Friday Matters-September 6, 2019
Everyday Sick Day
A few times a year I take a “sick day” and I stay in my pajamas all day. I feel alone. I have issues and even though I KNOW better I don’t feel better. I put my head under my covers and wondered how long I could stay in bed. I talk to God. He reminds me of Hebrews 4:15 telling me He understands everything I’ve been through because He went through it too AND He doesn’t condemn me for our feelings.
Sometimes when we feel closed in we think God is disappointed or mad at us. But He’s not. He loves you and me and He cares about what we care about no matter how distressed we may be. He hears our hearts and He knows what we’re thinking even before we speak. Give it all to God. Tell Him your heart and receive the peace He has for you no matter what or where you’re at…everyday.
Friday Matters-August 30, 2019
Everyday God Shouts IN PAIN
Emotional pain is harder than physical pain? Can I get an “Amen?!” I mean I get physical pain from my recovery with scoliosis back surgery and having mono and flu where I never thought I’d leave the bathroom floor. However broken relationships, the loss of a loved one, and the failure of a plan or dream, well … that kind of pain is so much harder for me.
But it helps to remember God uses pain to get our attention. C.S. Lewis wrote, “God whispers to us in our pleasure, but He shouts to us in our pain.” Pain is God’s megaphone. We rarely change when we see the light. We change when we feel the heat. But why does it get so hot? I hear ya. The answer is God’s love turns-up, it warms when it all seems so cold and hopeless. He’s always aware and He always cares. Proverbs 20:30, “Sometimes it takes a painful experience to make us change our ways.” Yes, God loves you, everyday.
Friday Matters-August 23, 2019
Everyday Offense and Hurt
We can say we trust in God to avenge us but as soon as we take matters into our own hands and try to avenge ourselves or someone we love we obviously aren’t putting a lot of faith in the power of what God promises. I think a big challenge is not to pick up the offense of a friend or family member who’s been hurt. I’m guilty there. But when we take on someone else’s offense we’re sucking the poison of their sin and we become bitter along with them.
I’ve seen this happen when a parent’s anger towards someone passes on to their children. Remember if only one side of the story is presented you don’t have the whole truth and may have a cocktail of lies. It’s the enemy’s plan to ruin relationships. God’s plan is to restore and He will avenge you and those you love. Follow Deuteronomy 30:19 which tells us to make the choices which bring life so that we and our descendants may live meaningful lives…everyday.
Friday Matters-August 16, 2019
Everyday Strong Will
I have a strong will. I’m sure someone listening right now can totally relate to the fact that while our spirits may be strong and willing our flesh fails us time and time again. Jesus tells us we do not "watch and pray". The flesh does not conquer the spirit. The flesh is weak - as Jesus said - and the flesh is a stumbling block to our spirit. I want to go to church on Sunday mornings but I’m tired so my flesh gets its way and later I have regrets. I have to pray and set my mind and will the night before to get up in the morning. My prayer is often this simple, “God You’re stronger and You live in me. Help. Amen.” Sharing areas of weaknesses, with someone, also helps for accountability and strength too. You can overcome. Jesus is there. He’s never mad at you and when you do fall He will help you get back up. He loves you and He’ll never give up on you. Don’t give up on yourself…everyday.
Friday Matters-August 9, 2019
The message of Jesus is to LOVE and forgive others, which you can only do once you have seen your bad self and accepted His forgiveness. There’s this past, so many people carry around, that you cover because it’s filled with shame from harming yourself by “cutting,” an eating disorders, an affair, alcohol, abuse AND it’s all yuck. I read that 80% of memories are shame based. People carry shame because they think once they’re fully exposed or “discovered,” they won’t ever be accepted or loved. But when someone’s identity is solid then they’re stable. Jesus sees all of you and loves you. There’s no shame in Him.
Psalm 91:1 is my 911 verse and it reads; “She who dwells in the secret place of the Most High will remain stable.” It means that when I stand still and let myself be exposed, God covers me. He covers my shame and my fear AND replaces all that I’m not with all that He is. God can see the real you and He loves you as you are, no matter what…everyday.
Friday Matters-August 2, 2019
Everyday Take Your Meds
“Lisa,” I wrote; “I know exactly where you’re at. You’re not a “bad Christian” because you went on medication for your depression. God doesn’t think that. He loves you where you’re at.”
I went on meds for anxiety. It was hard. I felt; “Maybe I wasn't reading the right scripture, praying right or maybe I didn't have enough faith. We live in a fallen world with sickness and disease. The enemy wants us to believe we’re a failure when our sickness is mental but it’s a lie. We’re sick. We need healing and stability and we limit God when we say He can only work on way. It was pride that kept me from wanting to take meds. I wanted to say; “God healed me without medication." Instead He provided a way through meds. It’s a mind battle. It helped me to hear National Speaker Chonda Pierce dealt with meds and depression. She taped a message to her prescription bottle which read; “God loves you Chonda. Take your medicine.” Don’t lose hope. You will get better…everyday.
Friday Matters-July 26, 2019
Everyday Crazy Thoughts
Do you have crazy thoughts? And by that, I mean the kind of crazy negative thoughts that swirl in your mind which come from past hurts or present crazy circumstances. When I have them they seem to creep in when I’m traveling a long distance by myself. BUT I know we can choose what we think on. WE can release God’s plan for our lives by no longer thinking about the things of old and believing instead that God has a good plan for our future.
Since what we think about eventually comes out of our thoughts, we will never get our mouths straightened out unless we do something about our thoughts. We need to stop mentally living in the past and begin to think in agreement with God. Then once we do that we can begin to speak in agreement with Him. We can actually see our own future and think on truth from Isaiah 43:19; “God makes a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. He can make a way for you and me…everyday.
Friday Matters-July 19, 2019
Everyday “NO” is my answer
Hearing our children’s first words are memorable such as, “Dada,” “Nana,” or “Puppy.” The word “NO” is also among those words and it can be harsh. I remember telling our son Joey when I was nine months pregnant, “Joey look at Mama’s belly. There’s a baby inside.” “Ah NO, Mama that’s a ball,” said Joey. “No,” screamed at you by a child isn’t a fun word to hear. Yet I’ve found that the word “no” is one our hearts need to hear when the truth isn’t being told about us. Perhaps there’s ugly and untrue gossip about you and so you need to remember, “NO, that’s not who God says I am,” or maybe it’s “No, I cannot take on another volunteer position at school.”
Jesus mostly used the word “no” when speaking to the religious leaders who were trying to boss everyone around. He came to fulfill the law by His grace, not by giving us more rules. The word “no” is a useful word when guided by God…everyday.
Friday Matters-July 12, 2019
Everyday Accepting Who You Are
Sometimes I get disgusted with myself. It’s when I’m in this place of self-pity and I feel stuck. The way to peace begins with accepting the truth of myself—the whole truth. My struggle to cope with certain people has a simple explanation: they represent to me precisely those things that I have refused to acknowledge and accept in myself.
To accept the truth of my brokenness is unbearable if not impossible, without turning to Jesus. If my vision of myself is not purified by the mercy and compassion of Jesus, I have to get dishonest, camouflage my warts, and present to you a self that is mostly admirable, fault free, and superficially happy. When I accept the truth of me, shipwrecked and saved, and give it over to the person of Jesus, I am at peace even if I don’t feel it. The peace that comes from God and surpasses all understanding, (Philippians 4:7) was provided by Christ on the cross and doesn’t depend on our shifting feelings …everyday.
Friday Matters-July 5, 2019
Everyday Dead Body Friend
Do you have a dead body friend? You know… a friend you can call at 2:00am and say, “I’ve got a dead body at my house. Come help me.” And that person will come over and help you-no questions asked.
It’s great to have friends who encourage and help us carry our burdens through difficult times and it’s especially great to have at least one “dead body friend.” The Greek translation of Galatians 6:2 lived out is that when someone is burdened with difficult circumstances, which are too much for one person to carry all alone, then crawl up under that burden and help carry it. People need your help and not necessarily your words or another scripture verse. They don’t need a reprimand that they’re not representing Jesus well but INSTEAD share God’s grace and how He represents them well. Helping someone with their load is following Jesus and its manageable even with a 2:00 a.m. phone call to carry the load that is needed…everyday.