Serving in the Body of Christ

The Body of Christ is too busy for its own good. We neglect our Lord and one another, because we make our own pursuits more important than God’s will for our life (1 Peter 4:10; Ephesians 2:10).

The government took over so many of our ministries, because the needs went unmet. Take, for instance, the care of our elderly. They go unvisited and feel unwanted, because we do not make them a priority in our churches.

Elderly Saints, who ministered for the Lord all of their life, need and deserve our attention. Rides to doctor appointments, visits, taking someone out to lunch, cards, phone calls and praying for one another are just a few ways that we can minister to our elderly.

Parents are so busy today that children’s workers in the Body of Christ can fill in the gaps and encourage our children to grow up in service to God. Many adults give their children and youth leaders credit for their dedication to God. We influence eternity by our service to children now.

However, caring for the children attending our churches is another neglected ministry. We already raised our children, or we are in the process of raising them, and we want nothing to do with children’s ministries in the Body of Christ.

Single parents need the most help. We can babysit to give these parents a chance to allow their Inner Child to play. Gifting these hardworking parents with a certificate to go out to eat or to buy whatever they need at a retail store is also helpful on their tight budget.

Many churches end up hiring people in order to have someone committed to the children, since very few people will commit to this ministry. Our children need Godly authority, responsibility, approval and nurturing in the same way which God relates to us (John 3:16; Romans 5:8).

If we all band together, the care required in these vital ministries will not be a burden on any one person, but will be a blessing for everyone involved (Romans 15:7).

We can make time for God and His Body as a priority in our schedule. Before we do anything, we consult the Lord and live each moment in His perfect will for us (Ephesians 2:10). While living by the Spirit, we will all function as a valuable member of the Body of Christ (1 Corinthians 12:12-27).

Prayer:
Father God, teach us to love Your Body as You love us. Allow us to be Your ambassadors to Your Body. Unconditional love and acceptance gives Your Body the assurance we all crave as human beings, regardless of our age or social/economic status. Remind us to give one another grace in our failings and to encourage one another in our successes.

Give us listening ears and the ability to recognize body language in order to be present with one another, rather than taking each other for granted. Help us to make one another feel safe to share our issues with each other, so we can bear each other’s burdens as You expect us to do (Galatians 6:2).

Thought for the Day:
If Satan can keep us in bondage to our failures, he cripples us in our service to God and His Body; as we learn to nurture and forgive our self, we will have an increased ability to accept, nurture, affirm and forgive one another. – Mark 12:30-31

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How to Prevent a Divorce

When people, joined by God in marriage, choose to divorce, there is understandably an immense amount of pain and brokenness, which affects both lives. Even the person who initiated the divorce will suffer trauma. Financial, physical and employment setbacks occur in both lives. Even the emotions in both parties are traumatized.

This may make no common sense; but in matters of the soul, it makes perfect sense. Our soul is divided into our mind, will and emotions, and all three are negatively affected by a divorce. We also have three ego states in our mind, called the Inner Parent, Inner Adult and Inner Child. The Inner Child of the person initiating the divorce will also experience shock and distress.

Even if the person really wants the divorce for various reasons, their Inner Child will still feel victimized. Their childlike nature, which needs nurturing, feels abandoned by the partner they are divorcing. They will often suffer feelings of rejection and abandonment right along with the person, which they no longer want to live with.

There are many unresolved issues in a relationship, which cause the marriage to dissolves into divorce. Years of underlying problems, formerly swept under the rug, are hanging in the air between the two parties. They blame each other, and some spouses are not willing to take any responsibility for the breakdown in the marriage.

We all have failings and idiosyncrasies, which may cause our partner to get weary and to wander. If we address these concerns instead of just giving up, we can find alternative methods of action. An equitable solution that is agreeable to both people will always improve the relationship. In humility, both partners can resolve the problems and allow God’s love to heal their wounds.

Truthfully, prior to any divorce, both partners need to forgive and to ask for forgiveness for the slights and issues they caused in the marriage. Mutual forgiveness will heal many injures, and may even prevent this drastic, unnecessary divorce. Then, there will be no more desire to separate, and the couple will joyfully end up growing old together.

Prayer:
Father God, our true fulfillment is found through service to You in our church and community, as well as in our marriage. We can serve our mate regardless of how we feel about them. In fact, we are serving You by serving them. This way we put our marriage in Your hands, relying on You to change us and our partner. You hate divorce and are not pleased with anyone who obtains a divorce without Biblical grounds for it (Matthew 19:9). Help us to bear one another’s burdens and to fulfill Your plans for our life (Galatians 6:2).

Thought for the Day:
Divorce divides us from the one, which we thought would share our hopes and dreams and grow old with us, and it forces us into the death of a relationship once birthed in love.

Surviving Lonliness

When we lose a loved one, our job, our home, our church family or a beloved pet, depression often hinders our mind from seeing any joy in life. We wallow in self-pity and hide under the covers, nursing our wounds. Of course, we have a right to grieve, and it is very healthy for us to do so; but we often carry it way too far. We may even turn to addictions to erase our pain.

We can choose to be lonely, or we can choose to reach out. A smile will change our whole attitude. Of course, a fake smile will wear thin and tears will often wash it away. The smile must come from our heart; therefore we need to think of something or someone that honestly makes us happy. The fact that Jesus saved us for eternity always puts a smile on my face.

Serving in our church family puts a song in our heart and a smile in our steps. Reading our Bible and other spiritual books, listening to praise music or watching inspirational movies and testimonies will also help to bring us up from the pit of depression. In addition, we can return to a previous interest, start a new hobby or get together with former, cherished friends. Making new memories and meeting wholesome new friends can also change our life.

Often our friends are too shy to reach out, or do not know what to say or how to help us. So, please communicate how you feel, return calls, invite people over for dinner or go out with the crowd and get lost in it. Some former friends may drift out of your life, but let them go. God has new friends for you just around the corner. Trust in Him to see you through this trying time and to bring you safely to His eternal joy.

Prayer:
Father God, You always use the negative aspects of our life for our good (Romans 8:28). We may not see anything positive at this time, but in hindsight, it becomes very clear that You had a purpose in it all (Proverbs 5:21). We often want the answers now, but You have Your very own time and way to meet all of our needs (Proverbs 3:5-6). Remind us that rather than doing all of the talking during our times of prayer, that we need to listen in order to hear Your voice.

Thought for the Day:
Jesus comforts us with the consolation He received from our Father; and we can turn around and comfort others with the same reassurance He gives to us in our time of need. – 2 Corinthians 1:4