Wednesday, November 22, 2017

THANKSGIVING ...A MIXED BAG OF EMOTIONS

Thanksgiving is upon us and what a mixed bag of emotions! As we gather together with family and friends there are not many of us who do not feel the impact of missing family. 
Family is missing for multiple reasons, but we all have old memories of those who once were who are not. 
The sadness that takes the place of those loved ones can indeed be debilitating at moments.
There are losses of every kind in families and  grief is an unwelcome intruder who must be dealt with.
The change in family structure due to divorce can be a staggering separation for many and is only minimized by the fact that though beloved family members may be absent at holidays and birthdays they are still on this earth and hopefully doing well.
Grave illness and grave handicap are yet another source of sorrow for many and a different type of suffering for loved ones. 
We as humans have all types of sorrows that can separate us from loved ones, sometimes that can even be long distance relationships. 
Then of course there is the empty nest and the broken ness brought on because of divorce and those struggles weighing on a single parent and the custody and visitation that the family suffers, however gallantly. 
There are many changes brought about in life and death is the only one that is final. Life for those bereaved by loss of all kinds brings about a whole gamut of often emotional struggles. 
What can we do? We can realize the living. The present. What we have, not what we have lost. Be active in living helping to lay groundwork for a solid foundation always for those who are in your circle of influence, the family that God has given you. The old passes away and life is always renewing in families. Honor each other in your own sorrows and losses by realizing we all suffer them at one point or another.
Most importantly in all these things it must be remembered that as written in Nehemiah http://biblehub.com/nehemiah/8-10.htm  The joy of the Lord is your strength and again in Psalms http://biblehub.com/psalms/28-7.htm The Lord is my strength and shield. I trust in him and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him. 
By mediating on just these few verses you can find the way to joy of the Lord. Don't hesitate. Taste and see that the Lord is good.
I love you and my prayer for you is that you find comfort, peace, and joy even in the times of sorrow and live your life to the fullest walking in paths with the Good Shepard. 
https://www.biblestudytools.com/esv/psalms/23.html

Thursday, April 27, 2017

HOLD ON, PAIN ENDS!

http://www.lifeway.com/Article/sermon-let-your-heart-be-broken-jeremiah-8-9


If you are in a hurtful situation or grieving due to having been, then this has been posted here for you. Not necessarily all of the sub headings, but I invite you to scroll down and see if one of these speaks to you. I wish you help in your pain and healing for your wound. Speaking from personal experience, it does get better. Hang in there. 

Sermon: Let Your Heart Be Broken - Jeremiah 8, 9

Sermon series: The Person God Uses

  1. Make No Excuses - Jeremiah 1
  2. Let Your Heart Be Broken - Jeremiah 8, 9
  3. Rise Above Discouragement - Jeremiah 20
  4. Sermon: Persevere in Obedience - Jeremiah 37, 38
Scriptures: Jeremiah 8:4-13, 18; 9:1

Introduction

In 1947, Robert Pierce worked for a religious non-profit organization called Youth for Christ. Its mission was to evangelize the world with the gospel of Jesus Christ. The young evangelist started toward China with only enough money to buy a ticket to Honolulu. On the trip, he met Tena Hoelkedoer, a teacher. She introduced him to a battered and abandoned child named White Jade. Unable to care for the child herself, she asked Pierce, "What are you going to do about her?" Pierce gave the woman his last five dollars and agreed to send the same amount each month to help the woman care for the child.
Pierce eventually made it to China, where thousands made public commitments as followers of Christ during four months of evangelistic rallies.
While there Pierce saw widespread hunger. He felt intense compassion for these people. Pierce later wrote these words in the flyleaf of his Bible: "Let my heart be broken with the things that break the heart of God." Dragging a movie camera across Asia - China was soon closed - Pierce showed the resulting pictures to church audiences in North America. He asked for money to help children. He showed their faces and begged Christians to "adopt" one. In 1950 he incorporated this personal crusade as World Vision.
In 1959 journalist Richard Gehman wrote that "[Pierce] cannot conceal his true emotions. He seems to me to be one of the few naturally, uncontrollably honest men I have ever met." Pastor Richard Halverson wrote that Pierce "prayed more earnestly and importunely than anyone else I have ever known. It was as though prayer burned within him. . . . Bob Pierce functioned from a broken heart."
Jeremiah, like Bob Pierce, served with a broken heart. He was called the weeping prophet because his heart broke over the plight and condition of his people. His heart ached. As challenging as Bob Pierce's work was to raise money to support needy children, Jeremiah's ministry was even more difficult. He was sent to deliver a hard message - a message that required the people to repent, change, and alter their lives. Then, as now, most people don't respond well to personal messages that require behavioral changes. The typical response is: "Who are you to tell me what to do?" Yet Jeremiah proclaimed this message,and he did it with a tear in his eye.
Jeremiah's mourning prefigured Jesus. In similar manner Jesus wept over people's sin. His heart broke "because they were weary and worn out, like sheep without a shepherd" (Matt. 9:36). The ministry of Christ was a tearful ministry. The summary of his ministry was offered by the author of Hebrews, "During His earthly life, He offered prayers and appeals with loud cries and tears to the One who was able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His reverence" (Hebrews 5:7). His ministry broke his heart and cost him his life.
What breaks your heart?
Before you answer that question, let me inform you what broke Jeremiah's heart, and Jesus' heart, and what should break your heart.

I. Let your heart be broken by turning from your sin. (vv. 5-7a)

God told Jeremiah to say, "Why have these people turned away? Why is Jerusalem always turning away? They take hold of deceit; they refuse to return" (Jer. 8:5). The people in Jeremiah's day had turned away from God, and they refused to repent. They had no desire to return to God, though they had every opportunity to do so. Instead, the people deliberately charged ahead in their sinful practices like a war horse charging into battle, having no idea of the dangers involved.
They should have known better. Jeremiah reminded them that when people fall down, they get up again. If one takes the wrong road, they turn around to get back on the right road. Even birds know when it is time to migrate. People should be as obedient to divine instruction, returning to God when they sin.
One of the great problems in modern Christianity is that we practice confession of sin, but not repentance. We hold fast to 1 John 1:9, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (1 John 1:9), but fail to heed Jesus' words in Luke 5:32, "I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance" (Luke 5:32). We treat repentance like it is a one-time act, at conversion, and confession is all we need after that. Jesus doesn't want us just to acknowledge our sin, but to turn from our sin. Remember what Jesus said to those he forgave. "Go and sin no more."
We are like children caught in misbehavior saying, "I'm sorry, I'm sorry," only to have them repeat the same mistake again. We do the same thing with God, don't we? How often do you find yourself saying to God, "I'm sorry," only to repeat the same sin over and over again? To turn from the sin is to cease from doing it.
The evangelist Sammy Tippet wrote, "Too many in the West desire to know the manifest love of God without the manifest holiness of God. We have lost the message of repentance. Now the church in the West is the sleeping Giant. The church in the East sends a strong message: The repenters must repent!"
Repentance is a gift of grace. A repentant person is willing to leave his destructive paths as a slave is willing to leave his galley, or a prisoner his dungeon, or a thief his wares, or a beggar his rags. Repentance sets us free.

II. Let your heart be broken by practicing God's Word. (vv. 7b-13)

The roots of Judah's sin were a failure to repent and the rejection of God's word. Jeremiah wrote that God says, "They have rejected the word of the Lord" (Jer. 8:9). The people possessed the Word, but did not practice the Word.
Isn't it interesting that year in and year out the Bible is still a bestseller? But its popularity is not keeping Western society from crumbling morally and spiritually. There appears to be little connection between what people say they believe and the way people act. Could the problem lie in the fact that while we may read God's Word and believe God's Word, we do not practice God's Word? In the words of James, we are to "But be doers of the word and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves" (James 1:22).
It broke Jesus' heart that the Scribes and Pharisees, the students of the Word, did not practice the Word. They argued and debated the Scriptures but they did not accept and follow its precepts.  They had knowledge of the Law but did not apply it.
James reminded us: ". . . humbly receive the implanted word, which is able to save you" (James 1:21). The word receive means "to welcome" or "to come on in." To accept God's Word, first we must welcome the word into our lives. We must give it our full attention. We must be teachable, yielded, humble, and willing to be changed.
When we begin to put God's Word into practice it will change our hearts. We will see people as Jesus saw people. We will hurt as he hurt over the injustices. We will be sensitive to the disenfranchised, lonely, abused, and neglected. We will cry for the lost and dying without him. We will feel deeply about his passion to reach the world.

III. Let your heart be broken by realizing the urgency of the hour. (v. 20)

Jeremiah wrote eloquently, "Harvest has passed, summer has ended, but we have not been saved" (Jer. 8:20). The harvest and the summer were two different seasons. The former was the time for gathering grain. The latter was the time for gathering fruit. If one of these harvests was a failure, the other was usually a success. If both were unsuccessful, stark tragedy stared the people in the face. The proverb speaks of the tragedy of wasted opportunity. It would be said today, "Time's up!" "The party's over." There comes a time when it is too late.
While I know little of farming, I do understand that the farmer has a brief window when the crops are to be harvested before they rot in the fields. The farmer must harvest before it is too late. A sense of urgency is required to bringing in the harvest.
A similar urgency needs must be felt for the harvest of souls. Of the billions of people in the world, it is estimated that over 30 million worldwide will die without Christ each year. And of the over 300 million people in the United States, it is estimated that 41 percent of the people don't go to church at all. Not at Easter, or at Christmas, or to weddings or funerals. And if they were to die they would go to eternal punishment without knowing the love of Christ.
Jesus' heart broke over the harvest when he said, "The harvest is abundant, but the workers are few. Therefore, pray to the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest" (Matt. 9:37-38). He saw the people, saw the clock, and saw the need. His heart broke because time was running out.
The old preacher Vance Havner used to say, "The tragedy of our time is that the situation is desperate but the saints are not." We are living in desperate times. And desperate times demand action. We live in a lost and broken world desperate for the good news of Jesus Christ.
Three weeks before President John Kennedy was assassinated, he said, "Almost all presidents leave office feeling that their work is unfinished. I have a lot to do, and so little time to do it." As followers of Jesus Christ, we have much work to do and little time to do it. We must give ourselves to it. The times demand urgent action. Remember, the gospel is only good news if it arrives in time.

IV. Let your heart be broken by watching someone self-destruct. (v. 21)

Jeremiah wrote, "I am broken by the brokenness of my dear people. I mourn; horror has taken hold of me" (Jer. 8:21). Jeremiah mourned over the sins of the people. The people were like his child, injured, barely clinging to life. "I mourn" literally means "I am dark" or "black," the color of mourning attire. He was dismayed, which described a wrenching fit, literally being convulsed with agony. Jeremiah was like a parent watching a wayward child destroy his life through wrong choices.
I have a daughter - my only child. I hurt when she hurts. I lose sleep when she is in trouble. I feel pain when she is in pain. I suppose only a parent can know those kinds of emotions. While my daughter is a "good" kid who has made mostly right decisions for which I am grateful, I can only imagine the hurt that some parents feel when they are helpless, watching their wayward child self-destruct.
Jeremiah saw the people of Judah as his very own children. He saw them venturing down the slippery slope of self-destruction. His pain, his wounded heart, was reminiscent of the pain Jesus took upon himself in Gethsemane. Jesus, too, saw the world - the people whom he created and loved - as his own children. When the shock and the burden of the sins of the people took hold of him his sweat turned to blood. We get our word excruciating from the events of Calvary, for the word means "out from the cross." The pain, the hurt, the emotions ran deep. His heart broke excruciatingly because the people he loved were running headlong into destruction.
How often does your heart break for lost friends and the lost world?

V. Let your heart be broken by people refusing the cure. (v. 22)

"Is there no balm in Gilead?" (Jer. 8:22) was a metaphor that his hearers would have easily understood. Jeremiah was looking to the east, toward the restful town of Gilead. It was located in the mountainous region east of the Jordan River and north of Moab. It was famous for its healing ointment made from the resin of a tree of uncertain identity. Gilead was a symbol of hope. It was a city of cure. It was place of remedy.
Jeremiah was saying that a remedy existed for the people's wound - repentance - but they had not applied it. A physician could heal their spiritual sickness - the prophet with God's word - but they refused to consult him.
Do you know any sick people who refuse to take medication or treatment? Do you know any married couples whose marriage is on the rocks, but they refuse to see a counselor? Do you know any employee who could be helped in his or her performance if only they would talk to their supervisor? Do you know any spiritually lost people who know they need to turn to Jesus but refuse to follow him?
A 30-year-old man climbed over the retaining wall at Niagara Falls and jumped into the rapids of Horseshoe Falls. Quickly the rushing currents carried him toward the 173-foot drop. Even if he wanted to, there could be no turning back. The 675,000 gallons of water that plunge over the falls every second hurtled him like a toothpick over the famous Falls.
Incredibly, the man resurfaced at the bottom of the fierce currents. He was conscious and swimming, despite a gash to his head. The force of the falls had torn off his clothes. Very few have ever survived such a fatal plunge. Clinging to a piece of driftwood, he swam 30 feet from the shore. Niagara Police Sgt. Chris Gallagher yelled for him to swim toward shore. The man refused. Letting go of the driftwood he headed in the opposite direction swimming between the ice chunks.
A helicopter flew low over the man and extended a pole, but he did not cooperate. He wrestled a rescue sling from his arm and swam away. Despite the treacherous conditions of ice, high winds, and waves the helicopter made another attempt. The pilot angled the chopper blades to create a wave that would push the man towards the shore.
Rescuers raced against the clock. After 30 minutes in the icy waters the man weakened but remained totally uncooperative. Firefighter Ted Brunning jumped into the river and pulled the perishing man 200 feet to shore.
He was rescued against his will. The authorities conclude the man must not have been thinking right.
Jesus sees more than just one person on a dangerous course. He sees people from every walk of life heading toward the same end. The path of sin does not have a good ending. Despite the well-announced warning of hell ahead people swim on in the swirling current of their sins, unrepentant, with the clock ticking. Time is running out. And, as bizarre as it seems, some perishing people resist rescue. Not everyone wants to be saved from peril. Not everyone wants to abandon the course they are on. Not everyone wants to come to Jesus.
It should break our hearts when we see:
  • People who are unrepentant.
  • People who don't practice God's Word.
  • People who don't realize time is running out.
  • People who are self-destructing.
  • People who refuse the cure.
Those people break God's heart.

Conclusion

God uses people with broken hearts. Will you let your heart be broken by the things that break God's heart?
I close with a song written by Bryan Jeffery Leech. It is entitled "Let Your Heart Be Broken." May it challenge us to look deep within our own hearts to see what hurts us most.
Let your heart be broken for a world in need.
Feed the mouths that hunger, soothe the wounds that bleed.
Give the cup of water, and the loaf of bread.
Be the hands of Jesus, serving in his stead.

Here on earth applying principles of love.
Visible expression, God still rules above.
Living illustration of the living word,
To the minds of all who've never seen or heard.

Blest to be a blessing, privileged to care.
Challenged be the need, apparent everywhere.
Where mankind is wanting, fill the vacant place.
Be the means through which the Lord reveals His grace.

Add to your believing deeds that prove it true,
Knowing Christ as Savior, Make Him Master too.
Follow in His footsteps, go where he has trod.
In the world's great trouble risk yourself for God.

Let your heart be tender and your vision clear.
See mankind as God sees, serve Him far and near.
Let your heart be broken by a brother's pain.
Share your rich resources, give and give again.

© 1975 The Evangelical Covenant Church
Rick Ezell is the pastor of First Baptist Church, Greer, South Carolina. Rick has earned a Doctor of Ministry in Preaching from Northern Baptist Theological Seminary and a Master of Theology in preaching from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Rick is a consultant, conference leader, communicator, and coach.

Monday, January 2, 2017

MINIMALISM...MY BLISS!!! WORKING ON IT!

For years my new year resolution has been SIMPLIFY but this year? It is forming into a kind of MINIMALISM but for the sake of finding and following my BLISS. Live with less and actually own only that which brings joy...bliss. If you are like me you have a lot of crap that clutters your life. A true minimalist will not own more than 150 items, does not own a car or a television. I am not planing to go that hard core but instead of having things stuffed away in the wash room or some drawer I am beginning the surge..rid myself of excess.. Have what you have because you personally enjoy it. If you cannot have it out to enjoy then why have it at all?

This is a big change and I have a storage unit to help me with the transition. Gives me a chance to think about what I want to do with 'stuff'. I have art pictures that I have strong feelings about and have come up with a creative way to display so I can actually experience them. Are you like that? Do you have large framed prints stored behind a door, for years loving them too much to send away? I tried and realized there is a reason and THAT is what I need to keep because it brings me enjoyment. That is fulfilling a purpose for me and one I DESERVE!! lol...

There are many things I tell myself NO to that I might enjoy but are not good for me in the whole scheme of things. Anyway this can only be a mix of minimalism and bliss and it is my resolution, not Joe Blow's or Jane Doe's. Yes, my new year resolve is only have/do what will ultimately bring you bliss. BLISS! What will that involve for me in the coming year? I better take the before pics now!! LOL and Happy New Year~!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

MY DELIGHT !! What is yours?

Delight : verb 
To take great pleasure or joy. 

How do I DELIGHT myself?

                      
Sometimes I go buy my favorite ice cream and favorite fixings and delight myself in the eating all I want. I at times delight myself in activities like dancing with a gentleman that doesn't step on my toes, or experiencing the phenomenal workings of my body as a lift light weight in a body sculpting class. We all delight in different things and activities to even the company we keep. Those things all beckon me to delight in them but none promises to give me the desires of my heart!

Now, THAT'S a promise!  

To those who earnestly seek to,  "Delight yourself in the Lord" ..not ice cream, though we still enjoy it, or people  (we certainly enjoy them), or shopping, fishing, boating,  trips to far-away-places or ANYTHING, (even being the BEST!!) But, DELIGHT YOURSELF IN THE LORD. This means I let go and trust in Him to fulfill my heart's desire.


  • I WILL DELIGHT MYSELF IN THE LORD AND HE WILL GIVE ME THE DESIRES OF MY HEART!  
  •  I HAVE NO IDEA HOW HE WILL DO IT AND I ACTIVELY DELIGHT MYSELF IN HIM. I JUST LET IT GO TO HIM!
When will you get serious about truly obtaining the DESIRES OF YOUR HEART?  
Everything in our society sends the message, "Delight in me!" Even those positive sayings that I once bought into will simply pull us away from delighting in the Lord. What they tell us is to delight in ourselves and our abilities or the abilities of certain others and things. 

 How earnestly do you consider delighting in the Lord?  
 STOP! Stop striving. Striving is in opposition with 'Be Still.' We are told to be still and to stop striving and don't worry. Sometimes in life tangle these words are as foreign as realizing that those two enemies called pride and vanity keep us in a gridlock hold with worry, lack, pain, anger to a negative end. No, they don't have us, we have them. We spiral down and down in a death grip. It is at that time the foreign words will come.Trust God. We simply need that moment of clarity when our true helplessness is understood.
    At that moment we see the big lie..and realize we don't trust God. Have that epiphany, and let go like you just realized you hold a basket overflowing with poisonous vipers.When you do the turn of that great tide against you will cease. Trust God. Let it go. Trust every care to God.  The moment of your epiphany will come.

I don't have to worry. I don't have to come to the rescue of whatever I hold dear. No more. I give it to God. Yes, the invisible God. The maker of heaven and earth. He loves me. He cares. Indeed. In Deed.

Step forward and delight yourself in the Lord. 

Check in. Check in on your priorities and begin putting your delight in the Lord. You can do it. Trust the fulfilling of your heart's desires to the Lord God! This means wonderful things will come your way (the desires of your heart) As I, we, follow the direction to delight in the Lord. This is a process. One I hope you begin. 
     I am experiencing receiving my heart's desires but if I am not delighting myself in the Lord  then that fulfilling,  flow of hearts desire will be hindered because I put my delight and my trust in other means. 

I pray I continue to humble myself and I vow to delight myself in the Lord continually. When trouble/trials of life disturb me, and those things come, I don't struggle or strive WITH it any more. I pray. I give the hurt of it, the sorrow, the fear or anger (plug your own word in) to the Maker of heaven and earth, the Lord God. The unrest and loss of peace are your sign, symptom and reason to get to your cave. Vent, be angry, cry,whine if you must but don't sin. Instead realize the quicker you cry out,

"Lord God, take this. This yoke. This is not my desire or my delight. I delight myself in YOU!" and humble self to your Father God. God is good. He is for us. 
     As we then wait patiently in trust He gives us the desires of our hearts. Sweet Lord! I only wish I had come to this epiphany at the beginning. However, that's not how epiphany's work. =)    Saturday, Dulin


 Want the desires of my heart truly given me then I must make the radical choice  to delight myself in the Lord God. Psalm 37:4 desires--( Psalms 20:5 , 21:2 ), what is lawful and right, really good ( Psalms 84:11 ).

Jesus In The Single Empty Nest TODAY!

   Hi, my name is Linda and welcome to this blog. My motivation for this blog is to help others through some tough times of the Empty Nest, especially the Empty Nest of the Single Parent. As such you will be little understood and often maligned. It will do no good to try and explain anything concerning your position to your circle of friends, family, or extended family and so it goes.

Below are some passages from the bible that will not only help you but will make the difference as you as you make your path through un-chartered waters. There will be high winds and storms of conflict. 

Stay the course of the following passages and forget the jargon, the angry society of your circle, even your inner circle,all  incited by tongues  set on fire by hell itself. Not my analogy, it's God's straight talk from scripture. If you try to defend yourself or say what you are being subjected by the speech of others then YOU will be ignored and worse still maligned even further. Possibly even shunned...Yes, this happens in our modern day society. So here you go. Your help... YOUR ONLY HELP! the passages from the Bible.

James 3:6  And the tongue is a flame of fire. It is a whole world of wickedness, corrupting your entire body. It can set your whole life on fire, for it is set on fire by hell itself.

So realize then, if it sets ones life on fire what the tongue of others can do merely in passing, to your life as well, IF YOU LET IT.

SO, YOU DO HAVE RECOURSE! 


#1 Scripture source

Daniel 6:22 (BBE) My God has sent his angel to keep the lions' mouths shut, and they have done me no damage: because I was seen to be without sin before him; and further, before you, O King, I have done no wrong.

I like to say that when Daniel was in the Lion's Den he spoke with confidence, My God has shut the lion's mouth. So let this be your prayer of faith as you are in a den or pit or circle of the ravenous. 

#Your 1 Recourse-- Proclaim, My God has shut the LION'S mouth.


#2 Scripture source

And all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, so that in due time He may exalt you. 7Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.

 Your #2 Recourse--Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, so that in due time He may exalt you. 7.Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.

#3 scripture source--Isaiah 54:16-17
16"Behold, I Myself have created the smith who blows the fire of coals And brings out a weapon for its work; And I have created the destroyer to ruin. 17"No weapon that is formed against you will prosper; And every tongue that accuses you in judgment you will condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, And their vindication is from Me," declares the LORD.
Put your faith and trust in the fact that: No weapon that is fashioned against you shall succeed, and you shall refute every tongue that rises against you in judgment. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD and their vindication is from me, declares the LORD.”

Use the powerful recourse God gives you when dealing with all manner of situations and do not stop,  and I do believe He will cause you to succeed!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 

Some of my life experiences in the Single Empty Nest

 A few years ago I realized that if I shared my experiences I could help others in similar situations ...
I realized that  it is not always the thing on the outside that crushes the heart but a heart can faint, fail, misfire because of what is going on inside. As a singled mother of many years to 3 sons, now grown, I have focused the majority of life on my sons. I spent much of that life keeping them involved in those things that would bring healthy growth and fill what could have otherwise been idle minds and hands. Organized activities of football, basketball, baseball, BMX racing, soccer, band, orchestra, choir and last but not least church involvement. AND oh yes I had a full time job and I served in my church as well. These were all things my sons needed to experience in a parent, even if there was only one of me! 

In the midst ... of  concentrated living as one who embraced motherhood responsibilities I knew I was the most important person in their lives. My life was full and I found self-worth and value in being their mother.

As my sons grew up  ...
and into careers, wives and homes of their own my motivation for life began to drain. Being their mother had been the driving force in my life. Instead of maintaining a daily devotional guiding me through this difficult "empty nest", even my prayers seemed to wane.  However, there was an ongoing conversation with God. He was still my Partner.

I no longer had motivation ...
to be my best.  Every good thing I did in life had my children at the core. They were why I smiled in the mornings and why I prayed ardently that  God help me to be the kind of mother HE would have me be. 

 Even though  ...
God worked this in me I still made mistakes. In hind-sight I realize that painfully stumbling, failing and getting back up were also part of the whole picture. I  learned in the process that I had a loving Father God who In His great mercy and compassion continued to  bless me through and in spite of mistakes. 

God is no respecter of persons ...
I tried unsuccessfully re-marriage, rather than concentrating on much needed healing within 3 years I had been married and divorce not once but twice!!! I was emotionally out of control.Too desperate for love and security. These things were there for me in a healing God I was too fragmented to fully embrace. It was a raw learning experience that God brought me through and in which He allows me to see that as it is written, "All things (not some) work for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose! The good that has been accomplished and is to be further accomplished as I continue in His love, walking according to His purpose.

I had never, ever learned to care for myself ...
This is painful to say. To realize. I am learning.

God so loved...
His love for not just me and mine but, His great love for all the women and the children of the Single Parent Nest. Those struggling little families without the protection and provision of an earthly father. I am thankful for God's love and His light in our lives. The reality of my imperfectness does not blot out what by His power alone was accomplished  in our poverty of not only finances but of earthly care from a family unit. No thing or person can blot out the reality and beauty of God, in our lives through it all, even the mistakes.


To the LEAVERS...left the Nest and the care for their children and spouse. To any father, mother/husband, wife who left 
the responsibility of Their Nest whether it be many years ago or few, humble yourself to God and repent to Him if you have not done so, that you be made whole.  I urge you in love, to confess to God who is the ONLY one we sin against. I direct you to a God who is beautiful in mercy and love, to Romans chapter 8 as follows:

 1Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.   2 For the law of the Spirit of LIFE in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. 3For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, 4so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. 5For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. 6For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, 7because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, 8and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
You can go to this link for all of the chapter:  http://biblehub.com/nasb/romans/8.htm

The four of us, however crippled by lack,  
were rich in love. Our great love for each other and most importantly God's great love for us.  A love that loved us back.

My life as a mother  
and a good wife for almost 20 years, and then a single mom with an infant and toddler and adolescent son (all grown and married by now) has thus far been the pinnacle of true accomplishment in my life. Motherhood has been my greatest achievement and highest earthly honor.

To become the lone person left in that nest ...
has now become the great challenge of my well being. and the thing that was the source of my greatest strength has become the source of my greatest weakness. My Achilles heel.

Even my heart began to fail me 
and I have wondered if this experience would be the end of my life on this earth so deep  was the tear to my psyche. I have done, tried, all the goal setting, the positive life filling things I found to try but have only had periods of time I managed to stay afloat and then would go down for the count for longer and longer periods each time as the lone-ness of the empty nest covered me like a heavy unwelcome blanket.

Each time the onset of the holidays 
brought deeper sinking. Holidays as you know are big family time, and with the many wonderful years of  celebrated Thanksgivings and Christmas and birthdays shared in my nest I soon went under for another struggle with depression. Last season proved my lowest point, and I managed to make it to January, when all the tears had been cried and all the private pain of the Empty Nest had been experienced. I was left a shambles physically by the tole of a sort of grieving.

And my heart truly failed me...
 It miss-fired, trotted like a runaway horse. My blood pressure soared and I felt helpless. Powerless. I had always been active visiting the gym daily but now reduced to a flailing victim of the Empty Nest! I reluctantly endured the repertoire of tests a cardiologist deems vital to find that I had a good heart that somehow had lost its' path, its' rhythm. He further added that it is unexplained by science. I took a newly developed beta-blocker with something included for anxiety and after a few months realized the life changing situation that had developed. 

This was not the way I wanted to live my life!
I grasp for the one thing that could save me from this storm. I returned to the one thing that always saw me through. A love that loves us back. I prayed earnestly. I confided in God that I did not want to live my life this way. I wanted to be healthy again and that I couldn't afford the medicine I would have to take till I left this earth. I confided to God's heart. "I know you can heal me if you will,"

I proceeded with life...
As well we should. The new motivating factor was now to preserve my life and to not allow my heart to remain in that confused condition constantly beating out of rhythm. I didn't realize that Jesus the Mender of Broken Hearts was at work.

In a blog entitled ONE MONTH TO LOVE by Kerry and Chris Shook (same authors as New York Times' Best Seller ONE MONTH TO LIVE) I began to search for direction. Jesus was aleady carrying me. I went back to week one to begin at the beginning and learned about the ancient practice of Electio Divina. The Holy Spirit used those simple living words to speak and give me much needed guidance. 

“Cease striving and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.“ Psalm 46:10 (NASB)

In other words the Holy Spirit spoke to me, 'Doesn't what you are experiencing lead to strife inwardly and outwardly leaving you miserable and sick in heart? '

YES! YES IT DOES!

I humbly admit... 
I confess, that after so many years in the exalted role of mother and sole parent and care giver it was that importance, that deep feeling of love and worth that women need, that I desperately held my 3 children in that same place...as I did in the delivery room of my last born son who I carried through and during the separation before our divorce.

Through much despair It reminds me of the time ... 
of dealing with a continually unfaithful, unloving spouse and parent, who could not even bring himself to be present at the birth of our precious child. 

As the doctor lay OUR newborn on my chest I wrapped my protecting arms around him. I must not let him go. The nurse tried to take him from me and that was not happening. He was safe in my arms. It was only with my doctors wise coaxing that clarity broke through and I released my careful grip. To allow the nurses to do all the post birth things they do. 

Only now as I write this blog ...do I realize the parable ... 
The comparison speaks as a parable of the loving grip I have held within myself of my nestlings. It was time to release that which I  held dearly. Protectively. And this time for my own well being. Let go of my dear birds to the ONE who loves them more than I do. Into His loving care and protection I have released them, to do the things that are best for them. I happily trust God. 

Now, this day is my hearts time to beat  ...
in harmony. And now is my time to LIVE HAPPILY EVER AFTER! And I can, and it's not just in the movies! I will take care of myself. I will care about myself. 

Having wealth in life  or a full nest is not what will ever bring us happiness ...
Learning to love yourself unconditionally, the way God loves you... and bringing it right to my nest, to your nest, left empty or not, feathers out of place, crows-feet, and muffin tummy... any or every other thing that you think could possibly render you unloveable ...loving and accepting yourself as you are. Then and only then and only then can we love our neighbor, our fellow inhabitants in earth suits as we love ourselves. That is living happily ever after.

The bible speaks ...
 'Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God and He will exalt you in due time'.  This speaks to, Quit STRIVING for honor or to be exalted by your family, or with your friends and at your job. STRIVING is a word full of negative meaning. Strife is what is brought about through striving and I am thankful to be guided by the word of God and the Holy Spirit and a faithful pastor's teaching of how to develop that communion with a Holy God through  Lectio Divina.  The teaching  and guidance of the Holy Spirit., it is the power of God working in my life.

If you are interested in learning more about the ancient method of meditation to receive Holy Spirit guidance not hocus pocus here is a free website to help you know how to do that plain and simple.

http://www.kerryandchris.org/2013/01/14/one-month-to-love-day-1/

God's light to me:
 CEASE STRIVING -- Know that I AM GOD! And--
"Humble yourself under the mighty hand of God and He will exalt you in due time."  

Through devastating trials...
God brought me to this moment. I am strong in Him alone for in Him the weak are made strong. I am healed. I no longer take any medication and my heart has regained its' rhythm. I realize my heart is sensitive and I am kind and caring to myself. I am thankful that God is faithful. God is greater than my heart. All things work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose.


I give thanks to God if anything on this blog helps even one person.  God is love and in Him we move and breathe and have our being. I pray God blesses every person who visits this blog with understanding of His ways...His ways are higher than our ways.

 If Jesus were to write a resume' the business of  binding broken hearts would surely be on it. Jesus came to serve, not to be served and He still serves on the earth binding broken hearts with the Divine Helper, the Holy Spirit! Beautiful.  Growing in God's love ~ Linda LaVerne Dulin




Isaiah 61:1
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners,  ~~  Jesus even cares about broken hearts. 


Blessed are those who mourn for they shall be comforted.
http://biblehub.com/matthew/5-4.htm


 Romans 8:1-4
 1Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. 3For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, 4so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
For all of Romans Chapter 8. you can go here: 
 http://biblehub.com/nasb/romans/8.htm  

Monday, October 5, 2015

TRUST GOD

Whether it was the killing of one man with one rock or the killing of many with a homemade bomb via easy access to the how to and the simplest of ingredients, NONE of the remedies you advocate will solve the problems. Their is SOMETHING that will bring change that IS within our grasp! DO THIS: Put your faith where your mouth is, 2 Chronicles 7:14 if my people, who are called by my name, (note it is us do gooders he is addressing) to (1) humble themselves and (2) pray and (3) seek MY face and (4) turn from their wicked ways, (surely He doesn't refer to our own wickedness! I wax facetious), THEN, I will hear from heaven, and I WILL forgive their sin and WILL heal their land. " I ask you why do you have faith in your fight over how to stop the violence rather than faith in the simple word of God? Do you believe God? Do you believe the scriptures? If not then what do you base your Christianity on? We must return to faith do it God's way. Trust God. Trust God. Do your part which is putting action to this scripture. I can humble myself before God, I can admit my own wickedness (only He is righteous) and pray and seek God's face AND turn from wicked ways. Then He will do his part and forgive MY sin (not that of the reprobate, get that? MINE ( I am the called by His name, Christ follower) He will hear, forgive me, US and HE will heal our land! THAT is our hope and only THAT will bring change."