Monthly Archives: July 2016

July 21, 2016


Written by Kelly Elders

I’ve never met a person who hasn’t been disappointed, betrayed, rejected or hurt by someone or something. We will never be able to avoid these moments. So instead of living separated from people, in a constant prison of loneliness or avoidance we can learn some of the best lessons even through pain.

Be Resilient

I bought a pair of Ugg boots when I came to California and took them back home to Michigan during the winter. Even though they are furry and very warm on the inside the outside couldn’t handle the rain or snow. They had no traction for walking on ice which I learned the hard way, and the water from the snow seeped right in and ruined them. They “look” like they are made for the elements but as I discovered they are best used in sunny California when the temperature is a mere 65 degrees!

The same is true with our hearts, we can’t just look like a Christian on good days. We need to keep the elements of this world from seeping in and that includes when people intentionally or unintentionally hurt us. The enemy knows if he can get you to walk offended, rejected and unforgiving that he stops you from moving forward. If you have been dealing with the same hurt for months or even years it’s time to get moving and start forgiving. What happens to you doesn’t have to happen in you.

God is your resilience and He will protect your heart like Rain-X!

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed. Psalm 34:18

Be Forgiving

Many Christians believe God should go after the person harshly for the hurt they have caused. They want the God of Mercy when they’ve caused the hurt but the God of Judgement to those who have hurt them. Forgiveness is leaving God as the Judge and trusting Him to know what is best. When we sit back and wait for God to cause their destruction it’s silent revenge.

“Do not be happy when your enemy falls, and do not feel glad when he stumbles. The Lord will see it, he won’t like it, and he will turn his anger away from that person.” Proverbs 24: 17-19

 God did promise us this:

“You make ready a table for me in front of my haters: you put oil on my head; my cup runneth over.” Psalm 23:5

We can trust God because regardless of who doesn’t like us or who doesn’t think we deserve promotion, position or blessings we know that God is the one who promotes or sets down another. He will make sure all your haters will see how merciful God is towards those He loves and restores. He will bless you in front of your haters. All you have to do is come to God’s table and allow Him to feed you, cover you and take care of all the rest.

Don’t be your own hater. You may not think you deserve to be used or blessed by God but go to the table anyways and all those wrong thoughts will be cast down when you allow God to be your Host with the Most!

Be Oily

It was in the presence of enemies that God prepared a table. That means you can sit at the table and He will cover you with oil like a welcomed guest of honor while your enemies look through the window and see all that God has done! He is actually protecting you from your enemies while you are eating in peace. Oil is used on sheep and other animals to keep flies away and in the same way God protects us from those things that pester us and cause us frustration. Our enemies are not always other people, sometimes its ourselves and sometimes it’s just life at it’s worst but notice God prepared a table during difficult times. In difficult times it’s important to sit at the table and allow His fresh oil to cover you and protect you.

You can’t hold on to much with oily hands! Disappointment, unforgiveness and bitterness will all slip out from you so stay oily!

Continue to sit at the table and enjoy His blessings.

More from Kelly Elders at her blog

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July 14, 2016

Recognizing Pride & Control

Written by Amber Lawton

Pouring fresh pressed juice into a glass bottle with a small opening, I became frustrated as I had to carefully pour to not lose any of the juice. Impatience began to kick in as I stood there holding the container in place attempting to not spill and waste any of the juice. After a few minutes of doing this I was reminded that we did have a funnel which would make this pouring process much easier. With the bottle three quarters of the way full I decided the funnel was futile, and continued to pour by hand. Of course, without fail I did end up spilling and losing some of my precious juice. Cleaning up the mess I began to regretfully think about not using the funnel. I could have rationalized the loss of a bit of juice. Seriously, it’s just juice. But I was not happy about the outcome. That mess on the counter though wasn’t just a loss of juice. The mess spoke to a bigger issue with control. Had I used the funnel I would have completed the task in less time, and not wasted an ounce of juice. Pridefully I decided I was better off without it. In the same way, when we don’t fully rely and trust God with everything in our life we cut ourselves off from His abundant resources.

When we neglect seeking God, then we are telling Him we don’t trust Him. We are essentially saying “I can deal with this better than the Creator of Heaven and Earth.”Control comes in many forms. There are times we don’t even recognize that we are trying to control a situation, person, or circumstance,in our lives until we have a mess that needs cleaning up. As a result, we have two issues to deal with: the main issue and the mess. We essentially remove the protection we would have had, had we not decided to exclude God.When we go to God we can trust and believe for a favorable outcome because He promises good to His children. In the case of the juice, it may seem like I had to exude more patience by pouring alone.In reality if I had been patient in the beginning I could have taken the time to consider ways to complete this task. I would have thought of the funnel much sooner.

Control is deceptive. We are convinced that we will know the outcome when we take charge. We believe we can handle everything if we keep our hands in the mix. However, we end up escalating the issue instead of diffusing the problem. When we take situations into our own hands we open the door for the enemy. We know the enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy. Why do we continue to leave a way of entry for him? Like any thief the enemy is calculating. Robbers case houses to determine a pattern in the homeowner’s activity. They watch to see where they will have unseen, easy access. Experienced robbers have a well thought out plan. They have strategy for their entry, movements, timing, and exit, in hopes of plundering as much as possible. The same can be said about satan. He is waiting at the back door and watching windows to find an easy entry. He’s hoping you forget what happens when you open any area of your life to him. He’s counting on you to leave him room to have a foothold.

I watched a video on a pretty popular blog aimed at millennials to gain understanding and perspective on how young people are being targeted. The video was of a “modern” witch explaining magic. By all accounts this video was created to make witchcraft appear harmless. In the beginning of the video was exactly what is wrong with control. When asked why she was a witch, the young lady responded: “I don’t want to wait for God to answer my prayers. That’s why I’m a witch. It’s a way for me to effect change in my life, but isn’t necessarily a belief in a higher power that I’m devoted to that I pray to.” She didn’t want to wait on God. She wanted change in her life without devotion. This is the problem with trying to maintain control. This is the very reason we should steer clear of control, and instead commit our devotion to God. Control can be seen in possessiveness, dominance, and manipulation. All are considered forms of witchcraft. You may consider yourself to be very devoted to God, but I would dare ask how devoted are you if you can’t hand over everything to Him?

In my twenties I purchased a book from a famous book club that was described as enlightening in the way we see God and purpose. I watched as many Christians gave great reviews and esteemed this book as highly motivating in drawing them closer to God. As I read the book I was disturbed to find many principles that had nothing to do with God but continuously led back to self. Ego was the greatest factor in this book.The author encouraged readers to discover ‘the god within’ them. Masked with spirituality, and dripping with a hint of new age appeal, this book was teaching pride. The more I read the more I could see how control and pride go hand in hand. The book was teaching how to gain control of the now by seeking inward. Matthew 6:34 says: “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

We are to seek God’s kingdom and righteousness first. Before we settle on a plan, we should desire to consider God’s will and purpose. After all, every day ‘has enough trouble’. Proverbs 3:5­7 says: Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding& in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes&fear the Lord and shun evil.” The scripture says to trust with all of our heart. When we lean on our own understanding we are missing key elements that only God could know and see. He may not reveal everything to us, but he will steer us clear of danger and crooked paths. Trust is the opposite of maintained control. When we are wise in our own eyes we are prideful. Yet, the fear of the Lord is what prompts us to fully trust Him and stay away from evil of any manner.

Today, be willing to open up to God about where you are in the area of control. Share with Him all your fears, or disappointments. Allow Him to release you from this bondage so you can walk freely on the straight path He places before you.

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