The Struggle Of Our Today (Guess Blogger)

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“We’ll tell you about our broken places of yesterday but don’t dare admit the limitations of our today.” Lysa Terkeurst.
Wow. These words are heavy, exposing the truth. It is easier to talk about the past. How we have overcome trials demonstrating our own persistence and strength. Of course, from time to time we will include God, most times as a hero who swept in and saved the day. Rescuing us from the storm.
But talking about today? Being transparent; honest? That is a different story. It takes guts. We like to appear to the world as having it all together. As if we can accomplish this insane to do list, save the world, and be home for supper. In reality, we are falling apart- most people are facing limitations daily, which could be illness, addiction, family disputes, or finances.

With a chronic illness, we act often. Taking on the role of a healthy and normal individual in order to blend in or make others happy. A friend asks how we are… and too often, we smile straight up telling a lie, “I’m doing great”…. Desperately we even debate which lies to tell our doctor. What is worth sharing? Will he or she believe me? Is it worth the frustration? It is challenging, to be honest, and the individual that God created us to be. Isolation closes in on us; as we swim in the sea of invisible illness

Without a doubt, there is a time and a place for everything. God’s word echo’s this in Ecclesiastes 3:1, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” At times taking on a role has its advantages, and at other times, it is downright damaging. There is also a time for raw honesty. “You weren’t designed to go through suffering alone. As times get tough — and they will — reach out and reach up. “You weren’t designed to go through suffering alone. As times get tough — and they will — reach out and reach up,” Rick Warren. Putting yourself out there is scary. Sharing your heart is healthy. By sharing with others, you become an inspiration and encouragement to others. Struggling does not make you weak, it makes you human.

Additionally, we ask who can we be honest with. Lately, I seem to keep hearing the same message, we were not meant to do life on our own. We were made for community, not isolation. But in all honesty, it easier to say than do. Falling into isolation becomes easy with an illness. Most times, it is not intentional. We flare up, battle fatigue, and lose many friends. Having someone we can confide in about the struggles of today is rare. There are people who hurt us, leave us, and betray our trust.

 

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I think it is hard, to be honest in this way because we don’t want to be negative or a burden to others. At the same time, it is important to do so. Not only is it healthy, but it allows others to support us and specifically pray with us then allows us the chance to offer the same to them. Being honest allows us to share with others how God is working in our lives right now.

Personally, I have two friends who I can be brutally gut level honest with, knowing in my heart that no matter what they will still love me and will pray with me. Their friendship is a beautiful treasure. I hope you have at least one person who you can be honest with about the struggles of today.

Lord,

You are the God who sees us and knows us completely. Teach us how to be honest about the struggles of today. Bless us with people who we can share our burdens with and support. Allow us to continually bring glory to Your Holy Name.

Amen

 

A big thank you to Victoria her blog is: Chronically Hopeful 2014  https://wordpress.com/read/feeds/25232744/posts/1937603516

 

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Come Into The Light (Guess Blogger)

Good Morning Everyone I would like to take this opportunity to introduce to you Don Merritt:

Don Merritt (that’s me) is just a regular guy who has had a half-century of living life. I’ve had experiences that are quite normal and typical… and some that are less common. I’ve been busy for a long time in activities that range from politics to writing to running a business I am finished ghost-writing for others and writing things from a purely technical point of view; it’s my turn to write about the things that are really important in life: God, hope, faith, understanding and encouragement for others. It’s my hope to do so in a way that you will find interesting, unusual and non-threatening… and at the same time challenging.

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This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.

1 John 1:5-7

Earlier we looked at the introduction to this letter, and here, we enter the first section of the letter which begins at verse 5 and continues through 2:14. This section is given context in verse 5: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. Thus, this section is all about John’s declaration of light versus darkness, and it contains comparisons and contrasts.
Before we take a look at it, keep in mind what John wrote in John 1:4 “In him was life, and that life was the light of men.” All through the Gospel story, John used “light” as signifying the presence of Jesus, contrasted with “darkness” denoting His absence. Keeping this in mind, let’s take a look at our text. After proclaiming that God is light, John gets down to his explanation claiming that if we claim to be in fellowship with God, but walk in darkness, we lie, and are not in the truth. This is a rather easy statement to understand, for if we are in darkness, then we aren’t in His presence, and if we aren’t in His presence, we couldn’t possibly be in fellowship: There is no half-way.

The contrast is that if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship… because we are with Him in the light. If we have this fellowship in the light of His presence and truth, then His blood purifies us from all sin. The reality of the statement is that we can’t be in fellowship with Him until our sins have been forgiven by His sacrifice on the cross.
Sometimes, we may walk a ways in darkness, and by this I mean that we may stray from time-to-time. John doesn’t suggest that our errors kick us out of fellowship as we will see a little farther through this text, but that there is a way to return to the light of His presence, by confessing our sins., as we see in the next paragraph:

If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us.
1 John 1:8-10
I think we all would agree that a claim by any one of us to have never sinned would be little short of crazy. John seems to think it’s worse than that− all have sinned, but take heart, for there is a way out, confess your sins and He will forgive; this is our covenant promise. There is simply no need for us to wring our hands and carry around a burden of guilt and shame before God, for when we confess our sins (acknowledge them) He will forgive; we have His Word on that.

https://lifereference.wordpress.com/

 

Life To The Full

Psalm 36.pngThey feast on the abundance f your house; you give them drink from your river delights. For with you is the fountain of life, in your light we see light.    Psalm 36:8-9

Never allow life to become an unbearable burden to you, because it is God’s greatest gift to you. He only gives to you what is good and you should be exceedingly grateful for that. Unfortunately it is possible to make your life an unbearable burden through degenerating and negative thoughts, and by the total neglect of your spiritual life and principles.

If you want to lead a full and blessed life, there are certain principles that must be accepted. One of the most important principles is that you must be grateful for your life, because it is the best thing God has given you. Of course this doesn’t mean that everything must always be plain sailing, but when you accept the goodness of life with gratitude towards God, you will stop fighting it. When you start co-operating with life, you become a collaborator with the almighty God. When you accept that life is good, you become aware that it has a clean goal and plan. This acceptance removes all impatience and frustration, and life becomes an exciting and satisfying experience. But, in order for you to understand the great plan of life, you need to know the Planner. You need to accept the fact that God exists and allow your life to be controlled by godly principles, until eventually you become an expression of those plans.

When you have this experience and make it your own, you posses a unity with the Creator and your life is filled with the fullness of God. How can you possibly thank and praise Him enough for this lifetime?, and I am not sure we can.

Grace and Peace to You My Friends

Compassion

Matthew 11.png    “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”  Matthew 11:28-29

Through these words written in the Gospel of Matthew, Christ speaks to people who are desperate in their search for God, trying hard to live a good life. Jesus’ invitation is meant for those who have become tired in their search for God and have been driven to despair. He invites those who have to shoulder heavy burdens in their search for the truth to come to Him. The Greeks believed it was hard to find God and when you did, it was difficult to tell anyone about Him. Zophar ask Job, “Can you solve the mysteries of God?” Can you discover everything about the Almighty? (Job 11:7)

The only way to get to know God is to focus on Jesus. The religion of the orthodox Jews was a heavy burden to them ( Matthew 23:4) It was a matter of endless rules and regulations, which weighed heavily on them in all spheres of life. The life Jesus gives us is not a burden that weighs us down, but a life that is specially made to suite each of us.

Christ’s yoke is put on our shoulders with love, and love makes even the heavies load light. When we think of the love of God, when we know that our “burden” is to love God, to love our fellow humans, then the burden becomes a song. The burden given with love is carried with love and therefore it is always light.

John Baillie a Scottish Theologian and Minister wrote “Give me a stout heart to bear my own burdens, Give me a willing hear to bear the burden of others. Give me a believing heart to cast all burdens upon Thee, O Lord.

Prayer: Loving Father God, thank you that your burden never becomes too heavy for your children.                         Amen

Grace and Peace to You My Friends