Tag Archives: pain

Into the Fog

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How many of us entered into a new relationship and felt like we were headed into uncharted territory?  Venturing into a place we were unsure of?  It’s like walking into a familiar place but there is a fog which is covering up the usual sight we see, yet, we just keep walking into it.  As we get closer and closer to the what we know to be there it becomes clear and we feel safe, but on the way there we could encounter several bumps and bruises as we lose our way sometimes in the fogginess. New relationships can be very unsafe waters sometimes, especially if we have not dealt with our past issues and pain.

Sometimes we dive head first into a new romance thinking we are healed and ready to just bounce back into love.  Some of us get lucky but for some as we begin to unpack our old baggage into a new relationship we begin to see just how unhealed we really are.  Sometimes relationships can be just cruising along like a well taken care of Mustang.  Smooth and speeding right through the curves and bumpiness of the road unfolding in front of them.  While other times it’s like you are in a rusted out car caught in a hurricane and being torn apart piece by piece until all that’s left is a battered heart.

What I would like to talk about today is intimacy. I want to address the things no one ever talks about.  I want to expose the weapons of the enemy.  I want you to leave refreshed and hopeful not beaten down and empty.

I really don’t know where to begin or even how to convey what I am trying to say but I want to give you a mental picture.  When we are growing up and fantasizing about marriage we often dream of a fairy tale experience.  Everything is always perfect.  There are no screaming matches or rejection or disappointment…just roses and fancy parties the rest of your life.  When it comes to intimacy, here again this is no bed of roses.  Many of us enter into relationships with so much covered up brokenness we don’t even know how to be real with the person we are married to.  Some come to the altar from divorces.  Some couples are together after several failed relationships.  Many couples come from a childhood of sexual abuse or molestation.  Everybody’s story is different yet the result is usually the same.   Running in two different directions avoiding the pain.

Below is a photo I feel represents what we think intimacy should look like.  It’s all beautiful and calm and spectacular in color.  It’s what the fantasy romance looks like.  You can’t see the pain or discomfort.  You can’t see the hurt or the wanting to run away.  You can’t feel the emptiness.  You don’t see the erupting volcano of unforgiveness or rejection.

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Unless we confront head on those things which are preventing us from having freedom in our relationship we will forever feel like slaves.  We will perform and do things out of obligation rather than love and true intimacy.  We can go back to the beginning of time and see God created us for intimacy.  He created us with relationship in mind.  What happened?  Where is the disconnect? Simple.  Satan has slipped in here and there in our lives and made a mess of things.  A mess which clearly can only be healed by seeking God and being truthful about our feelings.

I was molested when I was 5 years old.  I have gone through counseling.  I have forgiven the person.  I have let go and let go and let go, yet there is still I discomfort I have that just won’t go away.  In the five years I have been married to my current husband there has been a disconnect.  I just couldn’t figure it out.  I tried to understand but nothing was changing.  I felt as if Satan had me pinned down and I couldn’t see what was causing me to feel this way.  It all stayed the same until God in His perfect time showed me a very simple thing.  He showed to me what a real touch was like.  A gentle loving touch.  One that was not uncomfortable and enabled me to feel love.  To experience what love was suppose to feel like.  He showed this to me through my husband simply holding my hand.

In that moment I felt safe.  I felt loved.  I saw a glimpse of the colors of true intimacy.  The fog began to dissipate.

When I shared this revelation to my husband it opened up a whole new world for us to explore.  It was super hard for me to even talk about, however, we invited Jesus into the middle of our intimacy and we are looking forward to what He is going to do in our marriage.  When couples try as hard as they can to please their mates in all aspects of a relationship on their own, often there is no real evidence of anything changing.  Why?  Because the healing we need to have a viable marriage has to come from Jesus.  Only He knows our inner most pain.  Only Jesus knows what steps we need to take.  Only Jesus can take the deepest of pain and heal it.  We often try to fix ourselves or our mates and just make matters worse.

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As we move forward into this new level of intimacy we are excited that God is going to do a new thing in our marriage.  He will take the dry deserts in our hearts and make them waterways.  Waterways into places of intimacy and grace.  Paths to undiscovered love.  I anticipate great things in this new adventure.  I am expecting doors to the past to close.  I am looking forward to no longer being a slave to this.  I know God has a much better plan to heal me than I could ever come up with.

 

Dear God,  I thank You for loving us just where we are.  I invite you into the wounded parts of our hearts.  I surrender all of the past emotions and pain to You knowing You will take care of it all, I just have to trust You in the process.  In Jesus Name. Amen.

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Faith Zero

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[ Faith in What We Don’t See ] The fundamental fact of existence is that this trust in God, this faith, is the firm foundation under everything that makes life worth living. It’s our handle on what we can’t see. The act of faith is what distinguished our ancestors, set them above the crowd.
Ever been so lost at sea that you are being tossed to and fro and lose all sense of where you are?  Ever been driving in a storm and lightening is flashing and thunder is crashing all around you and your body is on high alert of danger?  Ever gone to a new school and as all the unfamiliar faces gawk at you in curiosity you feel unwanted and unliked?  Well, this is what life is without faith.  Without faith nothing is possible.  Faith is how we get closer to God and it is the very substance that brings us into the presence of God.
When my faith was at zero I could not make heads or tails of my life.  I was standing in a dirt storm chocking on everything that hit me.  My eyes hurt because of the debris.  My lungs were working over time to catch up with the fear racing through my body.  I could not see God.  I could not see anything good in my life.  I felt doomed to die right where I had chosen to be.  Now that might sound a bit dramatic but when you get to the point in your life where you feel that you must fix all of your mistakes before God can change your life, that’s how it feels.
Empty. Exhausted. Alone. Depressed. I begin to seek God.  I wanted out of my mess.  I wanted to feel what life felt like again.  I longed to smile.  I longed to be carefree.  I had this burning desire within me to move beyond my past, yet I could not make sense of the broken, shattered heart laying before me.  Where do I even begin to let God into my mess?
With one teeny tiny seed of faith.  One moment of surrender on my lips.  One whispered sentence into the surrounding darkness, “I’m sorry Lord, please forgive me.”
My life has been dramatically changed in five short years because I chose to believe God was bigger than any mess I could have ever gotten myself into.  God is bigger than addictions.  God is bigger than abuse.  God is bigger than neglect.  God is bigger than shame.  God is bigger than sin.  God is bigger than regret.  God is bigger than pain.  God is bigger than any bad decision I ever made.
Today I can hold my head up and be thankful for my word of the year: FAITH.  I look forward now to what God can and will do in my life.  My marriage, children, job and christian walk are all in His hands and I just need to rest in the knowledge of who He is.  Yes. Rest.
Dear God,  I thank You and praise You for bringing me to such sweet freedom in knowing who You are.  I pray that You will keep me on track.  I long to Linger in Your sweet Presence.  Lord, I pray for those who are reading this today that they will begin to believe that You are bigger than anything in their life right now.  I pray all will find rest in You today.  Thank You for being bigger than life to us.
In Jesus Name.  Amen.

Beauty is God’s

1 Peter 3:3-6

         ] The same goes for you wives: Be good wives to your husbands, responsive to their needs. There are husbands who, indifferent as they are to any words about God, will be captivated by your life of holy beauty. What matters is not your outer appearance—the styling of your hair, the jewelry you wear, the cut of your clothes—but your inner disposition.

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How many times to we hear that beauty is in the eye of the beholder? How many more times do we feel like we have no beauty..inner or outer?  Society paints this picture of what beauty should be when in reality it never measures up for the ordinary people.  We should feel beauty everywhere we go when we are in Christ.  In some cases He has brought us through the worst of valleys into marvelous light but we for some reason can only see the darkness because of others reactions to our lives.

 

Love turns pain into beauty.  This I know for a fact.  How you ask?  I have a husband who with the love of God has brought me back to life.  Now I am not saying that my former husband did not love me or find me attractive, it just was hidden under years of turmoil.  As the drug addiction progressed, my former husband lost sight of what love really was and it became very warped for me.  I lost sense of who I really was and I felt everything but beauty inside or out.

 

When I say beauty is God’s I simply mean He created us in His likeness and He is beauty beyond any compare, therefore, if we are created in His image, we are beautiful.  Life can throw us some tough punches sometimes but God turns all those into beauty marks.  We are stronger after the pain and so long as we keep looking to God for the provision and answers, He will continue to grow us stronger and give us inner beauty.

Got Ugly Past?

Philippians 3:13

No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead,
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They say honesty is the best policy and that’s how real I will be tonight.  I have seen some good things in my life and I have also seen some bad.  They also say you have to take the good with the bad, but why?  It’s like swallowing a pill without a liquid to wash it down, it gets stuck.  Another saying is bad things happen to good people, which is true but good things also happen to bad people, we just don’t publicize that one as much.  The point of my blog today is simple….we cannot hide what hurts us, it will sneak up in the most inopportune times in our lives.
When I was around the age of five, I was molested.  I was placed in a shed, doors where closed and inappropriate touching and kissing took place.  I spent some time in counseling when I was 18 and I thought I had walked out the whole process of forgiving and leaving this in the past until just recently.  I have had several shady relationships and have been taken advantage of in several ways but I did not add these all up together.  Never knew why I could not stand small spaces.  Never could quite understand why kissing was hard for me.  Really confused sometimes why it was hard for me to receive love.
As most of you know I recently got remarried to a wonderful man of God who loves me so deeply it’s hard to accept at times.  Just recently I was pushing him away and I had no comprehension as to why I would do this to someone who treated me like a princess twenty four seven.  Well last night at about midnight I was flooded with all of the ugly stuff from the past.  Yes I had dealt with the molestation but I never dealt with all the other “little” things which happened after that.  I had let these things just simmer somewhere in my past, not giving them a second thought….until last night.
Last night Satan decided to show me a whole picture show of my past violations and it hit hard as ever.  It took until two in the morning to walk through the forgiveness process. I cried, I tried to hide and I even tried to run but Jesus would not allow it.  He used my current husband to pull me out of my funk and show me the right way to feel.  I let go all of what was hindering me and the freedom which flooded my soul was explainable.  I have not forgotten what happened but the pain and hold it had on me is completely vanished.  I now can fully love my husband for who He is and not for what Satan was trying to show me he was.
Are you dealing with wanting to hide?  Has the past pains caught up with you?  Go now to the Father and deal with the issues.  God does not want you to be bound by the past.  God wants you to be free not to hide.  I encourage you today to just let ONE past hurt go.  I don’t care which one it is, just let it go.  Do not let the past have a hold so great on you that you cannot enjoy the here and now God has provided for you.

Is the Sky the Limit?

1 Corinthians 10:29

It might not be a matter of conscience for you, but it is for the other person. For why should my freedom be limited by what someone else thinks?
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Have you ever wondered why certain people are happy to just stay where they are in life?  Not just living conditions or region of the country, but they seem to enjoy being broken spiritually or left alone in the their pain.  It’s like they got to the top of the ladder and decided that their journey ends right there.  They lose hope in life and decide that God has them right where they are suppose to be and see no sense in pressing in any farther for the things of God.  They stop searching for things in life and are content with just sitting.  Why?  Who taught them that there are limits?
I have a guess and this is what I will elaborate on tonight.  I feel some have lost hope because they have not received any uplifting words in their life.  Perhaps they grew up in a household where they were never good enough for their parents standards.  Maybe they were told by their peers that they would never amount to anything.  So many things can be said out of lack of knowledge to the children we are raising and this causes damage that perhaps will not surface until years later.
So many people are broken hearted and without hope merely because of words spoken over their lives.  When you are told over and over again that you are not good enough or your not accepted, soon the words begin to take root and they will hold you into place until someone releases the pain.  How are they able to let loose?  The love of Jesus.  These people need someone with the love of God to begin to pour good words into their lives so that they are able to move forward.
I want to encourage anyone right now who is sitting at the end of the ladder, that the sky IS NOT the limit.  God has a plan for each and everyone of us and believe me it’s not stopping when we get to the top of the ladder.  He has far greater plans for each of us.  I could stop right now where I am and not publish my books and just enjoy the married life, not pressing any farther into the things God has planned for my life….but why?  My life is but a vapor according to the Bible so why would I want to just stay where I am?
So, take hold of the top rung of that ladder and reach towards heaven and find that next ladder God has ready for you.  For, life is but a series of ladders per say, once we climb one and enjoy the view it is time to search out the next one and the next one until we have attained all we can here on earth….I plan to still be climbing my ladders until I breathe my last breath for I believe this is the desire of God Himself.

Empty Glasses

Joel 1:17

The seeds die in the parched ground, and the grain crops fail. The barns stand empty, and granaries are abandoned.
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Sometimes we fail.  Often we say the wrong things before we can close our mouths.  Maybe we pushed someone away because they did not see things the way we do.  Perhaps we just closed our eyes and prayed for the best.  It’s like taking an empty glass to a desert, planting a seed and expecting it to grow and be fruitful.  When we come at something empty, we produce an empty and broken atmosphere.  Yes I am speaking my heart right now as I look across certain circles in my life and find that I am missing several friends who once were close.  What happened?  Was I the empty glass?  Did I not have a desire within me to nurture life?
I probably could spend all night listing all of the things I could have possibly done in the past to hurt others or to make them want to leave my life.  I  admit I am not the best at making friendships work.  It’s not selfishness or pride, it’s just I get tired of trying to be the good guy.  I want to love like Jesus does with all that compassion and grace and I have a desire to love people right where they are at…..yet…..I fail.  Why? Maybe I still have some brokenness.  Maybe I am just too busy.  Maybe I just don’t know what to say or do in certain situations and people think I have just let them go.
This is me.  I am a product of revival.  A creation only God could make.  I am who I am, faults and all.  I am a kind of love me or let me person be I guess.  I have so many things consuming my life right now…work, family, church….how do I make it all balance and still work on relationships?  Let’s get Biblical for a moment.  What did Jesus command us to do right before He left us?  To love one another and spread the Good News.  Are we really filling those shoes if we walk around with empty glasses?
What exactly is an empty glass?  Well, judgments, bitterness, unforgiveness, grudges, feeling unloved or unaccepted, mistrust, not letting the past go, misunderstandings, hatred, religion…..I could go on but it’s not pretty.  What fills those glasses? Grace.  How many of us have empty glasses?  I have lost several friendships in the recent past due to my new marriage.  What?  Am I not happy and content and still following after God with all I am? Am I perfect at it?  Nope.  Do I do my best? Perhaps not always.  Am I allowing God to change me as I go?  You betcha!  Maybe that’s wrong with me….I am too surrender.
How silly does that sound?  Too surrendered.  I guess what I am trying to get to is quite simple, I don’t want to be an empty glass and if I have been that to anyone reading this, I stand asking for forgiveness.  I miss my friends.  I miss the passion we once shared for God.  I long for my glass  to be overflowing so that wherever I go I will water the ground.  I want to be a source of strength for someone else.  I want my life to matter for God.
We as a body of Christ need to learn how to step in and stand beside our sister or brother even if we don’t always understand what God is doing in their lives.  We need to love them right where they are and not judge them.  We need to love one another not because we are perfect at being Christians, but because we recognize we all have pain.  We all have past hurts.  We all made wrong choices sometimes.  We need to learn to seek God in the matters before us and not with our own wisdom.  Yes, as Christians following after God we need to learn how to tell people that Jesus loves them no matter what and we should be able to do the same.
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Lord, fill my glass to overflowing.  Change what you need to change in me.  Give me the compassion to love.  Show me how to be a friend.  Let me not grow weary in sharing who You are to others.  Allow me to leave a river of You wherever I go.  Teach me Your ways Lord and give me wisdom to speak the right words.  Thank you for the grace which fills my glass to overflowing each time I come to you.