Category Archive Trials And Blessings

ByAngie

How To Build Your Own Lemonade Stand Step 2: Forgive

14 “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.15 But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” Matthew 6:14-15 NKJV

Last week I wrote on grieving. Sometimes, once we have completed that step we realize we need to forgive in order to be able to move on.

I can not stress enough how important this step is. If you simply skip over it, your lemonade will be VERY bitter!

Forgiveness is rarely easy to just hand out. It can be a struggle to let go of anger and hurt that is rightfully felt. Especially if the forgiveness needs to be given to someone who does not care, denies their fault, is unknown, clueless of their action, or did something unbearably horrible.

Something equally difficult is forgiving ourselves. It is often said that we are our own worst critics. Isn’t that the truth? I don’t know anyone who is as hard on me as I am on myself.

Regardless, we are required to forgive if we want to be forgiven. What all does this entail? Well, let’s look at the definition from Webster’s:

Definition of FORGIVE

transitive verb

1a: to give up resentment of or claim to requital for <forgive an insult> b: to grant relief from payment of <forgive a debt>
2: to cease to feel resentment against (an offender) :pardon <forgive one’s enemies>

Do you have to be friends with the person and act like nothing ever happened? Absolutely not! But forgive and move on? Yes.

Easier said than done, right? It usually takes quite a chunk of prayer time to be able to achieve this step. As with all things in life, pray for God to help you. Pray for guidance. Pray for forgiveness from Him. But I guarantee that once you do reach that point, you will feel so much better. Then, you can move right along with making that lemonade!

ByDiania

What’s On My Heart

I simply want to sit down and tell you everything in my life is wonderful, but to do that would be a lie. I feel as tho I am going thru transitions that scare me, ones I can’t control and am not even sure I want to try.

Being the oldest of our four writers you would think I would have a little more insight on how to handle life. But, like everyone else, I stand back fighting depression and decisions that weigh heavy on my heart every day. I know my God won’t put on me more then I can handle, but where exactly is that point, when does one break, or is it even an option?

A couple weeks ago I was talking with an old friend who had a mental break down and had been in the hospital. She seemed a little reluctant to tell me she had a nervous breakdown. I could see the embarrassment in her eyes. Then I started to tell her that a nervous break down is actually just a break thru, and now she could breathe a lot easier because God has lifted the burden and pain from her. I watched as her eyes began to shine, and as she set there for a while I could see her thinking. A few minutes later she began to thank me and said that was a wonderful way to look at it. She seemed to be relieved as I explained to her that she would be able to go on now and leave those burdens completely behind her. When I left her I knew God put me there for a reason. His child was hurting and I left knowing He had used me to help her heal…

So in the mean time I can’t help but wonder just where I will be and who God may use to help me thru what ever it is that holds me from surrendering and breaking thru myself. After all, going thru means I gotta come out on the other end. Your prayers are most welcome..

Love,

ByDiania

No Time For Sissies!

Lets start this by saying this week has been one whirlwind of events. The sickness in our church has taken a toll on me. Saying I have been discouraged is an understatement. So I decided it was time to get specific with my prayer, this was no time for sissy prayers.

I let God in on what my heart has been feeling, stating to him that I need to see the hand of God move. After months of praying up against brick walls and seeing nothing happen , it was time for hitting the knees and telling Him I need more. One can only endure so much, and that was where I was.

I don’t believe I was alone in my feelings. For the last couple years we have seen more sickness, the most some have endured in a lifetime. To say the least we have been attacked by the enemy, and it was time to take back what he has stolen from us. I can definitely say when Dean was, frustration filled me to the core. Standing back with sissy prayers was not going to be acceptable. What we needed was a team of serious prayer warriors standing in the gap for a brother in Christ, and that’s exactly what we got.

I love the living testimony of people walking by seeing where we put our trust. In our Lord and savior, the only true physician who could heal beyond what any man could do. I pray those people know where real healings come from.

I never doubt what my God can do, I may get discouraged but He is still in the healing business, and that is what I stand on. Promises of a God that cannot lie, and will not lie. I know for a fact that Dean is on his way to a full recovery. Tonite I sat in his chair and asked God to restore him back to a wholeness of wellness. In the name of Jesus I prayed for every illness Dean has, from allergies to back pain. Get ready Dean your gonna be better then ever, like I said,

You will arise and go forth, in the name of the Lord of host, for he has conquered every foe by his name, by his name, I will declare he is the Lord I will trust and not be afraid I will arise and go forth by his name…………….

I put my faith in God, he came thru once again. Amen……………..I love you Lord, and again I give you the praise…..

 

Originally written by Diania on April 14th, 2011… In reference to Angie’s Dad, Dean… You can read more about the situation we were all in here.

ByAngie

How To Build Your Own Lemonade Stand Step 1: Grieve

1 For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven:2 a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;3 a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;4 time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;5 a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;6 a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;7 a time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;8 a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 NKJV

For some reason, many people (not just men) are afraid to admit that they are not experiencing any emotion other than joy. Especially Christians. Some feel that it is sinful, or makes them not as good as the next person. However, as the scripture above points out, (Turn, Turn, Turn… Ha, you know it’s stuck in your head now too…) there is a time for everything.

To mourn and grieve is very important to the healing process. Without embracing the truth, acknowledging it, dealing with it, and accepting that something happened you may not ever truly move on. Sure, you can be all happy/smiley and say “Praise the Lord!” after everything everyone says, but that doesn’t mean you’re happy. The body, heart, mind, and soul need to grieve in a healthy matter for a healthy amount of time. It should not be rushed or dragged out.

Unfortunately, really horrible bad things happen in this world: Death, natural and unnatural. Rape. Miscarriage. Child abuse. Illness. Job loss. Divorce. Infidelity. Break ups. Infertility. Muggings. Robberies. Car accidents. Etc, etc, etc… After any of these situations, it is normal to grieve and expected. It is even normal to “mildly grieve” over much smaller less upsetting situations. Anyone who’s had a bad hair cut knows what I’m talking about. (I forgive Karen & Emily for butchering my hair when I was 16, really… but that doesn’t mean I didn’t mourn it for a few days.)

Yes, as Christians we should have joy. Yes, we should see the positive and not the negative. But we are also commanded that there IS a time to mourn. That means it’s accepted. Should you not allow this process, you may miss out on a complete healing.

Just remember, it’s called GOOD GRIEF for a reason. And that prayer is NEVER a bad thing. The more the better!

ByAngie

I Won A Prize!!!

In July of 2004, I made friends with a group of people in an IHOP. If you know me, this comes as no surprise. We ended up merging our tables and the other group came and sat with my group. One of these persons is a guy who we will refer to as “Chuck”…

That night was full of fun and laughter. I kept in touch with a few via phone, text, myspace, email, etc. “Chuck” was one of them. A few years later we reacquainted. I was busy with work/life and never thought twice about him. He was dating Julie, who I didn’t know.

Fast forward a few months: “Chuck” is about to leave for deployment (He was a Marine) and wants to meet up, just as friends. Before you know it, “Chuck” and I are dating. Only mentioned an ex-girlfriend a few times. Leaves for Iraq, and while there: rips my heart to shreds. I was left hurt, very confused, and angry. I was determined before that to never fall for anyone again, and I did… only to be let down.

In the time we were dating before he left, I got to know some of his friends. One was his best friend’s girlfriend, Le Anna. When “Chuck” and I broke up, she insisted I come along on a girls night. She brought 2 other girls. Steph and….. Julie, who also brought her now husband. I realized within seconds she was the girl in the pictures with “Chuck” a few months before I started dating him, but we were very cool with each other and quickly became friends. Before the end of the night, she ended up consoling me, and we both insisted we had to remain in contact.

That was almost 5 years ago. Now, I could easily look back on all of that and say “God, why? Why did you allow my heart to be broken?” However, I look at it like this, “God, thank you for the gift of friendship you have given me in these 3 women. Especially Julie. She’s always there right when I need her with a wise word, song lyric, or scripture. It was all worth it to know these girls!”

God knows what he’s doing, people. All the time. Even when we aren’t serving him at the time. And what may seem like something horrible in your midst, never forget that something good can come from it. Even the Bible states this:

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

Romans 8:28 NKJV

A month after I met Julie, I met and married my husband Bobby who is the love of my life. I could have NEVER imagined that I would ever find someone like him. He is a dream come true and one of the greatest gifts God ever gave me. I quickly forgot about “Chuck”, and still had 3 awesome new friends! A few months later, Julie and Chad were married and remain to be very happy.

You know what that means…

“Chuck” is apparently “Good Luck”… If you’re single and tired of it, I suggest looking him up… Just kidding. Save yourself the trouble, don’t. Just be friends with us instead.