Abundant life, Emotional, Encouragement, faith, Fear, forgiveness, Love and Life of a Testimony, Patience, prayer, Salvation, Sermon Notes

I AM…..

The Ladies Summit we had at Owensboro Legacy a couple of weeks ago, I had the privilege to speak about Shattered Reflections.  Here are my sermon notes.

I AM….. you fill in the blank…. TWO of the most powerful words but it is what you put after them shapes your reality

If you are like me, it depends on what my mood is that day, what emotions I am feeling or my environment, the people I am around, if I read the Word or prayed…. But better yet what is going on in my mind.

Life – the reality of day to day living.  The up’s and down’s and the all in between.

Life’s experiences can prevent us from reaching our full potential of what God has for us unless we get free and stay free from the lies the enemy entangles us.

John 6:23 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all.

Galatians 5:16-18:  So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh or sinful nature craves.

The sinful nature wants to do what pleases us,  the opposite of what the Spirit wants.

These two forces are constantly fighting each other.

 

By walking in the spirit we can be victorious and have a life that reflects Christ.

 

FRUIT:  Vs 22-25: But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

 

The Law of Moses was unable to save us because of the weakness of our sinful nature. So God did what the law could not do. He sent his Son in a body like us and died for our sins so the law was fulfilled and we no longer follow our sinful nature but instead can follow the Spirit.

But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

GOD MADE A WAY

Galatians 5:13 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love.

2 Corthinians 3:17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

We must be LED by the spirit.  LED = a verb ACTION meaning to lead, guide or brought.

The difference between lead and follow:

Lead is a strong force.

Follow leaves it us to us on our own.

The Spirit is not a leader like the pace car in the “Daytona 500.” He is a leader like a locomotive on a train.

We do not follow in our strength. We are led by his power. So “walk by the Spirit” means stay hooked up to the divine source of power and go wherever he leads.

People who try to love without relying on God’s Spirit always wind up trying to fill their own emptiness rather than sharing their fullness. And so love ceases to be love.

Love won’t be easy for us because we are not being led and we don’t have the freedom we are looking for.  We become trapped in fear relying on our own strength, shattered reflections.

When Christian life looks too hard, we must remember that we are not called to live it by ourselves in our own strength nor are we called to stay in bondage to depression, anxiety, identity lies, shame and guilt, unforgiveness,  betrayal .”  IT IS FREEDOM

Lets talk about our topics:  these lies all give us Physical, behavioral changes and Emotional symptoms or signs of what we are experiencing.  They affect us physically, how we act/behave and what we are experiencing emotional.

If we are a triune being:  body, soul and spirit.

These affect our body; these affect our soul.

Anxiety and Depression – estimated that 45 percent of people with one mental health condition meet the criteria for two or more disorders.

Depression and anxiety disorders (mess, turmoil, unrest) are medical conditions (circumstance, situation, environment, surrounding).

Anxiety and depression are NOT a result of failure or weakness.

These are feelings from a result of underlying causes (motive or source) and triggers; it’s not the result of something you did or didn’t do.

Physical, behavioral and emotional symptoms occur.  (SOUL (HEART, WILL) AND BODY)

Anxiety, or fear and worry, can happen to anyone that usually leads to irrational thoughts and fears that interfere with your daily life.

Physical, behavioral changes and Emotional symptoms

Shame and Guilt –

Guilt: a feeling of responsibility or remorse for some offense, crime, wrong, etc., whether real or imagined.   It involves the awareness of having done something wrong; it arises from our actions (even if it might be one that occurs in fantasy). GUILT COMES FROM ACTIONS.  Guilt is a focus on behavior

Shame:

The painful feeling arising from the consciousness of something dishonorable, improper, ridiculous, etc., done by oneself or another.

It’s a painful feeling about how we appear to others (and to ourselves) and doesn’t necessarily depend on our having done anything. Shame is a focus on self,

Shame is, “I am bad.” Guilt is, “I did something bad.” Guilt: I’m sorry. I made a mistake. Shame: I’m sorry. I am a mistake.

Shame is highly, highly correlated with addiction, depression, violence, aggression, bullying, suicide, and eating disorders.   (SHAME IS A PAINFUL FEELING THAT RESIDES IN THE MIND THAT AFFECTS THE BODY – FOCUSED ON SELF)

 

Unforgiveness – How do you know if someone deals with unforgiveness:

  • *Experiencing bursts of anger. (You’re likely bottling up your anger.) Oftentimes, the person who is the recipient of the inevitable outburst is not the person who caused the stress or pain
  • You’re desperate to make them understand how you feel, you can’t control the hurtful person, but you can control your environment. This can quickly become a negative spiral of compulsive activity. Maybe for you this means keeping your spaces spotless, checking social media repeatedly, or making unnecessary purchases. Maybe it involves comfort eating.
  • You’re unable to reframe your experiences
  • Find yourselfblamingthe person

“I hold you responsible not just for what you did to me, but how I reacted and responded to what you did. I hold you responsible for my unhappiness.”

  • Sickness in the body.

If you’re struggling with stress related illness such as anxiety, depression, or high blood pressure, it may be time to try some forgiveness therapy. (Affects body and soul)

You’re keeping a list of offenses

You hate yourself

  • If you’re stuck in unforgiveness, you are probably experiencing a toxic brew of guilt, shame, self-judgment, and self-sabotage.

You replay the scene over and over…and over

  • You gossip about them, it’s natural to want to return the hurt to those who have hurt us.

You’re self-righteous and entitled If you harbor the belief that you did everything right and they did everything wrong, you probably need to honestly reexamine your own behavior.

Betrayal – Betrayal is one of the one of the most painful human experiences.

When we see the word “betrayal” we may immediately think “affair.” But betrayal comes in many forms. Abandonment, vicious gossip, and spreading lies.

The damage is our sense of reality is undermined.  Trust crumbles. Innocence shattered. We’re left wondering: What happened? How could this happen? Who is this person?

Betrayal is an unavoidable human experience — the positive side of it may help us move toward deeper wisdom and maturity, understand of what love is and what love isn’t. And can also allow ourselves time to heal and understand ourselves — and others — more deeply.

What is important is not to let it destroy your trust in others when that happens.

Identity – enduring and continuous sense of who we are.  Who does God say you are?

 

Fleshly desires – For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do.  Galatians 5:19-21 When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.

 

Belonging and acceptance – A feeling (soul issue) of acceptance and belonging is an important part of a high performance culture.

Individuals, who feel like they belong, gain security. This sense of security then nurtures self-esteem. Maslow, when writing about the Hierarchy of Needs, believed that most of society’s social problems stemmed from this basic need (for belonging) not being met.

You are here tonight because you want to rid yourself of something, you long for freedom, rest, peace, a quietness that only God can give you.

Growth and transformation rarely come without pain.

Your pain is actually an opportunity to make you Christ like.

 

God made us triune beings – Body, Soul, Spirit.

  • We must see ourselves as this whole being
  • Appreciate how God made us without elevating one part over the other.

When we are not healthy in our triune being, we not feeling our best and the people around us cannot experience us in our full capacity.  

Spirit 

  • Your spirit is the spiritual or supernatural side of you, not a battle ground like the soul
  • It is not material,
  • It is not visible,
  • It’s not of this world, but it’s from God and lives eternal
  • Able to interact with the spiritual world.
  • It is what allows you to hear from God
  • Allows you to have faith for miracles

Soul – An easy way to understand what happens in your soul is whatever happens in your brain – heart-will-personality.

  • It’s also invisible like your spirit
  • Contains your emotion, your will, your desires, sensory perception, conscious, and your reasoning or logic.
  • Solemn says EVERY ISSUE in Life flows out of it
  • Words you speak affects your soul to yourself or to others

Now, because of sin, our soul, emotions, will, mind, desires

  • Pointed inward – Looks earthward
  • Always consumed with the self unless it is willingly disciplines and kept in check.
  • Decides what you want to do and send the signal to your physical body in order to act out your decisions.
  • Social media is playground for the soul

When God feeds your spirit (you allow or reject), which feeds the soul, (you either believe or choose to not believe) your body will follow.

Remember soul (heart, mind, will, emotions) always wins over knowledge.  We know to do good yet we fight against ourselves to struggle to escape.  Spirit must be fed daily to win the battle.

Your actions EVERYTHING YOU DO IS controlled by either your soul (your heart, mind, will or emotions) or by the spirit of God = whichever you believe the most will win and then it tells the body what to do.

Soul (psyche) part of flesh but the governor of our heart and mind – patterns, conclusions (joined to the spirit but different) initiates movement based on what it is feeling and thinking. (Personality) Soul never rests and always busy. (Needs to be saved, restored, survive, confusion, worn itself out trying to find direction, needs rest) Psalm 23:3

Why does finding rest for your soul matter?

3 John 1:2:

Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.”

The prosperity of your soul is linked to the prosperity of your body.

However, it’s easy to forget about taking care of our souls.

Too often, we try to hide our hurts behind busying ourselves with other people. We either don’t want to face God, or we hurt so badly that we are afraid of His work in our hearts. .

ASK:  DO YOU MAKE YOUR SCHEDULE WITH GOD OR WE WORK GOD IN OUR SCHEDULE?

When we refuse to embrace solitude even occasionally, we run from God. There is much healing to be found in getting alone with God.

How do we know we need rest for our soul?  These shattered lies….

Physical Fatigue

Physical and spiritual fatigue can be two different things, but when we’re tired in our souls, we’re mostly also tired in the physical as well. The body, soul and spirit are so intertwined that they actually affect each other.

  1. A Lost Hunger for God’s Word
  2. Feelings of Being Far From God

Have you ever felt so distant from God?

  1. No Desire to Serve Others

It’s hard to serve others when we feel like God hasn’t taken care of our own spiritual needs. Serving others always works best out of an overflow of a heart, mind and spirit fully rested and satisfied in Christ.

  1. Entitlement

Spiritual depravation can sometimes cause the spiritually exhausted to seek nothing else but our own satisfaction. This can cause people to become entitled because of a lack of in filling and rest in God’s presence.

  1. Feelings of Uncertainty

Hopelessness is not just the absence of hope, but also the absence of a good amount of rest for the soul. It’s hard to find hope when we’re tired. That’s why it’s very important to rest the soul if we want to continue trying to find hope in God.

You are seen and you are heard, He knows you by name

Everything he has brought you through, is because what seed he has put in you.

You see the enemy in the garden didn’t go after the woman first because she is weak; it is because she has influence

We receive seed in the natural and in the spiritual.

Abraham – we are a promise seed that is our identity.    Trust in the process and only He knows what environment that is going to bring forth the fruit.

Luke 10:27 – Love the Lord your God with all your

heart – emotions/feelings – we can take our thought patterns, walk away from

These are the battleground that the enemy comes after. 2 CORTH 10:5 – We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ,

Luke 1:37 Nothing is impossible with God!

When we leave here today, the enemy will come to you and try to make you feel …

Step back and look from a different perspective. God’s view.

Now I want you to finish your statement of I AM………

Educational and Informative, Encouragement, Leadership

Team Training – Building A Culture

We must develop a leadership culture within our organization.  People want to feel a part of a community.  We have a need for belonging.  We want a church that values us, promotes our personal growth and makes us feel that we are contributing to the vision.

 

  • ALL PREFORMANCE is driven by the culture. (How is the performance of your team doing? Showing up, doing a great job, meeting your expectations? – How is your performance and are you trying to do things in excellence or just getting by? )
  • Culture is the very thing that makes your organization special. (What are we doing that sets us apart from other churches or departments?)
  • It sets then it drives the standards of behavior. (Can you see people on your team grow closer to God or lack of? Does everyone get along or is there drama in the camp)
  • Tells your people what is acceptable and important. (Can you see your department improving or is it at a standstill? What are you not taking care of or dismissing that needs to be addressed?)
  • Lets people know what our church values. (If we ask anyone on your team to name our 5 values and why we exist as a church could they name them?)

 

5 Best ways to build culture:

 

  1. RITUALS: Team Huddle and Events to promote team bonding.  Rituals shape culture and keep it special.  Make sure you attend EVENTS and encourage your team to attend – it is important.  If you are a head leader over an area, ask what you can do for that event.  Show up, make it happen, help out are all great rituals and when others SEE YOU do it, they know it is important.
  2. CELEBRATION: You get what you celebrate.  When you see someone living the values your culture stands for, make them public.  Be sure to acknowledge someone on your team each week.
  3. CONVERSATION: Your people become what the leaders talk about:  to get your vision and values into your people’s hearts, you need to be talking about values constantly – gatherings, meetings, huddles, ect… Evangelize what you stand for constantly.  Does everyone on your team know our values or vision?
  4. TRAINING: Constantly developing.  The number one resource is people.  Constant growth, instill values, nurture and build leadership culture for improvement then improvements happen in every department.  If your department is not improving overall, can you invest in one on one and ask them how you can help them grow not only as a team member but also with the personal growth.  Do you know your team on a personal level or just on Sundays?
  5. STORYTELLING: Take a look of where you have came from, how we have fought back to victory from the brink of our worst days.  Telling your testimony is a reflection on transformation + pain = growth.   Share your story.

 

Abundant life, Educational and Informative, Emotional, Encouragement, Leadership, Love and Life of a Testimony, prayer, Salvation, Supernatural

A Self Test To Determine If You are Under the Influence of a Religious Spirit

The word of God says we can recognize a tree by the fruit that it bears (Matthew 12:33-37).

Many times we get hurt in the Christian world due to opinions of others or the expectations of others of what they think we should be, do or say.  Communication is not the followed protocol therefore it becomes easy to express your viewpoint to others, hurting the one not present in the aftermath.  Pastors and other leaders are the target. I have found through research it is the “religious spirit” in work and not always the unlearned new believer that causes the hurt.

 A person with the spirit of religion will produce more division than lasting works.

The aftermath of a religious spirit is like a wave of bitterness with a ripple effect that prevents many people from being all they can be in Christ or even turning people the other way and not serving God at all.  The taste of blood from a “preacher did them wrong” can sometimes be irreversible for years until their heart melts and walls are torn down for healing all because a religious spirit pukes on a believer their opinion.

Family bonds within a church community works with communication.  If a brother offends you as the Word tells us, go to him or her and talk about the offense to see if you are “correct” in your own mind versus a sin.  Most of the time it is an opinion  of what is believed it should be versus the latter. Religion and relationship don’t get along, and this is why religious spirits will work diligently to hinder true meaningful relationships between God and His children.

A religious spirit is a demon that wages war against the grace of God in our lives and acceptance of Jesus’ work as. When ritual controls our relationships this is Religion. Ritual minus relationship equals religion. The spirit of religion is an agent of Satan assigned to prevent change and to maintain the status quo by using religious devices.The Pharisees were obvious examples of people who have religious spirits although we would never compare our own behavior to them, a religious spirit is very destructive to our intimate relationships with God.

Religious spirits are more interested in judgment than forgiveness and grace

Religious spirits can manifest in different ways for different people.

It is important to understand that to be influenced does not mean to be possessed, but rather simply means to be:

  • Affected
  • Inspired
  • Moved
  • Swayed
  • Motivated

Most of us are subject to religious spirits to some degree. Paul exhorts us to “test ourselves to see if we are in the faith”, (2 Corinthians 13:5).

HERE IS A LITTLE TEST TO SEE IF YOU HAVE BEEN INFLUENCED BY A SPIRIT OF RELIGION: CHECK ALL THAT APPLY

Do you listen with a critical ear rather than an open heart

Do you have a tendency to see your primary mission as tearing down what you believe is wrong verses seeing the person’s Godly fruit or Christian walk

Do you feel as though it is your mission to point out or tear down or express your opinion to others when you think something is wrong instead of going to the source

Are you more inclined to see what is wrong with churches rather than what is right and feel the need to “fix” the issues you think is wrong

Do you use gossip and slander to assassinate other peoples’ character and may even use violence to prove your point or even be suspicious of others motives

Do you have a sense that you are closer to God than other people

Do you ever feel like you can never be good enough

You perform Christian duties but have no passion or hunger for God

Do you take pride in your spiritual routine of prayer and other ministries in which you feel you are more qualified to lead than other people or groups and maybe feel as though you have the best team or leadership

Do you hold a grudge against someone who did you wrong

Interested in seeing somebody pay or be punished for their wrongdoing or their past instead of seeing them repent and receive forgiveness and grace from God

Do you reject progress or refuse to embrace change, therefore buck the system, disagree with your leaders or new ministries in the church

Do you see yourself following certain rules, or regulations regarding the outward man, in order to be in right standing with God.  This would include dressing a certain way, legalism, working or earning your salvation

Judging people by their appearance or overreact to carnality or immaturity of the church

Do you feel the need of having recognition and titles in the church world or receive identity in the things in attempt to do for God and church

Do you make a big deal about the doctrines accumulated through head knowledge

Do you use emotionalism as a substitute for the work of the holy spirit or if emotion isn’t expressed believe the Holy Spirit is being hindered

Do you appear righteous but inside filled with anger, resentment and envy

Do you believe you are on the cutting edge of what God is doing and closer to God than your leaders or friends

Are you unable to take rebuke or have a philosophy that you only listen to God

Do you feel an overwhelming guilt you couldn’t ever be good enough

Do you glory more in what God has done in the past rather than in what God is doing in the present or use the words for God to move we must do this as we did back then

D0 you ever feel as though you are not saved, doubt God

THE COUNTERFEIT GIFT OF DISCERNMENT

A religious spirit gives birth to a counterfeit gift of discernment of spirits. This counterfeit gift thrives on seeing what is wrong with others rather than seeing what God is doing to help them along. If you checked on the self-test, you tend to have a counterfeit gift of discernment. Its wisdom is rooted in the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, and thought the truth may be accurate; it is ministered in a spirit that kills. Suspicion, which is motivated by rejection, territorial preservation or general insecurity, causes this counterfeit gift. However the true gift of discernment can only function with love. In 2 Corinthians 11:13-15, Paul warns them about those who minister in a religious spirit that they try to place a yoke of legalism on the believers. Religions that are based on works will tend to become violent easily, especially when confronted with those who live by faith. This includes “Christian Religions” where a doctrine of works has supplanted the cross of Christ. Those who are driven by religious spirits may try to destroy the true Christian by onslaughts of slander.

THE SPIRIT OF JEZEBEL

The Spirit of Jezebel is a combination of the religious spirit and the spirit of witchcraft that is the spirit of manipulation and control. This spirit is often found in deeply wounded people. Every trial in our lives will either make us bitter or better, and the cross will heal every spiritual wound if we will turn to it. Those who are deeply wounded who do not go to the cross can open themselves up to this evil spirit. The Jezebel spirit is one of the enemy’s most potent forms of the religious spirit that seeks to keep the church and the world from being prepared for the Lord. This spirit attacks the prophetic ministry through which the Lord wants to give timely, strategic direction to His people. Jezebel knows that by removing the true prophets, the people will be vulnerable to her false prophets, which always leads to idolatry and spiritual adultery. When there is a void of the true prophetic word, the people will be much more prone to the deception of the enemy. A religious spirit produces religious pride so that God will not communicate with those who are proud. In Matthew 15:14, Jesus called the religious leaders of the day “blind guides”. A primary strategy of the religious spirit is to get the church devoted to sacrifice in a way that perverts the command for us to take up our crosses daily. This perversion will have us putting more faith in our sacrifices than in the Lord’s sacrifice. It will also use sacrifices and offerings to try to get God to manifest Himself. This is a form of the terrible delusion that we can somehow purchase the grace and presence of God with our good works.

Religious spirits hold people in spiritual slavery. The battle against this spiritual slavery can only be won by unconditional love, in living the Christian life focused on Jesus and the Word of God and being filled with the Holy Spirit.

If you have been affected by the Religious Spirit, take time to ask our Heavenly Father to forgive and to allow us to practice grace instead of judging, to show grace more than pointing out faults and to be humble, full of joy as we lead others by example producing much fruit for the glory of God.  Rebuke the spirit of religion out of your life, resist and walk forward into your identity as the sons and daughters of Jesus Christ, the Lord above all.

God Bless!

Melissa

Abundant life, Emotional, Encouragement, faith, God Speaks, Leadership, Parenthood, Patience, prayer

The Gift Within

I Timothy 4:14

Neglect not the gift that is in thee…..

Everyday I see people come in and out of my life.  My contacts may be from the Church we pastor or the Juice Bar that I own and operate.  What I do know in the many people who I see or talk to, is that they are people and people desire relationship with someone who is going to give them hope.  They also desire someone they can do life with, to share experiences and dreams with.  They want people to inspire them, encourage and pray for them.

Just this past week, I had a customer come thru the doors with tears streaming down her face, crying.  I gave her a glass of “happy berry juice” and also a smoothie as she waited patiently for me to finish.  Then upon leaving, I hugged her and prayed for her.  She gripped me tightly as she explained her grandmother was on her death-bed and that she knew it was a matter of time. This saddened me also.  Her hug was so deep and tight, she needed comfort, like a child with a mother.  This touched my heart deeply.  The ironic thing, this is not a one time experience for me.  It has happened several times.  Ministry…..

I experienced life of stress and parenting in my twenty’s and thirty’s.  In my forty’s I felt like I was searching for significance and career as well as my identity since I was no longer raising children in the home.  It has taken me over 54 years to discover this.  What I have inside me is a gift.  A gift to give to others.  There is no one like me and there is no one like you.  We all are created unique and we all have gifts to give to others.  I do not expect others to be like me nor act or think like me.  Sometimes I think I am a little hyper in my mind.

Although I involve myself in many outlets, I enjoy what I do.  I enjoy serving others.  How about you?  What is your gift?  What is your purpose?  How can I help you?

This is my link if you want to discover your hidden possibilities in what God has called you.  Let’s discuss!

Continue to use your gifts and let your light shine!  Someone out there needs you!

In His Service

Melissa

Abundant life, Emotional, Encouragement, faith, Fear, marriage enrichment, prayer

There Is No Condemnation

Romans 8

There is no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh but after the spirit.  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.  …. For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit…. to the spiritually minded is life and peace.

This morning, I was thinking of a coaching session I had yesterday.  The barrier with my client wasn’t that she didn’t believe God wanted to do it for her or couldn’t do it for her, but that the enemy put up a wall to prevent her from reaching her goal she was trying to receive.  She reacted out of fear that God either didn’t want her to have her goal reached because she may have more responsibility after attaining the goal or too much freedom and act foolishly.

After digging deeper into the issue, I explained that our heavenly father WANTS her to have the freedom she is trying to attain.  He is not keeping it from her.  The issue was that the enemy had told her a lie.  A lie that was embedded out of condemnation and a works mentality.  We cast out the lie, her mind is renewed but the thinking will have to be re-directed for a time so her habits will change.  She no longer needs to be fearful of changing for the better.  God wants her better!

Condemnation gives you no hope.  Conviction from the Holy Spirit gives you hope.  She had no hope of reaching her goal because of the lie.

If you are struggling with something today, ask yourself the question “Am I hopeful or do I feel as though I cannot reach a state of peace about a subject.”  If it is the latter, then cast out the lie and re-direct your thinking.

Continue to walk in peace of His perfect love because it will cast down the fear.  Boost your faith by believing God not only wants you to have peace in every situation but He wants you blessed.  I want you to be blessed and find hope to live abundantly!

In His Presence be blessed!

Melissa

Abundant life, Leadership, Love and Life of a Testimony

Practicing Gratitude Daily

One of the things my husband has always said, “Be grateful”.

If you are not grateful then it limits your potentials.  Practicing gratitude unlocks your potential in everything including your peace of mind.

Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus. I Thessalonians 5:18

I found this article from Anna P and wanted to share.

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Practicing gratitude leads to forgiveness, which honors love and compassion. Love is the true healing energy, and it always starts with self-love. It always comes back to the self.

We, us, you and me, as long as we really love ourselves, will live life from a place of gratitude. Words are submissions of intent, and even when we are not aware, we are sending out a message to God.

The energy of gratitude is a pure love energy. It is the vibration of constant positive change.

The 10 rules of practicing gratitude:

  1. Honor what you have.

Whenever you find yourself wanting something to change, start by being grateful for what you already have. There is always something to be grateful for. Even when we are down, feeling lost and depressed, we can search for the inner feeling of gratitude.

  1. Order more.

Being grateful is the same as ordering more to be grateful for. If you want your health to change, we must embrace and love the work that the body is already doing. Feeling gratitude for our breath, our vision, our hearing etc. If we want a better house to live in, we must be grateful for the home that we already have, or the couch that we are offered by a friend. No matter the status of our current shelter – giving thanks for what is already there, is inviting in more to feel grateful for.

  1. Say thank you out loud.

In your daily life, gratitude starts with mindfulness. Once you are mindful, aware of everything around you, you will be able to see the little things that will create a feeling of “thank you”. Those magic little big words, thank you. Start by giving thanks for the things that are beautiful around you, that you see every day. The flowers that you pass, and the air that you breathe. The subtle things like, thank you for these comfortable shoes or the sound of that bird I just walked by.

Giving thanks is the ultimate act of gratitude, even though it is merely an honoring of the energy through words. The power is in the feeling behind the words that we speak and behind the intention thereof.

  1. Be aware.

By being more aware, the gratitude effect will grow, slowly and steadily. From the self-talk and the awareness, there will grow an inner compassion for life as it is. What we put our attention towards grows, and what we hold as our inner energy will draw to itself more that will match it perfectly.

The Change will show itself as having a more positive outlook on life, wanting to give more, faster healing, depression, and anger disappears and more things to be grateful for keeps showing up.

  1. It is natural.

Being grateful is natural. When we strip ourselves of our hurts and our clutter, when we get back to our true balance, gratitude is a part of who we are. The trick is to be able to tap into that naked and honest bliss, even when we are preoccupied with life and its busy schedule.

Even when in the middle of what we might see as chaos, we can condition ourselves to feel the grace and the appreciation for all that we have. We can step into it like a state of being, knowing that it is truth.

  1. Gratitude is truth.

Anything leading us away from gratefulness is a lie. The hardest thing for many, and I know it was for me, is to stop measuring where you are when you are going after a dream. It is easy to get caught up in where you are at this moment, forgetting that every step along the way has value and something to cherish. I was so hungry for health, I often forgot to appreciate how much further I had gotten, or that I was alive and breathing. Keeping the eye on the ball, always looking ahead can also keep us from seeing what is right in front of us.

  1. Be in the NOW.

It is always about this very moment. The magic of the now. Someday, one day, soon, when only, are outlooks keeping us from seeing that this moment is the only one there is.

There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle. – Albert Einstein
  1. Gratitude comes from the heart.

Gratitude doesn’t come from the mind. It is not a thought, it is a feeling, a state of being. It is a heartfelt feeling, and it fills the entire body with a nurturing, positive, healing energy. It is very similar to love, but it is directed towards the recognition of all that is. We can be grateful for every single thing in our lives, good, bad and ugly.

  1. Gratitude will show you your true potentials.

Gratitude opens the heart, and it opens the portal for rapid healing and nurturing manifestations. The magic of life will flow towards us, and every cell in our body will align with this vibration.

When I started counting my blessings, my whole life turned around. – Willie Nelson
  1. True freedom.

Look at gratefulness as a gateway to freedom. The simplicity is mind-blowing. Everybody can do it, feel it, practice it and reap the benefits. The simple yet profound truths are the most powerful there is. We are all capable of tapping into that magical feeling of grace and appreciation that will change our whole lives. Nature reveals its truth by keeping it simple.

Let nothing take away your gratitude towards the life you are living right now. It is a gift. It is the light that will keep on shining when everything else seems lost and dark.

The challenge is this:

Gratitude does not come from the mind.

It is not a thought, it is a feeling, a state of being.

It is a heartfelt feeling, and it fills the entire body with a nurturing, positive, healing energy. It is very similar to love, but it is directed towards the recognition of all that is.

A few tips for practicing gratitude in your day:

When you feel alone, feel grateful

When you feel sad, feel grateful

When you feel hurt, feel grateful

When you feel discouraged, feel grateful

When you feel lost, feel grateful

When you feel defeated, feel grateful

When you feel hopeless, feel grateful

Whenever you feel lost in your own drama or chaos, stop and be still.

Take a moment and pull yourself back. This is not your truth, only your play. Connect with everything you are grateful for, and let the rest go. Let it center you and keep you focused on what really matters. Your center comes from a news and propaganda-free zone. No fear, no blame, no lies and drama is wanted. Keep it simple and keep it true.

Write of gratitude in your journal.

Such a simple and easy tool.

Express your intent.

As you keep looking for things to be grateful for, express them, live them, feel them and be them. Allow this feeling to come through you as you honor and acknowledge it. Incorporate it in your everyday life. Say hello to every day with the intent that it will be yet another day filled with gratitude and wonder.

Not that it is anything new at all. It is the language of God, from pure love. It is the connection to truth, unfiltered. It is not a thought, an idea or a philosophy. It is a state of being. It is a brainless place where we know that there is something so much bigger than us. Something bigger than life.

Saying thank you is not the same as being grateful.

Saying I love you is not the same as loving someone.

Saying I will, is not the same as doing.

Saying I forgive you is not the same as forgiveness.

Gratitude cultivates an appreciation for all things. It can be trained, by practicing every day.

_________________________________

Abundant life, Encouragement, faith, Love and Life of a Testimony, Sermon Notes

The Church, Who, Where, What

JEFF AND MELISSA PHILLIPS PASTOR OF LEGACY OWENSBORO CHURCHI gave a message the other night with the intent of helping people know they ARE the church.  Here is my message. I also had a Powerpoint to go along with it if you want to leave me a comment, I can email it to you as an attachment.

Acts 16:5 So the churches were strengthened in their faith and grew larger every day.

Why does the world need a church? What is the church, who is the church and where is the church?

As believers: We are a regenerated people saved by the power of God for a purpose in this world.

The word “church” means: Ecclesia = “gathering”.

 

 

We sometimes misunderstand that the church is a gathering – (like an event) but actually “gathered ones” who builds their lives around Jesus as Lord, King and Savior.

It is not an event but the event of Christ saving people to Him.

Jesus builds his church thru his people, therefore everything we do counts, not just a couple of hours that we are in church but all life where we live as the church bringing glory to God in ALL things.

Jesus wants to saturate the world with his presence as the head building His church in every place.

When WE understand this, it changes the way you see yourself.

You don’t “go” to church you “ARE” the church.

MOST PEOPLE THINK CHURCH IS AN “experience” an event – listen to message, sing, pray and look as though church is way above us. People gather to look up to find Jesus when the Holy Spirit is everywhere.

We attract people to come into the church (a building to find God) but a building is just a place for us to be a part gathered to be the hands of feet of Jesus.We are the church...be the church, not a building but an example

To be a better church is not to form a better program, not to rely on pastor, staff, volunteer but to serve together becoming more like Jesus and be the “expression” of Jesus to many.

 

Mark 4: Once again Jesus began teaching by the lakeshore. A very large crowd soon gathered around him, so he got into a boat. Then he sat in the boat while all the people remained on the shore. He taught them by telling many stories in the form of parables, such as this one: “Listen! A farmer went out to plant some seed.

As he scattered it across his field, some of the seed fell on a footpath, and the birds came and ate it.

Other seed fell on shallow soil with underlying rock. The seed sprouted quickly because the soil was shallow.

But the plant soon wilted under the hot sun, and since it didn’t have deep roots, it died. Other seed fell among thorns that grew up and choked out the tender plants so they produced no grain. Still other seeds fell on fertile soil, and they sprouted, grew, and produced a crop that was thirty, sixty, and even a hundred times as much as had been planted!”

We are the church...be the church, not a building but an exampleMeaning: The farmer plants seed by taking God’s word to others.

The seed that fell on the footpath represents those who hear the message, only to have Satan come at once and take it away.

  1. Careless, thoughtless hearer are easy prey – satan robs the hearer. ( thinking of other things, zones off)

The seed on the rocky soil represents those who hear the message and immediately receive it with joy. But since they don’t have deep roots, they don’t last long. They fall away as soon as they have problems or are persecuted for believing God’s word.

  1. Hypocrites: Start out right, shows profession, many are glad to hear a good sermon but don’t profit from it because in reality, life is too hard to change – light of Jesus does not shine in them through actions and attitudes.

The seed that fell among the thorns represents others who hear God’s word, but all too quickly the message is crowded out by the worries of this life, the lure of wealth, and the desire for other things, so no fruit is produced.

  1. Hebrews 6:8 Worldly cares are great hinderance, trust is put in financial security – faith in money – status

And the seed that fell on good soil represents those who hear and accept God’s word and produce a harvest of thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times as much as had been planted!”

 

Thirty fold: The number 30 can symbolize dedication to a particular task or calling. Aaronic priests were dedicated to serve at 30, in part because it was the age when a person reached both physical and mental maturity and could therefore handle major responsibilities.

We are the church...be the church, not a building but an exampleJohn the Baptist, began his ministry at age thirty. In the Fall of 26 A.D., at the age of thirty, Christ began to publicly preach the gospel (Luke 3:23).

Joseph, a type of Jesus, was thirty years old when Egypt’s Pharaoh placed him in charge over all that he ruled. King David also, when he began to reign over Israel, was thirty years old (2Samuel 5:4).

The number 60: which literally denotes to uphold, help or support. The widow ; who herself gave much support for the body of Christ in “every good work”:

The number 100: represent the fullness or completeness – accomplish a task, the glory that results from Grace, God’s miracles.

Think about this: Jesus Christ is not only willing to be known and to represent Himself, He is willing to be known and represented by us!

He asks us to be His representatives, His ambassadors.

To be sure, we do a poor job of this sometimes, maybe even often. He knew that we would, but chose to arrange things this way anyway. He knows you’re not perfect, and he invites you to represent Him anyway.

 

faith, Fear, forgiveness, Love and Life of a Testimony, Parenthood, prayer, Salvation

Shannon’s Story of Forgiveness

How many times does our Father or Mother’s sin effect our life as we grow up as children?  Sometimes we carry around the sin, the guilt, the blame and yes the feelings of rejection and un-forgiveness in life or even deal with the battles our parents never conquered.  This story was made purposely not to expose one family’s faults but in some way we may all have experienced this or know someone who has.  The ultimate goal of the enemy is always to kill, steal and destroy, however as Shannon met her sister for the first time upon her father’s death bed, Shannon found something she had been looking for her entire life….freedom and forgiveness.

Watch as Shannon tells her story of forgiveness…..

Matthew 18 Living Translation

21Then Peter came to him and asked, “Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?”

22“No, not seven times,” Jesus replied, “but seventy times seven!

 

faith, forgiveness, Leadership, Love and Life of a Testimony, marriage enrichment, Parenthood, prayer, Salvation, Sermon Notes, Supernatural

What’s Love Got To Do With It

Valentine's Day Flowers is a great way to show you love someone

Last night I got the opportunity to speak at our church about the facets of Love.  Since Valentines day is tomorrow and everyone seems giddy about the event planning on flowers, chocolates and cards, I decided to teach about Love.  Here are my sermon notes and in a few days, I will upload the sermon link so you may also hear the message.

I John 4:16 –

And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. And as we live in God, our love grows more perfect. So we will not be afraid on the day of judgment, but we can face him with confidence because we live like Jesus here in this world. Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.  We love each other because he loved us first. If someone says, “I love God,” but hates a Christian brother or sister, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see? And he has given us this command: Those who love God must also love their Christian brothers and sisters.

This type of love that comes from God :

Daily Live in Love

There is love that is perfect love

Pursue it

Is forever love

Is Greatest love

Brings unity

Brings peace

Shows kindness

We have to receive it and put it on – abide in it

Sacrifices for sake of others

Love is a choice….

Greeks had terms of love:

  • Storge – affection that parents have with their children, (putting up with family members) Storge Lovers: life long friends
  • Philia – mental love of give and take – loyalty to others – general shoulder to shoulder friendship, Philia Lover: Philos love is a mutual, “give-and take” relationship,
  • Eros – Physical love – passionate love with sensual desire – love at first site – looks. It is based more on “self-benefit”.  Pure emotion without the balance of logic:

Erotic lover wants to know everything about the beloved from the first moment of their RELATIONSHIP, all of his or her experiences, joys and sorrows, who else he or she has loved in the past, how much and in what ways.  like to wear matching T-shirts, identical bracelets, matching colors, order the same foods when dining out, find out that their blood types are the same; they typically want to be identified with each other as totally as possible. Breakups are explosive and painful. Eros love can only succeed in the long-term if it progresses into a higher form of love. Otherwise, it will not last.

  • Agape – spiritual love – true unconditional love, expecting nothing in return –  no self benefit: Agape Lover: forgiving – “not a fall in love desire” but this love is always available for the opportunity to show that love.  They are patient, have the ability to wait indefinitely for the behavior of their love to change.

Other types of LOVERS:

  • MANIA (Possessiveness and Intense Dependency) (Eros and Game player )Mania is an obsessive love that, intimate  and intense, often includes jealousy, possessiveness and a lack of communication. Maniacal love can lead to domestic violence.   The constructed ideal of this type of lover is obsessed to where they are unable to sleep, eat, or even think logically around the loved one. The manic lover has peaks of excitement, but also depths of depression, with very few periods without a high or low, jealous – irrational.

A manic lover cannot tolerate loss of contact , even for short periods of time, and is distressed by a lack of the lover’s presence .

* crushed by real or fancied rejection, possibly to the point of suicidal ideation.

* manipulate the behaviors or feelings of the loved one,

* do not tolerate separation at all well.

The manic lover has a tendency to review past relationships and speculate about what when wrong – high level or anxiety,  have problems related to anxiety and associated with low self-esteem and a poor self concept.

  • Pragma (logical – sensible) a person who is unable to invest love in “unworthy” love objects. (You DESERVE ME) The pragmatic lover is keenly aware of the comparison level for alternatives that he or she has. Pragmatic lovers are inclined to look for a “deal – good bargin” A pragmatic lover typically assists the loved one to fulfill his or her potentials; for example, such a lover might make sure the love object finishes school, asks for deserved promotions, gets the attention or that he or she “deserves” from physicians, stockbrokers, or employers. And everything is planned – family
  • Ludus (game player) A ludic lover hates dependency, either in himself/herself or in others. This type shies away from commitment of any sort (does not like lovers to take him or her for granted). The ludic lover enjoys strategies, and may keep two or three or even four lovers “on the string” at one time. A ludic lover may even create a fictional lover to discourage a real one’s hopes for a permanent relationship. He or she avoids long-range plans. Self-centered and won’t listen

The Types of Love are explained.  The Agape is the highest form of love however culture continues to seek self gratification instead of selflessness.

1973 book The Colors of Love, John Lee compared styles of love to the color wheel.

Three primary styles:


1. Eros – Loving an ideal person

2. Ludos – Love as a game

3. Storge – Love as friendship

Three secondary styles:


1. Mania (Eros + Ludos) – Obsessive love

2. Pragma (Ludos + Storge) – Realistic and practical love

3. Agape (Eros + Storge) – Selfless love

The human brain supports falling in love, which is why we have such a strong physiological response when we are attracted to another.

Most people want love but believe self gratification is in there too.

  • make me ‘feel good’
  • Love  MUST nourish it. : feed it, to take care of it, to value it.

 True love is not about what you feel, it is about what you do.

*Euphoria Stage.  Emotion and feeling based but can be a long term with different value if love grows.

The more time you spend with a person the more you learn about their character and personality. The real test of love is being able to love someone when you know their flaws and short comings.

The ultimate goal is to love in Reality with some euphoric feelings and avoid the stage of ‘Offense’.

*Offense stage comes swiftly after the Reality stage because the relationship was built based on the feelings felt in Euphoria as opposed to a solid friendship.

The Offense stage is different from having hard times in a relationship.

The Offense stage: constant conflict and tension because of false expectations.

*Reality stage it’s not about how you feel, it’s about a choice.  The real test of love is being able to love someone when you know their flaws and short comings.

The ultimate goal is to love in Reality with some euphoric feelings and avoid the stage of ‘Offense’.

Humans have evolved three different brain systems to encourage mating: sex drive (lust), feelings of attachment (trust), and romance (being in love). Each of these systems plays a role in desire.

Lust. Sex drive is associated with a class of hormones called testosterone (even women have it) Playing competitive sports have been shown to trigger testosterone production; in fact, women get a bigger boost than men during a competition. Making love can also create the same effect. Studies have shown that sex raises testosterone levels, so the more sex you have, the more sex you desire.

touching someone brings more feelings of love because it releases a chemical in your brain to promote love

Trust. Feelings of trust and attachment are fostered by the chemical oxytocin. You can stimulate oxytocin naturally with touch. Hold hands while you watch TV, trade massages, or sleep in each other’s arms. Oxytocin, the love/hate hormone
.  Human and animal studies have shown that oxytocin plays a role in bonding;

While affecting positive behaviors of trust and bonding, it can also affect opposite behaviors like jealousy, envy, and suspicion. when the association is negative, the hormone increases negative sentiments”.

Love. The third chemical that drives relationships is dopamine, a key player in the brain’s reward regions that’s been found to promote romantic love. Research shows that —taking risks or trying something new—can trigger the release of dopamine in the brain.

 SONGS: MRI and PET scans reveal that when you listen to music that excites you, your brain releases dopamine during the most exciting moments of the song and even in anticipation of those moments.

Some things a person does can produce so much dopamine that over time, the dopamine response lessens, which means you can lose the ability to feel any kind of pleasure at all. The usual culprits of this dopamine dulling effect are things like cocaine and heroin, which is good news for the great majority of us who are not addicted to illicit substances. The bad news is that if you’re addicted to fatty foods, the same thing could potentially happen to you. If you let rats eat as much cheesecake, bacon, sausage, and other fatty foods as they want, not only will they become obese, but their dopamine responses will start to attenuate over time. So while a small slice of cheesecake once in a while may get your dopamine flowing, overdoing it may have negative consequences on your brain.

Feeling of intense romantic love lasts only about 18 months to—at best—three years.

Brains of these middle-aged men and women showed much the same activity as those of young lovers, individuals who had been intensely in love an average of only seven months. Indeed, there was just one important difference between the two groups: Among the older lovers, brain regions associated with anxiety were no longer active; instead, there was activity in the areas associated with calmness.

Sacrificing Love:  It is the foundation to every key relationship in life.

Revolutionizes marriage

Fortifies friendships

Business : we treat our colleagues, employees and customers

Communities : reach out to people and make their lives better

Love is sacrifice and has a lot more to do with being a servant than with being a hero. 

When you are concerned about the well being of others, you sacrifice.

  • Time
  • Energy
  • Money
  • Give up plans
  • Give up independence
  • Give up privacy
  • May have to part with whatever is most precious to you for the sake of someone else.

Hard because our Culture teaches exact opposite – Logic thinking doesn’t make sense or logic, it’s not fair.

True personal fulfillment never comes through self-gratification but opposite.

The right type of love never fails…. all other types of love will have you wanting but never satisfying.

 

Mark 8:34-35

Deny yourself

“Put aside your own pleasures and shoulder your cross and follow me closely.  If you insist on saving your life you will lose it.  Only those who throw away their lives for my sake and for the sake of the Good News will ever know what it means to really live.”

Matthew 20:26  … whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant,” (throughout the gospels: the one who rules is the one who serves)

Luke 22 :28  The one who stands beside me in trials.  (Through everything you love)

It is only when we give ourselves to God and joyfully serve his people in sacrificial love that we find fulfillment and satisfaction that the world will never know.

In marriage = a lot of sacrifice

  • A good marriage enhances the life of each spouse, making it fuller and more satisfying than it would be if the marriage did not exist.
  • Loving marriage help both spouses grow into their full potential rather than squelching either persons dreams
  • Loving spouses put the other persons needs above their own

The highest form of love…..do you agree?

In friendship = willing to make investment in someone’s life

Why is it so hard?  Commitment

Try it – keep giving and giving – good actions not a feeling…. Some do good but then what happens when people come to the point they are running on empty? They get angry at people: how do you know, people become problems. (hermit)

God tells us not only to live sacrificially but also steadfastly. (persistent, loyal, consistently)

“I am done!”  I am burnout….

How do we get refilled?

Spending time alone with God – He is source of love.  Jesus did this many times, leaving the crowd and go pray.

(can’t depend us getting love from another person) Hosea 12:6 But you must return to your God; maintain love and justice, and wait for your God always.

Want peace? 2 Corth 13:11 :  Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.

Satan. If he cannot destroy, he will try to disgrace or distress us If believers were left to themselves, they would fall; but they are kept by the power of God

Burn out 3 ways.

  1. Spiritually :  Love tank is low – daily time with God before the day starts. Listen to Christian music
  2. Emotionally: Feel uninterested in others – Life itself happens (bad days) . replenish yourself through relaxing or recreation
  3. Physically:  Won’t listen, no serving, no confront or encourage people, no energy, easily irritated, critical, short fused, defensive and negative.  It is hard to love others and equally hard for others to love them.

Act as Jesus would act and do in all 3 areas.….

I John 4:12 No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us.

I Corth. 13:1 : If I had knowledge, if I gave to the poor, moved mountains, but If didn’t love others, I would be nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind.

Love does not always want nor boastful, is not conceited, or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged.It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

slow to anger when abused, not quick of resentment, nor hasty to revenge when affronted; but exercises forbearance, suffers long, and bears much, and is ready to forgive:
Agape love is the highest form of love.  Do you think you could reach it?

Love suffers long.


Love is kind.


Love does not envy.


Love does not parade itself.


Love is not puffed up.


Love does not behave rudely.


Love does not seek its own.


Love is not provoked.


Love thinks no evil.


Love does not rejoice in iniquity.


Love rejoices in the truth.


Love bears all things.


Love believes all things.


Love hopes all things.


Love endures all things.


Love never fails.

So what does Love Got to do with it… Everything… because without love you are nothing…

Abundant life, Encouragement, faith, forgiveness, Leadership, Love and Life of a Testimony, Patience, prayer, Salvation, Soul Winning

God Showers Us With White Snow

Backyard snow showered by God's loveJehovah is KING!

Let all the earth rejoice!  (The song keeps playing over and over in my head as I look across my back yard in the beauty of the white snow covering everything.  There is flurries swirling about as if God is sprinkling everything with powdered sugar – sweetness!) 

Back to center, back to roots, devotion first thing so I won’t get distracted with my social media, my writing and my business.  I love giving God time, the house is quiet and everyone is still asleep.  In fact all you can hear is the typing of my fingers and an occasional howl of the wind.  The smell of coffee, the warmth of the cup and the taste of God being with me warms my soul.

My reading comes from Psalms 97 today.  I read out of the Living Bible.  Its my favorite with it being paraphrased it’s like stepping into a story book and coming alive.  🙂

Righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne….his lightning flashes out across the world, the earth sees and trembles.  The mountains melt like wax before the Lord of all the earth, the heavens declare his perfect righteousness every nation sees his glory.

The Lord loves those who hate evil; he protects the lives of his people and rescues them from the wicked.  Light is sown for the godly and joy for the good.  May all who are godly be happy in the Lord and crown him our holy God……

 God is good all the time – righteous is from Him.  When we allow Him to come into our lives, our thoughts are righteous and our actions our righteous.  All of creation knows this.  God is not mad or evil.  There is no evil in God.  I sometimes hear people say, God did this to me to teach me a lesson or He put this burden on me.  This is not true.  God allows things to happen to us to bring out the glory of Him and the good in us.  It is us to choose righteous behavior or actions during the trial.   

Let us be thankful for the good and the bad because no matter what God is King and He is righteous.  We declare that by allowing Him to be in us, protect us and rescue us through life.  Will you let Him?