117 posts categorized "Healing"

A Miller Update

Mike&Leslie
Leslie & Mike, Christmas 2016

Hello, my dear friends. I’m taking today’s post as an opportunity to update you on my daughter, Leslie. Many of you have asked me to keep you updated, which touches my heart beyond belief. Thank you. Your love and prayers fill my heart with comfort, joy and peace.

If you’re new to the site, my daughter Leslie was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor at age 14 in 2008. She is 23 now and cancer free. (If you want the full story, you can do a search of her name to access the archives.) At the end of 2015 she began to exhibit side effects of her radiation treatments from 2009 and had to stop working due to pain and trembling throughout her limbs. Just as it seemed she was finally stepping into a full life, healthy.

Leslie has still not been able to go back to work. It’s been over a year now. Her pain level is still high and after a year of seeing the doctors at Stanford (not the same team who helped save her life) and not getting anywhere or any relief, she has begun to take control of her own health care.

That’s a big step. I confess that was difficult at first for this mama who can hover at times, but she has done a fabulous job pursuing her own health solutions and answers.

As a result, she’s managed to find out more with a rheumatologist nearby in just a short month. Right now the doctor’s report says she has arthritis in her tendons, her right ankle being the most damaged. 

My friends, I am going to be honest with you here. I didn’t know what to pray for as this was unfolding. I, of course, wanted a good report and prayed for that, but I was torn. I wanted answers for her so she could figure out how to manage the pain in her body and live a fuller life. 

So I am grateful for answers, but I am not coming into agreement with this diagnosis, nor will I speak it over her. I have learned in the healing rooms to pray and believe with each person at whatever level they are willing to believe God for their healing, but I have also witnessed God increase each person's faith in those moments to believe and ask God for more than they can ask or imagine (Eph 3:20).

So, I will support my sweet girl and believe with her at whatever level she is at to believe she can be restored, even through treatments and medications, which I’m not against. God clearly worked in tandem with the doctors to save her life in 2008, and it is a story full of miracles.

I believe in God’s Word that says we WERE healed by the stripes of Jesus, and that His salvation (sozo) covers our physical restoration too. And I am standing on the promise God gave me for Leslie from Isaiah:

The Lord will guide you continually, giving you water when you are dry and restoring your strength. You will be like a well-watered garden, like an ever-flowing spring. — Isaiah 58:11

My friends, I am not discouraged. Initially my heart ached, and I poured that out to my Papa God. He gave me comfort, peace and reassurance. He does not forget His promises. Quite the opposite. He constantly watches, plans and sets things in to motion to fulfill His Word out of His great compassion and in His perfect timing.

Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore he will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him! — Isaiah 30:18

And for every promise God gives us, He gives us the provision too. So this is how I am “upgrading” how I am praying this over my daughter. 

Father God, You have given me the promise for Leslie. I speak it back to You, in faith. That You, Lord, are guiding Leslie continually, not just now but throughout her life. That you are giving her water in the dry places of her body and restoring her strength. That every provision she needs to walk in health is already in place for her. 

I declare in agreement with Your Word, Lord, that Leslie will be as a well-watered garden, like an ever-flowing spring. She will be restored in the places she has struggled and pour out great beauty, fruit and hope to others in dry places. She will be a garden that blooms and produces fruit that cries out and shouts of Your great power, love and glory, Lord. In the endless name of Jesus, amen!

SUMites, I believe now is the time for us to renew our prayers and declarations for the promises God has given us. He does not falter, nor does He step away from us. Our breakthroughs could be just a single prayer away. Let’s not give up the race now. 

Our Great God will not fail us. I believe He will move and do things in ways we have never seen before and never could have imagined. I’m already seeing Him do this in small things, and it’s absolutely stunning. I can’t even imagine what this will look like as He increases in us, our lives and circumstances and through the prayers we pray over those we uplift to Him. 

Share your hearts and thoughts in the comments, my friends. I am standing with you in prayer for every promise, every provision, every declaration.

Love you so very much,
Dineen

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Emotional Healing For Marriage

image from www.spirituallyunequalmarriage.com

He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.” —Mark 5:34 (NIV)

Let’s conclude this portion of our Emotional Healing study with a prayer for marriage. Several months ago, I was on the prayer team as we walked a woman through emotional healing from infidelity in her marriage. As I listened to our team leader gently lead this woman through an amazing healing prayer, I scribbled down the prayer and knew it was from the Holy Spirit.

SUMites, marriage is challenging in different seasons. I consider how damaged I was when I went into my marriage 25 years ago. Two immature, naïve, and broken people throw their lives together, add in children and then try to unwind our differences, our past and move into a future together. It’s hard. And it’s glorious at the same time.

How I wish I knew back then what I know now about my faith, myself and how to become free. But I’m learning and I’m compelled by God to share. That has been my direction and destiny since 2006 when this blog was born.

So today, I’m sharing a simple prayer for marriage. I’m going to speak it as if I’m praying it about my husband. Adapt for your marriage. Allow the Holy Spirit, Jesus and our Father, heal you and set your marriage on a path to GLORY!!!

Go into your quiet time with a journal, ask the Lord to bring His glory. For Jesus and the Holy Spirit to come just like I shared with you in my last post. Then pray something like this:

Jesus, I forgive my husband (wife). I forgive him because at times, he has made it unsafe to love him. (This is where you would tell the Lord about hurts or sins where you were made to feel unsafe or hurt.)

Jesus, I surrender the old muddy lenses I’ve used to see my husband. (Visualize yourself handing them over.)

Give me new lenses to see my husband exactly as You see him.

Lord, what is the truth about my husband? (Pause and listen then let the Holy Spirit speak into your heart. Write down what you hear. Linger here and let the Lord impress upon you the words about your spouse.)

Jesus, my husband is worthy of love. He is worthy of respect. (Listen and allow these statements to take root in your heart.)

Jesus, what is your favorite thing about my husband? (Listen)

Jesus, what do you want to do through my husband?

Jesus, what do you want me to do regarding my husband?

Jesus, show me how you are protecting me as I love my husband.

Jesus, is there anything You want me to know about my husband and our marriage?

Move through these questions in prayer and allow the Lord to show you facets of your life, marriage, and spouse you may not know or understand.

Recently, I experienced a revelation about my husband. It was life-changing and I will be writing about that in the next series, A Revelation of Love.

I love you SUMites. Someone, I hope many someones, in our community found their way to healing. The emotional healing prayer has become a regular “go-to” for me in recent months. I will pray this when I feel a hurt, a rejection, a wounding from a misplaced word from friends, family or my spouse. It’s a powerful tool to remain sanctified and in the Presence of God.

I love you SUMites. Pray with expectation because our prayers are accelerated in this season. Hugs. Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


The Rains of God’s Glory

My friends, I have something very special to share with you today. It’s something I was unsure about sharing at first, but a phone convo with Lynn helped me see I should indeed share it with you. And since then, God has revealed a bit more and connected more dots.

In early 2014 God told me to pray for California. This was before our move to Florida. II was sitting on my porch one morning with my favorite mug full of coffee and my Bible. As I read and prayed, God told me to “pray a wave a faith over California.” I didn’t quite understand what that would look like, but I did what He asked and began praying this obediently for months.

Fast forward to the Spring of 2015. We’d moved part time to Florida but still spent several months in California and still owned our home there. The Holy Spirit led me to read the book of Isaiah.

One particular morning, I reached Isaiah 55 and the Holy Spirit began to point out parts that had to do with the land and water over the next several chapters. I knew in my spirit this had to do with the drought in California. I continued to read, wondering why He would even show such things to me.

Now let me preface this to say that the He’d first set me up the day before with Isaiah 52:6. I underlined it, recognizing that as new covenant believers, this was connected to the promise of the Messiah to come. And we know the name of Jesus is powerful and thus why we pray it.

Therefore my people will know my name; therefore in that day they will know that it is I who foretold it. Yes, it is I.” — Isaiah 52:6 (NIV)

So the next day when He stopped me at Isaiah 59:19, I already had this reference to connect to. As you can see in the picture, I dated my notation April 28, 2015. I suspected this was related to the Holy Spirit’s instructions to pray a wave of faith over California and that this also spoke of the end of the drought. In fact, that is what I heard in my spirit, that God was decreeing an end to the drought. 

IMG_5636

Within weeks of this revelation, several other Christian leaders in California began to say the same thing. I knew God was revealing His heart and plans for the state of California, and now we are seeing the full revelation of this.

What was predicted to take years—the return of the rains to refill the reservoirs—is happening in weeks. We are seeing God move faster than we ever have before, my friends. And He is moving in new and stunning ways. Right now it’s very important that we keep alert to these new ways and be willing to let go of the old. I believe this is also part of what He meant when He told me things wouldn’t look the way we expect and that He wants to do things differently. These are things I shared with you last year.

Now there is more to this moment in time, my friends, and it includes us. On that same day, the Holy Spirit stopped me at Isaiah 60:22. See the picture below with SUM written next to the Scripture.

IMG_5635

SUMites, we have grown from a small family and a tiny group to a mighty nation of over 2,000. I believe we are symbolic of what God is doing all over the world. He is bring up communities like ours to operate the way the church did in Acts 2. We are the new church He is bringing into place. 

Last July, I shared in a video message what I felt God was speaking about His church, that “His heart is to establish a new and holy church—not fix the old one.”

That doesn’t mean we are to abandon our churches, dear friends, it simply means God is transforming us to function in greater unity and love if we will allow Him to come in and do this in our places of worship, no matter where they are. Our church will no longer be limited and defined by physical walls and building. We will be the unified body of Christ, His bride made pure. Connections and partnerships (bridges) are being formed between churches in communities even now to work together to have greater impact in communities and cities.

My friends, I believe this also means God is working in new and significant ways in our marriages and in the hearts of our spouses. This is part of our salvation word from last year, which continues to be the seed planted that the Holy Spirit is watering. 

Let me share some of my observations and what I am seeing:

I believe the rain we are seeing in California and the overflow is symbolic of God’s glory pouring over His children and our loved ones (that they shall be saved too! Acts 16:31). I know it looks messy, but remember what I said in one of my previous messages about God’s favor. It can look messy at first (remember how God favored Mary to carry Jesus), but we can trust God to bring His plans and purposed to a good completion for His ways are always good (Rom. 8:28)

I believe we are going to see significant shifts in our homes and in our spouses, SUMites. Many of you already are. As Lynn has shared in the emotional healing series, we need to be healed so we can help those coming to faith to walk in wholeness as well. Part of the video message I shared last year was about God’s “harvest time” and the “fruit” (remember the figs), which are the many souls being called in. (Some of you may even remember the harvest dream I shared in 2013.)

I believe we are entering this time at a new level. We are stepping out of the old and into the new. We will see things happen in ways we never expected or anticipated. We will see God move faster than we thought possible. And we will see our faith increased to new levels as we step into our promises and new opportunities. 

My friends, I will stop there. I have something else from Isaiah that God is showing me to pray for my husband that I may share on Friday. I'm asking the Holy Spirit for wisdom on that first and for any more insights He wants to reveal for us. Be assured I will share as the Holy Spirit leads me. I don't know why the Holy Spirit uses the book of Isaiah like this to reveal things to me, but it is fascinating to say the least.

SUMites, we are living in exciting times! Reading this may very well bring things to mind and connect some dots for you. Please share you're thoughts and what you believe God is showing you. I can't wait to hear your hearts!

Love you, my mighty friends! You are greater in Him than you know!
Dineen

 

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Emotional Healing Prayer

I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.
—Psalm 34:4

image from www.spirituallyunequalmarriage.comToday, let’s look at the fairly simple prayer for emotional healing. I have prayed this sequence of sentences often in the last several months. I have found that after praying, I experience relief when I recall the memory (wound).

Go into an uninterrupted place, a quiet time of prayer.

Relax! (This is a good thing) Smile.

Pray something like this and simply engage your faith (pray aloud if you can): Jesus, I ask you to be with me and walk with me through my healing. Sometimes I speak this sentence a few times and I wait as I sense the change in my heart or the room.

Father, bring Your glory. Rest Your glory upon me and in this room. Again, I may pray this aloud for a few times and allow the Lord to rest upon me.

Holy Spirit, I ask You to lead me into all truth. I give you permission to help me recall what needs healing and to protect me from any lies of the enemy during this time. Holy Spirit I trust you to bring me through my healing in peace and without fear. Heal me completely, wholly, and forever from the wounding we uncover. In Jesus name.

Prayer:

Remember a painful event in your life. After inviting the Trinity in, usually the first one that comes to mind is where the Holy Spirit wants to start to work. It is often the strongest negative emotion.

Identify the emotion you feel. (shame, grief, regret, betrayal, fear, etc.)

If this memory is a result of sin, simply confess it and ask for forgiveness. Tell Jesus you receive His forgiveness. If there is not personal sin attached to this memory, move on.

Jesus, take this emotion ___________ (name it) from me.
Jesus, I ask you to heal this wound in my soul. I believe the blood of Jesus heals this wound.

Jesus, I receive your healing. (I love this part. Linger here for a moment and just perceive what Jesus is doing. Remember how we saw Jesus standing in front of us in our prayer time. This often happens and you will sense His love, His hope for you, His healing, His joy.

Remember the event again and if there are other emotions or this one still lingers, repeat the prayer process, and ask Jesus to reveal any lies you may be believing about this event and then to reveal the truth. You want to recall the emotion without anger, pain, shame grief, pain, etc.

When you are in a place of peace, pray:

Jesus, what do You want to give me in replace of that painful emotion? (Listen. It’s also awesome to journal through this and write down what Jesus impresses upon you.)

Now, you can pray to forgive the person who created this wound. It becomes much easier to forgive from the heart when you have worked through the emotional wounding.

I offer this prayer as a testimony of what I have worked through with Jesus and what I have witnessed in the Freedom Prayer Sessions. Always, ALWAYS, remember you can’t conform Christ to a formula. It’s always about relationship. Earnest prayers from a heart that is surrendered to Him is where we need to pray from.

My friends, over the next few days, work through this. Please, PLEASE, come back and share what you have received in your prayer time. If you have a victory, SHARE IT. Testimony is how the power in the Holy Spirit is passed from one believer to another. (And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. —Revelation 12:11)

If you are still struggling, tell us. We can and will pray. Press in and pray in your quiet time. Sometimes you will be directed to pray this process over and over. The Holy spirit may direct you to a team of pray-ers for your healing. Listen to the Lord and allow Him to lead you into healing.

Jesus is desperate to heal His Bride. There is an explosion about to occur where many who are wounded and lost, will come to Him. They are going to need this healing. He is frantic to get His “Church” healed so we can bring His love and healing to others. So don’t delay. Do the hard work of healing and forgiveness because there is now a mandate upon your life to take Him and His healing to others.

Still to come: Healing prayer for marriage. Rescue back your destiny. Steps to maintain healing. The four spiritual weapons of healing. Healing assignment. Healing passages. The Blood of Jesus. Toxic shame. Anxiety, mental illness and the Church and I hope….. YOUR TESTIMONIES..(Email me or share in the comments.)

UPDATE: After writing this post, the Lord spoke to me in my quiet time on Monday, Lynn, it's time to move on. So, I'm going to wrap up this series. I may get a video together and share it next week. And I still want to share the healing prayer for marriage. But alas, I guess all the other topics will have to go into a book some day.

So starting in March.... I will be writing about what the Lord is teaching me right now....

A Revelation of Love..

I asked for a revelation of love and I can't wait to tell you what God showed me. And then we are going to press into this revelation together. 

Hallelujah. I love you and so does Jesus. Hugs, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Emotional Healing And Severe Trauma

The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears, And delivers them out of all their troubles. The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, and saves such as have a contrite spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all.
—Psalm 34:17-19

image from www.spirituallyunequalmarriage.comMy friends, on Friday I will outline the prayer for emotional healing. It is truly a simple prayer and can be whispered to our Father anytime throughout the day. I wonder, would it be helpful to you to have me record a video of myself working through this prayer as an example? Let me know in the comments?

But before we get there, I want to share a couple of things.

Praying through our past wounds is often painful during the prayer time. Bringing up a memory that needs healing means that we allow ourselves to go back into that memory. This may feel very scary to us, but allow the Holy Spirit to take you where you need to go. He will not leave you there nor forsake the healing that you are seeking.

However, I have a word of attention: If you have severe physical and emotional abuse, sexual abuse, or satanic ritual abuse in your past, it is likely that you need to pray through your healing prayers with one or two other believers. I have participated in praying for people with this kind of severe trauma and always I pray with the prayee and another person. We become a triple stranded cord of power, authority, and protection.

Seek out someone you trust at church who will invest in you. The prayer session for healing of severe abuse usually is about two hours long and multiple sessions might be a necessity.

My local church offers Freedom Prayer, Dineen works in the healing rooms where they pray for all kinds of healing. Seek out someone in your area that offers this kind of prayer.

And right now someone needs to read this. The enemy is whispering in your ear, this won’t work. It’s never going to work. It’s not worth the effort to find someone to pray with you. You won’t pray right. You are always going to walk in the pain of your memories.

THESE ARE LIES FROM THE PIT OF HELL. AND I REBUKE THESE LIES THIS MOMENT. IN JESUS NAME!

Commit to doing the hard work of healing, forgiveness, releasing bitterness. Then receive the BEST PART of the healing prayer, lasting healing, freedom, peace, joy, righteousness, and LOVE.

Hallelujah!

Now hear me. Don’t allow the enemy to discourage you. On Friday, we will take an emotional wound in your soul, we will pray through it, and I am convinced that Jesus will show up and help you through your healing. I’m so convinced that is why He has me writing about emotional healing on a marriage blog. HE WANTS TO HEAL HIS PEOPLE!!

Pray with me.

Jesus, I choose love over fear. I am assured that Your perfect love casts out fear. I am pressing into You for my healing. To be free of the wounds upon my soul. To be made perfect by Your cleansing blood. Jesus, I trust you and the Holy Spirit. I know You have my best interests at heart. You paid the heavy price to seal my healing and I will not let one drop You shed for me to go unclaimed.

Jesus, today, place in me a supernatural confidence and peace that surpasses all understanding. Empower me to read Your Words in Scripture and make come to life and power in every area of my body, heart, mind, will, soul, spirit, and emotions. I will choose life and freedom this day. I choose to be free and to bring freedom to others and lead them into their healing. I choose to bring freedom to myself and then my spouse and my children. I will walk in Your victories and I BELIEVE Your promises over my life are YES and AMEN!

Thank you, Jesus, that you saw my wounds and that you have declared, ‘IT IS FINISHED.” I receive your love, and healing and I will fully give You my heart and will work through my healing on Friday and throughout the days following. Touch me with Your supernatural hand of grace, mercy, healing, love and grant me full confidence in Your desire to make me whole.

In Your powerful name, by Your authority, love, and power, I pray this with an expectant and full heart, Jesus. AMEN!

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


The Holy Spirit - Truth Heals Our Soul

Emotional Healing HopeMy SUMites brothers and sisters. I have been in intercessory prayer over you who were brave and vulnerable in the comments from Friday. God has heard your name and He has seen your need. He tells me He is ready to move in power and healing!!! Wow and Praise Jesus!!!!!

Let me say this, because you wrote down and brought into the light the wounding and the abuses that happened to you, you have already smashed the power of the demonic. The demonic world thrives in secrecy, shame, and buried crimes. But the minute you began to tell someone about your truth, the light comes rushing in like a flood. It is also, the moment your healing begins. So, SHOUT HALLELUJAH because your healing is at hand.

We stand upon holy ground. Remove your shoes, be brave and allow our beautiful Jesus to heal every wound, scare, hurt and failure. Jesus said, “It is finished!” And it is, so we shall move further into His completed work in our life, soul, heart, mind will and emotions.

Remember my post from Friday where I described a shame wounding. Our soul can be scarred by pain, fear, abandonment, injustice, rejection, and betrayal. What I didn’t explain is how that can affect us, even unknowingly, in our life today.

Recently, I heard a story about how a family would plan to go to the lake for their summer vacation. However, weeks leading up to their departure, the husband would begin to get cranky, uncooperative, negative which was in contrast to his normal peaceful demeanor. It seems after some prayer a memory was uncovered and healed regarding a traumatic event that occurred at a lake when he was a child. Unknowingly, that old memory caused a great deal of strife for several weeks every year in this family. 

What I want to share today is that the Holy Spirit works with us in emotional healing. First, the Holy Spirit is our comforter. He will help us to walk through healing at a pace we can cope and comprehend. Secondly, Holy Spirit is our guide to all truth.

But the Comforter, who is the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. —John 14:26 (KJV)

Second, many unhealed wounds are lost to our conscious mind. Our mind will simply forget about the pain in our past or our minds cover the memory over in order to protect us and remain functional, sometimes we place a wound away in our memory that we didn’t realize was a real wound, but it’s still there seeping.

The Holy Spirit, when asked will gently lead us to uncover areas of our soul that are wounded but we don’t remember. I’ve actually watched this process unfold before my very eyes. It’s beautiful, healing and safe. Oh, how great is the love of our God for His children.

Finally, I have a grasp on an area of healing that can move us out of the yo-yo of faith. And we are going to walk through that next week.

Don't grow weary in the waiting for the prayer, setting up the foundation and the understanding places you in a powerful position when you begin to pray for your emotional healing. 

I love you so much, SUMites! You are Brave. You are stronger than you think. You are wise and you are the very essence of LOVE!  Jesus is so PROUD!!! 

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Demons Tap That

image from www.spirituallyunequalmarriage.comSUMites, go get a cup of coffee, strap in and hold on! We are going to get real!

At the beginning of this study, I asked a few questions.

Q: Do you wonder why you still struggle so much in your faith? Are there moments when you are filled with doubt? And yet you have prayed and prayed to remove all doubt. Do you fight continuing battles with anxiety and overwhelming fear? You experience triumph and then days later, fear overwhelms your mind again. Why does this happen? 

Frankly, for years I was baffled as to why we still struggle so much with our vices, addictions, failures and doubts. Really. I mean, come on. After all, I live in an intimate relationship with God our Father, Jesus, and the Spirit. I have sat with the Word for years. It dwells within. I’ve learned to walk in spiritual gifts and I’ve walked the daunting road of forgiveness.

I’ve really worked hard in the classroom of sanctification. So, why, WHY am I still struggling with eating poorly. Why do I make huge progress with temptation and in a single day, completely implode and fall all the way back down. Why do I move from the mountains of faith to the valleys of despair and doubt?

I truly didn’t understand why this happened to me and so many other believers that I love.

Here is an overlooked, possible answer to those questions:

We struggle because we have an unhealed wound. A soul wound.

Let me describe what I think this looks like. When I was a teenager, my sister and I were in the kitchen cleaning up after dinner. Somehow, we managed to spill an almost full pot of spaghetti sauce onto the kitchen floor. It was like a bomb went off. Red sauce spun in every direction. Across the floor, all over the both of us, on the cabinets, the refrigerator. It was a disaster. It was loud.

In came my parents. Now Please, hear me, I love my parents and I honor them but I feel as though I need to give a real, living example. Please don’t judge them. They were broken and needful people. (Disclaimer finished.)

I can’t remember many of the details about this next few moments, but my father freaked out. There was a lot of yelling, possibly a few swats on the back of the legs but what left a soul wound, was when we were ordered upstairs, told to strip to our underwear, come back down and clean up the mess.

I was wounded by shame. A wounding in my soul occurred that day.

Why that was so hurtful, I can’t fully understand or explain. I just know I have held that wounding in my soul, my heart, for decades.

So, this is what I believe happens, current day. I’m moving along, really well, in my daily life, my faith is in a good place, I’m close to Jesus. The demonic world can see this and some insidious demon waits for just the right moment to tap that wound. One tap will set me back. I will experience shame all over again. This tap is strategic to derail my progress or to stir up hatred toward my father. The demon comes along and taps that wounded teenager, smack in the middle of the wound that can only be healed by Jesus. Current life events can trigger old woundings and many times we don’t even understand why we feel the way we are feeling.

When I consider just how sinister this tactic is, I surge with anger at the devil. I pray a million people will read this series so we can bring healing and freedom to them and stick it to satan.

What is interesting is that I have truly prayed through the hard work of authentic forgiveness of my parents. And by the way, we all need to forgive our parents, even if they were amazing. Children can be wounded by parents just because kids don’t always perceive things as intended. I can expand on that later.

Anyway, that unhealed soul-wound truly affected me. And even though I’ve prayed through forgiveness the demonic had permission to tap that wound and cause me pain because it bled slowly for years.

We all have wounds from years ago and we will be wounded by others in the future. I know for me, I’ve had to face wounding within my marriage. But, we are not going to stay wounded. We are going to walk through this process and be healed. Truly healed and we will know how to remain healed.

I also want to share that we can be healed emotionally through forgiveness and there are other avenues God uses to heal. Hallelujah. This series is intended to help us find healing for areas of our emotions that remain unhealed.

So, how are we doing SUMites. Are we on track? Are you staying with me? Do you have questions? What are your thoughts about childhood wounding? And if you can, share with me any specifics that you are think about that you would like me to cover that relate to this series. I know I will discuss, marriage and wounding, anxiety, mental illness and the church. So I have more. Stay tuned. And I wrote so much today that we will look at how the Holy Spirit heals on Tuesday. Love you. Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Invite Jesus Into Your Healing

image from www.spirituallyunequalmarriage.comEstablishing the foundation of healing is crucial as we move along in our study. Of course, the Trinity works in us and through us in different capacities. We have looked at how God our Father is part of “who we are”, our identity. Understanding this truth releases us from rejection, fear, and lies we believe about receiving and our entitlement to healing.

Jesus, is our healer. By the shedding of his blood, when he was whipped (by His stripes we are healed – Isaiah 53:5) and by the spear that pierced His side, we have healing. I have so much more to share on the Blood Covenant. That will follow later.

What I want to bring to the forefront of our thinking and faith is that Jesus IS our healer. It is Jesus who heals. Through His name and by His blood.

The following passage (Luke 4:16-20 NKJV), Jesus is speaking:

So He (Jesus) came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read. And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written:

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,

Because He has anointed Me

To preach the gospel to the poor;

He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,

To proclaim liberty to the captives

And recovery of sight to the blind,

To set at liberty those who are oppressed;

To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”

Then He closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him. And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” So all bore witness to Him, and marveled at the gracious words which proceeded out of His mouth.

Oppression and LibertyMY FRIENDS, Jesus tells us specifically that He came to heal the brokenhearted (emotional healing) to proclaim liberty for the captives. Liberty in this context means to be released, to be freed from, the power (demonic) that binds us. He also came to give liberty to those who are oppressed. (Oppression is emotional, spiritual, and physical.)

It is His purpose to heal through His name and by HIS blood. And we are going to learn how to invite Jesus into our healing process.

I will be sharing the simple process of praying through the healing prayer in a few more posts. I still have a couple or more foundations to set up before we get there. But for today, I have an exercise for you. Invite Jesus into your prayer time for healing:

When I begin to pray about my own healing, I will enter into prayer and start by asking for the Glory of God to come into the room, I then ask for the Holy Spirit to come and bring all truth, and when I’ve waited a moment or two after asking, I then will ask Jesus to come and bring His love and healing.

This is what I want you to do in the next few days. I want you to practice. Go into your prayer time, close your eyes, then simply speak out loud, Father, bring your glory. Father, let your glory rest here. Holy Spirit, bring your Presence and rest here. Holy Spirit reveal all truth to me.

Then as you wait, finally, ask Jesus to come and stand before you. Engage your mind’s eye, your spirit, your heart, your imagination (mind) and imagine Jesus standing before you. See the love in His eyes that release His perfect peace into your heart. And finally, allow Him to reach out and take your hands.

Now, your experience may differ from mine. But this is how I see Jesus come to bring healing in my prayer time. This might be a new thing for you, to visualize Jesus. It was weird for me too the first few times. But every time Jesus arrives and reaches out His hands toward me, I melt within His arms of love. Just try it. Allow Him to love you.

On Friday, I will share with you how the Holy Spirit is part of your healing. It’s awesomeness!!!!!!

So give this a try. There isn’t a right or wrong way to ask Jesus into your healing/prayer time. This isn’t a formula. It’s relationship. Jesus wants a love relationship. Allow Him some freedom in your prayer time, I hope that like me, you are astounded by what happens when we release Jesus to move in our prayers and in our heart.

See you Friday. If anyone has already been praying in a similar way and can share, please do. Someone, probably me, will be encouraged to hear about how you welcomed Jesus into your prayer time and how is was experiential for you. Hugs, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Guest Post: The Magnificent Vine by Dee Rusnak

Dear Friends, Dee sent me this piece she wrote and it fits so well with our healing series and who Jesus is, our vine! Thank you, Dee! Love you, SUMites! ~Dineen

 

The Magnificent Vine 

“Therefore encourage one another and build up one another, just as you also are doing.” (1 Thessalonians 5:11)

On our way driving through the mountains of Pennsylvania recently, I gazed at the wooded areas alongside the highway. Everything was buried in a foot of snow that had fallen just a few days before. I was drawn to the effects of the snow on the trees as they stood cold and motionless. Some trees, too weak to stand under the heaviness of the snow, had slumped into what appeared as the "arms" of other trees. It was as though these trees were there for the sole purpose of support…a band of stronger brothers catching, holding, and keeping the weaker ones close. Many had fallen completely, possibly lying there forgotten for years.

Nestled among the tall leafless trees were the pines who tell quite a different story. The wee ones resembled little children straining to keep their branches from buckling beneath the burdensome snow. However, they gave the impression they were quite determined to hold this weight….as if vying for the Guinness record. The larger more mature evergreens emerged strong and confident, as the piles of heavy snow graced their branches.

During the warmer months of summer, my grandsons visited the local state park where the ranger explained how trees communicate with one another through an underground network well hidden from the eyes of humans. Their root systems are linked together, making them stronger as they mature, feeding the needs of others, and more importantly, warning them of impending dangers.

Jesus is our magnificent and powerful Vine from which we grow. The mighty Trunk. The solid Rock. “Abide in Me,” He beckons, “for without Me you can do nothing.” (John 15) Our branch was birthed by the Vine Himself as well as producing the fruit on it. As we remain in the Vine being one with Him, we find strength, courage, wisdom, understanding…all that is necessary to mature and flourish. “He sent from above, He took me, drawing me out of many waters, delivering me from my strong enemy…I will enlighten your darkness; arm you with strength…I am your help and will never leave or forsake you…you are My servant whom I have chosen, fear not, for I am with you, I will strengthen you, yes I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand…I will give power to the weak and to those who have no might I increase strength…He delivered me because He delighted in me.” (Psalms 18, 27, Isaiah 41)

Although in this life the snow storms may initiate, the exasperating bugs may infiltrate, weakness may penetrate, disease may permeate, burdens may arrogate, we find ourselves slumped into the arms of those who are stronger because they, too, were once here and found strength in the Vine. We allow ourselves to be upheld, while on other occasions we are the ones upholding others. It’s who we are. “Bear one another’s burdens, and thereby fulfill the law of Christ.” (Galatians 6:2) Together we take these burdens to the Cross where they’re unloaded and cast off. “Come to Me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)

As we sometimes resemble shaken bystanders seeing our unsaved loved ones lay helplessly fallen, the Holy Spirit from within activates our diligent and earnest prayers which swiftly rise to His inclined ears filling our hearts with the confidence and trust that His promised help will come to pass. “Blessed be the Lord, because He has heard the voice of my supplications! The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in Him and I am helped; therefore, my heart greatly rejoices, and with my song I will praise Him.” (Psalm 28:6-7)

Beneath the Vine is an extraordinary network hidden from the eyes of this world where our roots are permanently linked together by His Word, and everything we could possibly need is supplied by it. It feeds, nourishes, and transforms us into His new creation. It protects, warns of impending danger, giving wisdom, comfort, courage and strength. God uses this remarkable system to bring His message of hope to us and to this fallen world. “Establish Your word to Your servant, who is devoted to fearing You…for Your word has given me life…oh, how I love Your word! It is my meditation all the day…You are my hiding place and my shield, I hope in Your word…my heart stands in awe of Your word…all Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (Psalm 119; 2 Timothy)

Dee and JerryDee Rusnak and her husband, both retired, live in Westerville, Ohio. They have three grown sons and four adorable grandchildren (with another on the way this summer)!

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


The Heart of God

GodsLove
Good morning, SUMites! I loved reading your prayers yesterday on Lynn’s post. I prayed in agreement with each one of you and prayed over our community for complete healing. Many of the things you prayed mirrored my own prayers too, my dear friends. I’m so glad we are taking this journey of healing together.

And that’s part of what I feel the Holy Spirit planted in my heart to share today, that some of you out there have been on a very lonely journey in your pain. You have felt alone, as if you’re the only one, in this struggle and even abandoned at times. 

Today the Lord wants you to know that is not true. You are not alone, you have never been alone. And as you walk this path of healing, you will see others walking along side you who have suffered in the same way, you will walk in a new hope and strength like never before, and you will finally reach your breakthrough.

My first breakthrough (yes, I am believing for many more!) happened last week with the help of dear friends who prayed with me, loved me and contended with me. And that is what I feel the Lord is doing in our SUM family as well—uniting us even in this time of healing to uphold one another and rejoice for each other as our breakthroughs come. This is not a journey we are intended to walk alone.

My friends, today I asked the Lord to reveal His heart for our SUM family. He showed me Jesus. He said Jesus is the full representation of His heart for us. Even unto death…

Wow, that just continues to blow my mind and bring home even more the magnitude of God’s love for us. Jesus is not only our Savior, He is our Healer. In the Bible, the Greek words for salvation (sōtēria) and saved (sozo) encompasses more than just our eternal residence but our health and wholeness as well. 

Here’s another nugget God showed me recently in Romans 8.

And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. — Romans 8:38-39 (NLT)

Did you notice that Paul only says present and future? No mention of the past? That’s because Jesus dealt with the past on the cross. He even said, “It is done.”

And we know what happens with today? It becomes the past, so whatever heartache or challenge we face today, tomorrow it will be the past and Jesus declares it done! And as tomorrow becomes today, we can say the same about it as it passes into yesterday. It is done! 

Jesus is the heart of God. So whatever healing we are in need of, my friends, know that the Heart of God, Jesus, says it is done. He has already set our healing in place. It’s one of His promises to us. And He’s inviting us to walk in this truth.

I’m believing this is my year to be healed of emotional eating. Whatever is at the root of this issue will be revealed and healed. This is my need and the mountain I refuse to keep circling. I believe Jesus will move it and say, “It is done!” In the name of Jesus, amen!

Love you, my friends! Contending with you.
Dineen

 

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


"Watch What I Do!"

IStock_000005733150MediumWhat has God promised you, my friends? That is the place I want to start today, because I’ve discovered there is a very definitive process that occurs between the promise given and the reality (or manifestation) of that promise. And it’s in the in between time that we can get confused or even lose sight of our promise.

No, I will not break my covenant; I will not take back a single word I said. — Psalm 89:34 (NLT)

I believe as a community we are on this journey right now together. As I shared last week during our prayer and fasting, this is a Year of Promises. As I walk in this place of waiting and the challenges I’ve faced, I’m finding that God’s promises are designed to bring us from one point and place in time to another and it’s very much to do with our growth as believers.

We’ve talked in the past about preparation and that is part of this promise package. God always sees us according to His plan for us—who He created us to be. He sees us from our future and therefore partners with us to direct our path accordingly. Our promises are part of that future becoming our present reality. So, in everything, God is working for our good to according to that picture. 

Yes, we do have an enemy that will do whatever he can to hinder and delay that path, but ultimately, as we continue to seek God and say yes to Him, we are assured of victory, as God’s Word says. He already sees us as victorious, therefore we are. That’s an important place to walk in faith and perseverance (Romans 8). 

As God cheers us on He also works in us so that we can walk in the fullness of our callings (destiny) and many times that means we need healing. We live in the reality of good verses evil and the imperfections of this world, so it is inevitable. 

This past week God worked this in my life in a stunning way. As I mentioned God revealed some things to me, of which one part was a deep need for emotional healing. I find it so very interesting that as Lynn is about to begin this series on emotional healing, God walks me through that very thing.

So, my dear SUMites, I want to encourage you to walk this journey with us, because it is part of the revelation of your promises this year. To fully receive what these promises are we often must grow in some way to be able to walk in them. This is part of God’s upgrade or promotion process. He wants us to benefit fully from His promises. 

Think of it in a way as professional training or learning a skill. In order to function as a lawyer in a court or as a teacher in a classroom, we have to learn things in order to fully function in those places. Our “training” or teaching can be very specialized too.

I believe that God is doing much of this in us for many reasons. For me, this means I am more emotionally healthy for two reasons. One, to walk in the broader places He is taking me in ministry and to be ready for where He is taking my husband to one day be in ministry together. Yes, He has to get me ready (prepared) for what that means. Oh boy…

And sometimes it can seem messy and painful, but as we’ve used the analogy before, a wound must be cleaned for it to heal well and without infection. Think of the lies, hurts, rejections and grudges we carry as infections, that once dealt with, our emotional wounds can be healed.

The wonderful thing about this process is that it ripples out. So often we want to fix what we see on the outside, but God works from the inside out and that is what those around us begin to see as we are healed. Those places we often struggle with externally could very well be the reflection of something inside in need of healing. This applies to our spouses too, my friends. We have the benefit of the Great Physician at work in us to help us heal, yet those who don’t know Jesus yet can only rely on their own resources or that which the world offers.

My friends, whatever God did in me this week broke and released things I have carried for years. I feel lighter, stronger, and more peaceful. And I am excited to walk in this new freedom and am expectant of the ways it will show up more in my life. I’m excited to see what God does next, and I am looking forward to what He does in all of us through Lynn’s series. 

It’s going to be good. How do I know that? God told me. Since last weekend, His still soft voice has whispered over and over to me these words.

“Watch what I do.”

And He has expanded those words for our community. This is what I feel I hear Him saying for us:

Watch what I do.

In your homes and in your marriages,

Watch what I do.

In your lives and in your government,

Watch what I do.

In your nation and in your communities,

Watch what I do.

In your minds and in your hearts,

Watch what I do.

SUMites, the choice is always ours. God loves us no matter what. He is always for us and always, always, always, working for our good. So if you feel this is something you want, then I encourage you to pray something like this in your own words:

Lord, I want everything You have written on the pages of my book in heaven to become a reality in my life. I want to let go of the pain and hurts and be healed of the emotional traumas in my heart and soul. Whatever that takes and whatever that looks like, Lord, I say yes. I am ready. I trust You. I love you and I am so grateful that You love me with such a relentless and perfect love. Lord, I am watching to see what You do! In the name of Jesus, amen!

For all of God’s promises have been fulfilled in Christ with a resounding “Yes!” And through Christ, our “Amen” (which means “Yes”) ascends to God for his glory. — 2 Cor. 1:20 (NLT)

I love you, my SUM family. I’m so blessed to walk this journey with you and stand with you in prayer.
Dineen

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Offense Follows on the Heels of Pain

I'm Offended

When our hearts are wounded, we have two choices. How we respond will lead down two very different paths. We can choose healing and a path back toward joy. Or we can choose offense and stand on the slippery slope and slide slowly into bitterness, anger, depression and demonic oppression.

And let me tell you a truth. The demonic realm uses offense as one of its most effective weapons upon believers. The demonic likes to whisper the deceptive words into our ears such as you didn’t deserve that. You are absolutely right to be hurt. Those words are unforgivable.

What is difficult about choosing healing is that the demonic will twist words of truth to lure you down the slippery path. You may have been hurt and you DID NOT deserve to be. But it is a deceptive lie that you are entitled to be offended. An entitled offense will hook you then steal your joy and hope.

With this said, I want to share the process of walking through healing back toward joy following an emotional wounding or offense.

One: Take the pain to Jesus. Immediately, pray. Ask Jesus to come and hold you and to take the words of pain out of your soul. Ask the Holy Spirit to touch your heart and bring healing. Do this over and over until you start to feel peace and a change in your heart.

Two: (Here’s the hard part) Ask the Lord to help you see this person the way He sees them. When I do this, I often can see my attacker’s wounding. I can see they are filled with fear and failure which motivates their hurtful words. Often I see insecurity cloaked by pride and selfishness. I can sense the fears and pain from wounding, neglect, or unloving parents or others who should have cared for them when they were a child.

This kind of empathy develops a supernatural compassion. And when you begin to see them from outside of your pain, it changes how you move forward.

Three: (This is the REALLY hard part) Choose to forgive. Choose to let go. Choose to not be offended. How do you do this? I literally must speak these statements out loud. I take angry thoughts and thoughts of revenge and hurtful words of response, captive to Christ. I put into practice all I’ve learned about the power of our words and I pray them forth.

I take captive any and all repetitive thoughts of an angry response. Thoughts that are unkind, unloving or hate motivated. Over and over. And over and over again, sometimes over many days until they come into obedience and alignment with the truth of the Word.

Then I bless. I bless that person with the knowledge of the love of Christ. With joy, peace and whatever else the Holy Spirit places on my heart. And I can do this with a genuine hope that they receive all they need through Christ.

This process over a few days and/or weeks will bring about healing and leads me out of pain and darkness into light and joy.

Now, I do want to chat about relationships that need boundaries and I hope to get to that soon. Stay tuned.

Today, I have another assignment. In the last post, your homework was to give the Holy Spirit permission to work with you in areas of offense. So today, your homework is to take out that list and start to work this process in prayer with the Holy Spirit about that person(s) who hold offense in your heart.

My friends, offense grows and becomes a block in your prayer life. It will stifle the Holy Spirit’s work. Offense cuts off love from flowing out of us to others. That is why the devil employs this tactic often. Today, I implore you to forgive every offense. Our work here on earth is to learn to forgive and learn to love. Dealing with an offense with Jesus leads us on the path, Everlasting. And living without offense it FREEDOM. It’s life without fear and pain. It is living the abundant life Jesus promises in John 10:10. It is a life of joy and peace. It's GLORY!!!!

So, what do you need help with in this process? Share in the comments. Hugs, Lynn

Luke 17New King James Version (NKJV)

Jesus Warns of Offenses

17 Then He said to the disciples, “It is impossible that no offenses should come, but woe to him through whom they do come! 2 It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were thrown into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones. 3 Take heed to yourselves. If your brother sins against you, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. 4 And if he sins against you seven times in a day, and seven times in a day returns to you, saying, ‘I repent,’ you shall forgive him.”

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Reaction Mode

Dear friends, the following is a post I did a few years back. The Holy Spirit has continually reminded me of this post the last week or so, but I wasn't sure if it was a needed subject at the moment. Then on Thursday as I was working on the registration details for the Hope Ignited conference our healing rooms and my church were hosting, I heard the Holy Spirit say over and over again throughout the day, "Don't take offense."

I assumed it was for me, specifically something the Holy Spirit knew I would encounter at some point over the weekend at the conference. Then our worship leader gave a word on this very subject Friday evening. I knew then it was a corporate word. And then Lynn's post yesterday confirmed that! Wow! Don't you just love how the Holy Spirit speaks to us?

God is on the move, my friends, to restore this nation to peace and righteousness. I truly believe we will be astonished in how He does this through His amazing love.

So, I present to you, "Reaction Mode," originally posted in September of 2011. I pray it speaks to your heart and encourages you. I've updated it just a bit for our community needs right now.

 

Reactions Mode

6a00d83451ee9f69e2014e8b804fe8970d-320wiAre you in reaction mode in your marriage?

I remember to this day when I made this revelation about my marriage. I stood in our home office, about to react to something my husband said. I believe at that moment the Holy Spirit stopped me and then gave me a complete picture of the situation. And it wasn’t pretty. If this pattern didn’t stop soon, my marriage would soon crash and burn.

And even more sobering (i.e. convicting)? I was the heart of the problem, because my heart was in a bad shape. Years of resentment toward my husband and unmet expectations had created a barrier between us.

What I call “reaction mode” is this highly destructive and very draining place where you and your spouse are walking in your marriage more like adversaries than partners. Every comment is scrutinized under suspicion and communication has completely broken down.

Though not always true, I find this often starts with women. We stop communicating out of unforgiveness and resentment. Or, like me, we never learned to communicate in a healthy manner.

The saddest part of reaction mode is that it leads to contempt toward one another. And where there is contempt, respect and love no longer exist. They simply can’t coexist. For example, a husband reacts back to his wife harshly, because he’s not receiving his deepest desire, which is to be respected. The wife then retreats or closes herself off, feeling unloved when her deepest desire is to be loved.

Do you see the vicious cycle? That’s the first and most crucial step to breaking reaction mode—seeing this pattern in your marriage. Whether you are male or female, this pattern will not stop until you make the first move. What does this change look like?

  1. Be Careful What You Speak.

You know, there were times that I realized my reactions to my husband bordered on the behavior of a sarcastic teenager. Not a pretty sight but very convicting when recognized. Our words have the power to build or break down. If you’re inclined to speak without thinking first, stop right now and ask God to help control your mouth. This is a biblical principle and He will help you. Trust me on that.

A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. — Proverbs 15:1

We can also seek the Holy Spirit for the right words to speak as well. If we choose words that are honest and without an agenda to prove we’re right or place blame, we can be instrumental to restoring peace to our marriage.

  1. Dwell on the Positive.

It’s easy to fall into this place where we think our spouse has an ulterior motive to his or her words. Even simple requests can turn into a battleground, because we’ve somehow fallen into the lie that our spouse intends to harm us. This suspicion perpetuates the reaction mode and is its fuel. Suspicion can also be fueled by lies, so the best way to combat this is to counteract with the truth. What does your spouse do well?

Make a list. My husband is great about making sure the garbage goes out every week. I appreciate this even more when he’s out of town and I have to do it. Yuck! He’s also great about going grocery shopping with me, and he’s quick to show his love and affection. Start with small things and your list will grow. Then study it whenever you fall into thinking those negative thoughts about your spouse.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. — Philippians 4:8

A negative thought feeds the enemy and breeds more negativity. This can even evolve into scenarios playing out in your mind of how your spouse could potentially hurt you. Then you wind up hurt and defensive over something that never even happened.

A positive thought feeds the spirit and releases the Holy Spirit to work in your mind for transformation (Romans 12:2). He also works in your heart to help you forgive and allow God’s love to flow more freely to and through you.

Which one do you want to grow “fatter” in your life?

  1. Respect Him Even When You Don’t Want To, Love Her Even When She’s Unlovable.

Our hubbies need to know we will still stand by them when they mess up. And they will mess up, just as we do. We need to extend that hand of grace and acceptance, just as we want it extended to us. I’ve never seen anything quite as destructive to a marriage as contempt. And it is subtle in its presence. This goes right back to number one in how we use our words.

Add to that how you sound. What is your tone? Are you speaking in a way that solicits cooperation or are you condemning and accusing? This was the biggest area that I needed to change, and I know I could not have done it without God’s help. Sometimes we aren’t even aware that our tone and words hurt those we love. Pull out that list you made and go over it again. When it’s hard to show respect to your husband, find the things you can respect and show it to him. Then watch him bloom under your praise.

… and the wife must respect her husband. — Ephesians 5:33b

And loving someone when they are unlovable is one of the most powerful and sacrificial things a person can do. I have watched a woman be astonished by the fact that my church was assisting her out of our own desire to help and we weren’t getting paid by the government to do it. I have been deeply humbled by my husband's love when I was in pain and cranky. Love speaks louder than anything. Anything! Love changes hearts, marriages, families, cities and nations.

God is love so when we love, even when a person hasn’t “earned it,” we display His heart and presence in the most powerful way possible by revealing His very nature. Love (1 John 4).

  1. Keep a “We” Mentality.

Isn’t this really the truth we forget? We enter in to marriage as two “I’s” and suddenly have to figure out what it means to be a “we.” This requires putting our spouse first, this means loving and respecting even when we don’t feel it, this means seeing our marriage truly as a team effort and pulling our weight even when we feel our spouse isn’t. God sees our heart and our efforts. Your actions to honor Him in your marriage are never wasted!

Don’t quit the team. Be the one who stands strong and keeps Christ in the middle—your faith and prayers do that (1 Cor. 7:14). Whatever issues you’re dealing with, remember that you and your spouse are a team. Blame solves nothing. Teamwork always gets the job done.

For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh. —Genesis 2:24

Finally, remember that we can’t make these changes on our own. We need God’s help. Start with prayer and trust that God really can work in you, in your spouse and in your marriage to bring change and healing. It takes time, but when we desire God’s will for our marriage—a partnership built on love and respect—He will give us the desire of our heart (Psalm 37:4).

SUMites, I want to leave you with one final thought here (and this is a new part I'm adding). No matter where we are in our faith journey, God sees us the same way through His love and according to who He created us to be. We are His righteousness through Christ Jesus. And He never changes for He is the God of today, yesterday and tomorrow. He doesn't function within time as we do. He is present in all places—past present and future.

Now this is where it gets really interesting and may blow your mind a bit. Just as He sees us in this way, as who He created us to be, He sees our spouse the same way. He does not define them by their lack of faith but according to the measure of faith He has set aside for them. He sees them as they are intended to be, His children. I believe that is the heart of Eccl. 3:11 too. 

Father God, give us Your eyes, Your perspective of our spouse. Help us see them in the potential and in the light of eternity that You've placed within them so that we can love them according to that image and be part of releasing the truth of Your love in them. Thank You, Lord! Thank You! In the amazing name of Jesus, amen!

Love you so much, SUMites! And God loves you even better. ;-)
Dineen

 

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Offense

I'm Offended

SUMites, in the last 30 days the enemy has come like a flood and with a specific weapon, offense.

In the last four weeks, I’ve had to fight for my heart with all the faith I possess in a way I haven’t in a long time. I’ve battled, fighting against pain and fear and worked relentlessly to move into joy and healing. And after walking through this season, I believe the Lord is asking me to share what I’ve learned with you. So, I think we need to chat about how to walk with Jesus through emotional pain and how to keep our hearts from moving into offense.

What do you think, is this a good idea???

The devil will use physical pain to open the door to more sinister issues such as resentment, depression and fear. The enemy also uses emotional pain in the same way but with emotional pain, the demonic will employ bitterness and even do his best to paralyze us with inaction, shock and anxiety.

The Lord is well aware that the devil uses pain, wounding and especially offense as one of his primary assaults to invade our life and spew his destruction. What I’ve come to learn is that our thought life is especially vulnerable and can lead us into defeat while in the midst of emotional pain and offense.

Today, I want to chat about how to defeat the darkness of offense.

Let me start with a story:

Not long ago, a friend of mine was searching for some healing for her life. She asked me how to receive the kind of healing she was searching for and because she lived out of state, I suggested she contact her church and ask for some healing prayer. Well, I followed up with her about a month later and she told me that she contacted the church for a session of prayer. However, because they asked her to fill out a questionnaire to facilitate her session, and the questions were quite detailed about her past, she was offended. She never went for prayer and likely still struggles with issues that could have been given to Jesus in prayer.

My friends, I need to ask you a question: WHAT OFFENDS YOU?

Sometimes we are easily offended? We can watch television and be offended. We can be offended because a stranger parked their car in front of our house. We are offended because the Women’s ministry leader didn’t include us or ask us to participate. We are offended when the train is late, someone forgets to pick up their socks, when we are cut off in traffic, etc., etc. And these are just the little things that will raise an offense in our heart.

THEN there are other offenses. We are emotionally knocked out by words from our mother, father, sister, brother, children, boss, best friend or others. And how about when our spouse speaks something hurtful and you feel like the air was knocked from your chest.

These moments of pain are even more devastating when the words spoken are released with intent to harm, humiliate and are without truth. And hurtful words are especially upsetting when spoken by those we love and trust.

In years past, following a moment of hurtful exchange my gut reaction is revenge. I want to say something to hurt back. I want to rush to my defense and just set this person back a step. I want to react with a blow to their life that would give me satisfaction.

All the years of walking with Jesus, I’ve learned it might feel good in the moment to respond at that level. However, later it never feels good to respond in revenge and give pain to the one who wounded you. But boy howdy, it is hard to respond like Jesus and turn the other cheek.

However, it IS possible. And when you work through the pain and realize that you handled the situation with integrity and maturity, you will be filled with relief and there are some amazing things that are the result when we offer a wise response.

I think in order work through offense there are two processes that are needed.

In The Moment: You may have more to add to this, but for me, in the moment of a hurtful exchange when emotions are roiling, it’s my intimacy with Christ and my years of practicing grace and restraint through the Holy Spirit that saves me from escalating a situation and restrains me from speaking words that will wound others. I remain focused on words like redemption, hope, reconciliation and grace.

Remaining conscious of who I am and whose I am, reframes conflict. I don’t need to stoop to untruths or verbal mud-flinging. I don’t need to speak words that intentionally harm, control or silence.

(Side note: There are situations when it’s appropriate to remove yourself from the conflict, i.e., hang up the phone, leave the room, etc.)

After The Moment: How we process and handle the aftermath of an emotional wounding and conflict is utterly crucial for our emotional and spiritual health.

Join me next time for After The Moment, as I will share the process of how to keep our heart and soul from falling into offense.

Today, I have some homework. In your quiet time this week, I want you to take out paper and pen and pray: Holy Spirit, I give you permission to show me where and with whom I am offended. Write down what you hear then ask the Holy Spirit how to begin to move out of offense.

If you can, share with me areas of offense where you struggle. I hope to write about how to work through them in the next few posts.

I’m in Philadelphia and NYC this week, so I’ll be in the comments sporadically. But I will check in and we will walk this out in Holy triumph my friends. Hugs, Lynn

“You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. 40 And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well.” -Matthew 5:38-40 (NIV)

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


A Glimpse of Heaven

October 12, 2012, was THEE day.

My entire universe altered as I stood in worship at Open Heavens and experienced the Presence of God. Dineen too was forever changed that day. Our ministry was forever changed and I pray that many of you have received encouragement and have experienced a change in your life because of that day.

This year was my fifth-anniversary visit. It always amazes me that Bill remembers me and our ministry. He truly cares for all of us who walk this difficult road, the spiritually mismatched.

I want to share some glimpses of the week. And share one moment that God gifted to me.

Meet Edna, Sandy, Evelyn, Grace and Maria. These five ladies came all the way from North Carolina.

Edna Sandy Evelyn Grace Maria

They came because of Evelyn, who is on the far right, a SUMite and she had read about my adventures on the blog in years past. 

Amazing things happened with these ladies. Like when Evelyn asked for prayer for her hearing loss. As I stood next to her, waiting for the pastor to instruct us to pray, Evelyn looks up at me and says, “I feel heat on my right ear. Heat.”

I am teary with joyous excitement as I reply to her, “Your healing is happening and we haven’t even started to pray yet.” After prayer, she said she experienced a popping sound and her hearing was improved.

I remain utterly mystified how God heals but I'm undone to be allowed to pray and to be a conduit to miracles is….. well….. I have no language to explain. God just ROCKS!!! 

I share some photos below along with one personal story. It's not often that I consider the efforts of my life on earth. I serve the Lord out of love and passion, to empower and strengthen the Saints. So, I was undone on Wednesday. Let me explain. October of 2012 was my first year. In 2013, I invited a woman named Sue. Her life was forever changed. In 2014, 2015 and this year she invited more and more people. I invite people. And they joined us on the adventure this year.

During worship on Wednesday, Sue stepped back to where I was standing and whispered, “Lynn, look down these two rows of people.”

I looked down the rows at a collection of people and children. There were 31 people in our group and others around the auditorium that were in attendance because I took a chance. God heard my call, felt my hunger, for MORE of Him. And through the wildest of circumstances and convincing Dineen to go on this wild adventure with me, we came to Open Heavens in 2012 and set in motion life-change for many others.

Sue went on to say, “These rows of people who are here, experiencing healing and a renewal of their faith, Lynn, they are the fruit. The fruit of your life.”

I burst into uncontrolled sobs.

Even now a lump is in my throat. I don’t often consider the fruit of my life, but on this particular day, the Lord in His great love allowed me a glimpse. I am unraveled.

My friends, once in a while, a glimpse of our efforts is worth months and months of contending in our struggles. I pray this week that God gives you a glimpse of all that your life is pouring into others. And let me assure you of this. If you are spiritually mismatched, your life IS pouring into others.

image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2016-10-16/783db8a30c8b4586b38e5179c0a15bd7.png

This is Sue. She prays for hours for people while we wait in line.

 IMG_4340

SUMite: Evelyn recognized me coming out of a port-o-potty... A blessing indeed.

  image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2016-10-16/c558454e0db5499d8e20f437eb3d3ea0.png

I was praying for people in line and this wonderful woman from Australia asked me to pray for her.

  image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2016-10-16/e4108d6e9ee84300a4be7bb2482c6d61.png

Some of our group. They came from as far as the UK. That Is SUMite, Jim Edwards, in the back.

  image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2016-10-16/9c114d6d2a4d41e58334f45f028be1e9.png

This is Gracie Wright.  She is an author of children's books. We were in line at O'Dark 30. Someone brought donuts.

  image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2016-10-16/b6c70e54a0fc471894c6d9bc672058a3.png

Lynn, Bill, Stone

  image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2016-10-16/92858981b4c04239b84c8fec6c3e329b.png

Jenn Johnson and Stone. They have a new album soon and it's awesome.

They shared several new songs from their new album that will be out in a few months. The song, He's In The Waiting, is utterly transformative. Stay tuned.  

IMG_4423
My travel companion this year.

 IMG_4377These girls stood up in the conference. They attended with their parents who live in Colorado. Both girls eyesight was miraculously healed last year. Girls Eyesight Healed by God.

image from https://s3.amazonaws.com/feather-client-files-aviary-prod-us-east-1/2016-10-16/38cc4f36e8564e9081f499e3958b2e26.png
SUMites: Lynn and Jim Edwards

  

IMG_4386
FRUIT: I'm undone!

My friends, God is on the move. Hang on because we are bearing witness to the church arising, awakening and impacting our world.  

We are the church of the Most High God. And I believe we are going to quickly be the church of the book of Acts. Hang on because IT'S THE BEST RIDE EVER!!

I pray you are overwhelmed with wave after wave of His love today. Hugging you, Lynn 

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


A Stunning Revelation of My Authority

LOVE
My friends, today I want to share a something God is showing me in my own life. And as God is so perfect in His ways, this ties into the series I’ve been writing about regarding words, the power of God’s Word, and the authority we walk in as His children. And I’ve no doubt this is something many in our community here (and this country) need to know as it’s something that affects the majority of women today in all ranges of ages.

First, let me set the stage. Last week I was listening to a podcast by a pastor and teacher I very much respect and he said something that I knew was true but didn’t fully understand in the moment how very deeply this truth can run.

His words were, “We can’t take authority over what we don’t love.”

When I heard it, my heart, soul, mind and spirit nodded in agreement. I believe God has planted the truth of 1 Corinthians 14:1 deep inside me since I was a child.

Let love be your highest goal! But you should also desire the special abilities the Spirit gives—especially the ability to prophesy. — 1 Corinthians 14:1

Love must always be our motivator, sustainer and final goal. I firmly believe that. And hearing these words from this pastor brought this truth to a whole new level for me. It’s also made me examine the places where I have have taken authority in my prayers, yet haven’t seen a shift or change. 

As Lynn shared Friday, there can be things that block our prayers, and perhaps this could be one of them. It makes sense, doesn’t it? If our heart isn’t filled with love for what we’re praying for, how can our prayers be? And I do believe this kind of love has to come from our Lord Jesus and our intimacy with Him. He pours His love into and through us.

So, what did I discover? I can best explain by sharing how this translated into a revelation for me the very next day.

I have had a love hate relationship with food, my weight and my appearance for as long as I can remember. God has brought me a long way over the years, but I still long for complete freedom. I know there are many of you reading this right now, SUMites, that get this. You’ve most likely struggled with it in some way, shape or form too.

And I am determined. I know my prayers are powerful, so I have blessed my body with divine health, perfect function as God designed my body to work and blessed areas that I know I need healing physically. But I’m not seeing the results I so desire. 

As I said, the application of this pastor’s words that the Holy Spirit wanted me to grasp came the next day. He showed me that yes, I have attempted to take authority over my body, but how can I stand in that authority when I don’t love my body and the way God created me?

I have whined and complained about my appearance, my health issues and weight for a long time. I have spoken and thought negatively about myself in more ways than I probably know. And please forgive me if I’m being a little too real and honest here, but I am compelled by the Holy Spirit to share this, because I do believe it is the answer I have sought for a long time to understand what the core issue is.

So now I am changing this. I am seeking God daily to help me love myself in all ways. I’m not talking about anything bordering on vanity or pride here. Just simple appreciation and acceptance of who God created me to be and look like. (Psalm 139:13-18, Luke 12:7, Ephesians 2:10—share more verses in the comments!)

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body. — 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Because I firmly believe that this issue begins in the heart and mind. And I believe as I partner with the Holy Spirit to transform my mind in this area and break old thought patterns too, I will begin too see the results of a healthy mind and body manifest more and more. 

As a person thinks, they are and do, right? (Proverbs 23:7 NKJV)

My friends, can you relate to this? Is this a truth you’ve wanted or needed and didn’t even realize it, like me? What area can you see applying to your life right now? Please share if you’re able. I truly sense this will be a revelation day for many of us and the beginning of new healing and freedom in places we have prayed and longed for.

I love you, SUMites. So very much. I want all God has for you, every single thing He has written down in the pages of His book about you—I pray He pours out every word, blessings, gift and provision He has written down for you today and that His presence is the greatest gift He reveals to you. I pray for more revelation of who you are to Him and who He created you to be, so that you walk in complete confidence in your identity and relationship with your Papa God. In the blessed name of Jesus, amen!

He loves us, my friends. Oh how He loves us…
Dineen

(P.S. Later the same day I noticed the toenail on my left foot—I have unsuccessfully treated it for three years so I began blessing it weeks ago—is now clearing up and growing normal again. Thank You, Lord, for Your sweet confirmations! You are so holy and wonderful!)

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Lord of the Harvest

15753952_sHe said to his disciples, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.”

My friends, I don’t know if you remember me sharing in June of 2013 a dream God gave me, which I believe was a precursor to our salvation word this year and what’s to come. There are several pieces to this that the Holy Spirit is showing me, and I am excited to share with you. So let’s start with a refresher of that dream and then pray in this harvest!

May 2013 (date of dream)

I was half awake, half asleep, but the dream was very vivid. I stood before a tall cornfield—taller than me. Jesus stood next to me.

He gestured to the crop and said, "This is the Great Harvest.”

I said, "Lord, I can't see past this, can you show me more?”

Suddenly I was up higher and could see tall mountains in the far distance. The crop spanned all the way to the mountains!

At the time I found it very curious that I saw corn in this dream as opposed to wheat. With some investigation and research, I discovered that the Bible references to grain can mean either corn or wheat and are often connected with oil and wine.

“From the dew of heaven and the richness of the earth, may God always give you abundant harvests of grain and bountiful new wine. — Genesis 27:28

Isaac said to Esau, “I have made Jacob your master and have declared that all his brothers will be his servants. I have guaranteed him an abundance of grain and wine—what is left for me to give you, my son?” — Genesis 27:37

“If you carefully obey all the commands I am giving you today, and if you love the Lord your God and serve him with all your heart and soul, then he will send the rains in their proper seasons—the early and late rains—so you can bring in your harvests of grain, new wine, and olive oil. He will give you lush pastureland for your livestock, and you yourselves will have all you want to eat. — Deut. 11:13-15

Look at this Scripture from Joel, which is part of God’s promise of restoration:

The threshing floors will again be piled high with grain, and the presses will overflow with new wine and olive oil. — Joel 2:24

Grain and wine were such integral parts of the Israelites lives and culture that it makes complete sense that Jesus would use bread and wine to bring such powerful symbolism, connection and power to what we practice today as communion.

And harvest time is always about prosperity, provisions and promise—of abundant life. The Old Testament displayed this in the physical sense first through manna and then provision from the promised land. Jesus took this provision of physical sustenance and connected it to our spiritual need as well. 

Then Jesus declared, "I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. — John 6:35

Now recently several SUMites have shared stories of how their spouses have walked away from their faith either on this blog or on our 1Peter3Living Yahoo group. My friends, I can’t tell you how deeply this grieved me. These are the stories that break my heart and bring me to tears before God. 

And that is what I did one day last week. It made no sense to me in light of the promises God has been sharing with me—with all of us. I went to Him in tears and asked, “Lord, what is going on? You’ve promised us salvation and even shown me this is coming. Have I missed something, not prayed enough? Is the enemy winning this battle?”

I saw only two possibilities, but our God of the impossible replied with His, “I’m revealing the greater glory.”

Dear friends, my tears turned to laughter as the Holy Spirit whispered this to my heart, “The prodigals are being called back and the unbelievers are being drawn in.”

Our Papa God is so good! He’s bringing our loved ones to His Son just as Jesus said He would. 

“No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them, and I will raise them up at the last day.” — John 6:44

SUMites, I believe this with all my heart, soul, mind and spirit! Will you pray with me?

We praise You, Mighty Lord Jesus, for You are the bread and wine to our lives, our souls and our spirits. Thank You for giving this provision to our spouses too! Lord, send the workers needed for this Great Harvest. Send people into our midst to reveal Your presence and love to our pre-believers. Reveal and show that love to them through us, for we are Your workers too, Lord! 

Lord Jesus, there is Resurrection Life in all You do. We ask for this resurrection life to be released over our pre-believers, our lives, our marriages, our children and every place in our lives where dry bones need to be called back to life. Breathe Your breath of life over all of us. We call these dry places to life, in the Saving and Life-Resurrecting Name of Jesus. 

Lord Jesus, we ask for vengeance against the enemy and the demonic for all they have stolen from us, the SUMites, from our pre-believers, from our children and even from our ancestors. We ask for full recompense and restoration of what has been lost and stolen (Isa. 35).

Lord, call in the harvest of our pre-believers and prodigals. Bring them to You, Lord, every single one of them. Lord Jesus, when You walked this earth, every person who came to You was healed. We present our prodigals and pre-believers to You like the man lowered through the roof and ask that every single one be saved and healed. In the Mighty Name of Jesus, amen!

Love you, SUMites!
Dineen

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Resentment Turns Into THIS... And it will hold you captive

Anger1Part I
Part II
Today is: Part III

So the weird anger explosions transpired a few years ago. And I can state fully that I haven’t had a moment of raw anger since then. Hallelujah. That doesn’t mean I don’t get mad or angry at times. Just not to the extent of a few years ago. Jesus is and was my deliverer.

So why is the Holy Spirit pointing me back to anger? Geeze. I would really like to get out of this classroom.

Remember my phone and the two words that I Googled, resentment and indignation? Well, God was pointing out unresolved anger I held that I perceived as unfair treatment.

Ugh!!

The Lord was revealing that I still had some areas of forgiveness to work though. And as difficult as it is to admit to all of you that I have issues to work through, I do. But I’m so glad the Lord is pointing out this area in my heart. Indignation is a door that if opened fully, the enemy will hurdle through to cause more havoc in my life. 

So how do we deal with resentment, indignation and anger?

Anger, especially unresolved anger when it cools hardens slowly in to resentment. Resentment is a weapon in the arsenal of the devil that he deploys through our self-talk. The devil will roll “that tape” in our heads over and over to fester in our soul, mind, heart, will and emotions to feed our resentment to birth: disgust, loathing, etc hoping we will spiral toward …. hatred.

After the resentment erects a number of emotional and spiritual walls the enemy will work hard to add layer upon layer until finally there is a castle constructed of bitterness.

BITTERNESS.

Bitterness is a cancer of the soul. And I’m convinced that bitterness held in the heart of a human can manifest as physical illnesses. (Oy vey, a post for another day.)

To rid ourselves of bitterness, resentment and anger we must start down the road of forgiveness. I wrote about this in our first book, Winning Him Without Words. It’s a journey but it is necessary for our healing and to throw out any blockage of the Holy Spirit in our lives.

I had to start praying, Lord, help me to want to forgive. And this applies to everything in our past, not just our marriages.

Then you begin to ask Jesus to flood your soul with His love, tenderness, compassion, grace and mercy. When this happens He can walk you through honest and real forgiveness.

In my life I find that ongoing forgiveness is my challenge. I don’t struggle too much with a one-time offense and usually don't hang on to resentment with people whom I don’t know very well. I can see their wondedness and it’s easy for me to have empathy. But forgiving those whom we live with day in and day out, who continue to offend or hurt us in the same manner, well that’s another realm of forgiveness.

But it’s absolutely achievable. Jesus said to forgive, seven times seven.

Do you know why He said that?

It’s not to prove our spirituality or to give us an assignment to grow our faith. It’s not that our love and forgiveness will draw others to Christ, however, it often does. No, Jesus says to forgive because when we forgive we receive healing.

Our spiritual and often physical healing comes when we truly forgive.

I see it like this. In the Spiritual realm my resentment and bitterness forge giant chains of steel around my faith life. I can’t breathe well. I’m constricted and greatly uncomfortable, maybe even in pain so I can’t hear my Father’s voice. I’m weighed down with a heavy burden that I can fully comprehend as to why. I feel sluggish spiritually and physically. I suffer for long periods of time because the weight becomes so intense. And yet because the chains grow so seductively, secretly and slow I become accustom to them. Dare I say, familiar and they can comfort me in some weird way.

Anyone???

Honest forgiveness freed me. I spent a lot of time in prayer and surrender. Bending to the scripture and to love of my Lord. I’ve received prayer from others and we need others to pray for us and with us.

I don’t want to make forgiveness appear to simplistic. In my ministry I’ve prayed for people who have been horrifically abused. Terrible, unspeakable sins were perpetrated on many who were innocent, who were children.

You can be free and forgive even the worst person on the planet. This requires some prayer that takes time. And usually you need to pray with someone who knows how to lead you into Freedom through prayer and forgiveness. If you need this kind of help, search out a healing room. Find a trustworthy pastor or friend who is strong in faith to spend time praying with you. If you live in Southern California and would like to come to my house for healing prayer, email me.

Also, I can pray for you in the comments. I’m astounded that the Holy Spirit shows up and results happen. I kid you not. The Spirit moves through this online community in ways I cannot fully comprehend but they are miraculous.

Forgiveness leads to our freedom.

Next up……. Disappointment.

How are you doing? Everyone okay? Can we pray for one another in the comments today? I love all of you so much. So very much. My heart swells as I consider your difficult lives and how in spite of it all, you press on to prize that awaits you. And your faith is strong and shines the light of Christ in this dark world!

Well done my good friends. WELL DONE!

Hugs, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


The Call to Rest

22300078_sMy friends, my search for deeper understanding of God's call to rest has brought me to some interesting places. I'm excited to share what I have discovered with you. 

As I pondered and prayed over this, Holy Spirit brought to mind first "trust" and "strength." Specifically these pieces of Scripture.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. — Proverbs 3:5-6

Then he said to me, “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of hosts." — Zechariah 4:6

I then began a search for the word "rest" in the New Testament and discovered there are at least five different Greek words used for this one word. The more obvious one would be koimēsis—to rest, recline, lay down, sleep as used in John 11:13.

Acts 7:49 and Hebrews 3:11 both use katapausis, which refers to a place of rest, the heavenly blessedness in which God dwells. Hebrews 4:8-10 uses the word, sabbatismos, which you can probably guess has to to with the Sabbath. This word holds the promise of “entering now into this rest means ceasing from the spiritual strivings that reflect uncertainty about one's final destiny; it means enjoyment of being established in the presence of God, to share in the everlasting joy that God entered when he rested on the seventh day (v. 10).” — ESV Study Bible Notes

But in Matthew 11:28-29, which is about taking Jesus’ yoke, this little word gets very interesting and takes on implications such as refreshment, freedom and salvation. This word, anapausis, comes from the word, anapauō, which means to rest, refresh, take rest, to keep quiet, of calm and patient expectation and is also used in Luke 11:24 about unclean spirits seeking rest but finding none. They live in constant unrest.

Now, if I haven’t lost you (and if I have, just keep reading because this next part if the good stuff). Take a look at this nugget of Scripture.

And he said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat.” — Mark 6:31

This verse comes at the point when the disciples have returned from traveling and ministering to tell Jesus about all they had done. He calls them to a time of rest to refresh and to possibly reflect (anapauō). What I find very interesting in His direction is that He calls them to a desolate place (Mark 6:30-44).

Now the meaning of this word also means isolated and solitary but even still in these definitions it holds the intent of loneliness and uninhabited. It was a desert, a place uninhabited by people. Yet as they go to this place, the multitude rushes ahead and fills this "desolate" location.

I encourage you to prayerful read this part of Scripture and allow the Holy Spirit to fully bring its symbolism to your heart. I find it quite deep and exciting to reflect upon. This is what I felt Holy Spirit wanted me to see.

Even with a group of people in this place, the disciples still called it desolate. There was hunger there (not just physical), deep needs, unfulfilled desires and wants. Remember, these people lived under ether heavy religious yoke of the Pharisees. 

I can remember once years ago being with a group of people I knew yet feeling lonely in that moment and place. I believe the use of this word "desolate" was not just to describe a physical place but the spiritual state of the people thronging Jesus and the disciples. They are desperate for relief, restoration and healing in their lives.

But then something amazing happens. Jesus now tells them to do something about it. The disciples seem confused by Jesus' command, as they can only see what is there—the desolation and lack of provision.

Yet Jesus shows them that even a desolate place can be transformed to one of plenty and provision. Jesus called them to rest from their efforts and to rest in Him. They most likely expected a time to sit and physically rest. Not a lesson about true rest in Jesus, which can be so much more. That even in a time of rest, provision, growth and flourishing occurs. Healing, transformation and even miracles, such as five thousand being fed with two fish and five loaves. Just the symbolism in the bread alone, served by the “Bread of Life” is breathtaking.

And in the collection of the leftovers (vs. 43) we see that abundance. Jesus could have multiplied the fish and loaves to be just enough for the crowd, but He did more. The lesson of "rest" continued in those baskets to reveal the plenty of His provision, generosity, abundance and love. 

As the disciples served those people, I dare say they found an unexpected rest. The kind that comes from placing ourselves in the hands of our Creator and saying, "Yes, Lord, whatever you will.” That's the trust of Proverbs 3:5-6 and the strength of Zechariah 4:6 to do what we may think is beyond us—the impossible. 

So my friends, my understanding of resting in Jesus is confirmed in my heart by what I suspected and knew it to be, to trust in and rely upon Him. But now I see it as so much more. It's not just a set time apart with Him each day to grow and know Him more. It is an intentional choice to seek this constant state of mind and spirit. To trust in and rely upon Him to renew, restore, replenish, provide, guide and love us, even in our desolate places—spiritual, mental or physical—all of them.

For without Him, they are truly desolate. Jesus is the one who brings the baskets of life and love. We can bring nothing except a willing heart and spirit to receive what He has for us. Our striving can cease as we "rest" in the truth of what He has already done for us. 

And there, my friends, we find our true peace, resting in Him regardless of what conditions or situation surround us. To the naked eye the place where the five thousand ate remained a place of desolation, but the desolation in the hearts of many that day were transformed into places full of lush greenery (growth), cool waters (hope) and restoration (revival).

The Way had come into their midst to show them a better way to rest. He beckoned them then just as He beckons us today. And ours is to simply heed His call.

Love you, my friends. May we all respond to His call to go deeper with trust and a loud, “Yes, Lord!” That is my desire and longing and my heart for you.
SignatureGraphic2

 

Copyright: kwest19 / 123RF Stock Photo

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


76 Years AND My Personal Miracle

Okay, this is the LAST in the series of post I began in March about my mother's redemption. How appropriate that I finish this story up and share my own miracle on Easter Sunday.

Part I

Part II

Part III

And the final post: Miracles Still Happen Today Because of Jesus!

My mother then interrupted me to share one last story. And I share it with you now because the truth behind it is weighty for all of us. She said to me that last week she was contacted by the mother of one of her students. The student was in my mother’s Sundays school class when she was five years old. The mom of this student said that her daughter was turning 16 years old. And the best present she could give to her daughter, was, well….. her.

So they arranged to meet for a surprise breakfast for my now 76-year-old mom to meet this 16 year old girl for her birthday celebration. As my mother walked from the light into the darkened restaurant, her eyes weren’t adjusted yet to the dimmer light when from across the room a squeal was let loose and this vibrant and beautiful, sixteen-year-old girl rushed to my mom and embraced her. The love shared between this old woman and young woman was tangible in the restaurant.

My mother imparted the love of Jesus into her life when she was just a little girl and years later that young girl loves her in a way, I can’t fully grasp. The reunion was astonishingly holy and beautiful.

As I listened to my mother describe this moment, I reached for more Kleenex. I could barely whisper into the phone but I uttered the words, “Fruit, Mom.”

“This is the fruit of your life. You have poured so much of Jesus into others and today, Jesus is showing you the fruit of your labors, of your love.”

Healing.

Breakthrough.

Fruit.

Even at 76 years old our Savior never stops loving us, healing us, leading us into breakthrough and continues to reveal our fruit.

Oh my siblings, my SUMites, I have no language to describe my grateful heart. The love I feel. How utterly undone I am to be an honored witness to a life-long dance of love with a Savior of one woman’s heart.

I hung up the phone and worshiped and I knew Jesus was calling my mother, Sue, The Rose of Sharon, His beloved Bride, whom He dearly loves.

Okay wipe your eyes because there is another part to this story….. Yes, wait…. There’s more.

Remember the conference in Las Vegas? Well something else happened while we were there that week. Now the story I’m about to share is, ahem, kinda personal and delicate. I’m going to talk about some anatomy that may make some of you squirm but if I don’t share this story, I’ve robbed Jesus of a great glory and others of a testimony of power and healing.

So here we go.

On the second day of the conference, throughout the day, I began to notice some pain in my right breast. An aching pain that kinda nagged at my subconscious. With the events of the day I paid this weird pain no notice until finally at 4 a.m. I’m wide awake and the pain is pulsing in a dull throb. I roll on top of the blankets and begin to feel around to try to figure out why I’m in pain.

And then I felt it. A lump near the center of my breast. Gulp. I reexamined several times, yep it’s truly there. No doubt.

Let me tell you what happens in four in the morning when you feel a lump. FEAR. Immediately my mind screamed and my heart pounded and fear pulsed through my body. For just a minute…. And I mean that because in that minute the years of truth and training and Bible study rose up before me and conquered that fear.

I said aloud into the dark room, “No, I choose to be in faith and not in fear.”

I prayed and spoke and declared every promise I KNOW as truth into the dark in that hour. My heart rate calmed and my spirit walked in real faith. I will not walk in fear. I will walk in faith.

And I did. When my mother woke, I told her about what I found. Now remember my mother worked in oncology for more than three decades. She examined. And the look on her face alone confirmed that indeed, there is a lump.

I called my doctor from Las Vegas and set in motion a ton of appointments. Mamo, ultrasound, surgery appointment. Geeze. Even taking this action, I stood in faith and fear did not grip me. I truly promise you. I believed this lump would be healed.

That night at the conference I received prayer. I put out an APB to my intercessors and those amazing people, you know who you are, they prayed down heaven about me.

I returned home and two weeks later following my Mamo and ultrasound – NO LUMP. Nothing. Clean….

Healed!

I called my mom, who had been praying unceasingly for me and shared the miraculous new. She said, “I praise God and am so relieved. Lynn, that lump was big.”

I gulped and replied, “I’m glad you didn’t tell me that at the time.”

My SUMite friends, miracles are happening all around us. And you are not going to be left out. God is on the move with astonishing power and love. We MUST let go of our unbelief and choose to stand in faith. Kick that old familiar spirit of fear out of the house. Stand upon the promised of our King. Attend a conference where they teach healing. Let me pray for your healing. We all can love and pray for one another. The prayers of the righteous availeth much (James 5:16). I know this to be true and proven over and over again as I live and breathe.

Jesus: Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. - Matthew 18:18-19

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


What Really Happened With The Crown Of Thorns

In my kitchen is a small house plant. It’s called a Crown of Thorns. I’ve had this particular plant for years. Regretfully, year after year it has been barren. Never producing the pink blossoms I’ve expected. For some strange reason I can’t part with it. Perhaps it's because of the name….

Indeed, this plant’s stock is thorny. And they can grow to become very large and menacing. Many grow here in Southern California and they look imperious and I cringe when I think about Jesus and Good Friday. By the way, why in the world to they call today, “Good Friday.” It was terrible….. But I always remember….

Sunday’s a comin!

They stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on his head. They put a staff in his right hand. Then they knelt in front of him and mocked him. “Hail, king of the Jews!” they said. They spit on him, and took the staff and struck him on the head again and again. After they had mocked him, they took off the robe and put his own clothes on him. Then they led him away to crucify him. — Matthew 27:28-31

Do you think the Crown of Thorns is significant? Up until just recently, I always thought that the crown was of course, a mockery of His kingship or that it was in some way a spiritual representation that the devil perverted.

But No.

It’s so much more than all of that. The placement of the Crown of Thorns on the head of Christ was pointedly redemptive.

It breaks the curse placed upon the ground when Adam sinned.

 To Adam he said, “Because you listened to your wife and ate fruit from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘You must not eat from it,’ “Cursed is the ground because of you; through painful toil you will eat food from it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field.” — Genesis 3:17-18

Everything about today! The day where Jesus mediated the New Covenant and set our redemption into place. Everything about the Crucifixion is meaningful.

This is just one of the many things the blood of Christ redeems.

Today, I received a phone call from Deborah, a Sumites from years gone by. She called me to share how she is hungry for more of God and to share all that the Lord has redeemed in her life. Today, on this day, Good Friday, I weep as I type. I’m overwhelmed as I think of the lives, that I have personally known, that have been redeemed, healed, saved because Jesus gave everything ….. TODAY, on “Good Friday.”

And as I was on the phone, I walked into the kitchen and my little plant, my Crown of Thorns, blooms. And it blooms in petals of perfect white.

Crown of Thorns

I love you so much Jesus. I lack adequate language to say how your love has redeemed everything in my life and those who are part of our SUMite home. We honor you Jesus with words of worship, love and eternal loyalty. I’m so thankful we have all of eternity to love you and honor your sacrifice of this day.

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Breakthrough after years of.......

Part III today... Part I (click here) Part II (click here)

-----

Mom & Kaylee crop
Granddaughter reunion in January

But, my friends, wait as I grab tissue to dab at the tears, there is STILL MORE.

Yesterday, when my mother called to check up on my health progress, at the end of our phone call, I said, “Mom, thank you for always praying for me and my healing. But Mom, how can I pray for you?”

And this is almost the best part of the story.

She said, “You know I wasn’t going to mention it to you but since you asked, I think I’m having some kind of a spiritual breakthrough.”

“What? Oh Do tell me more. I want to hear everything.”

“Well, for some reason I am teary. I don’t know really what is happening but I’m so teary and weepy.”

OH HOLY GOD BE PRAISED!!!

“Oh Mom, I’m so glad you told me about this. I’ve been praying for you to have a breakthrough in this area for years. Mom, it’s okay to cry. It’s healthy to cry. It’s healing to cry over your pain. Mom, you know that Jesus cries. It’ right and good to cry.”

“Well, yes I know that Jesus cries.”

“Mom, do you know that on that day many years ago when you said to yourself that you would never cry again, did you know that when you said those words you made a word vow, a curse against yourself? Mom, when that happened a demon attached to it and even in later years when you wanted to cry, even needed to cry, you were unable.”

“But Mom, praise be to our Jesus because He has set you free and yes, mom, you are having a spiritual breakthrough! Mom, if you need to have a long-bawling-cry your heart out- cry, then do it. Don’t stop it up because Jesus is right there to hold you through the tears.”

“I’m afraid that if I start, I won’t stop.”

“Don’t stop this mom. Let Jesus heal you all the way. And you will be healed when you let it all go.”

“I love you so much Mom. It has been my profound privilege to be a witness to how Jesus has loved you all of your life. Through such great tragedies and heart wrenching loss, He has danced with you and loved you every day of your life. He saw you as a small child, determined to get to Sunday school to be with Him, so determined you walked alone. He has watched you train up three children in the Lord. He has stood with you as you taught Sunday school to little children four and five years old for years and years. And mom, you are still teaching those little ones today, which just inspires me.”

“Mom, Jesus would not let you leave this earthly life, without giving you these profound, healing encounters because He loves you, He sees you. He knows you honored Him and believed without wavering even when everything appeared hopeless….. But you cried out, “I believe in Jesus.”

My mother then interrupted me to share one last story. And I share it with you now because the truth behind it is weighty for all of us...... 

-----

Part IV on Monday my friends.

I wonder if any of you have found yourself in a place where something you swore would or would never happen again in your life and become a barrier to you. If you have, please leave me a comment, that I may pray for you. Or email me, link for my private email is in the sidebar. 

I love you my friends. I am watching the Lord move with power and freedom in many of our lives. Email me your stories. I want to celebrate with you.

Have a blessed weekend. And remember to set your clocks forward on Saturday night in America. Hugs, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Dancing With Jesus..... The Miraculous Happens

Part II .......  

And indeed, a second and successful surgery saved her life. AMEN!

My privileged vantage point has been awesome. I have a front row seat to view the life-long, faithfulness of God in these very later years of my mother’s life.

Over the last few years as my own spiritual journey expanded and intensely grew, I shared so much of my faith experiences with my mom. I told her about the many freedoms I’ve attained through Jesus and also how some of the bondage that has lived in our family blood line has been cancelled  I prayed over the phone with her to free her from familial spirits of Free Masonry and other issues that have plagued our family line for generations.

In these her latter years, my mother is experiencing areas of heart healing from our Savior. The memories bring a smile of Godly joy to my face as I bear witness to my mother stepping into further freedom. And the next story is such an amazing event.

Several months ago my mom received an unexpected phone call. Her granddaughter, my brother’s daughter, wanted to visit and spend the weekend with her grandma. Plans were set in motion and indeed the reunion was more than either could have hoped or dreamed. Many misunderstandings were reconciled and love was shared. Old photos were looked over and crazy antics of my brother were told. Laughter and love all were given as the Lord looked down with a great smile of satisfaction. Years of hopeful prayer came into their fullness in those few days. And this relationship has been fully restored. In Jesus name. Thank you and hallelujah!

But wait…. There is more, so much more. Just because He can…

For several years I’ve invited my mother to attend the Open Heaven’s Conference with me. You may have been a reader here for some years and know that my life, as well as Dineen’s, forever altered at that conference in 2012. The spiritual fire that was set loose in me recalibrated every aspect of my faith, my love of God and how I love people as well as defined and focused my Godly purpose. And I’ve shared so much of my experiences with my mom but she always hesitated to join me for this annual event.

Mom Lynn Heidi LV Conference II
This is SUMite, Heidi, myself and my mom at the conference.


However, in January several amazing speakers, including Bill Johnson, were going to be at a conference at a church in Las Vegas. So I invited my mom to join me as a celebration of her 76th birthday that coincided with the event.

She said yes.

So two women, bearing bibles, head to Las Vegas…… to go to church. The irony is not lost on my heart.

Now here is where the story moved into the realm of our miraculous God.

The first evening of the conference near the conclusion of the night, Bill, offered prayer for healing. My mother stands. For at least six months she has been nursing, treating and bearing up under a weird ulcer-like-sore, the size of a golf ball, on the belt-line of her waist. The thing is an ugly, open, and painful sore that has been infected numerous times.

As an interesting side note, my mother has never, in all her years of faith, seen God heal anyone, physically. But at this moment, after the Spirit lead teaching and worship, my mother stands….. she stands in faith for healing and she receives prayer over this ailment on her abdomen.

Two people who were seated around us step over and lay hands upon her and pray. Then I place my hand upon this area of concern and pray. It’s in this holy moment that I feel heat leave my hand and warm the area on her stomach. My mom feels nothing but I know what just happened.

Jesus was in the room!

Prayer ends. Hugs all around and we depart for our hotel.

Early the next morning my mom steps from the bedroom area and finds me on the couch in our hotel room. She exclaims, “Lynn, look at this.” She raises her shirt, “Look, there is a scab on this sore." The astonishment on her face was beautiful to behold.  "I have prayed for months for a scab to form.”

“Oh, Mom. Jesus has healed you.” I leap from the couch.

 JESUS HAS HEALED YOU OVER NIGHT!

Gang, I take a closer look at the scab. Indeed, a round scab now covers the previously red and irritated area. My head still blows up when I think back to this moment.

And now let me bring glory and honor to our healer, the Lord Jesus Christ. By the time the conference ended and we departed, the entire area was healed, the scab fell off and all that remained was a shadowy area, a scar, that is a permanent marker of her supernatural healing.

But, my friends, wait as I grab tissue to dab at the tears, there is STILL MORE. So much more to tell........

But, alas this post has already gone too long.... So on Friday I'm going to share the best part of what happens next... Stay tuned!

------

Side note: It's so interesting to me that I'm finally getting over of a month and a half of illness myself. I've prayed extensively about health and healing in the past several months. So has Dineen. Today during my prayer time, the Lord was very specific about sharing a healing prayer with all of you. I posted  the prayer on our SUM Facebook page. It's also posted on my personal blog. Lynndonovan.org.

If you are struggling with health issues, perhaps this prayer would be helpful to you. Read it and pray it, aloud and often, over yourself for the next 30 days.

Finally, in faith I stand with you and I say: Be healed and whole in Jesus name.

-----

Okay, see you Friday. Let me know what you think of my moms story in the comments and share your prayer for healing as well. I love you my SUMite family! Make it a fantastic week ahead. After all, you are a Child of the Most High God. LIVE LIKE IT!!!  Woo Hoo! Hugs, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


A 76-Year Love Dance With Jesus

Isaiah 46 4
My friends, can I just tell you how GLAD I am to be back at my desk and typing. I’m thrilled. After traveling in January, I came down with some serious illnesses and one in particular could have been devastating. I will share more about that as we move through the story I’m about to tell.

Already in this Jubilee Year, I’ve been utterly privileged to watch Jesus restore, heal and save. And today I’m compelled to ascribe Great Glory to our Jesus because of His endless and fathomless love, mercy and kindness. I have a testimony to share that is partly mine but mostly it’s a magnificent story belonging to my mother.

This story is a telling of a love dance between an old woman of 76 years of age and our timeless Lord Jesus. I pray I bring him honor through these words.

I’ve watched as a close up participant, and also from a distance. I have perceived and viewed from many angles, a life-long love dance between my mom and Jesus. But it’s only been in the last few months that I’ve born witness to the truly profound and supernatural moves of God in my mother’s life.

Let’s set the stage.

My mother, Sharron Sue Parks, was born in a small-town, a farming community in southern Colorado. Her childhood was wonderful and she was adored by my grandparents. My mother told me years ago that the Lord called out to her to draw her unto his love and a life of faith. On Sunday mornings as a child of eight or nine she would set out to walk to Sunday school alone. Sometimes her Aunt would take her to church because her parents didn’t attend (another story for another time). But she was drawn to Jesus and many a Sunday morning walked, by herself, to church. She grew up in the First Christian church in her small town and married by father there in 1959.

The newlywed couple moved to Denver and I was born a year later. Married life was challenging from the beginning but she pressed into living for her family and marriage. Three kids later and a few moves of the family found us in Las Vegas. I was a teenager and my siblings and I were shuffled into new schools, a new culture and a new life, once again.

May things occurred over the years. My father left my mom after 25 years. Following a long and protracted divorce proceeding, she found herself alone. The night the divorce was finalize, she cried herself to sleep. When she woke the next morning, she vowed to herself that crying didn’t solve anything and that she would never cry again.

She never did. Years and years passed. Not a single tear.

My mother’s tender heart was crushed further when my brother passed away at a young age of 41, following a long illness where he battled with cancer. Her pain and emotional beating was barely survivable. But she never stopped praying. Even on the day of my brother’s passing when three demons appeared before her and said hissingly, “We’ve got him now. He belongs to us.” My mother in her darkest moment said the only truth she knew and held in her heart, “I believe in Jesus.” And the demons immediately left. (BTW, demons lie. My brother was a believer.)

Her pain increased in other life circumstances but somehow through all the pain, she still remained loved and in love with her Jesus. The same kind Savior who once walked with her to Sunday school when she was a small girl. He adored her then and never left her even in the darkest of years that passed. Even when her questions and doubts overwhelmed her faith.

Sue eventually retired from her management and nursing position in a large Oncology center. She moved back to her home state of Colorado. It was during this time she faced a life-threatening surgical complication. She virtually faced death’s door. I remember praying and praying for her life. And I clearly heard the Lord give me this passage of scripture for her:

In those days Hezekiah became sick and was near death. Isaiah the man of God, the son of Amoz, came to him and said, “The Lord says, ‘Make those of your house ready, for you will die and not live.’” 2 Then Hezekiah turned his face to the wall, and prayed to the Lord, 3 and said, “O Lord, I ask you from my heart to remember now how I have walked with You in truth and with a whole heart. I have done what is good in Your eyes.” And Hezekiah cried with a bitter cry. 4 Then the Word of the Lord came to Isaiah, saying, 5 “Go and tell Hezekiah, ‘The Lord, the God of your father David, says, “I have heard your prayer. I have seen your tears. See, I will add fifteen years to your life. — Isaiah: 38 1-6 NLV 

I knew the Lord intended to extend her life. God had heard the years of prayers uttered by my mother to one day be reunited with her granddaughter, her son’s only living child. She had not seen her for years following my brother’s death because there was great pain on both sides of this family when he died. Yet, in my prayer time, I KNEW, THAT I KNEW, THAT I KNEW, IN MY KNOWER, God would reunite them and all would be forgiven.

My mother didn’t have the faith for this but I did and I stood in the gap with faith for her reunion and knew God had granted her extended years to answer this old woman’s heart’s desire.

And indeed, a second and successful surgery saved her life. AMEN!

-----

Okay, this is the end of part one of the story.. But it's also the beginning of even more amazing testimony. Stop back on Monday as I share what happened next. I love you my SUMite family. This testimony bears witness to the love of Jesus and becomes a powerful in our own lives. My mom is 76 years of age but Jesus is moving with great power in her life right now.

Jesus never stops redeeming, healing and restoring our lives no matter how many years it takes.
Never, ever. AMEN!

See you Monday. Hugs, Lynn

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books


Broken In A Thousand Pieces But..... Jesus..

SUMites, ANOTHER profound email. What is happening in our community? Ten years of praying, believing, trusting. The fruit is ripe and I celebrate every victory in our SUMite Nation. And I continue to pray and trust for those yet to come.

Today, please meet Kim Valentine. Her story is TRULY miraculous!!!!  Thank you Jesus. (Read to the end because this story is astonishing!)

-----

One day after 18 years of marriage my husband informed me he was moving out.  As soon as the words left his lips, I knew this time it wasn’t an idle threat. God immediately began revealing to me every sin I committed that degraded, emasculated and disrespected my husband. Every time I blamed, criticized, condemned or withheld intimacy was before my very eyes. The blinders were ripped off and the ugliness of my sin was repulsive to me! Here I was a Christian for 16 years, playing the part, talking the talk and holding the church positions. I felt so valued by my Christian “family” as one of Christ’s ambassadors to the world, but the witness to my own husband was like filthy rags before God.

 “Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.” James 1:26

I felt stripped bare to the core that day, but in that process God miraculously transformed my heart for my husband. I experienced an infilling of unconditional love for him that was beyond human comprehension. The persistent nagging inside my being that had to speak up and criticize my him was miraculously gone. So many things that irritated me in the past were washed away.  I began to see him through God’s eyes as a precious human being created and loved by Him.

“Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” Isaiah 43:19

We had become strangers in the same house living separate lives. We were more like roommates than a married couple and our lives rarely intersected. We hadn't shared a bed for over eight years but I was comfortable with that arrangement, so I didn't care to change.

Had I not realized over the years I was not treating my husband well? I could say “no” and blame other men who had hurt me, other people or society. I have to confess that deep on a spiritual level I knew my actions were damaging to my husband and our whole family.  All factors may be reasons for my behavior but no excuse to treat him with disrespect he didn't deserve.

This new love for my husband welled up inside me and overflowed. I had never felt this way and I wanted him to receive this love from me, but was it too late? I had taken control and removed him as head of our family where God intended him to be all along. Would he think that my actions were nothing more than a ploy to make him stay? Regardless, I started to treat him with respect and submission the way I should have all along.

But I was not completely obedient and trusting God. I fought for control of the situation by plotting and intervening like an amateur detective. I intercepted emails and monitored his bank account justifying it because I was trying to save our marriage. God began to convict me of my intrusion and I realized it was actually an invasion of my husband’s privacy. The harsh reality was, he was leaving and there was nothing I could do to control or manipulate that outcome.

After he moved out I withdrew and began to focus on my own pain.  I started to dwell on my husband’s contribution to the marriage breakdown in my own private pity party. I remember lying on my kitchen floor weeping and begging Jesus to take me Home. I felt like my heart was broken and I was in a thousand pieces. I now believe it was my own sin and lack of “control” eating me alive. One morning I woke up in tears telling the Lord that I couldn't go on any longer, I was too weak.

I turned to my devotional and the scripture verse was from 2 Corinthians 12: 8-10:

“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

God wanted to heal my heart and life before He could ever heal our marriage. This journey of reconciliation wasn’t only about our marriage but also about my disconnection with the Lord. I took my eyes off Him and lived life my own way.

God used prayer and study to open my eyes and discover I was the contentious or quarrelsome woman of Proverbs. In the message Proverbs 27: 15-16 reads: A nagging spouse is like the drip, drip, drip of a leaky faucet; you can’t turn it off, and you can’t get away from it.

 “It’s better to live alone in the desert than with a quarrelsome, complaining wife.” Proverbs 21:19

God now had my complete attention and I wept in brokenness. Even though my heart had been transformed, I continued to hold on to control. I had to be obedient to the Holy Spirit, renew my mind, be accountable to the Lord for my own actions and not blame anyone else. My obsession with control destroyed our marriage.

A week after this epiphany, my husband contacted me out of the blue and asked me to go out for coffee. I hadn’t heard from him in months. The first meeting started as a casual meeting between “friends “but was actually the beginning of our restoration journey.

My husband had a new softness to him I had never before seen, so I knew his heart was changed. He is back home now and we don't just have a marriage restored but a one that's transformed. I tell people I have the husband I’ve always wanted but never allowed him to be. We are blessed to fall into a deeper love with each other. I am witness as he grows in confidence as the head of our household. There are days I still struggle with wanting control, but being aware helps me learn to surrender it to the Lord.

Learning to be a wife as God intended is counter cultural as the world dictates women be independent. We are supposed to take control in marriage and family instead of depending on the Lord but this is so counterproductive. I have new joy embracing the role God has graced me with as wife and help mate for my husband. I know that after God, my husband is my priority. This is how I honor the Lord.

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:2.

I have had the privilege of watching the Lord draw my husband to Him.  It has been more than two years since our reconciliation and my husband has recently become a follower of Jesus Christ. I stand in awe at how the Lord is developing him into the spiritual leader in our home. It’s all about Him!

The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:9

For many years I sought to find my identity and affirmation in education, positions and career but these pursuits became my gods. I had built my foundation on sinking sand destined to wash away. It gave me a feeling of superiority over my husband. I lost focus that my true identity is found in only in Jesus Christ and the role he has for me as His child, a wife to my husband and a mother to our children.

Kim Valentine 2016I am a  50-something  daughter of the King, wife to one awesome husband, mother to two amazing children and one special "son in love", future grandmother and nurse.  I strive to be a woman after God's own heart and walk in His steps.

"To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps"
1 Peter 2:21

*****

Share your voice, heart and love in the comments. 

THRIVE in your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and raise your children to faith. Our books are filled with practical experience and Biblical advice. -click or tap the photo-

Covers Three Books