life of being a victim. one day my Pastor’s wife pointed out to me I was living my life as a victim and when was I going to allow God to take over the healing and move forward. The first step was to forgive my abusers. Once I did this I felt for the first time I was set free. I would make strives to serve the Lord and teach others the importance of forgiving.

Ephesians 4:32 Be Kind and compassionate to one another forgive each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Jesus is our example of mercy and unconditional love as our relationship with Jesus grows we want to become more like him.

Two Point

  1. Ask for forgiveness to be forgiven will allow us to unload those burdens.
  2. To give forgiveness is to be set free.

I building a relationship with Christ we want to be more Christ like. We become a better person by making changes . Remember what God did for us.

John 3:16 “for God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal love”

This example of God’s love demonstrates unconditional love and forgiveness.

We believe that there are sins that are so horrible and we will never find the grace of God’s love however in Psalms 103:12 As far from the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.

Remember to Say I’m sorry and forgive just as the Lord would want us to do with a spirit of unconditional love.

Salvation

For some reason this topic has been on my mind a lot lately; I have also been reading a lot from the book of Psalms especially from Psalms 51. (David wrote Psalms 51) This is one of the critical points when king David has realized everything he had done was for his own selfish need. He sinned by having an affair with Bathsheba and then he also had her husband murdered and covered it up.

King David did horrible things but here is where he begins to ask for forgiveness:

 Psalms 51:2 “Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from sin.”

We are familiar with the story of King David and his short comings yet the Lord still used him for His purpose.  How? by showing us his mercy and love by forgiving King David for his sins.

So, thinking about ourselves; we have days we are just on top of the world; we don’t miss a step and keep on walking forward with the plan to please the Lord. Reminding ourselves of our true purpose. Then one day we will sin, sin is a little word with a huge impact, it means the same as doing something wrong which is against anything you believe to be righteous and true. I know I fall short on a daily basis; falling short could be as simple thinking a thought which is inappropriate or wishfully thinking harm would fall upon someone.

When we were born; we were born with sin. Our natural tendencies are for our own selfish ways rather than to please the Lord. When Jesus died on the cross he took on all our sin for our own salvation. King David didn’t have this at the time; he had to turn to the Lord himself. I can imagine him on his knees praying these words to the Lord.

Psalms 51: 10-12 Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a stead fast spirit within me

11) Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.

12) Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit to sustain me.

With our salvation; we ask for forgiveness by praying through “His son Jesus Christ.” We can become free of sin once we ask for forgiveness and truly want this forgiveness. God wants to have a close relationship with us and the only way to prevent the crushing wave of guilt is to ask for his forgiveness. By doing this we are also building our relationship with Christ and this is where the foundation for salvation begins.

So when we find ourselves distant from the Lord this is the time we want to remember:

  1. We turned away from Him (Through sin)
  2. God has proven time and again he will mercifully forgive us
  3. Salvation comes through accepting Christ as our savior
  4. Ask for repentance

Remember Jesus’ words

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only So, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.