Don’t Tell Me What To Do

   Who likes to be told what to do? On the flip side do you like to being told what you cannot do? I would say the answer to both questions would be ‘No’. We all have been given free will. We have the ability to choose what we will or will not do. So being told to do or not to do something can irritate us. We can choose to follow instructions to perform a task or try to do it our own way (which usually doesn’t work).

   We may choose to believe that rules, laws, commands and instructions, limit our free will, but they do not. It is up to you to decide for yourself if you will follow them. Their purpose is not to restrict you, but to keep you from harm and keep you from harming another. They also teach us how to live good and productive lives, and not ones that are harmful and destructive.

   When we are told to do this or not to do that we sometimes hear that spirit of rebellion whisper in our ear, ‘Who do they think they are, telling you what to do?’ (It is your choice to listen or not listen to this voice.) When someone is telling you to do something or even how to do it, it is not always about controlling you. It can be because they are trying to help you.

   How many of you read the instructions before trying to put something together? When you do this do you find extra parts and does it take you longer than if you had just read and followed the instructions?

   Have you ever taken a short cut to get somewhere only to get lost? When you are lost, do you stop and ask for directions? (Something many comedians have used in their routines to pick on men.) We can think that we know what we are doing and that we may know a better or quicker way, but to be honest we usually do not. God’s ways are higher than ours, and His thoughts are not our thoughts.

   So why is it that we continue to try to lean onto our own understanding and keep trying to do things our own way? I have an answer that will annoy any parent who reads this, ‘I don’t know’. (I hope that this made at least a few of you laugh or at least smile) Paul had discussed that he had his own struggles with doing what he knew to be wrong even he knew what he was doing was wrong and was trying hard not to. He said that his flesh fought against his spirit. Yet he encourages by saying he did not give up but chose to press on toward the goal and to finish the race.

   None of us are perfect and neither does everything we do in our life is the right thing to do. Thank God for mercy and grace! One more thing to be thankful for is His commands. His Word instructs us how to live and His Spirit if we allow it to convicts us when we do what is wrong and get off the right path. He does not tell us not to do things so that we cannot enjoy ourselves, but because He does not want to see us harmed. Sin leads to death and He wants us to live. He does not make us follow His command. Jesus does tell us that if we love Him that we will follow His commands. So following His commands is acknowledging who He is and telling Him that we love Him. Even when we do something wrong we can repent and He has already forgiven us.

   I hate to say it, but I sin every day. Not because I want to but because I have been doing things my own way for so long and that I do not always listen to His instructions. I still think I have to do it all on my own. Even when I give Him a part of my life I still hold on to other parts. I am not saying all this to make myself look bad or because I think I am not good enough. Thank God for His love and forgiveness. I am saying all this because even with all of my faults He does not give up on me and He keeps guiding me and teaching me His ways. I am choosing to follow Jesus Christ and listening to His instructions. I am not doing this because I have to but because that I want to. After all Father really does not best.

Isaiah 55:8-9  (NKJV)

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord.
“For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways,
And My thoughts than your thoughts.

 

Proverbs 14:12 (NKJV)

12 There is a way that seems right to a man,
But its end is the way of death.

 
Blessings and prayers for you.

I am a Survivor

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I am a survivor
I stand my ground when the battle can be won
I find shelter when needed
You can knock be down
But I will get back up
I have many scars
I have bled
But still I live
I am a survivor
I may loose the fight
but I will live to fight again
You may take all that I have
But my freedom and my will you will never take
I am a survivor
I will live

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I Heard You The First Time

How many times have you said to someone, ‘I heard you the first time, or you’ve told me that story before’?

Now how many times have you told the same story more than once?

To be honest I cannot count the times I have done either. When a person retells a story it is most likely because it is interesting or important to us.  Another reason is because that we might forget who we have shared this story with.

Thinking about this made me think about how many times that I have read the same book or watched the same move or TV show (a run). So what is the difference between a person retelling the same story and rereading the same story or watching a rerun?

Recently I was driving pat the local Veterans Museum. I told the person in the car with me how nice it was and how friendly the volunteers who ran it were. Their response was you told me that the last time we past it. The way they said that made me feel like I had annoyed them. I felt bad and apologized. This made me feel defensive. Even though I did not say how felt, I did think to myself about asking them, “And how many times have you repeated yourself? In this instance I was only sharing an experience that I had enjoyed and just wanted to share that experience with another.

Unfortunately not every story that I retell is positive like this one was. There are past events that range for painful to even tragic. Yet no matter how many times I retell the accounts  of these events, they do not change what had happened.

Not all stories are pleasant and happy. Too many are painful and even terrifying. No matter what they are about they are our stories.

I cannot count how many times I have read my Bible, and quoted scriptures. The stories in the Bible never change and neither do the scriptures. N matter how many times I read or speak the words found in the Bible it is the same every time.

The Ten Commandments can be read in both the book of Exodus or Leviticus. The commandments are referred to in the New Testament as well. Fear not is repeated 365 times. I can continue making this list but I think you get my point.

If you are a parent you repeat yourself probably every day. You tell your children to do their chores or their home work and some listen but the ones who do not you tell them again what they need to do. If they still do not do what they are told you discipline them. You also tell them not to do things and they still do what you tell them not to do. You set rules and must enforce them if you want them to be kept. Part of this is repeating what you have said multiple times. You do not do this because it is fun or because you enjoy doing so, but you want to protect your children from harm and you want them to have a good and safe life.

God is our Heavenly Father, and He loves us better than we know how to love. His wisdom is greater than ours. He truly knows what is best for us, and what will cause us harm. He repeats Himself and disciplines us when He has to because He loves us even when we refuse to listen to Him. He does not control us but sets rules to keep us safe and so that we can live life and prosper.

This is just food for thought.

God bless and prosper you.

Pain Hurts!

emotionalpeace

Pain hurts! Pretty simple, you would think. But what caused the pain may not be so simple to describe. Were you hurt by something big that happened all at once, or was it little things that happened over a period of time? Does any of that matter? I do not think so because pain still hurts. Whatever that has happened, or has been done to you, the pain you feel is what has your attention. You feel it. Physically or emotionally the pain is real. It may stop you in your track, or drop you down to your knees, and it may give you reason to lay down and not get up because the pain is more than you can bear. Pain lets you know that something is wrong. It is that big red flashing light telling you stop what you are doing or you will get seriously hurt. It is the…

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The sound of a closing door

The sound of a closing door is not one we pay much attention to. A saying most of us have heard is, ‘When one door closes another will open’. Then there is the scripture Revelation 3:20 Behold I stand at the door and knock; if any man hear my voice and open the door, I will come into him and will sup with him and he with me. These words encourage and give hope.Rev 3 20

 

We open and closes doors every day so the sound of a door closing means nothing to you,  yet there are those that it breaks their heart. It can represent loss, an ending, or rejection. Add the sound of a lock being turned it can make one feel hopeless. That they are not only shut out but that there is no hope of that door ever being opened again.(Which is not always a bad thing because there are some doors that not only need to be shut and locked, but the key needs to be thrown away.) The pain of loss or rejection can amplify the simple sound of a closing door. Then there is the sound of a door slamming shut. Which is usually done in anger, meaning one person has turned their back on another in anger and not just walked out but stormed out leaving the other behind. The one who stormed out may feel like they cannot return because they were the one to leave and no matter what their reason was at the time they may feel guilt and even fear because now they are the one who may be rejected. The one left behind feel not only rejected and hurt, but they may fear that when the door slammed that was the end, and that is not their desire. Loosing loved ones to death or an end of a relationship can leave a lasting memory that the sound of a closing door can reopen the wound that the sound of a closing door can bring.

I had not thought of this before, but while sitting on my porch I heard the sound of a neighbor shutting their door. A sound that I hear often living in an apartment because neighbors are coming and going daily. Yet this morning when I heard the sound it seemed amplified and I even heard the sound of the lock being turned. I don’t know why it made me stop and think, but it did. I go in and out my door multiple times through out my day and when I am on the phone I know the person on the other end can hear the opening and shutting of my door so I try to close the door quietly so I do not interrupt what they are saying to me. Yet today I am thinking of all the ways the sound of what a door makes can mean. For some it can mean security, (This makes me think of the song ‘Shut the door, keep out the devil’) and for another it can feel like they are all alone, shut out and not welcome.

For the ones who feel rejected and shut out there is One who will never leave you or forsake you. He knocks on your door patiently waiting to be let in. He is the one I mentioned earlier in Revelation 3;20.

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Now there is the sound of a door opening. Think about how a child reacts when the door opens and it is their Daddy who just came in. They run to him joyfully and yell ‘Daddy’s home’ and they jump into his arms.

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Now the sound of the door closing behind him means they are safe and they have no reason to fear. For when they are with their Daddy they are not afraid, but are happy and secure. For it is written that perfect love casts out all fear. The love of our Heavenly Father, our Abba Daddy is available to all who receive Him, and Jesus is the door we enter to get to Him.

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God bless you and keep you in His perfect peace

Moods/Spiritual Health/Physical Health

I do not believe that I am the only person that when my health is not good neither is my mood. Honestly do you really feel like smiling when pain radiates from every part of your body? I am currently working in the food service and I know people prefer to be waited on by someone who does not radiate misery. I have learned over the many years of any form of customer service is to put on my cheerful mask when dealing with the customers no matter how I feel. Yet this is very draining, both emotionally and physically. There are many health conditions that there is not a lot that we can do to make ourselves feel better. We endure and suffer through bad days and do the best we can,  yet as hard as we try our moods can very from sadness to full blown depression, and even anger and rage. You can feel helpless because of your condition, which can lead to frustration and aggravation. The company of other people can either bring comfort or agitation. So you may close your self off from others not wanting to feel like a burden. Unfortunately this is not good for you. First you start by isolating yourself only seeing or talking to people when it is absolutely necessary. Then your prayers become shorter till almost obsolete. Cutting yourself off from God. Prayers take more effort and can become even difficult. Now you are miserable and alone and don’t even make the effort to turn to God. He is still there for you but your health and your mood consume you. Once you have gotten to this place it is very difficult to get yourself out.  A good beginning may be as simple as crying out “God help me.” It is easy to let our physical condition dictate our moods, and I understand this completely. I still have this battle on a very regular basis. Sometimes it takes everything in me to even call out the name of Jesus. Then I think about people in the Bible and I read their stories and find inspiration. It was only recently that I had a new insight to the life of Job. He went through loss of children, wealth and health. Then he had friends who basically kicked him while he was down and his wife told him to curse God and die. When we first think of Job and all he lived through we see only his suffering and loss. I now see a man that God trusted even when he had every reason to give up, Job didn’t lose his faith in God. So what ever it is that you may be going through, understand God is not the cause, and that He trusts you, and believes you will endure and not fail. Also remember that Paul tells us to count it all joy when we face trials and tribulations. I know reading these words will not fix you and make things better, but you can make an effort not to allow your situation to make you so miserable that you allow yourself to drown in despair. Hold on to God, and do not give up no matter how painful and dark it may be for you right now. Let the joy of the Lord be your strength.

Blessing of peace and health to you all.

Breathe / Spiritual Health Physical Health

How often do you actually pay attention to how you breathe? I am sure at one time or another you have heard someone tell you to breathe. When I go to see my chiropractor for an adjustment, he often reminds me to breathe during my treatment. We breathe while both awake and asleep. If we stopped breathing we would die.

Genesis 2:7 And the Lord formed man of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul.

God breathed life into man.

CPR is performed when a person stops breathing.

Breathing is something we do not give much thought to.

Most of us do what is called shallow breathing. We simple breathe and don’t think about how we breathe. Yet when you are upset or angry ,people  people will tell you to take a deep breath. Deep breathing calms the body. Breathing  is how we get oxygen into the body.

Job 27:3 All the while the breath is in me and the spirit of God is in my nostrils.

Just like we need to breathe to live, we also need Jesus to receive eternal life.  For we can only get to the Father through the Son.

Take the time to pay attention to your breath and make time For Jesus and His Holy Spirit.

There are many breathing exercises you can do and learn to breathe deeper.