Healing from Our Past

Humans often function on automatic pilot. We repeat tasks hundreds of times and pay no attention to the details along the way. Sometimes, “the devil is in the details”.

We get tied up in the details; and the good things we run around accomplishing rob us of the best things, which God called us to do with our life.

We wear different hats according to the requirement of the moment at work, home, church and play. We segment our soul and personality to meet the expectations of those around us.

Some of us dissociate from parts of our identity and suppress the expression of those personality characteristics. Sometimes, we experience trauma from which we use dissociative amnesia to escape the memory.

We cannot remember parts or all of our past; and, at times, even present events. We function on automatic pilot in multiple personalities in order to fit in or to cope. We lose part of our true self with every trauma we experience in life.

Some of us are schizophrenic, we hear our different ego states conversing with one another and we fear we are going crazy. One part of our self may sabotage or fight against the other.

This dissociative identity disorder attempts to save our life from the extreme pain of our past. Once the Holy Spirit moves into our spirit, He sorts through the various alter egos we create to protect our self.

He heals the pain of our past and allows us to release our grasp on various personalities we used to defend our self. We realize that God is here to protect us now and we have no need to hide behind alter egos.

Prayer:
Father God, the indescribable pain which human beings inflict on one another is caused by rampant sin and suggestions by the god of this world (2 Corinthians 4:4). Regardless of what we experience, however, there is healing in Your wings (Malachi 4:2; Psalm 91:4); and we can hide beneath them until we heal and gain the strength to face this world with Your perspective.

We sing for joy as we snuggle into your feathers and find safety, comfort and security from this world, which often frightens us (Psalm 63:7). Help us to serve as a lifeline to others who also face traumatic events in this life, and give us opportunities to share Your comfort with them in very real and tangible ways.

Thought for the Day:
We can ask God to strengthen the inner being of those we love by His Spirit, so that Christ may dwell in their hearts and they may also find His eternal healing. – Ephesians 3:16

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My Hiding Place

I have a secret hiding place. It is my safe house, my shelter and fortress, my place of rest and rejoicing. Whenever my soul is afraid, I run into it and find safety, balance and serenity.

My secret hiding place is called the spirit of man (1 Corinthians 2:11). Prior to our coming to Christ, this safe place is all boarded up and inaccessible. Sin destroyed it and it is uninhabitable.

Yet, when we surrender our life wholly to God, our spirit is born again. We meet God there. From the moment of our salvation, He dwells with us in our spirit by His Holy Spirit and He never leaves (Romans 8:9, 16; Hebrews 13:5).

As we mature in our walk with God, we no longer live through our body or soul – our mind, choices and emotions. We do not depend on our human skills, talents or capabilities, but we give God full reign in our life.

We walk this earth in our body in union with God’s Spirit who abides within us; but we function in life through our spirit rather than our body and soul (1 Corinthians 3:16).

God still uses our body and soul for His purposes in the earth. He transforms our personality and capabilities and makes us a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17).

We are no longer tied to the earthly realm, influenced by sin and hindered by human insufficiency. Our external world my fall down around our ears, or people and experiences may attack our thoughts or emotions; but like Paul, we rejoice in the tribulation.

We experience life from our safe place: our spirit within us (Galatians 5:25). Our carnality is dead and it is no longer us, but Christ who lives in and through us (Colossians 3:3).

We are controlled, guided and filled through our entire being with all of the fullness of God (Ephesians 3:16-19). We experience eternal life as a reality even now, by intimately knowing the only true God and His Son, Jesus Christ, whom He sent (John 17:3).

Prayer:
Father God, due to Christ’s sacrifice on Calvary’s cross, we can leave behind the cares of this temporal world and touch the glories of Heaven. Our spirit is filled with Your Spirit and we feel safe and right at home there (Revelation 3:20). We live in step with Your Spirit from within our spirit, separated from our body and soul and viewing them as from a distance.

Regardless of what the world, the devil or our flesh attempt to entice us to participate in, or the amount of pain and grief they try to distract us with, they have no effect on us or lure for us, because we live in our spirit by Your Spirit and no longer through our flesh.

Thought for the Day:
Christ is our whole life and we live by His faith; He gave Himself for us, because He loves us completely and unconditionally.
– Galatians 2:20; Colossians 3:4

Lead Me to the Rock – Psalm 61

Jesus Christ is our solid Rock on which we stand when the storms of adversity stir up the quick sand of life. These menacing pits of destruction attempt to swallow us whole, sucking the life right out of us inch by inch.

As our heart grows faint, we cry out to God from the lowest parts of the earth and He leads us to the Rock, which is so much higher than our debilitating circumstances (Psalm 61:1-2).

Safely entrenched on the Rock of Christ we rise far above these destructive elements from Satan, the world and the flesh, which come to rob us of our joy and peace and make our testimony for God ineffectual and tarnished.

As our refuge and strong tower, He protects us from our enemies, takes us into His dwelling place, shelters us under His wings and showers us with His blessing (Psalm 61:3-4).

He hears our vows to serve Him with our life and He gives us His heritage in exchange. He increases our days and provides for our children and grandchildren for thousands of generations in the future (Psalm 61:5-6; Exodus 20:6).

God gives us a place in His royal priesthood and shares with us the throne of Christ. He showers us with His love and faithfully protects us (Psalm 61:7).

His goodness, grace, love and mercy cause us to praise His name forever and to keep our vows to Him day after day (Psalm 61:8). We want nothing more from this life than His perfect will for us.

Prayer:
Father God we wait patiently for You and You always hear our cries. You lift us out of the slimy pit of doom, out of the mud and mire and safely stand us on the Rock of Christ (Psalm 40:1-2, 62:1-3). You put a new song in our heart, which is a testimony to everyone in our life (Psalm 40:3).

Your love fills us with peace and joy regardless of the outward circumstances attempting to beat us down and debilitate us. We look for the seed for a miracle, which You plant within every trial threatening to overcome us. We depend on Your Spirit to guide us through each moment of our day.

Thought for the Day:
When we face the issues bombarding our life, we remember that the peace of God protects us when we are firmly standing on the Rock of Christ.

The Name of the Lord – Meanings and Uses

Most names have a meaning and may describe the person’s character, nature and attributes. This was true even in Bible times. God also used different names in order to describe Himself to us.

It is valuable for us to study and understand the power, provision and protection we have in God’s name. The main point is that the name of the Lord is a high tower; and when we run into it, we are safe (Proverbs 8:10). God never abandons us on this earth and is always with us (Hebrew 13:5).

The first word in the Bible referring to God is Elohim – a plural word denoting the Trinity and identifying God as Creator (Genesis 1:1, 26). Other names are:
El Shaddai (Almighty one who nourishes and supplies)
Immanuel (God with us)
Eli (My God)
YHWH (God or the Lord)
Pater (Father)
Kurios (Lord)
I AM (John 8:58)
The Rock (Jesus)
God of hosts (Amos 5:27)
Branch (Zechariah 6:12)
YAH (Revelation 19:1-6)
Onoma (the Word of God, Revelation 19:13)
Shammah (present)
Maccaddeshcem (Sanctifier, Exodus 31:13)
Tsidkenu (our righteousness)
Yahweh Nissi (Our ‘banner of victory that glistens’)
Yahweh Shalom (our peace, full, complete, finished, and perfect)
Yahweh Adonai (the one who is and who reigns)
Yahweh Jireh (the one who provides and who sees before time)
Yahweh Rophe (The adequate healer)
Yahweh Sabbaoth (The Lord of Hosts of the armies of heaven)
Adonai (the One who owns and rules over all)
El Olam (the everlasting, unchanging and God of inexhaustible strength)

Jesus manifests God’s name to us (John 17:6). We too glorify His name and consecrate our life to Him in holiness; so that we never bring shame to His name (Leviticus 21:6). We are a dwelling place for His name.

We proclaim God’s name to one another in worship and sing His praises (Hebrews 2:12); we bless His name (Psalm 100:4); give thanks to His name (Psalm 140:13; Hebrews 13:15); call upon His name (Exodus 34:5; Acts 22:16; 1 Corinthians 1:12); and walk in His name (Zechariah 10:12).

When we focus our love on God, He delivers us. He sets us up on the Rock of Christ, when we believe in His Holy name (Psalm 27:5). God gives His angels charge over us, to protect our every step, and even to prevent us from stubbing our toe (Psalm 91:11).

Prayer:
Father God, teach us to give thought to the reverence, which we owe to Your name, and the power, which we have in Your name. If two or three gather in Your name, You are is in our midst (Matthew 18:20). If we receive a child in Your name, You and Jesus receive us (Matthew 18:5; Mark 9:37; Luke 9:48).

Remind us that whatever we do, even if it is a spoken word or some mundane action, You call us to do it in the name of the Lord Jesus. We give thanks through Christ to You (Colossians 3:17; Ephesians 5:20).

Thought for the Day:
When we remember and appeal to His name, God comes and blesses us. – Exodus 20:24; Numbers 5:27

Our Strong Tower

As an infant, most of us are properly cared for by our parents; although, more often in these days in which we live, children are no longer cherished and nurtured.

Regardless of our upbringing, however, life rarely pulls its punches. It deals out a lifetime of hard knocks, abuse, neglect and disappointments.

We learn to keep more to our self, in order to give people and circumstances fewer chances to hurt us. We want to stay safe from a world, which often frightens us.

We continue to reach out to other people, and to help them in any way we can; but suspicion taints the way we view people and opportunities, which come our way.

We are programmed to believe that the good times will never last, because they never did in the past. We stop looking forward to things; and we never believe promises, because they rarely if ever happen.

We miss opportunities, which we would enjoy, because we are afraid to trust the leading of God’s Spirit. We stay home rather than to take risks to meet new people and to share God’s love with them.

We learn to build walls to hide behind in an attempt to protect our self. However, these very walls only serve to keep us restrained in the confinement of our own making.

We try to escape these walls through addictions, the wrong friends and mate, busyness, hobbies, projects and over-achieving in areas, which do not really matter.

We imprison our true self behind those walls, which were meant to keep us safe. We can never live a full life as long as we continue to hinder our whole body, soul and spirit from living free in Christ (Galatians 5:1).

Prayer:
Father God, we wall up our heart, because vulnerability makes us susceptible to victimization and neglect. You advise us to guard our heart from sin, but not from other people. You actually expose us to disappointment in this life to show us the magnitude of Your continual love and nurture for us.

Remind us that when we are the weakest and the most vulnerable, then You are the strongest and closest to us in order to fight on our behalf (2 Corinthians 12:9-11; Exodus 14:14; Deuteronomy 3:22).

Therefore, we can entrust our body, soul and spirit to You and Your protection and care (Psalm 55:22; 1 Peter 5:7). We can run into the safety of Your everlasting arms (Isaiah 41:10).

Thought for the Day:
We fear vulnerability; therefore, we hide our true self behind walls of our own making; but God protects us from our enemies and is a strong tower into which we can run and be safe. – Psalm 18:2, 10

My Life Was a Wreck – Part 1

A few decades ago, while running an errand for work, I found myself on an unfamiliar country road after dark. There were no street lights, and the street signs were scarce.

One particular stretch of the road curved, but I did not realize it. I continued going straight. Thanks to God, there was a dirt road ahead.

I smiled in relief that I was safe. Just then, my back tire punctured on a small rock and blew out. This sent me careening toward the high dirt embankment lining the side of the road.

I pumped my breaks, but was concerned about fully engaging them, since the car was swerving back and forth. Seeing the wall of dirt ahead, I thought it would safely stop me, since I was going so slowly.

To my surprise, my front tires went up the embankment, and the car tilted up and over until it flipped and the roof of the car hit the dirt road and smashed in. The car slid down the road for several feet with me hanging upside down by my seat belt.

I was in total shock. I paused for a moment to digest what just happened. I unbuckled my seat belt and immediately fell onto the ceiling of the car. I tried to open the door, but it was compressed out of shape and stuck shut. Squished into a coffin-sized space, I started to panic.

Frantically grabbing the handle for the window, I attempted to roll the window open to climb out, but it would not budge either. This is when panic really set in, and sent a jolt of adrenalin through my body, which was no help at all.

I quickly reminded myself that God always had everything under His control and He knew exactly where I was and what I needed. Engaging the Lord in prayer, I asked for guidance.

I breathed deeply and God’s Spirit calmed my anguished soul. The Lord clearly reminded me that I was upside down and the window handle would only turn in the opposite direction.

Of course, that worked perfectly. Once free from the wreck, I leaned up against the car for support. God sent a nurse driving by at that very moment, and she stopped to take care of me.

She took me in her car to the closest house in the neighborhood and examined me all over. No broken bones, concussion or scratches. The owners of the house called the policeman, who wrote his report and gave me a ride home.

As I walked through my front door, my nerves finally reacted and I started shaking all over from scalp to toes. My husband fixed me a cup of tea with honey, and I gulped it down. I sought solace beneath my covers, and slept until the next day.

Accompanying my daughter to the chiropractor, I was surprised to find out that I did not have one scratch or bruise. There was not one bone or spinal disc out of alignment. The car was totaled, but I escaped unscathed and perfectly cared for every moment of the ordeal and beyond.

Prayer:
Father God, that wreck was a milestone in my life. It taught me that Your hand was on my life regardless of what Satan tried to do to end it. I cannot thank You enough for building up my faith in Your faithfulness through that nightmare.

This experience gave me the strength I would need to face some trials, which lay ahead for me in my life. Your works are perfect and all of Your ways are just (Deuteronomy 32:4).

Thought for the Day:
God works out even the most life-threatening challenges for the good of those who love Him and live in His purpose for their life. – Romans 8:28

His Cherished Treasure

His Cherished Treasure

Husbands, did you know that if you do not treat your wife with consideration and respect as heirs with you of God’s merciful gift of eternal life, that your prayers may be hindered (1 Peter 3:7)? God made women, so He knows how emotional, unpredictable and irrational we can be sometimes. That is why He gave men this cautionary advice.

The wise husband makes his wife his priority second only to God. He provides her with love, acceptance and a secure home environment. If he does, then she will never doubt his love for her. She will see it in his eyes, in his tone of voice, in his caring touch and in the amount of time he wants to spend with her. She is his most cherished treasure and is highly valued in his esteem.

Every human being has a love language. We often love others the way we want to be loved. However, if your mate’s, child’s or grandchild’s love language is not the same as yours, then they will not be impressed by your expressions of affection toward them. Some people enjoy gifts and others prefer physical touch, quality time, acts of service and/or words of affirmation.

Take the time to discover the love languages of the people God gave you to love ( http://www.5lovelanguages.com/ ). Give your loved ones continual expressions of love and devotion throughout the day. Many couples have a date night, which is admirable and something to look forward to; however, do not limit your time together to once a week. Spend little increments of time together throughout the day.

Maybe a shared lunch, family time after a dinner eaten together, a gift for no reason at all, a compliment for a job well done, a 15 minute snuggle, a walk in the park, a repair of that leaky faucet, a note tucked away in an obvious nook, a bike ride to a favorite place, taking her car to get it serviced or spending a few hours together walking on the beach. The possibilities are actually limitless.

Prayer:
Father God, remind us that You created marriage (Genesis 2:22). We dishonor You when we allow Satan to destroy the love You place in our hearts for one another. In today’s easy divorce society, we are not expected to work through the hard times and communicate with one another about what we really need and how we really feel. Remind us to lay our life down for each other as Christ did for us.

Thought for the Day:
Nurture your romantic urges and express them often. This is not a stilted requirement, but a spontaneous expression of your love and devotion.