There are two kinds of erosion: breaking and smoothing. The first happens when water flows into cracks and then freezes. It makes jagged edges and rough surfaces. The second when water or wind slowly wears down and rounds.
When people disappoint you in church, it’s wearing. It can erode your spirit. But what is left is up to you. Does it become beautiful, as if molded by God, or does it show the painful barb of breakage?
Let us, as Joseph, see the hand of God ultimately in the pain other “Christians” inflict.
Posted in abuse, church, forgiveness
Tagged beauty, Bible, Christianity, erosion, Faith, God, hurt, Jesus, Joseph, ministry, pain
We know pain — all of us. But we don’t know the answer. No, it is not to lose yourself in falling in love or the emotional highs of rock concert. It’s not travel, fashion or achievements.
The answer is Jesus. The root cause of our inner hurt is the inborn separation from God due to sin. The path to joy, peace, love, fulfillment is Jesus.
Posted in Christianity, life, motivation
Tagged afterlife, answers to lifes problems, Faith, God, Heaven, hope, hurt, is there an afterlife?, Jesus, pain, sin, suicide
If we didn’t feel pain, I don’t suppose we would pray. Not until we hit anguish do we remember our limitations and God’s limitlessness. So prayer, then, is a journey from pain to pleasure, from bruises to blessings, from hits to happiness.
If pain is the starting point, however, the journey doesn’t have to be painful. After all, we leave pain behind.
We need to see prayer less like instant answers and more of a pathway. Some hikes are short and easy, others long, still others strenuous. I don’t know about you, but I like hikes of all sizes and shapes. In fact, I haven’t met a hike I didn’t like yet.
Regardless, it is the destination that makes you forget about the process of getting there. Once you reach happiness, all previous pain is pretty much forgotten. Part of knowing how do I pray is staying on the path towards happiness.
Posted in God's work, How do I pray?, prayer
Tagged better life, Bible, Faith, hope, how to pray?, Jesus, lifestyle, love, pain, positive thinking, problems, random thoughts, self-improvement, trials
First you follow your heart (excuse the pun) whole-heartedly.
Then when your heart leads you to pain (because of sin), you want to get rid of it.
But those who try only make things worse. They try to deaden the pain with a deluge of sin (drugs, alcohol, meaningless sex). These are neither permanent nor true fixes.
Jesus heals hearts. Cry out to Him.
Myer with her boyfriend.
Tears streamed as Salome recounted how the C-section didn’t save the baby. Katelyn Myer became painfully aware of the gaggle of kids screaming and laughing and tumbling around the clinic as she listened to the Tanzania women share her sorrows.
Lighthouse Medical Mission’s 2015 clinic to Mwanza “made me think and know and feel that we are all God’s children,” she said. “The medicine and the science had overtaken my point of view. They’re not just bodies that are sick but people who have hurts and feelings.”
An actress in Hollywood, Myer only recently became a Christian. She joined the Santa Monica-based charity LMM this month to give of herself. “It was a really intense and beautiful and incredible experience,” she said.
In all, LMM attended to 1,800 patients for five days and held evening church services. “It really pushed home that the theme of the Bible is love,” Myer said.
Medically, the doctors couldn’t do much to help Salome. Her pain was in her heart from the stillborn child. So Myer gave her emotional support.
As they left the clinic Friday to tour a bit, the patients were cheering and singing songs of praise.
Then she remembered a prophetic word her boyfriend had received before coming to Africa. Someone had told him, “You need to say the word ‘Life’ to somebody over there.” It was time to say the word.
We don’t know yet if Salome is pregnant again.
Christmas has a way of heightening pain. Why am I so lonely?
If you are broken, know this: Jesus came for the broken. Christmas was the day of His birth (probably not the actual day, but on this day we remember His birth). Are you suffering alone? Jesus came for YOU!
All the people engorging, all the material consumer crazed — well, Jesus came for them too. BUT first and foremost, He came for the hurting heart. If that’s you, this Christmas can be a very special time. You may have nothing, but you can get EVERYTHING if you open your heart to the Savior.
Posted in Christianity
Tagged broken, depression, desperate, Faith, hurting, is there any hope?, Jesus, loneliness, pain, random, suicide, thoughts
So Jesus can relate to suffering and pain.
In fact, his essential purpose in leaving his kingship in Heaven and condescending to take mortal form was to suffer. And it started with his birth in a filthy stable.
During his life, He alleviated pain everywhere He found it. Blind eyes were opened. Condemned prostitutes were forgiven. Tax collectors escaped a life of being despised by others. The demon-oppressed were freed.
Then he died excruciatingly.
If Christmas conjures magical feelings of family and beauty, let us never forget its underpinnings are the Son of God coming to help the helpless, the defend the defenseless, to redeemed the scum of society, to sanctify the sinner and prick the self-righteous to reflection.
He feels your pain. He came to take the pain away.
Photo from soulation org
Joy: when I think of others’ blessings.
I get discouraged by my own circumstances.
But when I think about other rising disciples in the church, I rejoice to see God blessing and using them.
Lesson learned: think about others.
Posted in Christianity
Tagged Bible, Faith, God, inspiraton, Jesus, joy, ministry, motivation, others, pain, self-centeredness
If you never suffer pain, you will undervalue joy.
If you don’t know anguish, relief is boring.
If you ignore what misery is, you will be void of compassion.
If you don’t understand how your sin puts you into desperate straits before God, you will never grasp the imponderable wonder of grace and salvation.
If it’s always somebody’s else’s fault, you will never know what it means to forgive.
If you only love yourself, you do not know what love is.
Think about Job’s friends. They wanted to console Job. But their theology was too black-and-white. Through some 20 chapters, they degenerated from help to hurt, from wanting to encourage to discouraging. Eventually, they just argued.
Don’t be like Job’s friends. They started on the right foot. The Bible says that when calamity slammed Job, they sat with him in silence for seven days, grieving with him. They showed strong moral support.
But then they searched for words. They sought reasons to explain the unexplainable. They spoke eloquently and gradually became enamored with their fine speeches and forgot about the purpose of uplifting the victim. Instead of infusing solace, they spiked Job. Dogmatism doomed them.
Their lack of words spoke more powerfully than the florid poetry they poured out trying to convince Job he was wrong. In the end, they did more harm than good. Eventually, the dragged Job into the fray and provoked him to some unwise statements. At the end, God rebuked them.
If only they would have finished like they started, friends showing mute affirmation.
Certainly “truth” would be another area for definition. But my faith in the Truth impels me to act. The same love of the Savior buzzes in me, and I cannot stand myself if I am not about Jesus’ business.
Parenthetically, I renounce the idea that I am trying to earn my salvation. I am saved because of Jesus’ work on the cross. Because of Jesus work on the cross, out of sublime gratitude and with joy, I work to alleviate others’ suffering.
And you? How do you define Christianity?
Photo courtesy of Imprezzme.blogspot.com
Pain is off the charts these days. I believe the multiplication of evil prophesied by Jesus for the last days is to blame. There’s more disintegration of families, more sin abounding, so hearts are hurting everywhere from betrayal. Where love is supposed to be, rejection abounds.
English obviously correlates “cry” and “cry out” in the translation of the Bible. O my God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer, by night, and am not silent — Psalm 22:2 NIV. Distress
from The Landy – Out and About
is associated with shouting. Our desperation turns to prayer, our anguish to hope. Prayer, if anything, is pathos.
I asked God for His toughest assignment because I was cocksure of the solution: prayer. Then He allowed me a trial that blindsided me and left me staggering and confused. I had to laugh at myself: I got what I asked for, and then I didn’t know what to do.
Prayer is the outpouring of pain, a solution, not a reveling in hurt. Unlike cutting or pity-partying, it doesn’t celebrate the ouch in an upside-down way; it heals it. Turn not your anguish into alcoholism. You have a God above you who loves you and cares for you.
Posted in prayer
Tagged Bible, Christianity, cutting, depression, Faith, God, Holy Spirit, hope, inspiration, Jesus, love, pain, self-harm, suicide
from Steamboat Friday
Nebuchadnezzar wanted them really dead. So he heated up the executioner’s furnace seven times the normal heat. Even the guards who threw in Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego died. Talk about… mmm, overkill.
Even so, those three Jews, guilty of not bowing to the king’s idol, didn’t flinch. With great impending disaster bearing down upon them, they stayed faithful. They would only pray and believe in God. They wouldn’t do lip service to appease the wrathful king.
In the end, constancy won. King Nebuchadnezzar leaped to his feet in amazement and asked his advisers, “Weren’t there three men that we tied up and threw into the fire?” They replied, “Certainly, O king.” He said, “Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, unbound and unharmed, and the fourth looks like a son of the gods.” — Dan. 3:24-25 NIV.
from British Columbia ROCKS
After that, the three Jews walked free. Good ole Neb learned not to mess with the One True God. And a decree was issued giving testimony throughout his empire. It pays to remain steadfast, to remain unbowed before the world’s idols despite intense pressure.
Posted in Christianity
Tagged Bible, Daniel, Faith, faithfulness, fiery furnace, God, grace under pressure, inspiration, Jesus, life, lifestyle, Nabuchadnezzar, pain, resilience, Shadrach, threats, trials
From pinterest. (This is not me.)
Praise is very much like prayer, only that it is confident (full of faith) of the answer.
One of the “secrets” I have learned in decades of prayer is to have time to praise God. (Usually the “big secrets” that the “gurus” know are simple truths that other people already know anyhow.) This key to successful prayer transformed my prayer life, which previously was something of a whine session.
It also served the second purpose of filling up my faith
Another random photo from pinterest.
tank. As I remembered all the good answers God had brought to my prayers (I compile lists), I am filled with faith to pray for today’s challenges. Yessiree, it’s that simple.
Posted in faith
Tagged answers, God, inspiration, Jesus, key to success, life, lifestyle, motivation, pain, praise, prayer, purpose