Most of us are blessed far more then we open our eyes to see. (One of these pics is my little girl, who almost didn’t live. I am blessed!)

How much do we complain? Day by day we find things that make us angry, disappointed, frustrated, that just puts us in a really bad mood. We always find a way to justify our attitude, we reason with ourselves how we deserve things to go a certain way and if its not that way we are mad and sometimes even take it out on our friends, loved ones, or our coworkers. I worked with a great lady a couple years ago, she would often say something like, ” I have a lot going on in my life, times are hard and I start to think, why me Lord? Then I think, why not you? What makes me so special?” She had a lot of wisdom and had been through quite the hell ringer throughout her past. It always pops in my mind when I start getting frustrated and start thinking, why me myself. There are so many people out there that have it so much worse then myself. Out in this great big world someone has just buried their baby boy or baby girl. Someone has been diagnosed with cancer or some other horrible life threatening illness. I have a pretty good job, a roof over me and my family’s head, the means to pay my bills, even if there is no savings. I may not be rich, but I have been blessed multiple times by the love of God. I have seen my own daughters life spared, blessed with an unplanned son, and work for an amazing boss that makes my life a lot easier on me then what it was in the past. Do things go wrong sometimes? Sure! Do I get angry and complain at times? You better believe it! I started thinking about how people, how I am ungrateful sometimes. Do we really have the right to complain? I googled pictured of other countries cause I started thinking about how other people have things so much worse then I do. The pictures that came up were over overwhelmingly heart breaking.

Instead of complaining that someone was mean to us, complain that someone charges us too much money, or complain that we don’t have the next best thing out on the market, we should take a look at the rest of the world. People are hurting, starving, no place to live, no fresh water in some places, and no way to treat sickness properly. There are people that would trade all our bad days cause theirs are so much worse. There are people who would give anything to have a couple bites of the food we complained about at the restaurant because it just wasn’t hot enough. The water someone through away cause it got too warm, would have been gold to someone who hasn’t had a good clean drink in, well, maybe never.

So why do we complain so much? Why cant we focus on the good and stop dwelling on the bad? Maybe if we focused more on other people and their needs and less on what is wrong in our own lives things would improve. God put us on this earth to help one another, to love each other and to be His arms and feet. I have been guilty of looking past the person that is on the street, to barely notice he or she is even there, but maybe paying more attention would help, maybe a little acknowledgment would brighten someone’s day who is feeling really bad in life and dealing with far more problems then our average ones. instead of saying, “why me Lord” we should say, “Lord, send me to someone that I can help, that I can sympathize with. Let me be a light in their darkened world that they will see things can and will get better, that they just need to trust in you. When you feel angry, and start feeling like there is much to complain or be down about, think about people around the world, or even in your own town, who would love to have your bad day in exchange for their own. Its not “why me Lord”? Its, ” I’m under attack, the enemy must be wanting to stop me from blessing someone else by discouraging me and trying to break me. Stand strong and be someone else’s beacon of light, be the witness of how trusting God and relying on Him brings peace. There is no greater blessing then to help others and see past our own needs, and from the looks of it, the needs of others, the bad days for others may not even come close to our own. Be a blessing, and be blessed.

HOW HARD IS YOUR LIFE, REALLY?

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Do You Ever Feel Like Just Giving Up? (DON’T!) You Are Important.

Yes! I think we all have been there. We all have moments where we feel as though we just can’t go on. We feel like our whole world is spinning out of control. Was that the universe laughing at me? Was this God’s cruel joke? Creating me just to see a failure? Maybe tomorrow will be better, maybe if I can just get by and survive one more day. But those days seem to turn to weeks, months, and maybe even years. There might be a couple good days around the corner, but the next bad one will strike with a vengeance. Am i worth it? What do I do in this world? What good am I? Why is it that when I fight hard to stand on my feet I feel like I fall harder then the last time?

Maybe it’s because I am trying to do it on my own? Or maybe it’s because all of hell is against me because God has something GREAT in store. Don’t bend and don’t break. We are all important. We are all loved. There is a value to each of us; to you, to me, to our future generations. We are warriors, if we rely on God to train us to be. Boot camp is no joke and no conquering soldier can crumble under pressure. Moving forward is the only way to win, to get victory. The enemy will always advance to conquer, always study the strategy to destroy a soldiers move. We are in a spiritual war of survival, but our commander is always fighting with us. He fights behind us, beside us, and He protects us while standing tall and strong on the front lines, in front of us. We are important to Him, we are His chosen ones, the people called by His name. So, no matter how you may feel unvalued, no matter how down you feel your life may be, rise above it, take charge and give your victorious war cry. We are fighting many things physically and spiritually, but we have God, the commander, right there with us, fighting every inch of hell with the power of His blood. Don’t ever feel you are not good enough to go on, ’cause God said you are worth fighting for as well as dying for and His word never changes.

You Don’t Have To Remain Guilty.

Today i am looking at my plant’s survival. I have had this plant for over ten years, which is amazing because i tend to end up killing every house plant i ever own. This plant went without water for an entire month once because i left it in a room that we never use in our house and i forgot all about it. It was all but dead, but with regular watering it came back to life. Years later i put my plant outside as the weather was starting to get warmer. It turns green without much sunlight, but when it gets good sun, it deepens into a dark purple and produces light, small purple flowers.

(Makes me think about how without the SON in our lives, we lose are royality connection and turn green, worldly)

The wether got cold over night and drained the life right out of its vines. My plant was limp and colorless. I cut off all the vines then gave it water and i waited for new lofe to grow. In just a couple of days it started sprouting new growth from the sides of where i had cut it off. I have even cut pieces off and shoved them into more dirt. with alot of water it grows roots and starts rooting deep into the dirt for survival.

How many of us are rooted in Christ? Are we grounded in Him? How many of us slip from time to time and start doing things that cause us to lose our deep soul rooting that survives only through His living water? Some people make mistakes and feel like God will not forgive them. In their mind they can not forgive themselves, so how could God, who detests sin, forgive them? We are just like the plant. We buried ourselves in Christ (rooted in Him) with baptism in his Holy name, Jesus. We started our journey and He provides us with His living water that we shall never thirst again. If we stay focused on Him our spiritual longings will never be unfulfilled because He is all we truly need. But what happens when you don’t fill yourself up with His spirit? How about when you no longer seek His glory and desires for your life? It starts becoming about our flesh, about our wants and needs. The blacks and whites start becoming gray. You start questioning what you have believed for so long. You start losing life in your vine. It starts on the surface, working its way down to the root. The vine, the connection with God becomes weak, Eventually the root will start to dry out and it will die.

The main source of my plant, from where it first started growing, is infact dead. The roots dried up and the whole center will never grow another vine. when i saw it losing its life, i cut clippings and planted them all around the center. So, the original roots may not be in connection with its beauty, but its life has started a new and with the tender love and care it is beginning to grow again.

Now matter what we do in life, God’s blood (sacrifice of His son, Jesus) covers our sins, we need only to ask forgivness, be baptized in the name of Jesus, and develop a relationship with Him. If we slip up, just start over, re-root in Christ and seek His spirit. He will never leave you when you come back to Him. He waits with you with arms wide open because He is full of love, forgiveness, and grace.

So, if you are feeling unworthy, unlovable, or like an outcast, remember this…God loves you, He died for you so He could take all your blame and shame away. If you truly are sorry and you have a longing to root or re-root in Christ, drink from His living water to strengthen your soul, so you can one day be with Him. Don’t ever believe you are too far gone or too much of a sinner. God has called you by grace and no power in hell can dry up your roots if you stay strong or return to God, almighty.

Jesus Died For Our Past, Stop Putting Salt On Your Old Wounds.

Today I am thinking of Sodom and Gomorrah. click to view about Lot’s wife from the Bible

Lot was told, by God, to gather up his family, to leave and to not look back. Lot’s wife was so caught up in her surroundings that instead of focusing on God and His plans for her life, she focused on what she was leaving behind. She turned around for just one more look, as God’s wrath was destroying all of the wickedness in that place, instantly she turned into a pillar of salt. No second chance, no way to take back her mistake. She was destroyed, along with the rest of the wickedness, for disobeying God.

As most of us know, salt is used for many things. It is good for food, it gives something that seemed flavorless a delicious perk. It takes bland and makes it savoury. Too much salt can ruin a meal that once was good though, so it must be used in good portion. Salt is good for sores… Like rinsing your mouth with salt water, the taste is plain awful, but the effects cure our mouths from the mouth sores. We throw salt down on ice to melt it off of side walks so we don’t slip and fall and down on roads so we don’t crash our cars. Salt is infact a good thing, but the saying goes something like this…

“Hurtful words hurt as much as pouring salt on an open wound.”

Well, I thought about Lot’s wife and how she caused way too much salt in her own life. Not trusting God and not obeying Him poured salt on her open wound of having to leave what she loved and treasured, to leave her past far behind her. In a way, we do this ourselves to this day. We have a past with many memories, with many struggles, and with many things that have hurt us. We dig up our past, or even someone else’s past, applying salt. It hurts, but in this case it doesn’t heal. If we pull up someone else’s past, that is definitely applying salt to an old wound and it will not make it better. It causes past pain, past regrets, and past failures to resurface. Bringing up things that hurt us in the past in forms of our failures, our unGodly words used to cast someone down, or something we may have physically done that we are ashamed of, pouring salt on those old wounds will not help us heal. We have all made mistakes, that is what the blood of Jesus Christ was shed for. He was our salt on our wound, but portioned just enough to heal us and give us a rebound. So, lets not be like Lot’s wife, so wrapped up in our past that we just keep needing nothing but salt because we never move on to what God has planned for us in our future. We were forgiven the minute we asked and the moment we began to change our behavior. He wants us to cast all of our hurt moments, all our past mistakes, and sadness on Him, to let Him take our pain and give us joy in return. Moving foward is all God has ever wanted for us, not to be wrapped up, always looking back and keeping every wound open, hurting ourselves over and over again by applying salt to something that He tried to heal us from. Use your past as a stepping stone, one step closer in climbing that mountain and reaching the top. When you make it to the top and look at the valley below you’ll be able to say, thank you, Lord, for it was You, I know, who carried me through all my troubles, helped me to become more of the person You created me to be, and helped me every step of the way when I felt like giving up.