Keep Coming


The Father invites us to come and pray about our past pain until we are healed. There is not a limit on our counseling sessions with Him. We know we are healed when we can see with clarity how God allowed that pain to work together for our good. One of the best “goods” that come from bringing our pain to God is the intimacy that is developed between us. I’ve seen God in a way that I have never seen Him before because of deep wounds that I kept bringing to Him.

The desperation that comes from wanting to be healed has a way of breaking down false pretense and formalities in prayers. I have experienced characteristics of God that were veiled because of legalism. When I am vulnerable with Him in prayer about my pain, I suddenly realize that He is not a distant God who is always looking for me to get it right. Instead I come to know Him as a loving Father who wants to guide me with His truth. I no longer see Him as this God who is pointing His finger telling me to get over it and toughen up. Instead I see Him as a compassionate and patient father who extends His grace and helps me to walk the path to maturity.

I also know that I have been healed when thanksgiving and praise flows from my lips instead of venom. The praise doesn’t come from a place of naivety. Instead it comes from a deeper revelation of the goodness and sovereignty of God and His ability to redeem our pain when we come to Him. It is in the coming that we see how God used what the enemy intended to harm us with, as a launching pad for where He, God, wanted to take us. When we are healed we look back on our painful experiences, not wishing they would happen again, but thanking God for His ability to bring beauty from pain.
Keep coming to drink from the healing well
Keep coming to drop the weight at His feet
Keep coming
Because it is in the coming
That healing takes Place

Isaiah 61:3 (NLT)
To all who mourn in Israel, he will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair. In their righteousness, they will be like great oaks that the LORD has planted for his own glory.
Romans 8:28 (NLT)
And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.

The Healing Process Takes Time

The process of being healed from previous painful experiences is not automatic and it is not always easy. We must make the choice to come to the mender of broken hearts and give him our hurt, continuously. It’s a process. Don’t become annoyed with the journey because you would prefer a microwave healing and remain at the surface. Resist the temptation to say one prayer, move on and pretend like it never happened. Denial is not synonymous with healing. Suppressed pain is a ticking time bomb, and it is just a matter of time until we explode! Go ahead, ugly cry in His presence, it’s ok. Tell Him all.
Tell Him how much it hurt
Tell Him about your insecurities
Tell Him about your on and off desire to get revenge
Confess the unforgiveness and bitterness that may have festered in your heart
Tell him about the pride that may be present that has driven you to prove them wrong
Tell Him all.
AND
THEN
LISTEN
Listen as He tells you who He is because the pain made you doubt and accuse Him
Listens as He tells you who you are because the pain made you forget
Listen as He tells you how much He loves You
Listen as He tells you of the urgency of forgiveness
Listen as He tells you that releasing the offense is not a nod of approval for what they did but a healing balm for your soul.
Listen well and respond with obedience.

Reflection Questions: Are you in the habit of pretending like painful experiences never happened because it is too much work to face it? Who do you tell the most about the pain from your past, humans or God? Why do you think we are prone to vent to other flawed human beings instead of bringing our pain to a perfect God?

Scriptures for Meditation:
Mathew 11:28 (NLT)
Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.
Psalm 147:3 (NIV)
He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.

Why Are You Still Holding On?

I recently read, Sands of Forgiveness.  It is a very thought provoking, well written book that pulls you in from the beginning.  I completed the book last night and could not help but to reflect on what I read. I encourage you to get a copy of this book, it is well worth it.  The following are my reflections.

Many choose to hold on to scars from the past. The pain endured from previous experience is worn as a badge of honor instead of being released. Stories of hurtful words spoken over us is on constant replay. We find ways to bring up how others hurt us in most of our conversations. If we don’t have an audience, we retreat to our minds with the same agonizing stories.

Unresolved pain distorts our vision. We can no longer see God for who He is or ourselves for who He made us. It is easy to accuse God or even question His goodness when pain is the blanket, we choose to insulate ourselves with. We allow the pain to redefine our identity. Sometimes we have operated in that false identity for so long that we forget who we really are.

We cannot erase the hurtful words or evil actions done toward us, but we can control our response. They may have tried to change our name to worthless, stupid, ugly, etc. but they should not be given the power to change who we were created to be. Reliving the past is a great way to remain in chains. Freedom is not based on my external circumstances, but it is more of an inward reality.

We have the authority to reject the lies, release the offense and move forward in our destiny. Remaining stuck in our past pain is not the only option! It is wise to make the choice to move forward, and when we do the grace of God meets us in powerful ways.

Reflection Questions: Have you settled on believing the lies and wallowing in the pain from the past? Do you often relive past pain in your conversations? I encourage you to bring it to Jesus.

Psalm 34:18 (NIV)The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

I Published My First Book. Dreams Realized!

I have known for a long time that writing books was a part of my purpose. I would start and then stop. I would either get distracted or discouraged. I finally made up my mind to sit and focus and write my first book but there was one problem, I didn’t know where to start. Which book do I write fist? The week I was praying and asking God for clarity was the week that a sweet friend invited me to a service at a local church. At that service, the Lord prophetically used the speaker to answer my prayer. I came home energized and encouraged. The Lord helped me to see that the material for my first book had already been written and it was just a matter of editing it and putting it in book form. I hit some bumps along the way, but I was determined to complete what I started. When I got serious, God sent me the help that I needed to complete it…and I really needed help! One of my biggest sources of help came from the author of this award winning book.

I am so happy to announce that as of this week, my first book, “Lessons Learned Along the Way: A 40 Day Devotional,” has been released. I took the content that I wrote for my 40-day reflection before my 40th birthday and created a devotion with reflection questions and scriptures for meditation. You can find it on Amazon in both kindle and paperback form. If you choose to purchase it and are blessed by what you read, I invite you to leave a review on Amazon so that others would be encouraged to get it as well. This is indeed a dream realized!

Reflection Question: Is there something God has called you to do but you have put it to the side? Do you need clarity on how to pursue that purpose? I encourage you to earnestly seek the Lord and respond in obedience to His directives!

Be Blessed

Anika

 

Satisfaction In Jesus

We live in a culture where greed and the abundance of material things are promoted. However, as of late, the minimalism movement is of interest to many. Why is that? Could it be that people are finding out that material things don’t bring lasting satisfaction? I was watching a video on minimalism by a Christian youtuber and she made a powerful statement. In reference to minimalism she said that it was the “giving away of stuff to find that more!” That statement hit me to my core because it is so easy to misdiagnose what we need more of. Therefore, some continue to grasp for joy in material things, but it is all in vein. The only “more” that can truly satisfy is Jesus! In the moment, material things are great to have but they quickly lose their luster. However, a relationship with Jesus fills us to satisfaction, again and again.

Take inventory of your actions and your priorities. What is the “more” you have been seeking after? Is it more of Jesus? Or is it more of this world and its possessions?

John 6:35 NIV
Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.

1 Timothy 6:6 NLT
Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth.

Doing the Hard

God often calls us to do things that scare us or make us uncomfortable. Previously I abandoned some of my God given assignments because they were hard. We have assumed that the call of God is easy.  This is often not the case. You don’t believe me?

Ask Moses how he felt standing before Pharaoh repeatedly.
Ask David how he felt running from Saul, the one occupying the position God called David to.
Ask Esther how she felt standing before the King, risking her life because she had not been summoned.
And my favorite, ask Jesus how He felt in the Garden of Gethsemane agonizing because he felt the weight of what was before Him.

In this season, I am stepping out and doing specific things I’m called to, and quite honestly it is difficult. Being stretched is uncomfortable. But I am learning that God is more concerned with my obedience than He is with my comfort. And while it is difficult, I am seeing His grace show up as I move in obedience.

Have you been putting off what God has called you to do because it is difficult? Are you waiting for it to make sense and become easy? I encourage to move in faith and obedience and the grace of God will meet you in the hard.

Philippians 4:13 NLT 

For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.