Blog, Home, Life, Family, Encouragement

The Ultimate Valentine

It’s the time of year where “love is in the air”. Couples showering each other with flowers and gifts in an effort to show the other how much they love them. For others it’s a time of sadness, loneliness, and depression. Often feeling unlovable because they are “alone” and have no one to spend the day with. Feeling as if somehow they aren’t “good enough” to have someone show them love on this specific day.

My hopes in writing this is to bring hope, joy, and the surrounding presence of God’s love to those whom feel “alone”. I am excited to share with you– you are NOT alone. Not on Valentine’s day or any other day for that matter. Let me share with you a love that is unconditional, unfailing, and unchanging!

Deuteronomy 31:8 And the Lord, He is the One who goes before you. He will be with you, He will not leave you nor forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed.”

The love of Jesus– there is no greater love than that of Jesus Christ– who was tortured and killed for you– yes YOU– so that your sins would be forgiven so you may live eternally– so you would know His love. Perfect- Unconditional- Never Failing Love!

John 15:13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

There are many people that have the wrong idea of who God is– Thinking that He just wants to take the fun out of life or give you a list of rules that is impossible to follow perfectly. Some think He is mad at them–that He is to blame for the bad things in their life– some even believe that God hates them. As Joyce Meyer says and wrote a book on, God is NOT Mad at you!! I read the book and if you believe God is mad at you–you should read it too.

God doesn’t correct us or give us rules because He is mad or wants to be a party pooper. God corrects us through His word because He loves us! Just as a good parent loves their child– God loves us even more!

Proverbs 3:12 For whom the Lord loves He corrects, Just as a father the son in whom he delights.

The Bible is there to instruct, convict, and replenish your soul– not to chastise, condemn, and break you down. God instructs us in Matthew that love is the greatest commandment. This is because God sent Jesus to die on the cross for our sins and lack of capability to uphold each commandment in the law. When Jesus was crucified He was sinless His death represented the love of God to all of us.

Matthew 22:34-40

But when the Pharisees heard that He had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35 Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?”

37 Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”

God never stops loving us even on the days or years we do not choose Him. God authored the concept of love–God is love. God wants us to love Him, love ourselves, and love everyone as He loved us. We love because He first loved us.

You see no one is truly alone– that is a lie the enemy wants you to believe– so that you will remain in bondage to loneliness, sadness, and depression. God is always with us–He goes before us and prepares the way.

If you are feeling alone and vulnerable this Valentine’s Day I encourage you to seek out the Ultimate Valentine– God. He showers you with the perfect love all of the days of your life. He has many gifts (blessings) for you– you only have to receive Him and accept them. God is near to the broken hearted and His strength is made perfect in our weakness. What better valentine to have than the one who authored the concept of love.

Prayer

Heavenly Father,

Thank you Lord for being the ultimate example of unconditional love in Jesus Christ. Thank you for showing us love even when we did not deserve it and in our times of struggle. Forgive us Lord for forgetting that we are never truly alone, You are always with us. Remind us that regardless of what the world says or what our circumstances may seem like we are loved far more than we could ever imagine. Remind us that our relationship with Jesus is far more important and comforting than any relationship we could ever form on this earth. Lord I pray that in this season we remember that we love because You first loved us. Remind us that You are the author of love and we must learn to truly love ourselves and who You created us to be before we could ever show true love to someone else. Lord help us to be vessels for Your kingdom, give us courage and boldness to share the love of Jesus with those who cross our paths daily. Thank you for Your perfect and unconditional love and it is in Jesus mighty name I pray.

Amen

Blog, Devotionals, Home, Life, Family, Encouragement

Daily Devo- A Cry for Help

The world is full of hurt, disappointments, fear, anxiety, depression, and the list goes on. I write this devotional today with a heavy heart from personal experience’s with the mentioned emotions in my own life and those that I love.

The struggle is real, the hurt is deep, and the fears can be paralyzing.

Depression, anxiety, fearful and negative thoughts plague us daily and are growing during this season of the pandemic. We are under attack physically, mentally, and emotionally. Many are feeling more disconnected today than ever before.

These are attacks from our enemy- satan- the author of lies and the father of it. The enemy that only comes to kill, steal, and destroy every aspect of our life and keep us from fulfillment in God’s purpose for our life.

God has already defeated the enemy. We can cry out to Him for help and He WILL rescue us.

We are not alone and do not have to face these difficult times alone– God is near to the brokenhearted!

Psalm 34:18 NIV The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Psalm 142:6 NIV Listen to my cry, for I am in desperate need; rescue me from those who pursue me, for they are too strong for me.

I want to encourage each person that may be facing difficult times and emotions to reach out– Talk with a loved one, a doctor, a friend, or myself (faithanchored@yahoo.com)– just please ask for help. My heart is breaking for all those that are lost and are struggling alone.

YOU MATTER!

YOU ARE LOVED!

YOU HAVE GREAT PURPOSE!

YOU ARE NOT ALONE– GOD IS ALWAYS WITH YOU, ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU DO NOT FEEL IT!

It is okay to not be okay. It shows strength and courage to seek help with your struggles especially those that are emotional and mental.

Trying to battle the feelings, thoughts, and attacks alone will only feed into the already difficult circumstances. Our enemy plants lies in our mind when we are aimlessly wandering in our thoughts– these seemingly small seeds can quickly grow into deep rooted beliefs about ourselves and our circumstances. Starting as a single negative thought then quickly spiraling into a playground of negativity and lies in our mind for satan to torture us and attempt to keep us chained by the lies, out of God’s will, and bound by our feelings.

Seeking help and facing our feelings along with the trauma that caused them is not easy, but it is necessary for total healing and freedom. Although learning to navigate through these seemingly never ending cycles of hurt, depression, and downward spirals of negativity is hard; it is possible.

God’s word tells us that He can take the impossible and make it possible– through Him ALL things are possible! (Matthew 19:26)

Take a stand for yourself and your future. Step up and step out. Admit that we are weak but He is strong. Hand each emotion, traumatic event, worry, fear, anxiety over to Him and let God do the work in you and for you.

It may seem hard to believe in the midst of the storm but God will help you through deep waters, He will comfort you, He will protect you, and He will save you from your despair. He did it for me and He can do it for you too!

Prayer

Heavenly Father,

Thank you Lord for Your Word and Your comfort in times of trouble. Thank you for the promises to never leave us nor forsake. For always being near to those of us who are brokenhearted and struggling with life’s storms. Lord God I pray that Your message be heard through these words. I pray You will be a light to so many during this dark season. I pray that those who are battling depression, fear, anxiety, and hurts from this broken world would turn to You. Soften their hearts, open their eyes and ears to Your truth. Lead each of us and protect us from the schemes and lies of the enemy. I declare in the name of Jesus chains be broken, people be truly freed in You, and that you will transform each one of us with the renewal of our minds through Your truth, grace, and love. In Jesus mighty name I pray.

Amen

Blog, Home, Life, Family, Encouragement

Breaking Chains and Healing Trauma

We all experience events in life that are less than ideal. However, some events that people experience the pain and hurt goes much deeper than just the surface. Likely, we have all known someone that has been through a horrible loss or survived a difficult situation. When an event is so terrible that the pain and hurt cuts deep into our souls this is what counselor’s call trauma. Those who have had traumatic events happen in their life need help healing the wounds it caused. When healing is not sought after or completed for those that experienced the trauma– they are likely to grow up and damage others, including their own families.

There are two types of trauma– invasion trauma and abandonment trauma.

Invasion trauma is something that did happen to a person and caused damage.

Abandonment trauma is when something did NOT happen to a person that creates damage. (feeling unloved, not protected, or nurtured)

Both affect the four aspects of people’s lives: emotional, physical, sexual, and spiritual.

Invasion Trauma

  • Emotional Invasion- when people feel criticized, shamed, or blamed verbally or nonverbally. It occurs when people are talked out of their feelings–‘Big girls don’t cry’ or ‘Christians don’t feel that way’. It can also occur when an adult authority figure reverses roles leaving the child to be a caregiver instead of receiving.
  • Physical Invasion- when someone is abused physically. This type of invasion can cause permanent physical damage. The emotional affect of this can also be experienced if someone lives in a home in which someone else is being physically abused.
  • Sexual Invasion- is when a person is touched or penetrated in sexual areas outside of a mutual relationship or marriage. This is a broad description as a person having consensual sex outside of God’s Plan can have traumatizing effects as well. This type of invasion can also occur if someone is teased or criticized about their bodies..
  • Spiritual Invasion- when a person is led to believe they are unworthy of God’s love and grace, even if well intended it could result in shame that many people can’t seem to shake.

Abandonment Trauma

  • Emotional abandonment- occurs when love, attention, care, nurture, and affirmation are not given. Resulting in loneliness.
  • Physical abandonment- happens when a person’s needs for food, shelter, and clothing are not met. People who do not receive positive ‘touch’- cuddles and hugs- can form what is called ‘touch deprivation’ Another form can happen when people do not receive the needed information for healthy physical self- care.
  • Sexual abandonment- occurs when parents or other responsible adults do not teach their children about healthy sexuality, not having the correct information can lead to devastating results.
  • Spiritual abandonment- occurs when healthy spiritual teachings are not available to children.

Sometimes in life the above categories can overlap. Damage in one part of a persons life can carry over to other areas, depending on the situation that caused the damage.

Effects of Trauma

Unhealed trauma can lead to symptoms like anxiety, depression, panic disorders, anger, loneliness, attachment disorders, and addictions of all kinds. Panic, anxiety, flashbacks, and anger sometimes are classified as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Trauma survivors can cope in a variety of ways- regardless if the trauma is remembered or not. Some may subconsciously seek to repeat the trauma in their adult lives, in attempt to have a different outcome. Some will create relationships with people who treat them poorly or some go the opposite way, and avoid and person or group of people who trigger their past memories of the trauma.

Healing Trauma

Trauma survivors need a number of things to recover from the trauma experienced

  • to have an education on the nature of the trauma- sometimes denial will need to be faced
  • need to have someone to listen that is comforting, accepting, and non-judgmental- someone that believes them and offers them hope of healing
  • need help in expressing their anger about their trauma- anger with the perpetrator and possibly God too. Education on how a loving God would allow trauma to happen could be helpful.
  • assistance on how to grieve the losses that the trauma has caused in their life
  • to understand that they did not deserve what happened to them and that they certainly did NOT cause it
  • assistance on developing boundaries so that the will not be further harmed in old, new, or existing relationships
  • to see the positive strengths that resulted from the trauma endured and the healing process
  • to find a way to forgive (the ultimate spiritual victory)- forgive the perpetrator, forgive themselves, and ask God to forgive them both

What the Bible says about trauma

Being a Christian does not guarantee you a pain free life. Sometimes our faith exposes us to difficulties and struggles we would not otherwise have been through. Here are a few note worthy things to know about life’s traumas:

  • Suffering is not always a punishment. God does allow people to suffer the consequences for their sinful choices, but that does not mean that every time we suffer it is because we are being punished. God uses suffering to strengthen us– to give us knowledge and life experience so that we can empathize with others– to shake us up when we are stagnant or losing our way– and sometimes God uses suffering to build our trust in Him.

    Psalm 46:1-11

46 God is our refuge and strength,
A very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear,
Even though the earth be removed,
And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;
Though its waters roar and be troubled,
Though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah

There is a river whose streams shall make glad the city of God,
The holy place of the tabernacle of the Most High.
God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved;
God shall help her, just at the break of dawn.
The nations raged, the kingdoms were moved;
He uttered His voice, the earth melted.

The Lord of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah

Come, behold the works of the Lord,
Who has made desolations in the earth.
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two;
He burns the chariot in the fire.

10 Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!

11 The Lord of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our refuge

  • The key is to realize God does NOT leave us when we are suffering.

    Psalm 34:18
    The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, And saves such as have a contrite spirit.
  • God will reward us for the suffering that we endure for His sake

    Matthew 5:10
    Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake,
    For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
  • God will heal you and bind up your wounds.

    Psalm 147:2-3
    The Lord builds up Jerusalem;
    He gathers together the outcasts of Israel.
    He heals the brokenhearted
    And binds up their wounds.

    Psalm 107:20
    20 He sent His word and healed them,
    And delivered them from their destructions.
  • God adopts us into His family- we are never truly alone

    Psalm 27:10
    10 When my father and my mother forsake me,
    Then the Lord will take care of me.
  • God will direct our paths, if we trust in Him and not our own ways.

    Proverbs 3:5-8
    Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
    And lean not on your own understanding;
    In all your ways acknowledge Him,
    And He shall direct your paths.
    Do not be wise in your own eyes;
    Fear the Lord and depart from evil
    It will be health to your flesh,
    And strength to your bones.

True healing and trust in God comes when we can look at our trauma from a different perspective. Learning to ask what can I learn or how can I grow from this instead of asking why me.

God does not always remove us from the traumatic situation but He does always help us through. He is our strength, when we are weak; He is near to the brokenhearted; and He will never leave us nor forsake us. If we trust in Him, He will heal us and deliver us from our shame, our guilt, and all other fleshly feelings that bind us.

Seek His truth and a relationship with Him and He will set you free!

Notes from Mark Laaser on healing the wounds that bind you

Prayer

Heavenly Father,

Thank you Lord for Your safety and protection throughout all difficulties that we face in life. Lord I pray that each person who reads this and has experienced trauma and it has had a lasting effect on the their life, would find freedom and hope in this message. Forgive me for running from You and blaming You instead of trusting in You and seeking Your guidance. Lord I pray You would work in each of their lives and bring peace through You so that they will glorify Your kingdom. Touch each heart and be their strength to seek healing in You. Lord, I pray that each person would find forgiveness in their hearts for themselves and those who have hurt them. I pray that you would give them discernment in their thoughts and feelings, that they would know who they are in You and not fall prey to the lies of Satan. I pray every chain from the trauma in life that has bound us would be broke in the name of Jesus. Lord, teach us how to trust in You, guide our steps, and help us to not lean on our own understanding, but seek healing and answers through you. It is in Jesus name I pray

Amen

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Daily Devo: Self-Worth

29 Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will. 30 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.

Matthew 10:29-31 NKJV

This parable illustrates a few different characteristics of God. In the scripture it talks about how sparrows are sold cheap and God protects them and keeps them safe within His will. This shows that God cares and loves each and every one of us.

It further explains that God knows the amount of hairs on our head. This may seem trivial or like ‘small potatoes’ in the big picture. However, it shows God’s great power and knowledge. God knows every hair on our head but He also knows every want, need, desire, fear, worry, etc. and He cares for each of them in our lives.

Scripture also explains that we are far more valuable than the sparrows. So if God is interested in protecting and caring for the sparrows and we are more valuable then they- than we should have peace in knowing God cares and finds us valuable no matter what our circumstances may look like.

In God’s eyes we are worth more than gold. Do not let what others think or say about you determine your self-worth.

Your worth was determined upon conception.

God says you are worthy- You are loved- You are protected under His wings

Prayer

Heavenly Father,

Thank you Lord for being a Father who loves, care, and protects His children. Thank you for showing me in Your word that I am more valuable than gold in Your eyes. God forgive me for believing what the world says is my worth. God help me to remember every day that I am Yours and that I find my worth in You alone. In Jesus name I pray.

Amen

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The Ultimate Valentine

It’s the time of year where “love is in the air”. Couples showering each other with flowers and gifts in an effort to show the other how much they love them. For others it’s a time of sadness, loneliness, and depression. Often feeling unlovable because they are “alone” and have no one to spend the day with. Feeling as if somehow they aren’t “good enough” to have someone show them love on this specific day.

My hopes in writing this is to bring hope, joy, and the surrounding presence of God’s love to those whom feel “alone”. I am excited to share with you– you are NOT alone. Not on Valentine’s day or any other day for that matter. Let me share with you a love that is unconditional, unfailing, and unchanging!

Deuteronomy 31:8 And the Lord, He is the One who goes before you. He will be with you, He will not leave you nor forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed.”

The love of Jesus– there is no greater love than that of Jesus Christ– who was tortured and killed for you– yes YOU– so that your sins would be forgiven so you may live eternally– so you would know His love. Perfect- Unconditional- Never Failing Love!

John 15:13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

There are many people that have the wrong idea of who God is– Thinking that He just wants to take the fun out of life or give you a list of rules that is impossible to follow perfectly. Some think He is mad at them–that He is to blame for the bad things in their life– some even believe that God hates them. As Joyce Meyer says and wrote a book on God is NOT Mad at you!! I read the book and if you believe God is mad at you–you should read it too.

God doesn’t correct us or give us rules because He is mad or wants to be a party pooper. God corrects us through His word because He loves us! Just as a good parent loves their child– God loves us even more!

Proverbs 3:12 For whom the Lord loves He corrects, Just as a father the son in whom he delights.

The Bible is there to instruct, convict, and replenish your soul– not to chastise, condemn, and break you down. God instructs us in Matthew that love is the greatest commandment. This is because God sent Jesus to die on the cross for our sins and lack of capability to uphold each commandment in the law. When Jesus was crucified He was sinless His death represented the love of God to all of us.

Matthew 22:34-40

But when the Pharisees heard that He had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35 Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?”

37 Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”

God never stops loving us even on the days or years we do not choose Him. God authored the concept of love–God is love. God wants us to love Him, love ourselves, and love everyone as He loved us. We love because He first loved us.

You see no one is truly alone– that is a lie the enemy wants you to believe– so that you will remain in bondage to loneliness, sadness, and depression. God is always with us–He goes before us and prepares the way.

If you are feeling alone and vulnerable this Valentine’s Day I encourage you to seek out the Ultimate Valentine– God. He showers you with the perfect love all of the days of your life. He has many gifts (blessings) for you– you only have to receive Him and accept them. God is near to the broken hearted and His strength is made perfect in our weakness. What better valentine to have than the one who authored the concept of love.

Daily Bible Verses

D.B.V.- August 25, 2016

Proverbs 12:25- Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression, But a good word makes it glad.