Tag Archives: Christianity

I Use To Support Prostitution…

http://viralchrist.com/spiritual-growth/love/1559-qlover-or-prostitute-the-question-that-changed-my-life

Now before you jump to conclusions, let me explain. This morning I read an article titled, “Lover or Prostitute?” It started out by explaining the history of Christianity. Christianity started in Palestine as a fellowship; it moved to Greece and became a philosophy; it moved to Italy and became an institution; it moved to Europe and became a culture; it came to America and became an enterprise. The definition of enterprise is a business or company. The writer was teaching this history lesson to a group of teenagers and one of the women asked a simple question. She said, “A business? But isn’t it supposed to be a body?” His response was yes and then she said, “But when a body becomes a business, isn’t that a prostitute?”

I didn’t grow up in church, but I did attend with friends every chance I got. I loved it there. Everyone was so loving and welcoming, something my home life was lacking. I quickly learned that people in church were different. Their families were actually happy, or so they seemed from the perspective of a 13-year-old with such a dysfunctional one of my own. So as an impressionable young girl, I related happiness with church. And with that I also assumed that all people who went to church were good people. This mindset led me down a very destructive path, although I didn’t recognize it until it was way too late.

At 15, I started dating. The boy was perfect in my eyes because of one thing. His family attended church. For some reason in my mind it never occurred to me that just because people go to church, doesn’t mean they are without flaws. Fast forward three years and I am now dating a different person with the same mindset. I fell in love with him because of his family. They were everything missing in my life. In a mother and father that were still married, I saw perfection. They not only attended church, but his grandfather was a preacher. I honestly felt that God placed this man and his family in my life to give me what I was missing for so long. I now had the mother and father I had always dreamed of and their Godly son by my side.

Fast forward a few years and I am married to that man and I discovered that just because people attend church and know the bible does not mean they are any different from the world. I learned that people can put on a mask and pretend to be whomever they want to portray. I made the bold statement that I use to support prostitution because I supported things that were against everything Christ stood for. My ignorance allowed me to focus on the wrong things in order to try to gain the things of Christ. I did eventually gain the things of Christ and I continue to learn more with each new day, but I took the wrong path to get there.

It not only took me 15 years of growth to gain the courage to stand up against the wrong that was taking place, but it took me even longer to realize that having a relationship with Christ is nothing like a business. I use to think that in order to grow in Christ I had to attend every church event, volunteer for everything I could, teach the younger generation, etc. I had bought in to the body becoming a business because I had a mental checklist of things that must be done to reach the my desired goal.

When the body of Christ consists of people that don’t really know Him, there is no way they can love Him. Loving someone unconditionally requires knowing them. Knowing what makes them tick, why they are who they are, their hearts.

As the body of Christ, I think we better stop and check our hearts and our motives. Because if the majority of us that call ourselves Christians are out there prostituting the body of Christ, we who call ourselves the body are defiling the very nature of the one who gave His life for us on the cross.

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WARNING: More is Caught than Taught!!!

WARNING: More is Caught than Taught!!!

http://youtu.be/L11s56ALon0

Today as I was preparing my daily posts for my Facebook pages, I ran across this video. As I watched it, my heart was pained by the fact that we all have made stupid choices in front of our children at some point in our lives. As Christians we teach our kids to listen to what we say, often forgetting that our actions speak louder than our words. As my children get older, I have noticed some of the mistakes I made during the most painful years of my life have taken root in their hearts. Luckily God gave me His eyes and His heart during that time and made me aware of my own issues. Without that, I would still be indirectly teaching my kids behaviors that I would never want them to learn. Don’t get me wrong. I am in no way perfect now, but my heightened awareness allows me to see the areas where I need to grow and heal so that my kids don’t imitate my bad behaviors. If you are reading this and wonder how you can know if you are guilty of this, study your kids. They are mirror images of you. If they have a bad habit of being impatient, I would bet that one of their parents struggles with patience. If they have a low self-esteem, odds are a parent possesses that same trait. If your child is negative and sees life with a glass half empty mentality, they learned that from someone close to them that they watch every single day.

I know this is not easy to hear or to accept. As parents we want to raise perfect kids, but in reality that is not possible. No one is perfect and the ugly truth is that we all have baggage and bad behaviors that we caught from our parents, and them from their parents. But we can be the one who decides to make the necessary changes in our own hearts in order to foster an environment that encourages positive behaviors instead of passing on negative ones.

If today, for the first time, a lightbulb came on for you, know you are not alone. God is on your side and is right there waiting for you to ask him to start the healing process in your life. Trust Him!

Joshua 1:9 says, “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid. God will be with you and will never forsake you.”

Dear God,

Thank you for sharing with us in ways that get our attention. As we strive to be better parents, give us the strength and courage to get honest about us so that we can model YOU to our children. We know that we can’t give away what we don’t have so fill us with You.  Help us replace our old ways with Your ways. Thank you for giving us children and entrusting them to our care. Use them to reveal to us our hearts and open our eyes to the damage we are doing without even knowing what we are passing on.

In Your Precious & Holy Name,

Amen!

Call To Christ

My childhood consists of bits and pieces of memories that fade in and out of my mind as I journey though life. My earliest memory of church was one I attended with my parents. We sat on the back row every time we went, which wasn’t very often. Maybe half a dozen times at the most. I recall sitting through what seemed to be hours of hymns that made me very sleepy. I often would lay my head in one of my parent’s laps and I think I slept through the rest because that is all I can remember. So my experience with church was one that put me to sleep. Not a good start towards living a life for God.
When I started middle school, I met lots of new kids that attended Lakepointe Baptist Church. They always talked about how much fun it was and I wanted to go more than anything. But my family owned a pizza restaurant and worked late hours on Saturday evenings, so Sunday mornings were the day they would sleep in. My seventh grade year I spent the night with a friend and finally got the chance to experience what the hype was all about. It was such an awesome experience. It was then that God started stirring something in my heart.
For the next two years I was blessed to have the chance to bum rides from friends and my knowledge of God started to grow. At the end of my Freshman year of high school, I applied for a scholarship to attend church camp. It was approved and that experience changed my life forever. I will never forget the moment God spoke to me. We were singing and the worship leader invited us to accept Christ. My heart was racing and tears were streaming down my face. Time stood still and it was as if my Heavenly Father had stopped everything to share this moment with me.
Everything changed that day. I was suddenly very aware of things in my life that were no longer acceptable if I was going to live the Christian life that I had been called to. So my journey with God began. I continued to attend church and my faith in Christ grew stronger everyday. I even wore a t-shirt everywhere I went saying, “Friends Don’t Let Friends Go to Hell.” I wanted others to experience the love I had received.
Ever since that day that God met me where I was and invited me to have a personal relationship with him, my heart has been leading me to help heal others. Through the years, others have broken my heart, betrayed my trust and taken what wasn’t theirs to take, but God’s voice forever tells me to forgive them because they don’t know what they are doing. They are lost and hurting and they need to feel the love of Christ from people that have no reason to love them. God has always done just that for me and if I am to call myself a Christ follower, it is my duty to do the same.
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The Handiwork of God

A few weeks ago I received a phone call from a friend telling me that the man I dated prior to my husband, the one that I have spoken about that broke my heart, had shared his testimony with his wife at Re-Engage at Lakepointe. After hearing it, I realized for the first time that there aren’t just two sides to every story, there are three. Ours, theirs and Gods. Our stories just go to show that we never know what God is doing in our or the lives of others when he takes things away. His hand is working miracles every single day and we have to trust Him even when we don’t understand. I hope that hearing the other side of this story gives everyone that sees it a glimpse of God’s handiwork. His love is a redeeming love and no matter where you have been, what you have done, or how many times you have screwed up, God’s love wins every single time!

Thank You God!

Dear God,

I want to take time to remember all the things you have done for me through the years. Oh there are so many things. You have carried me through dark valleys of the shadow of death. You have rejoiced with me on the mountaintops. You have held my hand and helped me take a leap into unknown waters. You have applied healing balm to my hurts and warm sunshine on my soul. You have given me precious friends whom have stood the test of time…and more. You have given me a loving family to grow with and be with. You have increased my territory spiritually. You have picked me up when I have stumbled and nearly hit the ground. You have provided for me when I did not know where my provisions would come from. You have surrounded me with prayers and support from the family of God in time of need. You have shown me miracles and blessed my soul. You have given me the desires of my heart — desires that are in line with Your will and word. You have given me the privilege of helping advance Your Kingdom through gifts, talents, and resources You have entrusted to me. You have always been patient with me. You have felt my cries, laughed at my silliness, and gently guided me back onto the right path. You have loved me with an everlasting love. I could go on and on. God, I am thankful for You and all You have done and all You will do in my life. I love you and appreciate You and want to shout, “How great is my God!”

With loving gratitude, in Your sweet and holy name,
Amen.

Being Patient During the Wait

Patience — the will or ability to wait or endure without complaint; the state of endurance under difficult circumstances, persevering in the face of delay or provocation without acting on annoyance/anger in a negative way; or exhibiting forbearance when under strain, especially when faced with long-term difficulties.

Growing up I learned early on that patience was a virtue, but I never really knew the true definition. So because my version was a little skewed, I saw myself as a patient person. What I would soon learn was that the kind of patience I had was for day to day trials, not long-term waiting.

After my divorce I “dated dumb”, as I like to refer to it. Out of my pain, I choose people that were very unhealthy and I quickly discovered that if I wanted my second marriage to be healthier than my first, I had to make wiser choices. So I waited for God to place someone in my life. Not long after, I met a man and a few months into our relationship, marriage was being discussed. We dated for almost a year and had an amazing relationship. We attended church together, prayed together, and he was my best friend. He was everything I had prayed for since I was a little girl. But all those dreams were put on hold when he decided he needed some time to figure out what he really wanted. So my wait began. I knew God was in control, so I respected my boyfriends’ decision and stepped away to let him have the time he needed to make the best choice for him. I was patient for about four weeks and then I got angry. As days turned into weeks and weeks into months with no word from him, I realized patience was an area I needed to work on. I reminded myself daily that God had a plan and tried to meditate on His promises. That mindset would last a few days and then I was back to feeling sad and wondering why it was taking so long for God to give me what I thought was His plan for my life. Somewhere on this roller coster ride of trusting God and feeling sorry for myself, I realized that my lack of patience was due to the fact that I was waiting on the outcome I wanted. Never did I imagine that God had a different plan in store for me.

One day I had stayed in bed all afternoon because I had made myself physically ill. While I was laying there feeling sad and praying for God to take the pain away, I heard a crash that came from my bathroom. I walked in to find a framed, full length mirror face down on the cold tile floor. I very carefully turned it over, careful not to cut myself. The glass was shattered in hundreds of pieces. Great, I thought, seven years of bad luck. Just what I needed, more trials and heartache. Needless to say, that day turned out to be a depressing one.

It wasn’t until a few days later that God came through loud and clear. After the mirror had fallen and shattered, I placed it under a chaise lounge in my room. One day as I was cleaning, I decided it was time to throw it away. As a slide it out from under the lounge, I was reminded of all the pain in my life. With tears welling up in my eyes, I stood up and noticed something I hadn’t noticed before. Not a single piece was out of place. With blurred vision, I saw the most beautiful arrangement of broken glass. It looked like a firework with the center as the point of impact, bursting from there into a starburst effect. I was in awe of the beauty that came from an old, broken mirror. What God revealed next pierced my heart. He softly whispered that the mirror represented my life. Like the mirror, I was completely broken, but He promised me if I stayed focused on Him, He would take all the broken pieces of my life and put them back together to create a beautiful masterpiece.

On that cold winter day, my Heavenly Father revealed His heart and began the process of putting mine back together again. He taught me that patience is waiting on His timing, not my own. Through my brokenness, God made something more beautiful and more magnificent than anything I could have ever dreamed of.

So if you find yourself questioning God, wondering when He is going to come through for you, know that His timing is always perfect. Meditate on His word and through His teaching, He will use your heartache to mold you into the man or woman you were created to be.

 

Betrayal to Forgiveness

This is the poem I wrote to the women in my past that betrayed our friendship by sleeping with my husband. This is very raw and it still pains my soul, but there is healing in taking the last step to letting it go. I forgave my ex years ago, but my friends were the hardest to release. Holding on to the pain has held me captive and it has also kept me from letting other women get close. I pray that if you read this and have scars like me, give it all to God and let Him set you free!
He played a game, your heart his pawn.
Betrayed your trust, he led you on.
You always thought somehow you were special,
But that’s never the case when you dance with the devil.
He feeds you lies, consoles your cries,
But day by day a part of you dies.
Little did you know, you weren’t alone.
I too had placed my heart on his throne.
He became my God and I his slave,
which led my soul to an early grave.
For years the one I blamed was you.
How could you betray what I entrusted to you?
I shared my hurts, my fears, my dreams,
And you used that knowledge to fulfill your schemes.
You took what was mine and lied to my face,
but my problem was putting my husband in God’s place.
It has taken me years to break free from these chains,
But with God by my side, I have healed from the pain.
So thank you for opening my eyes to finally see,
And I forgive you because my God forgave me.