Should we keep murdering, polarizing, hurting, hating, and tearing each other down? We are destroying ourselves and each other instead of valuing each life as a gift.
Giving in to the darkness of hate-of anyone- no matter what our political, social, ethnic or religious background is, is the recipe for demise. We do not have to fear a foreign enemy or a virus. We are doing an excellent job of destroying our own selves. The problem starts in the unseen heart of each of us.
So, where do we go from here?
“Having resentment in your soul is like drinking poison and hoping that your enemy will die”- Nelson Mandela
So, where do we go from here?
“The fastest way to change you is to change me.” -Tony Robbins
So, where do we go from here?
“Three things will last forever- faith, hope and love- and the greatest of these is love.- The apostle, Paul.
Yesterday I had the privilege of working a long side (my husband, pictured here:), but also, another very gifted and intellectual man, Dr. John Neyman. The seminar was held at Cornerstone Church of Clarion who warmly and authentically welcomed us to share. John wrote a book called; “The Neyman Strategy”, out of his life long career of counseling people with various issues, namely, anxiety. He shared the information from that book and more, in his seminar, “A Day Of Grace”.
If you get the chance to schedule this doctor of Theology, Psychology and Behavioral Specialist in a town near you, which I highly recommend, my husband and I will most likely be supplying the music for the event and sharing a bit about our story.
Dr. Neyman’s over arching theme is; change your thinking, change your life. His passion comes from his own life journey, where he walked in dark trenches himself and met God there. That led him on a path of faith and a voracious desire to become educated in every way so that he could grow and help others.
He shared many stories of the transformations that happened in seemingly hopeless cases. He once asked the City Of Pittsburgh to give him their most difficult behavioral case, and they did! It didn’t happen over night, but freedom eventually came to the tormented person who others would have written off.
God says in His Word in Romans 12:2, “Do not conform to the world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” Science backs up God’s Word for this! In recent years, the neuroscience field has proven that new neural pathways can be created when we meditate on positive, life giving thoughts and subsequent actions.
One of the strategies that Dr. John teaches in his book and at his seminar is, meditating on scripture for 7 minutes a day in 1-minute increments.
We are given second, third, forth, chances when we apprehend this tool! How am I so certain? Well, God did this very thing for me after I came through a great challenge and subsequent failure. I could have been left in depression and in the bondage of guilt and shame, but God lead me by His grace into His path of light and life. I wrote about this journey in my book; That’s Not Who You Are.
The very method of renewal that Dr. John spoke about for hours yesterday, is the same method I used to recover from failure. I spent hours and days, studying scripture, meditation on it, writing it down, writing songs and blogs about it, speaking it, memorizing it, trusting it, and trusting God- not my circumstances. It transformed me. It didn’t happen in a minute, it wasn’t the microwaved, drive-through version, it was deep, wide and continues to sustain me.
I was able to share a bit about that at yesterday’s seminar and connect with people who have been touched by the pain of hopelessness. I share how God is a God of hope, second chances and new life! I share how God made Himself so real and intimate to me in such a dark time of my life. How He brought others to surround me along the way as I surrendered my control to Him.
If that is not the God you know, I invite you to rediscover Him again, through His son, Jesus Christ. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life and He does not disappoint! No matter what you are going through, addiction, depression, anxiety, loneliness, failure…He has every answer and has given us the tools to illuminate our lives. There is nothing that you could have ever done or do, that He will not welcome you with open arms when you come to Him for help. He delights in mercy.
It is to Him, I am grateful to have the privilege and the honor to work with and along side so many amazing people<3
To inquire about a Dr. John Neyman event, call: 724-712-9449
Be still and know that I love you…that I hold you in the palm of my hand…that I have counted the hairs on your head…that you are the apple of my eye…that your name is written in my heart…”Do not be afraid it is I.”
There is nothing in us that needs to be hidden from God’s love. Our guilt …our shame…our fear…our sins…He wants to see it, touch it, hear it…and make Himself known. There is no other God than the Lord of Love.
Be still and know that I am God. God is not in the storm, nor in the earthquake, nor in the fire, but in the still, small voice , the gentle breeze, and the sheer silence…
Be still and know that I am God. Take these words with you in the week to come…let them be like a little seed planted in the good soil of your heart and let it grow…
The following is an excerpt from Henri Nouwen’s, The Inner Voice of Love, titled, Stay With Your Pain.
When you experience the deep pain of loneliness, it is understandable that your thoughts go out to the person who was able to take that loneliness away, even if only for a moment. When, underneath all the praise and acclaim, you feel a huge absence that makes everything look useless, your heart wants only one thing- to be with the person who once was able to dispel these frightful emotions. But it is the absence itself, the emptiness within you, that you have to be willing to experience, not the one who could temporarily take it away.
It is not easy to stay with your loneliness. The temptation is to nurse your pain or to escape into fantasies about people who will take it away. But when you can acknowledge your loneliness in a safe, contained place, you make your pain available for God’s healing.
God does not want your loneliness; God wants to touch you in a way that permanently fulfills your deepest need. It is important that you dare to stay with your pain and allow it to be there. You have to own your loneliness and trust that it will not always be there. The pain you suffer now is meant to put you in touch with the place where you most need healing, your very heart. The person who was able to touch that place has revealed to you your pearl of great price.
It is understandable that everything you did, are doing, or plan to do seems completely meaningless compared with that pearl. That pearl is the experience of being fully loved. When you experience deep loneliness, you are willing to give up everything in exchange for healing. But no human being can heal that pain. Still, people will be sent to you to mediate God’s healing and they will be able to offer you the deep sense of belonging that you desire and that gives meaning to all you do.
Dare to stay with your pain, and trust in God’s promise to you.
I got to pray with some one this weekend. I spoke at a church and sang some songs I have written about my journey of forgiveness. Learning to forgive my self, others, and even God. This woman desperately wanted to forgive a particular person who has caused much pain in her life. I told her God can not bring the fruits of forgiveness until we forgive, even if we do not feel like it.
I have experienced forgiveness only works when you are vulnerable. Vulnerability can be painful. It is easier to be closed off and hard, but the rewards are only no pain (and I don’t really believe there is no pain in that.) But when we are soft and vulnerable, forgiveness and new life can flow, like healthy cells into a wound. Vulnerability in Forgiveness brings healing<3 Have a great weekend.
I go to the gym three times a week and work out like a fiend to get all the happy hormones I can get in a morning! I listen to my playlist through my headphones, but there are TV monitors in the gym that I can not escape the view of. I have purposely quit watching and listening to news over the last few years to de clutter my mind and allow space for more peace in my life.
I blogged last week about the devastation in Las Vegas and the last few day, news has been about all of the perversion in Hollywood (not surprising there;-( Devastation seems to be on every side. Hurricanes, fires, scandal, the demise of families; this is a hurting world. I have been harmed by people in my life and I have also caused harm because of my selfishness. I understand pain very acutely and I understand stumbling and making a mess of my life. From here forward, I want to be a healer and a light to others who are in darker places.
I wrote a song last year as part of a healing process that I want to share. I had this deep pain and I had to get it out. God gave me the ability to write this song and music and it was pivotal in facing the trauma and bringing healing. A friend of mine used the term “bloody battle” to describe her journey and I resonated with that. My heart is that I can comfort someone else by the understanding I have received and the vulnerability to give it away. I believe there is only one face you can look into, one Name that has power to overcome the world, and one voice that you can listen to, to apprehend this healing. His Name is Jesus. You can click here to hear the song on YouTube. Many Blessings and Peace to you<3
Anxiety. Next to Inflammatory diseases, anxiety is a world-wide epidemic! Anxiety is constantly trying to get in my door and it has taken major vigilance to keep that evil, time wasting intruder out!
Yesterday afternoon I got pretty anxious…and isn’t it funny how everything looks insurmountable when that happens? The bottom line was that I needed some time alone. I asked my husband if he would take our over weight son running, (which was a source of my anxiety) as his ADHD was out of control yesterday. I workout all week to keep my vessel in shape and I make lists for our son every day (because that is part of our Autistic way of living), which includes exercise on it. But in my anxiety yesterday, I was feeling like my husband doesn’t have enough vision for the part he plays in our son’s physical fitness and that was adding to the pile. You micro manage when you have a special needs child, and you get tired of micro-managing…and I was tried.
Any way, he graciously agreed to take him out and after they left I decided to work on an art project while I was listening to a Malcom Smith teaching. I mentioned Malcom last week in a blog, he is a person who dedicates his life to teaching Christians who they are in Christ. I needed some of that soundness in my mind.
He was teaching that in this particular Psalm (103:1-5), David was talking to himself. He said “often we allow our self to talk to us, but David addressed himself and took authority over his inner person concerning the distractions and made himself Bless The Lord.” As he was teaching, he expounded on how anxiety is simply letting go of the peace that you currently have right now in the moment, and exchanging it for fear of any number of things! I resonated! That is so true. I had been thinking about my son not being physically fit enough, my husband not being pro active enough, the things I don’t have enough of, attitudes I have too much of, etc. etc.
Right now, In this moment, I have the Mind Of Christ as a Christian! I have the peace of God that surpasses all understanding that guards my heart and mind. Right now, I do not have fear but Love, Power and a Sound Mind! God has never left me or forsaken me, He loves me with an ever lasting love and wants to build me. I have perfect peace when my mind is stayed on Him. I carry Jesus wherever I go, and He told me not to be anxious for anything, but to talk to Him about everything.
Why is it so easy to exchange all of that peace for fear… for a lie? Well, I have found it very easy to do, but I know what I heard Malcom Smith saying and what I was meditating on last night is truth an brought my mind into perfect peace. It is living in The Now, and realizing right now, I have everything I need in Christ Jesus. I can tap into the supernatural realm right now, because Jesus lives now and wants to abide in me as I do in Him. Heaven will be amazing with our new bodies and all, but I can live a supernatural life in this here and now and so can you!! Live Fully in The Now!
End Note; when the boys came home, we were all in our right, peaceful, strong minds! We all had the time and the adjustment we needed and I was in a very hopeful and encouraged state of mind<3
I’ve been understanding forgiveness on a whole new level over the last year. I’ve dealt with asking for forgiveness, forgiving myself, forgiving others and not being forgiven. One thing I completely agree with James McDonald on: “Christians need to be masters at forgiveness.” This is a challenging thought, but it’s true. And whether you’re a Christian or not, you know forgiveness changes your life and allows things to move in a healthy way that would be impossible otherwise.
The biggest challenge and help to me has been to understand that, “I am completely forgiven and fully pleasing to God. I am totally accepted, deeply loved and absolutely complete in Christ” (Robert McGee, The Search for Significance).
With God’s help in believing this is true, I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength! I want to be rebuilt and energized in that truth, so I can do everything I was created to do in this life and not waste one more second in unbelief.
I want to encourage you that this is possible! You can change your life, your patterns, your habits, your hangups, and your failures. You can take that mustard seed of faith and it can grow into a flourishing tree!
I completely relate to King David when he said, “I would have lost heart unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of The Lord in the land of the living” (Psalm 27:13). Forgiveness is not an easy road, and the battle is mostly in the mind. But unless I believe (without seeing) that forgiveness produces good fruit and leads to a more abundant life, I will give in to hopelessness and despair. I have been there many times, and it does not bear anything good! Not for me or any one else around me.
So, I am encouraging myself even as I write this, and hope I encourage you today!I encourage you to check your heart, investigate the things that weigh you down, and ask yourself if there is an area in your life (or that situation you can’t let go of) in which you really haven’t forgiven a person, or even God. Don’t let this day pass without getting it out in the open, confessing it, and receiving forgiveness for it. Don’t carry it around another minute, day, or year. This is precisely the Reconciliation Jesus Christ provided to us through the cross and what we can meditate on further through this Resurrection weekend. The books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John can greatly aid us on this journey of forgiveness<3