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But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles,   They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31  NKJ)

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It's all for the asking.  He is faithful.  It's ALL FREE!


    Some people have a problem with the word “repent” but I found a new understanding in the word “renounce”, for the church that I was raised in brought shame and guilt in association with repentance.  It wasn't until I was an adult that I learned:

 

“there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus,” (Romans 8:1)


     It was a hard road to understand that bitterness and anger can be a sin, but that it was extremely freeing to learn that all I had to do was repent, “RENOUNCE MY RIGHT” to it.  There is no shame in Christ Jesus. “Condemnation” is different from “Conviction”.   


      As we repent of our “hold” on sin, He cleanses us.  YES, the Lord Jesus cares deeply for my pain but when I decide to keep it wrapped up and close, decide to not give it to Him for whatever HE decides to do, decide not to surrender it, then I get in trouble.  It's ok to feel hurt, pain and sorrow...but to STAY focused on myself, my sorrow, my loss, my pain, is self centered and not of Christ Jesus.  


We are told to not be “mastered” by anything...and if there is some state of being, some destructive emotion or attitude, that I cannot just stop, then it is on the edge of being “mastered”.

 

“They promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves of depravity—for a man is a slave to whatever has mastered him.” (2 Peter 2:19 )



“So, how do I receive and KEEP my freedom?”

1. Run to Him QUICKLY!


Turn to him quickly...and He will come to YOU quickly. Come to Him and He will come near to you (James 4:8, Psalm 102:2, Psalm 31)  Before emotions get out of whack, before actions are made before you've prayed on them, before you say something or do something you wish later that you could take back, fall on your knees and cry out NOW.

"If my people would but listen to me, if Israel would follow my ways, how quickly would I subdue their enemies and turn my hand against their foes! (Psalm 81:13-14 )

2. Resist the enemy!

     Trust that as you resist the enemy, he will flee, we don't even have to fight at times (James 4:7, Nehemiah 4:13-15).  Resist the temptation to stay in anger or bitterness once you've realized falling into it.  Recognize the Lord pulling you out of any season of sorrow, saying it's time, come to me”. Resist the enemy of fear which is not of God, and claim as our brothers Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego reacted when faced with the fiery furnace:


 “If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it, and he will rescue us from your hand, O king.  But even if he does not, we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up." (Daniel 3:17-18 )

3. Put a guard over your mouth and thoughts

    As you may know, it's really easy to let words slip when we're upset. Trust that as you resist the enemy, he will flee, we don't even have to fight at times (James 4:7

“We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:5) Others: Psalm 141:3, Proverbs 4:23

4. ASK Jesus to take it!

    POUR OUT to Him...and trust Him to pick up what you give to Him. Ask for more healing.  Ask for more patience.  Ask for more Joy.  Ask for more peace.  Take “inventory”, what is it that you need? ASK!  He says we have not because we ask not! (James 4:2) Pour out to Him!  He is big enough to carry it!


“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:13 ) Others: Psalm 43:5, Psalm 119:28, Job 16:20   

5. Claim His words & Truth.

God's word IS POWER and as heirs to the kingdom, we have all the rights and honors to claim and stand on it.

   

“For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.” (2 Corinthians 10:3-4) For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power. (1 Corinthians 4:20)

6. Build your “Camp”

     Don't isolate yourself away or hold everything inside you.  Yes, there should be a measure of discretion on who you share what with because you could either put strain on someone who is not strong enough to handle what feels put upon them, or, if it's someone the Lord did not bring to you, that person can bring other facets to the problem, even with good intentions. (Crucial Factor to Healing 3 - Build your Camp)


 Pray and ask the Lord who you should share with, receive wisdom from those you know submit to the Lord in all things, and carry one another's burdens.


“Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2) Others: Colossians 3:16, Ephesians 4:2, James 5:16, Hebrews 10:24

 7. Trust in the Lord at all times.  

    Ask for more faith, step out in what you hear, do as Jesus did, which is only do what you hear your Father in Heaven doing ...Listen, Move, Act ...Remember that Jesus came to set the captive's free:


   “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10) “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (john 10:10 b)

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4 Healing Rooms

5 Crucial Factors to Healing.

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4 Healing Rooms
#1Triage & Rest #2Treatment & Rest - Index #3 Restoration & Rest #4 Physical Therapy

Does He not work out all things for our good?

 

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)


Can you trust Him?  


“For the word of the LORD is right and true; he is faithful in all he does”  (Psalm 33:4 )


“O Sovereign LORD, you are God! Your words are trustworthy, and you have promised these good things to your servant.” (2 Samuel 7:28 )


Can you trust your situations to Him?   


“Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows” (Isaiah 53:4)


    Ok, so maybe this situation that came into my life is NOT about making me miserable or to torture me, maybe it's about something bigger, something the Lord wants to do in my life.  


“Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge. Selah”  (Psalm 62:8  )


     So ...pouring out is one thing, accepting that things that come into our life are meant for our good is a little harder but once in hindsight, easier to swallow. But Can or WILL the Lord take smooth out this roller-coaster of the emotions that we go on?


You bet!  

“Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom.  Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” (James 4:9-10 )


I don't have to make myself feel better, HE does it!  


You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing to you and not be silent. (Psalm 30:11-12)


You just have to be willing to surrender what you're holding onto!


There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die ... a time to weep and a time to laugh ... a time to mourn and a time to dance... (Ecclesiastes 3:1-4)


You have to DECIDE to give your situations AND YOUR EMOTIONS up to the Lord.  He will not rip whatever you're holding onto from your arms.  There may be consequences for acting out of anger or bitterness but it would be by our own doing and we have to make a decision to put this away and lay it at His feet.  You don't have to MAKE it go away or work to make it better, HE does that, you just have to be willing to give it up.



     My health had deteriorated and I had read much on our emotions affecting us physically.  I was hurting myself in many ways. I couldn't even see that it affected my loved ones around me, for I could see nothing but my own pain.


 Your Feelings are real...the situation is not.


     The “situation”, or ANY situation that happens to us, has not come to us by some way of God turning His back, forgetting about us, Him dropping the ball or the enemy attacking us without His permission.   All I saw are hindrances in life when our Heavenly Father had a purpose for everything that He allowed in my life. Did I really believe that he meant for everything to frustrate and hurt me?


“For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11 )


Is He not in total control?


“I form the light and create darkness, I bring prosperity and create disaster; I, the LORD, do all these things. (Isaiah 45:7 )


Does he not love us without limit?


The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: "I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness. (Jeremiah 31:3)

any of the other emotions that I listed above, when “bad things” happen, but I do not “deserve” to hold onto these emotions if I am going to claim that my life is in Christ Jesus.  My testimony of His goodness is not much of a testimony and my faith not a witness to anyone should I hold onto anything that is NOT of Him.  


“A happy heart makes the face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit.” (Proverbs 15:13)

“You can hold onto that if you want to”


I have told this story before, how, when upset over some situations in my life that seemed insurmountable, I shared with another sister in the lord, looking for help where there seemed no answer.  Needless to say, I got even MORE angry and frustrated when her response was: “you can hold onto that if you wan to”.  


Was she actually suggesting that I actually had a CHOICE as to how I felt about the terrible things that were happening?! I had been sincerely looking and praying for a way out of the pain and anguish that I was in and to suggest that I was doing anything to aggravate the situation was not only ridiculous but offensive.


Or was it?


 She loved me enough to tell me that I DID have a “choice”, that I was not a slave to how I felt, that God would not tell us to avoid something if we honestly COULD avoid it, right?

 

“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.” (Ephesians 4:31)


Pain is real,

       no matter how you experience it.


     It's natural to be upset when upsetting things happen.  It's natural to be sad when sad things happen. It's natural to be human: to be hurt, angry, or

  Yeah, it certainly FEELS like you're

in jail at times: controlled; bound with

no obvious escape; hindered;

oppressed;downtrodden; beaten up

emotionally; trapped; in despair and a maybe

a myriad of many other emotions that cause one to feel as

if there is no getting out.


What is holding YOU “hostage”.


     You may find that you reacted harshly when your son wanted you to come and play some game with him, or a co-worker fell short in his duties which placed yet another burden on your workload.  You may have snapped when your mother called to tell you once again what you should be doing or why the trials that are in your lap are your fault anyway. You may feel like hiding away from all living beings and the possibility of staying in bed looks really good about now.


 ...and you may feel...that if one ...more... person comes up to you and tells you that you need to “give it up to the Lord”, you will scream, or do something worse.


“To peace...or NOT to peace...”


    What you're experiencing IS real.  Whether you're going through great trials in life like you've just lost your job, your home, your marriage, or you're not sure what exactly is weighing on your shoulders.  If you had to guess, you might say that you don't know or that it's a lot of “little things” that are taking it's tole on your emotions: grief; despair; sadness;despondency; desperation; anger; fear & frustration or a multitude of other things that tax your strength, health and relationships.


    Personally, I would rather be “at peace in the midst” more than I would want to experience these things...or at least so I thought.



“I DESERVE to feel the way I do!”

     They have this wonderful event at Red Lobster called “Shrimp & Lobster Fest”, which I've gone to once and can testify that it's pretty amazing.  While not as “yummy” as these event is, I have a little event that I find myself celebrating from time to time called “STEW-FEST”:  I “stew” in my own juices, and marinate in my own “gunk” for quite some time when upset.  I “stew” in my frustration, stew in my anger, stew in my pity and even stew in my sorrow.


     At times like this, I felt that I DESERVE to feel sorry for myself when something happens beyond my control which costs me a lot more money.  I felt that I DESERVE to feel anger at being mistreated or wronged by someone, and during these times, it just feels too good to get out of it and I found it even offensive at the suggestion that I should NOT feel the way I did.


     I was totally into myself:! It was all about me, me, me.  I was self-absorbed and totally unable to see anything or any one around me.  I knew I “deserved” to feel the way I did because ...others around me told me that I could.  They told me how they would be devastated if the same situations happened to them, confirming my belief that I truly did deserve to feel the way I was feeling.


Where is YOUR head?


      Last spring I was privy to a TV commercial where 2 women lost their husband's in a golf pro shop and when help came the men had their heads in a totally compromising place.  Now I realize this is computer animated, at least I HOPE it was, and it WAS a pretty gross thought and crass at that (CBS wouldn't allow them during the Superbowl but you can see them on youtube) but they made a big point at that time.  


     The product or point of the commercial was totally lost on me as we laughed hysterically as one of these seemingly deformed men made a putt, which landed the ball in the hole and said in a muffled voice: “It's in the hole”.  I think it was almost universally funny, as so many of us have joked at one point or another, considering where OUR head was at times, and now for the first time we were actually able to visualize the concept much more clearly.


      When this “concept” is referred to, it's usually in reference to one who “has no clue”, which most of the time, means we have no clue to what's going on around us: in our lives...or anywhere else for that matter.  Seeing this visual, I’m struck almost in an equally funny way at how it's impossible at times to see anyone but yourself.  During trials,  it's almost impossible to actually see anything good in such a place (think about it!) and...it's impossible to HEAR anyone else around you or to “receive” from them as well.  We get irritated at others, impatient at life situations and sometimes:downright ornery, rude, angry or offensive ourselves.


     Ok, I should have apologized for such a vulgar analogy before hand, but would I really get the point across with a bunch of fluffy or pretty analogies?   My point is, we do NOT have the luxury of what I call “F.O.S.”  - Focus on Self.  We died on that cross when we received the Lord Jesus as our Savior, right?  We were told to crucify the flesh over and over again, right?  So HOW do we really deal with these issues, especially when we REALLY HURT ...and especially if the more we try at times, the worse things get?

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