Monday, July 11, 2011

Forgiveness .....

Forgiveness ..... That is the next part in Joyce's book.   I thought the last section on offenders was hard ... not.  This hit me harder than I thought.  I had more things to work through than I thought.  OH but the joy on the other side. 

In the old testament is says "an eye for an eye"; however now God is telling us to forgive our enemies, to love and pray for those who have harmed us.   In her book she says "Anything God has given us, such as forgiveness and mercy, He expects us to extend to others. If it comes to us, it should flow through us - and that should be our goal."   God forgives us .... we need to forgive others. 

We think, but it is so unfair for me to forgive them and then they just have no punishment for what they did.  Why should I have the pain while they get the freedom?  The truth is that by forgiving, we are releasing them so God can do what only He can do.  If I'm in the way - trying to get revenge or take care of the situation myself instead of trusting and obeying God - He may sit back and allow me to try to handle things in my own strength.  But if I allow Him to deal with those who offend me by forgiving them.  He can work good out of it for both parties concerned.  Hebrews 10:30 - When we forgive, we put God on the case.

I sat in the tub (I just love taking baths and sometimes the best place for me to connect to God and myself) and I just cried.  I just let it all out .. put everything out on the table.  God knows our thoughts anyway, so why not just spill your beans.   I am finally forgiving people that have done me wrong in my past.  Things that only God and I know about (and of course, the other person).   I think the crying was more from being released from the poison that was taking over my life because of the unforgiveness.  

As I prayed and released these people to God and forgave each one of them and the different situations, I could start to feel the joy and peace coming over me that I have so longed for.   It also made me think about things that were going on in my life and wondering if the poison I have had in my heart effecting those areas?  The main one I was thinking about was my weight.  Was I eating and stuffing my face because of all of these emotions and unforgiveness that I was carrying around?  I think it is ....  I ate instead of having peace.   As I thought way back to when I started gaining weight ... I am pretty sure I can connect the two.  Is this a break through that I was needing?  I hope ....

I have always heard people say that we can't have unforgiveness in our hearts.  I never thought they were talking to me.  Heck, I really didn't think I needed to forgive anyone, until God revealed them to me.  What a blessing that was for me to release it all to Him.   Thank you Lord!!! 

This is one area I am going to be praying on and reading more on .....

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Still Amazed ....

God still amazes me.  I think, in a way, the way that God chooses to speak to me is kind of funny.  When I have been praying about a problem, I will turn on Joyce Meyer or pick up a book to read and "Bam" there is it .. the answer to my situation.   It happened again tonight. 

I am a person that often gets offended by other people.    I got offended today,  yet again by a family member.  I really prayed about the situation and asked God to handle things for me, because I was just tired of doing it myself.  I wasn't doing very well, by myself.  (You would think I would learn by now ... lol)  So, tonight I thought I would read a little bit in a Joyce Meyer book that I have been reading off and on.  Guess what was the chapter on? On letting people offend us!!  Holy Cow!!!  Are you kidding me????

OHHH ... how this chapter has slapped me upside the head.  I didn't realize until reading this chapter, just how offended I was getting and how God doesn't want us to be offended.  When we let people offend  us we are letting Satan in ... boy, my door must be wide open on this one.  The Lord showed me 'ALL' the ways that I have been offended in the past. 

Did you realize that by letting others offended us it can cause all kind of things to happen?  In the book it says:  One of Satan's most deceptive and insidious kinds of bait is something every Christian has encountered - offense.  Actually, offense itself is not deadly .. but if we pick it up and consume it an feed on it in our hearts, then we have become offended.  Offended people produce much fruit, such as hurt, anger, outrage, jealousy, resentment, strife, bitterness, hatred, and envy.  Some of the consequences of picking up an offense are insults, attacks, wounding, division, separation, broken relationships, betrayal and backsliding.

We meditate too much on what the offensive person has done to us, and we fail to realize what we are doing to ourselves by taking the bait of Satan.  Keep remembering that being offended will not change the person, but it does change you!!!  Oh how true ..... this one I am working on!!  It makes us miserable and steals our peace and joy, so why not prepare ourselves mentally not to fall into Satan's trap?

I asked the Lord who all I let offend me and I was surprised at the many names that just kept coming to my mind.  I really didn't realize there were so many.  Then I got to thinking about the consequences that Joyce spoke about and how it really could affect your life.  It could be causing divorces, splits between parents and their kids, between siblings, churches, and the list goes on and on. 

Thank you Lord, for bringing this to my attention and helping me change this area of my life.  I long to NOT let people offend me and for me to keep my peace and joy.  I will NOT let Satan in this door anymore.