By His Grace

Posts Tagged ‘Holy Spirit

usandthem

This post is a personal situation I’m going through and would appreciate any input from my brothers, sisters in Christ and fellow friends in recovery. 

There is a man at work who wants to pursue a friendship.  He is a manager and has been awesome with helping me have a “voice” at work during times when I was having some issues with getting more shifts, more tables, etc.  Essentially, making more money.  Because of his input to the higher ups, on my account, I have made awesome money this week.  I am grateful.  Very grateful.

Now mind you, I am not naïve.  I know that this “friendship” he wants to pursue will develop into stronger feelings.  Feelings that I am not ready for.  He knows I am a Christian.  He is not a believer.   He does not make fun of my beliefs (to my face anyway), but I have heard him scoff at the very mention of Jesus Christ and God.  He made a comment yesterday about the church crowd coming in for lunch.  He mentioned that “these people go to church and act all ‘good’ yet it’s obvious one of them is a homosexual”.  I looked at him and said, “God loves everybody.”  Someone gave him a little card about salvation, and he laughed and said “can you believe they gave this to me?”  And threw it away.  He knows how I feel about God and Jesus, and I was offended.  It hurt my feelings.  But I didn’t let him see that. 

I was contemplating getting a second job, and was very torn about this decision.  Reason being, I don’t want to shoot myself in the foot and have my current job be upset and take me off the schedule all together.  I do appreciate this man’s input and advice.  So I went to him for advice.  He knows the restaurant owners better than I do and he told me they wouldn’t like it, especially with the busy season coming.  There is always another person wanting my job.  So I decided to not go for the interview at this other restaurant.  I was up in the air about what to do.  I prayed boldly about it. 

My first thoughts are to seek God with my decision making and what choices to make.  But I wasn’t positive of what to do and thought maybe God was opening a door for me to make more money.  But I had never got a clear cut answer from God if this was His will or not.  I had to make a decision within 3 days.  So I sought other advice.  And I believe I made the right decision now by cancelling the interview.

Now back to the whole “friendship” thing.  He kept pressing me into talking about how we feel about each other.  He says I’m running away from myself.  This was my response to that comment, “I am not running away from myself.  I am very confident in who I am, but at this point of my life, I am focusing on myself.  I don’t have the emotional or mental room for others right now.”  This is the truth.  I found myself thinking too much about this man, when I should be filling my thoughts with Jesus.  I was very uncomfortable allowing an unbeliever from the opposite sex filling my thoughts.  I could tell it was wrong.  The Holy Spirit was grieving about this and I felt it. 

So today I put an end to it.  I told him we can stay work friends and that’s it.  He was very polite about it and backed off (at least for now). 

Here are my questions:usthem

  • When do we seek human advice from man when we aren’t hearing from God, especially if we need an answer within a deadline?
  • We have to work in a world of unbelievers, how dangerous is it for us to follow their advice about our careers?
  • God works through people, do you believe God also works through unbelievers to bless us?  Why do you believe this?
  • How close are we to get to an unbeliever?  Should we develop close friendships with them?
  • Should we have an attitude of “us” and “them” ?

When we feel down or discouraged with life, remembering who we are in Christ helps bring us back up to a better emotional state. Here is a list of verses and reasons we can experience joy and contentment even if our emotions are telling us different today.

jesus-loves-me

Who am I in Christ?

I am Significant

  • I am raised and seated with Christ in the heavenly realm (Eph. 2:6)
  • I am the salt and light of the world (Matt. 5:16)
  • I am chosen and appointed to bear fruit (Jn. 15:16)
  • I am God’s temple (1 Cor. 3:16)
  • I am a new creation (2 Cor. 5:17)
  • I am God’s workmanship (Eph. 2:10)
  • I can approach Christ with freedom and confidence (Eph. 3:12)
  • I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Phil. 4:13)
  • I have authority over all the power of the enemy (Luke 10:18)

I am Secure

  • I cannot be separated from the love of God (Rom. 8:35)
  • Christ, the hope of glory, lives in me (Col. 1:27)
  • I am born of God and the evil one cannot touch me (1 John 5:18)
  • I am confident that God has begun a good work in me. He will perfect it. (Phil. 1:6)
  • I am assured all things work together for good (Rom. 8:28)
  • I am free forever from condemnation (Rom. 8:1)

I am accepted and loved

  • I am God’s child (Jn. 1:12)
  • I am the apple of His eye (Zech. 2:8)
  • I am loved with an everlasting love (Jer. 31:3)
  • I am Jesus’ friend (Jn. 15:15)
  • I have been made complete in Christ (Col. 2:10)
  • I am forgiven of all my sins, the debt against me is cancelled (Col. 1:14)
  • I have direct access to God through the Holy Spirit (Eph. 2:18)

There are many reasons why Christ’s death on the cross is important.  First, Jesus’ dying on the cross is the only way we are able to establish a relationship with God the Father.  If Jesus’ death and resurrection did not happen, we would not be able to have this relationship with God the Father because our sin separates us from God until we receive salvation through Christ.  Salvation is not possible without Jesus’ death and resurrection.  Jesus made this possible by taking upon our sins with Him on the cross and dying for us.

Secondly, by Jesus dying on the cross for our sins and then being raised from the dead, we are given the opportunity to have a place in His kingdom.  Jesus clearly explains that the only ones who will enter into heaven are those who believe and accept Him as the Way, the Truth and the Life (John 3:16, 14:6).  The most important decision you will ever make is to accept Christ as your personal Lord and Savior.

Jesus’ death is not like any other person’s death.  The Bible tells us that Jesus came to the earth to destroy the works of the devil.  In 1 John 3:8 it tells us, “He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.”

It’s important to know that it was the devil who brought death to this earth, not God.  It was God’s plan for us to live eternally with Him from the beginning.  But because of the sin of Adam and Eve, and their disobedience to God, not only did a spiritual death come to us, but the physical death of dying came about as well.

The significance of Jesus dying on the cross was in fact God’s way of showing the devil who is still “in charge”.  Christ’s death freed us from the chains of sin and death on this earth.  Christ’s death shows Satan that just because our physical bodies may die, we do not have to die spiritually but can have an eternal life with Him in heaven.  Christ’s death on the cross showed that Jesus has the authority over death, not Satan.  By believing in Christ as our Savior and believing He died on the cross for our sins and was raised from the dead, we are able to have salvation through grace in faith in Jesus Christ.  It enables us to be able to go to heaven when we die.  It enables us to have a relationship with God the Father.

Thirdly, if Jesus didn’t die on the cross we would not be able to have the Holy Spirit indwell in us.  The Holy Spirit comes into our hearts after we are saved (also known as “born-again).   This is a gift from Jesus after His death.  Christ told us about this in the book of John 14:16 that He will send an “advocate” in His place for us.  The Holy Spirit is also our “comforter” and gives us strength and courage in such a wicked world we live in.  A regular human’s death cannot achieve all this.  They cannot give us their spirit.  Only Jesus could do this.

And finally, Christ’s resurrection gives us the assurance we will also receive perfectly resurrected bodies after our death and will be given these bodies when we go live in His kingdom, which will be a new heaven and a new earth.  Essentially that is what Jesus is talking about when He says “His Kingdom”.  His kingdom consists of us believers living on a new earth “where righteousness dwells” (2 Peter 3:13).  Some say it will look like the Garden of Eden and we will be able to live amongst Jesus and other believers.  How wonderful this sounds!

Jesus was in fact a great spiritual leader, but he is so much more.  He is our Savior, He is the Son of God, He is our friend, He loves us more than our minds can comprehend.  He is the only way for us to have are relationship with God and the only way for us to receive His Holy Spirit by believing through faith.  Salvation is an undeserved favor of grace from God.  As Scripture says, Jesus is the Way, the Truth and Life, no one can come to the Father except through me (John 14:6).

This is one of my favorite songs by Third Day.  This song both uplifts me and brings tears of cleansing to my life when I most need it.  If you haven’t heard it before, please listen to it.  I hope you are blessed by it as much as I am.  Enjoy!

(p.s.  if an ad pops up first, just click “skip ad”)

“Offering” by Third Day

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mpRAOS_rv7w

No more dark wordpress themes.  I looked at it and just shook my head.  What the heck, Michele, I said to myself.  Time to snap out of it.   But getting out of a depression is not as simple as just “snapping out of it”.  And those who suffer from it will understand, those that don’t experience it, just won’t get it but God bless’em for trying.

In this post, I’m going to be a little more blunt than usual because as a recovering addict, well there really is no fluffy talk or nicey-nice in that whole scene.  I have to get real with myself.  Or so they say “Be True To Yourself”.  I really, really hate being fake.  It’s something that eats away at me.  If I say one thing but do another.  How in the world can I be a help to anyone if I’m not being true to myself?  It doesn’t work that way and the Holy Spirit convicts my heart and I have an INCREDIBLE conscience!  I’m certainly no help to myself either and the inner addiction that lies in wait for me loves it when I put my “holier than thou hat” on but then in secret I commit the very sins I hate and tell others not to do.

Yesterday was a difficult day for me mentally.  In the back of my mind I was thinking of how in the past, when I’ve had an anxiety attack, and a really BIG one at that, that maybe I’m coming to the end of that dark tunnel and I’m just one step away from daylight.  So today, I see the daylight.  After all, me just working on my blog is a major accomplishment for this whacked-out chick!  As I was going through the panic, I cried out to God to take it away from me.  I cried for an hour for Him to take it away and I surrender it ALL to Him.  Not just the “real” drugs, but the over-the-counter crap I take to catch a buzz too.  That’s a little secret I’m revealing.  But is it really a secret?  Of course, not.  I cried to Him that I surrender it all to Him and to do with me what He wills.  Just take it away!

You know, yesterday, I had a phone call from one of satan’s workers (that’s what I call the dealers), and a couple weeks ago I told him to stop calling because I quit.  Well, he calls and tells me of something else he has that I really like.  My car is broke and I can’t use it and the only way to get it was for them to come to my house.  Well at first I said yes.  Then I thought, these people could come back and rob me because I live in a nice neighborhood in another town over and then I won’t feel safe in my home, the paranoia will kick in.  Ugh!!!!  I am straight-shooting here so I hope I am not upsetting anyone who reads this but that’s the life of an addict.  It sucks, believe me.  So I call them back and tell them no, not until I get my car fixed.  But see what I’m doing?????   I’m leaving that door open “just in case”!! This is part of the panic yesterday.  But screw it, I’m not doing it.

I was talking to myself out loud yesterday telling myself this, “Michele, what good will come from getting this other thing you like?  You tell yourself you only do little bits at a time, because you live alone and overdosing is a real possibility.  But then what?  You know you’ll get more and then a full blown addiction on this crap and you will have to go to a detox to get off of it.  After all you’ve done this before!!”  So what’s the point.  YOU DON’T NEED IT!!!!”

Welcome to my head for a second there.  And I don’t want to lose sight of why I started this blog in the first place.  When I first started writing it was an outlet for me.  A way to be close to Christ and a way to get away from the abuse that was happening in my house.  So I got rid of the abuse with a restraining order and after that things just started going downhill.  But I didn’t see it.  I looked at it as freedom and independence and being able to breathe without being yelled at every day.  Even though I made a commitment (so I thought) to not use, eventually, I did anyway once I lost my job.  I don’t even remember the whole week after I got fired.  All I know is I spent about a thousand dollars and my house was a wreck.

But even before that I was struggling with my blog.  I lost sight of why I started it.  Was I using my blog to help me or to help others?  Well, I started to feel the pressure of helping others and saying the right thing, to not make another Christian stumble if I make a mistake in my bible knowledge or personal views.  I put a lot of pressure on myself and slacked off on writing.  I felt like a hypocrite because I knew my thoughts were not where they should be and I wasn’t fighting that hard to change it.  After all, I wanted to feel that freedom of not being in an abusive relationship for 3 years.  This is how I became so close with my Creator.  My refuge, my peace was with the Lord and my time with Him.  It’s amazing I didn’t go off the deep end sooner than this, but He kept me strong and I was doing the right things no matter the storm surrounding me.

So I may use my blog a little selfishly and focus on myself for a little while.  If it helps anyone than I am blessed and happy about that.  I want to thank all of you who have stuck by me this past month (has it been longer?) I really don’t know.  I have a void in time.  But I don’t want to focus on figuring that out.  I’m moving forward starting today.  I’m going to get my butt in gear, get things fixed like my car, pay my rent today and then start looking for work.  I plan on going back to my church on Sunday and also trying a Celebrate Recovery meeting Friday night at another church.  So I’m calling myself out on this and trying to hold myself accountable to do what I say.  No more fakeness.  It’s real from here on out and letting the Lord lead me and I will follow whatever He wills.

As I go about my new life in Christ and allowing Him to change many things about me, I thought it best to ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to me and keep me sensitive to the “little sins” I may be committing in my daily life.  You know, the little things I do or say that go unnoticed.  After all, I am trying to change and strive to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, right?  I certainly don’t want a bunch of unconfessed sin out there that I don’t know about. 

What has been brought to my attention these past few days is all the little things I don’t notice that I say under my breath.  May I suggest a warning to those who are reading this?  If you don’t really want it, don’t ask for it.  When Jesus said “ask and you shall receive”, He wasn’t kidding.  I can’t believe all the little things I say under my breath!  It appears I sin quite abit in the course of a day.  I start my day off so well and as soon as I get frustrated or irritated about something I blow it.  Like pealing eggs.  I love to eat hard-boiled eggs.  But sometimes they just don’t cooperate and if one after another doesn’t peel the way I want them to, I can say some pretty ugly things to these eggs under my breath.  My cute little dog likes to watch me peel them and when I look over at him he does that cute little “tilt” of the head.  I guess my body language is sinning too in some way and he must see it and is wondering, “what the heck”?

I ask for forgiveness right then and there.  Leaning over the garbage with the egg in my hand, I admit to God that I get frustrated too easily and I’m sorry for saying un-ladylike things under my breath.  But I’m trying.  I really am.  After all, I use to say these things out loud.  So in my opinion I like to think I’m getting better anyway.  We are all a work in progress though aren’t we?  I don’t beat myself up over not being perfect.  Frankly, I’m tired of being so hard on myself!  Being hard on myself has caused me many years of fatigue and anxiety and quite frankly, I’m just not going to allow that anymore. 

My beautiful Savior knows my heart.  He knows that I love Him and I’m trying.  But it’s also important for me to make progress with eliminating these little sins.  I have to be sure that I see a difference in my first reaction to frustration or irritation.  It’s not enough to just say “I’m trying”.  I have to correct it the best I can.  I don’t know how long it will be when I can go a whole day without sinning.  Is that really possible though?  I’ve heard that it is but I just don’t know about that.

Do you believe we can go an entire day without sinning?  Even the so-called little sins?  Is rolling your eyes and sighing because the lady in front of you is taking too long at the cash register a little sin?  Or even quietly cursing at a hard-boiled egg?  Aren’t we suppose to handle all things with good temper?  Whether we show it outwardly or not?  I’d love to hear your thoughts on the so-called little sins you struggle with. 


A little about me........my name is Michele and I am a born-again Christian. I was saved as a teenager and graduated from a Christian high school. I am a mother of one son who is the world to me. Despite my upbringing, later in life I fell into a life of self destruction which led me down many dark paths. I am a recovering addict and alcoholic and I have a great passion for Christ and His amazing power to heal even the worst cases. I am living proof of the miracle of God's power to change your life and way of thinking. Nothing is impossible with God.

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