New Living Translation (NLT)
13 Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.
I prayed before I decided to go forward with this blog and I believe the Holy Ghost will guide my words so as not to offend anybody because that is not my intention. My purpose in writing this is to show how God works in my life and to show how in this situation God really opened my eyes to something He needed me to understand.
A few years ago I was prayed over by a Prophetess and she said I needed to learn how to love God’s people or He wouldn’t be able to move me forward in my ministry. As I stood there weeping on that altar I chose to begin to change. No more sarcasm. No more mean thoughts. No back biting. No more gossip of any kind. No more anger. All these thoughts were running through my head at that very moment. I was eager to do exactly what God wanted me to do and I was going to do it to the best of my ability.
Well, that sounded good on the altar but once I stepped back into the world I felt like I had to be in defense mode again and sarcasm began to flow. I felt like a failure and soon got very discouraged, so I began to pray. I asked God to open my eyes to what He wanted me to see and boy did I get an eye-full. If I began to talk about somebody,God would show me their heart. If I started to speak sarcastically, He would show me what it looked like to the person I was saying it to. When I thought people were doing something I thought was stupid, God would show me why they were doing the particular act.
Day after day as I prayed, God began to show me how to have compassion. He taught me to love no matter what and to meet people right where they were. I also learned that we all come from different homes and people learn different things according to what they have been exposed to. As I began to see that people are a product of their background I could finally understand why some people just seemed not to get things like I did. I began to have this overwhelming compassion for people. Suddenly I wanted to understand rather than hide behind sarcasm or speak negatively about someone.
The more I began to understand what having compassion meant, the more doors God opened for me. The more I listened to His heart, the more I could love His people even if I did not understand why they didn’t have a desire to change their circumstances. I used to get so frustrated when people chose to stay in chaos instead of seeking God as an answer to peace. I know now that I have to have a Christlike lifestyle everyday so as to draw all men unto Jesus. Even when I am not talking about Jesus, I should be acting like Him.
40 Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?”
41 So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.”
43 When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face.
Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.”
God keeps bringing me back over and over again in the last few weeks to a point in my life where I had to really let go and surrender it all. It was in that hospital room watching a man fight for his life from a drug oversdose and the need for me to be released from a twenty year span of wandering in the desert. Today the sermon at church was centered on never quitting, funny story that was a blog from a few days ago for me. It also was focused on looking over and reflecting on what God has already pulled you from. Sure made me cry as I thought about sitting in that hospital room trying to figure out how I had gotten to where I was.
After the sermon, someone came up and spoke about the scripture verse quoted above. She explain how Lazarus needed to be unwrapped before he could be free. He was alive but unable to move because he was still bound up in his grave clothes. He needed people to unwrap him and set him free from the past. Isn’t that how we should be as a church body? Should we not help bring people back to llife by showing them Jesus and then begin the process of stripping them of all the guilt and pressures of the past?
Sometimes we come to God so wrapped up in guilt and shame that we don’t even know where to begin, this is where the body of Christ should begin to minister. We should be willing to step out of our comfort zones and use the power within us to heal the brokeness these people have. I know for me, I would not be standing where I am today without the help and direction of those who loved me right where I was enough to begin to “unwrap” me, releasing me to be alive and free. I was scared, confused and wanting to be active again. I needed people to begin to show me who I was. I needed others to show me God so that I could find peace once more.
Are you ready to be unwrapped? If you have not come to know Jesus yet, are you ready? If you have begun a relationship with Jesus, are you being held back by your grave clothes? Do you need someone to begin the unwrapping process for you and set you free? I encourage each of you to look deep into yourself and ask God for your freedom. I know He will show up for He hears the cries of His children and is quick to send help.