Posts Tagged ‘Forgiveness’

Is The Path You’ve Chosen Killing You?

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It’s not too late to start again. You get to choose the road you take, and you get to choose how long you stay on that path. If you’re finding yourself on the wrong path today, I encourage you to STOP, change direction, and start journeying down the right path. In reading The Word, you will find much encouragement and direction for your journey. You’re not in this alone. There are brighter days ahead!

Take a minute or two and read Psalm 103, I think you will find it very helpful. 🙂

My prayers are with you on this journey to growth!

You are blessed,

Sarah

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Today’s devo selection:

A NEW ROUTE
By: Joel Osteen

I know people who feel like they’ve wasted years of their lives because of poor choices. They spent years in a relationship that was toxic, years with an addiction, years at a job where they weren’t fulfilled. But you have to realize, nothing you have been through is ever wasted. Your past experiences, good and bad have deposited something on the inside of you. Those challenges have sharpened you to help make you who you are today.

When the enemy brings hardship into your life, God has a way of taking that experience and turning it around for your advantage. You may think you’ve hit a dead end, but if you’ll stay in faith, you will see God begin to open up a new route. He’ll put the right people in your path, the right opportunities, the right circumstances to move you forward toward your God-given destiny.

Today, don’t focus on what’s happened in your past, focus on what God will do in your future. He wants to restore your soul and revive your dreams. Keep believing, keep expecting, keep hoping because God has a new route for your future!

Prayer:
Father God, I come humbly before You today. I give You my past, present and future knowing that You will redeem my life. I release those who have hurt me, I choose forgiveness so I can be free to move forward in the new route You have for me in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Scripture:
He forgives your sins—every one. He heals your diseases—every one. He redeems you from hell—saves your life! He crowns you with love and mercy—a paradise crown. He wraps you in goodness—beauty eternal. He renews your youth—you’re always young in his presence. (Psalm 103:3-5 MSG)

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I Have to Love Them, Too? Ew.

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1 Timothy 2:4, 8 MSG

He wants not only us but everyone saved, you know, everyone to get to know the truth we’ve learned: that there’s one God and only one, and one Priest-Mediator between God and us—Jesus, who offered himself in exchange for everyone held captive by sin, to set them all free. Eventually the news is going to get out. This and this only has been my appointed work: getting this news to those who have never heard of God, and explaining how it works by simple faith and plain truth.

Since prayer is at the bottom of all this, what I want mostly is for men to pray—not shaking angry fists at enemies but raising holy hands to God. And I want women to get in there with the men in humility before God, not primping before a mirror or chasing the latest fashions but doing something beautiful for God and becoming beautiful doing it.

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With all of the horrible things going on in this world, I hear a lot of, “They’re gonna burn in hell.” Or, “There’s a special place in hell for monsters like that.”

I used to say the same things frequently..but then I had a revelation. We all deserve hell as our final destination, and there is a “special” place there for all of us.

Just because our sins may seem prettier, or are more socially acceptable, they’re still equally hideous in His sight. But! We believers have hope. Because we are saved by grace. And the non-believers have hope, too, because they can also receive Christ and experience grace.

If we spend all of our time condemning “the sinners”, who’s gonna lead them to Jesus?

If we refuse to have anything to do with “them”, how will they ever see that there is hope, love, and forgiveness for them, too?

Christians need to stop acting as if this is some elite group that only some sinners can be accepted into.

Would the world be different if we reached out to these “monsters” and “horrible sinners” – the rejects of the world – the most hated – and told them that they too can be forgiven? That it’s not too late? That even their sins/crimes can be forgiven? That Jesus came died for them, too? What if we got really crazy and said, “I forgive you.” ?

If there is one thing I know, love and forgiveness change everything. They change everything, because love and forgiveness were being offered at the cross..and they’re still being offered today. They transform sinners into believers. They bring hope to the hopeless.

If we are to be like Christ, then we must also offer love and forgiveness to those who have committed the most heinous of sins/crimes. The only way to do that is by realizing how we have also received the same degree of love and forgiveness.

We cannot continue to place pride on our personal brand of sin, seeing our sin as superior. Our sin is filthy, just like everyone else’s.

Let’s work on trying to heal the world, instead of trying to constantly condemn and put the last nail in the coffin. Jesus wants EVERYONE to be in Heaven with Him. None of us deserve to go, but He was willing to die for us anyway. All of us. So that we could be with Him forever.

People need to know they are wanted, loved, and forgiven. Try to see beyond the sin, and into the heart of the person. There are reasons people have become who they are. There are deep hurts, and scars.

What’s one thing people often say to reporters after someone they know does a horrible thing? They say, “I didn’t see it coming. This isn’t the ….. I knew. He/she always seemed happy. He/she was quiet, and kept to himself/herself.”

This proves, most people never take the time to look beyond the surface of a person. People who feel alone and hurt get desperate. They want to be heard.

Will you be a person today who chooses to look past the outward appearance, and the sins, into the heart of a person? Even if you’ve never met them. You can offer love. A simple smile. A kind hello. A sincere, “How are you?” When you read a news article about yet another horrible thing that’s happened, will you stop and offer up a prayer for that person?

Will you show the unbiased love of God today? No one deserves it, but everyone needs it.

Jesus came to save the sinners. We are all sinners. As it says in The Word, He wants NO ONE to perish, but He wants EVERYONE to enjoy everlasting life.

Love like Jesus loves. 🙂

Blessings to you as we continue on this journey together,

Sarah

a prayer of reconciliation to the world…

This is so beautiful, I just had to share.

a prayer of reconciliation to the world….

I Don’t Love Your Smacking, But I Love You

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Would it be ok if we all just set our gavels down and decided to love people for who they are? Would it be ok if we quit demanding perfection in others? Would it be ok if we shifted our vision..from seeing faults in others to instead seeing the potential in others?

The truth us, we are all imperfect. So let’s just decide right now to quit pretending we are perfect. We aren’t, we never will be. And that’s ok!

Jesus loves me in spite of my shortcomings so I’m going to love myself, and you, too!

Have a beautiful day!

Blessings,

Sarah

**As I was typing this, my amazingly wonderful husband, was sitting next to me, talking with his mouth full. Satan is using that to see if I really mean what I’m saying in this post. Well let’s just say..life is a growing opportunity. And I’m growing.

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Today’s devo selection:

How many white hairs have you been given?
by George Whitten

Matthew 7:2-5 For with what judgment you judge, you shall be judged: and with what measure you use, it shall be measured back to you. And why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, Let me pull out the speck out of your eye; and, look, a plank is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first remove the plank out of your own eye; and then you will see clearly to remove the speck out of thy brother’s eye.

A dear friend recently sent us this funny story and we couldn’t help but share it with you.

One day a little girl was sitting and watching her mother do the dishes at the kitchen sink. She suddenly noticed that her mother had several strands of white hair sticking out in contrast upon her brunette head. She looked at her mother and inquisitively asked, “Mom, why are some of your hairs white?”

“Well”, her mother replied, “every time that you do something wrong and make me cry or unhappy, one of my hairs turns white.”

The little girl thought about this revelation for a while and then said, “Momma, how come all of Grandma’s hairs are white?”

A funny story, yes — but isn’t it true that we’re always looking for someone to blame for our imperfections? The Lord warned us about the danger of pointing out the faults of others. He said that people with planks in their eyes should not attempt to remove specks out of other people’s eyes. Somehow, we lose sight of this so quickly! We are all still growing. None of us has arrived! We need to be aware of how the enemy tries to ensnare us in this way.

I don’t know about you but I tend to agree with the person who said “The only person I want removing splinters out of my eyes is someone with a clear vision and a gentle touch!”

Let’s ask the Lord to help us to see the ways we’ve been judgmental and become people with clear vision and a gentle touch! We should be building up one another and encouraging each other so that the work of the Lord may go forward and we may rejoice together in the blessing!

Growth Under Attack

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Some attacks are easier to forgive than others, but regardless, all must be forgiven. Why? Because we have been forgiven. Even when it’s hardest to forgive, we must. It’s love that will change the world..”Love one another as I have loved you.” In order to truly love, we must forgive.

It’s easier said than done, but we can do it.

Blessings and love to you all,

Sarah

Today’s devo selection
From: http://www.findthepower.com/dailydevotions

About keeping the faith in the face of Satan’s attack…

Acts 7:59 While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” 60 Then he fell on his knees and cried out, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” When he had said this, he fell asleep. (NIV)

Stephen knew he was dying. Yet even in his last moment of life, with his last breath, Stephen asked for the forgiveness of those who were killing him. You have the same mighty spiritual power within you Stephen had. Your witness in life or even in your last breath can change lives like Stephen’s witness has done for two thousand years. You might not be a famous person. You might consider yourself a “nobody.” However, in God’s eyes you are precious. Until you take your last breath, it is God’s will the evil in your world should be defeated with His love and with His consuming grace. As Christ’s witness, show the world how evil can be defeated with the same love and forgiving grace you keep within your heart.

Forgiveness Brings Freedom

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You can be shackle-free! Start the path to forgiveness today. You will be glad you did!

I pray blessings and peace over you today as you embark on this new journey. Freedom in Him is here for the taking!

– Sarah

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Today’s devotional selection:

A Place of Forgiveness
By Suzie Eller

” … Keep your eyes open to this Temple night and day, this place of which you said, ‘My name will be honored there,’ and listen to the prayers that I pray at this place. Listen from your home in heaven and when you hear, forgive.” 1 Kings 8:28-30 (MSG)

Claire sat on the floor with a wad of tissues in her hand. Her husband had left her three days earlier for someone else.

Sitting there crying, in her brokenness she sensed God whisper, “Pray for him.”

Fists clinched, she shook them at the ceiling. “It’s too soon, God. If You love me, You won’t ask this of me. You are focusing on the wrong person. He’s the one who should be kneeling and asking for forgiveness.”

In 1 Kings 8, we find the story of God’s temple being built, a temple where God’s presence would dwell. It took seven years, a labor force of over 130,000 and King Solomon’s leadership to complete the temple. It was built with cypress, olive wood and cedar, and inside the doors were overlaid in gold. When the temple was completed, Solomon stood in awe as God’s presence filled it (verse 10), and he began to pray.

He could have asked God for many things. That the temple be a place of power where his kingdom would shine. That his enemies, and those of his father, King David, would be slain. That the sinful man would walk through the doors and be condemned for his sins.

Instead he asked that God’s Name be honored in the temple, and the magnificent structure would be a place of forgiveness.

Scripture declares that we are His temple. Three days after discovering her husband’s secrets Claire hadn’t eaten. She hadn’t slept. Her temple was crumbling.

By asking her to forgive so soon, God wasn’t showing a lack of compassion over her pain or her husband’s abandonment, but a sign that He knew her well. By asking her to forgive, God was asking for a place to move into the demolished areas of her life.

Forgiving would allow Him to fill her with His presence, putting His Name there forever, no matter what her situation.

Daily, Claire walked intentionally in her relationship with God, reading the Bible, talking honestly with Him, listening to worship music. This became her sanctuary as she went through the most challenging parts of an unwanted divorce. The more she nurtured her heart and His presence inside of her, the less room there was for sadness, grief, anger, and loss.

And then the day came. She knelt on the carpet and she told God, “I forgive him,” and she meant it.

A deeper meaning to the word forgive is “to abide” or “to set free.” Claire experienced both of these as she made room within her heart, mind and soul for God’s presence and forgiveness to dwell.

It’s been nearly a year. She is still beginning each day with God and inviting Him to fill her up with Himself. Moments of joy now surprise her just as grief once did.

Dear Lord, I knew instinctively that one day You would ask me to forgive, but today I understand why. You want to move in to the demolished areas of my life and let Your presence shine. Help me to begin to forgive with Your help. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Did You Say, “I Love you!” Or “You Disgust Me!”??

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It’s so easy when we have known someone so long to think we just “know” exactly what they realllly mean when they say or do this or that. But the truth is, we don’t. And the enemy is always right there to take advantage of that, planting the seed of discord. Let’s not allow him to do that anymore. Let’s choose to react in love, and believe the best of our loved ones. Maybe as we do that for them, they’ll do it for us, too. 🙂

Have a wonderful day, friends!

Blessings,

Sarah

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Today’s Devotional Selection:

Communication and Conflict
from Focus on the Family

We are called to be attentive to one another in marriage, to stop and listen and to learn about each other.

Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. James 1:19

As men and women our differences go beyond the obvious physical ones. We think differently, we respond differently, different things catch our hearts. However, we are too-often inclined to ignore that fact and plow through life with our own perceptions of how others should live and respond. The harvest of that kind of mentality can be misunderstanding, resentment, and alienation.

We are called to be attentive to one another in marriage, to stop and listen and to learn about each other. We must be willing to ask; we must be willing to reveal. Much can be learned about one another by how we live, but there are also things that words can give life and understanding to.

Conflict is inevitable, and often it is through conflict that we come in touch with the deep places and real meanings of our feelings. It is often only through times of discord that we can identify and offer the deepest content of our hearts. What we must remember in these moments is that our spouse is not the enemy. It sounds odd perhaps, but couples often come at each other from that very stance. In that place where little listening occurs, painful and damaging words are spoken, and anger isolates.

Consider James’ words, what a compelling picture of relationship. When we look at one another in marriage, when we realize that this is just the person we need to help us become who God has made us to be, then our hearts are more likely to respond in attentive tenderness.

Father, you communicated your love to us by sending Jesus to live and die for us. You bring us together in marriage, we who are so very different, and you call us to communicate with one another the very love we receive from you. Teach us, Father, how to do that in a way that honors each other and glorifies You.

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