True Contentment

When life is free from stress and trials, we tend to forget God, to take credit for our successes and to change our focus from Christ-centered to self-centered.

God gives us room to follow our carnal desires and to experiment with our own plans and goals (Romans 1:24); so that when we fail or get the wind knocked out of us, we will run back to Him.

A trial brings us to our knees and reminds us that only as we are weak can we be truly strong in Him (2 Corinthians 12:9-11). We no longer find fulfillment in a sinful lifestyle. God is our exceeding joy (Psalm 43:4, 149:4).

When God delivers us from various trials and temptations, our faith increases and we grow spiritually. We realize that we are now dead to sin and alive in Christ (Galatians 2:20; Colossians 3:4).

Regardless of our circumstances, our soul finds true contentment, which comes from God alone. We gradually stop depending on our self and depend only on God. He becomes the very air we breathe.

Christ is our whole life (Colossians 3:3-4). We realize our utter dependence on His Spirit to guide us, comfort us and give us strength for each new day (Lamentations 3:22-23).

As we decrease, He increases (John 3:30-35) and draws us into a deeper walk with Him. We devour His Word, and this life-giving source fills us with faith and wisdom for living in this insecure world.

Prayer:
Father God, help us to find serenity, joy and contentment of soul in You alone. Nothing that this world offers to us equals to what You give us through Your mercy and grace. Through our total dependence on You, we find Your strength for each moment of the day as we rise up to meet the challenges life throws at us.

We can rest in You, because You have all things under Your control. We want to tell the world what you mean to us. Give us daily opportunities to be a friend in order to win a soul to Your love. Take pleasure in us as we hope in Your steadfast love (Psalm 147:11).

Thought for the Day:
Our delight is always in the Lord, because we find our true contentment and fulfillment in God alone. – Psalm 37:4

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God’s Comfort through Grief

The death of an intimate relative is one of the most challenging, disturbing, overwhelming, and painful experiences we may ever survive. Grief shakes our core foundations and creates devastating and sometimes unrelenting loss and chaos in our life.

For a period of time, depression dampens all of our activities and feelings, and it interrupts our normal schedule. Grief has even been known to hasten the death of the surviving partner or parent.

Our life may never totally recover after the loss of a loved one. At best, life will take a new course, which brings change and fear of the unknown. This change is often one we would never select if we had a choice.

Grief may even accompany the loss of a cherished personal possession, a pet, or even financial security or a part of our body. Aging also produces aspects of grief as we experience the loss of friends, health, physical appearance, energy, family support and memory.

Divorce is another loss from which some people never recover. It causes traumatic grief in most cases, which is similar to or even more distressing than a death, because our mate chooses to leave us.

Each person alive experiences grief in some form or other in their lifetime. Even minor losses will trigger heartache. Grief from former losses will accumulate over the years and add to the sorrow we feel in current losses.

That is why it is important to allow our self the time and opportunity to grieve until we feel closure from any loss as it arises. Ignoring or suppressing grief compounds this devastating emotion in our soul.

Taking our grief to God allows us to heal more completely than if we try to heal on our own. His solace provides peace and joy, which surpasses human reasoning and emotion. We feel His presence within us, filling us and lifting us up.

Prayer:
Father God, we thank You for walking with us through the valleys of grief we experience throughout our lifetime. Your comfort transcends any mantras we utter or human counsel we receive during these times of loss.

We come to You and Your Word and find our wellbeing through Your life-giving truth and wisdom. We know we will see our saved loved ones again, but please fill their void in our life with more of Your presence than we ever felt before now.

Thought for the Day:
God brings physical, emotional, mental, social and spiritual healing to us in every instance of grief we experience during our lifetime.

Negative Emotions Unleashed

Our normal daily order in life is often disturbed by unexpected incidents, which may touch a sore spot deep within our subconscious mind. The unanticipated moment triggers negative emotions from our past, which are stored in our subconscious mind. They cause us to either over-react or to withdraw to nurse our wounds.

These dormant, negative emotions boil like a pot on the back burner of the stove. Sometimes, they will boil over the edge, often when we least expect it. People think we are crazy for getting upset over such a simple issue, but our reaction is actually stirred by years of pent up sentiments and fueled by a similar painful experience.

These feelings may continue to boil over until our soul is empty. Then we burn up from the inside out. False accusations, or being ignored or some misunderstanding may cause us to feel bitter, especially if this issue is never resolved. Bitterness is spiritual poison and defiles our whole life, which affects everything we do and everyone to whom we relate (Hebrews 12:15).

Bitterness sets us up for a snowball of negative emotions, which may eventually freeze out the people whom we love the most. We are usually kind, gentle and loving people; but the painful experiences of our past are whittling away at our inner strength and peace. Due to these subterranean emotions, we over-react negatively toward all further hurt.

The only cure for this vicious cycle is to go to God and to sit quietly in His presence as He reveals to us the root and origin of our negative emotions. He will reveal and heal the wounds in our soul and give us His peace and mercy (Lamentations 3:23). He will give us His joy and strength to face the adversity of life.

Prayer:
Father God, teach us to rely on You and to stop attempting to meet life’s challenges alone. Thank You for being our strong tower and for allowing us to run to You in times of adversity. You always keep us safe (Proverbs 18:10). Help us to forgive those who sin against us, just as You forgave us for sinning against You (Luke 11:4). Thank You for speaking Your truth to us about the underlying causes of our resentment and anger.

Thought for the Day:
A lifelong accumulation of emotional pain, humiliation, fear and false shame affects us every day of our life, until we allow God to speak His truth and to dispel the lies, which Satan planted in those memories.

To find freedom from your past read these three free chapters:

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