WeepingintoDancing

Overcoming Difficult Trials

Archive for the category “Healing”

Heart Break And His Healing Balm

*Broken Heart

Our God is a healer. He is the “Great Physician,” and this means spiritual and emotional healing, not just physical healing.

“He heals the broken hearted and binds up their wounds.” Psalm 147:3 (NKJV)

I won’t assume that all of you have suffered through the death of a brother, a brain tumor, cancer, or clinical depression. These are my bag of troubles and woes. However, I am pretty certain everyone has (or will) come to know the pain of heartbreak.

Many different circumstances cause such a malady, but one common side affect is agony. The level of torment will vary, but the discomfort it causes is one we can all relate to, empathize with, and comprehend. Jesus was a man of sorrows and well acquainted with grief. Our God is not without understanding, for surely His heart broke when He witnessed the death of His only begotten Son.

So why? Why must we experience pain and broken hearts? Why would a loving God permit or even cause His beloved children to experience the sorrow of heartache? Could it be because He loves us? Is it possible a broken heart is God’s means to break apart our self-will? A surrender of self would cause a believer to lean all the more on God.

1 Peter 5:7 tell us to cast all of our anxieties and cares to God, for He cares for us. Our heavenly Father wants to take on our worries. In addition, Philippians 4:19 reminds us that God will provide for our every need. He is the “Great Provider.” God wants to furnish us with all we require.

When we are too self-reliant, we take God out of the picture. However, if we are suddenly faced with impossible odds, a cry to the heavens is often our response. Tribulation is one way God gets our attention. Sadly, it takes affliction for many of us to notice Him.

“O Lord my God, I cried out to You,and You healed me.” Psalm 30:2 (NKJV)

So, affliction is allowed to enter our lives, permitting an open door for pain and heartache to pass through. It is only after these “guests” have entered our home that we truly experience the blessing of God’s miraculous healing. The one we love may die, so where is this healing? Why didn’t our beloved recover?

God sees the whole picture at such times and His number one goal is to save souls from eternal damnation. He looks for opportunities to bring all men to their knees, hoping they repent of their evil ways. He wants every one of His children to acknowledge the redemptive power found only through His Son, Jesus Christ.

Therefore, if the one we love must suffer or die, breaking our hearts in the process, God has allowed it for some greater good. One death is able to produce a full harvest of repentant sinners and immeasurable spiritual healing. Is this not what every Christian should long for and desire; Even if it means loss and the pain of a broken heart?

There is a comfort we can cling to regarding such times of suffering. Solace is found in knowing God will faithfully heal all wounds and broken hearts, so long as we let Him. This occurs when we lay down our hardened hearts and feelings of bitterness. Submitted before His sovereignty, we can then ask God to make our hearts once again pliable and useful for HIS purpose. For it is by the stripes Jesus endured on the cross that we are healed.

Our lives are not our own. I will say this again, dear one. Our lives are not our own… they are for the pleasure and glory of God. What He chooses to use us for is His divine right. What He decides to ask of us is appropriate and fitting. His will should be our heart’s desire. Our love for Him should be so great that whatever He requires from us is our good pleasure.

If trust is an issue, will you pray about trusting God with your care once again? Let Him put a balm over your wound or heart-crack. Decide right now to move forward. If grief has bound you in chains break free, for He came to set all captives free. There are joys to be found in the remaining years of your life. There is much joy to be found in service. Use the life He has given you and totally dedicate it for His purpose. He has turned the wailing of many into dancing. Joy WILL come in the morning. There are many new wonders yet to be experienced. Your best day has yet to be lived!

God knows your frame and what you are able to withstand. You are stronger than you think, for God is your strength and He can do all things. Reach out and call upon His grace! Let go of the old and step into the new. It will be hard but it is time! Your Savior will never forget your heartbreak. It has great meaning and value; otherwise it would not have hurt BOTH of you so much. Your broken heart will serve as a lovely stepping-stone into a new and specially designed future.

We were created for service and for the act of worship. God deserves all glory and praise. Living a full life of joy and moving out of the past is a true sacrifice of praise. With each heartbreak there is a healing balm, and with each scar we don there is a badge of honor to be worn throughout eternity.

Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; Save me, and I shall be saved, for You are my praise.” Jeremiah 17:14 (NKJV)

“But He was wounded for our transgressions,He was bruised for our iniquities;The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,and by His stripes we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5 (NKJV)

Find this devotion in my book FACING ANXIETY: THOUGHTS OF WISDOM, PRAISE, AND PROMISE (The first of December 2014) My other books are now on Amazon at

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Cheryl%20Zelenka&sprefix=Chery%2Caps

The Promise of Forgiveness

*Jesus Forgives

1 John 1:9 is a PROMISE. We will find forgiveness in Christ if we confess our sins and repent of our ways. This is a blessed assurance. God will never say, “No, I will not accept your confession of sin and heart felt apology. I do not forgive you. I do not want a relationship with you.”

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”   1 John 1:9 (NKJV)

Some of you may know the heartache of unforgiveness. After humbling yourself and apologizing for a wrong, hoping to restore a broken relationship or bring healing to someone, you were rebuffed or ignored. Your cry to be forgiven was not met with love or a consoling pardon. The pain of unforgiveness is heart wrenching. All one can do is act on what the scriptures instruct and pray, leaving the rest to God.

Thankfully, we will never suffer this rejection with God. He accepts our plea for forgiveness and casts the memory of our sin as far as the east is from the west. We have been washed in the blood and sacrifice of the Lamb. Our Creator longs for an intimate relationship with us and since all sin separates us from His presence, He forgives us repeatedly.

We cannot however change people, or their reaction to our sin. We can only work on changing ourselves…. with God’s grace. Because God loves us, He works to perfect and refine our spirits until they eventually reflect back the very image of Christ. This act of sanctification requires man to lay aside pride and self-will. Everyone comes to the place of absolute surrender at a different time in life. Through the revelation of the Holy Spirit, we eventually come to understand the necessity for making greater room in our hearts for God.

He must become greater; I must become less.” John 3:30 (NIV)

A conflict between two people means that there are TWO individuals who need to work together on the resolution. One may want change and restoration but the other might not. We can influence people in a positive way by walking in the light, but God alone refines and transforms the heart. If one person is not willing or ready to consider forgiveness, reconciliation is put on hold.

There is always the hope of a restored relationship but sin, even confessed sin, will change an association in some way. We are not like God who is able to forget wrongs and cast them beyond His memory. Broken trust takes time to heal. It takes work and patience, understanding and tolerance. Wounds heal but some scars remain. Maybe the scar will serve as a testimony of God’s healing power, a witness to others who are living in broken relationships.

A restored relationship gives glory to God. It can become even better after suffering through affliction, betrayal, and sin. Love is the healing balm that makes this possible. Love is the greatest gift of all and can cover a multitude of sins, if we are willing to lay down our own pain and offer the wrongdoer (It usually takes two individuals to make a wrong and therefore two are necessary to make it right again) absolution.

Hold on to the promise that ALL of your sins are forgiven when you repent to God, even the unforgiven sins held against you by someone with a hard heart. You are cleansed from all unrighteousness the minute you confess to God. He pardons all unrighteousness and grants absolution. Guilt does not come from God, just Holy Spirit conviction that leads to humble repentance. You have been forgiven. You are forgiven. By the blood of Jesus Christ you are freely forgiven.

“I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake;And I will not remember your sins.” Isaiah 43:25 (NKJV)

 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” Ephesians 4:32 (NKJV)

He does not treat us as our sins deserveor repay us according to our iniquities.

For as high as the heavens are above the earth,so great is His love for those who fear Him; As far as the east is from the west,so far has He removed our transgressions from us.” Psalm 103:10-12 (NIV)

“To be a Christian means to forgive the inexcusable, because God has forgiven the inexcusable in you.” ~ C.S. Lewis                                 

This devotion is from my book FACING ADVERSITY: THOUGHTS OF WISDOM, PRAISE, AND PROMISE. You will find it on Amazon the first week of December. http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Cheryl%20Zelenka&sprefix=Chery%2Caps

In God Alone

*Hope In You

An all-powerful and sovereign Creator, who wants to have an intimate relationship with His creation, loves mankind beyond measure. God did not create the human race out of boredom or on a whim. No, He made us for His good pleasure and great delight. His attachment to us is so great that He longs for our fellowship and will one day live among us in paradise. He enjoys our company! Although we are corrupt and sinful in nature, He refuses to abandon that which His breath made alive. We are His. We belong to a King! He made a commitment to us…. we are His beloveds. In Him alone we find all hope.

But I will hope continually,and will praise You yet more and more.”   Psalm 71:14 (NKJV)

Hope is that push that moves us though another difficult day. Hope comes from our faith and it expands as our trust in God deepens. Hope grows when we accept God’s grace and believe every confessed sin is tossed as far as the east is from the west.

“As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.” Psalm 103:12

When we need strength God gives us His. Some privileged saints are asked to bear incredible pain and debilitating illnesses, which leave them in a weakened state. Through these precious ones the power of God gives witness to His healing strength, love, and ability to perform miracles. Hope is often found in hospitals and in the presence of the dying. In such places there is hope for healing, hope for wisdom, and hope for eternal peace.

We hope for security but the world is uncertain. Only in the arms of grace can we find stable ground. If we are declared impoverished and found hungry, we can still feed upon God’s daily bread… the living Word of God. With this manna we nourish our spirits, and find rest in the hope and promise of a new and better day.

“You will be secure, because there is hope;you will look about you and take your rest in safety. You will lie down, with no one to make you afraid, and many will court your favor.” Job 11:18-19 (NIV)

If hope is absent from your life then consider the faithfulness of God. Are you still alive and breathing? Your positive reply means that up until this moment God has faithfully preserved your life for a reason. Maybe you lost a job. There is the hopeful possibility that a better one is in your future. By placing your hope in Christ, you will soon see He has carried you through your adversity.

God did not spare His own Son the suffering of the cross. It was for our benefit that Jesus became man, died, and was raised again. God sent Jesus to redeem us and has exalted Him in the heavens. He is our Victor and blessed Mediator.

Take your burdens to Jesus and pour out your heart. He is the Savior of the world and our only hope. Ask Him to be your guiding light as you attempt to stand and move forward through your storm. Your struggle will have an end but His love and care for you is never-ending.

To persevere is to ascend the mountaintop of God. It is a necessary trait, a requirement if we wish to see the face of God. When you place your hope in the Father, you will always have victory and a supernatural peace.

READ THE SCRIPTURES AND QUOTE BELOW. REFLECT ON WHAT IT MEANS TO PUT YOUR HOPE IN CHRIST JESUS.

“But I will hope continually,
 and will praise You yet more and more.”   Psalm 71:14 (NKJV)

“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
 and in His Word I do hope.”   Psalm 130:5 (NKJV)

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13 (NIV)

Why are you cast down, O my soul?
And why are you disquieted within me?
Hope in God;For I shall yet praise Him,
The help of my countenance and my God.” Psalm 43:5 (NKJV)

I asked for strength that I might achieve;
He made me weak that I might obey.
I asked for health that I might do great things;
He gave me grace that I might do better things.
I asked for riches that I might be happy;
He gave me poverty that I might be wise.
I asked for power that I might have the praise of others;
He gave me weakness that I might feel a need of God.
I asked for all things that I might enjoy life;
He gave me life that I might enjoy all things.
I received nothing I had asked for;
He gave me all that I had hoped for.                                                                                                                                                                                                              ~ Author Unknown

This devotion is found in FACING ADVERSITY: THOUGHTS OF WISDOM, PRAISE, AND PROMISE. Available on Amazon the first week of December.

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=cheryl%20zelenka&sprefix=chery%2Caps

Is It Well… With Your Soul?

 

*It Is Well
The hymn “It is Well with My Soul” has always been a favorite. This worship song is just beautiful. It reminded me of the sovereignty of God and His faithfulness.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DDNi5C0eDS8

Facing Trials, Storms, and Adversity Trilogy Now on Amazon!

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My second book of devotions is now available on Amazon. Here is a review from my first book, Facing Trials. I promise… Facing Storms is as good, if not even better!

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Cheryl%20Zelenka&sprefix=Chery%2Caps

“I received “Facing Trials: Thoughts For Meditation,” by Cheryl Zelenka for free through GoodReads First Reads. It is one of the best devotionals I have read. Personally, it spoke to the trials I face. As a single mother, my only child died 2 1/2 years ago after a fatal car accident. Ms. Zelenka, a brain tumor survivor, speaks to anyone who is plagued with adversity. She offers hope, encouragement, and reminds the reader of His promises to us. We only need to keep on pressing on through the difficulties of our life journey. I will keep the book, “Facing Trials: Thoughts For Meditation,” close at hand because it fortifies my faith.”

My third book will be available on Amazon the first week of December. Evey devotional is just $12! They are also available as eBooks.

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_Facing Adversity Cover Final jpg

Prayer: Brain Tumor Ashes To New Growth

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Those of you who know my story, and if you do not…. well, a brain tumor nearly took me in 2011. My life appeared to be ashes at my feet when I woke up in ICU. No home, no job, away from friends, uncertain financial issues, etc. But GOD IS FAITHFUL! (Read my testimony… on right under My Story)

Even though my future IS STILL pretty much in the dark… I am alive, healthy, working, and serving God. This is a prayer I wrote today. I hope it blesses you and makes you think….

“Lord, I praise YOU for YOUR love and stand in awe of YOUR might. I see now how there is growth coming forth from my ashes. YOUR living Word is such an encouragement to me. Help me to persevere in the new direction YOU have set before me. I know that YOU are the perfect guide and will help to move me forward on my path. Joy and gladness have already filled my heart, for I have all I need…. YOU and YOU alone.”

** Remember there is ALWAYS HOPE! God loves you and has never left your side. Keep praying and trust He has the very best for you!

” For the Lord will comfort Zion, He will comfort all her waste places; He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the Lord; Joy and gladness will be found in it, thanksgiving and the voice of melody.” Is. 51:3 (NKJV)

*6 Days aver brain surgery/ July 2014 visiting my dog Bubba.

**Me and Bubba

 

 

Wailing Into Dancing

Ps 30 Wailing 2 Dancing TL

A devotion from Cheryl Zelenka’s soon to be released book of devotions FACING STORMS. Available on Amazon this October.

“No one will calmly and quietly submit to bear the cross except those who have learned to seek their happiness beyond this world.” John Calvin

“For His anger is but for a moment, 
His favor is for life; 
Weeping may endure for a night, 
but joy comes in the morning.”  Psalm 30:5 (NKJV)

“You number my wanderings; put my tears into Your bottle; 
are they not in Your book?”  Psalm 56:8 (NKJV)

“Hear, Lord, and be merciful to me; Lord, be my help.” You turned my wailing into dancing; You removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing Your praises and not be silent. Lord my God, I will praise You forever.”  Psalm 30:10-13 (NIV)

Have you ever heard somebody say, “You’ve got to praise Him in the storm?”  This concept might seem insensitive or even ridiculous to you, especially if eating, speaking, and even waking up requires a monumental effort. The idea of lifting your voice in praise during your dark moment may even be offensive, especially if you can barely manage to get out of bed or utter a few words over your morning coffee. But let me ask you this one question: Does God deserve our accolades and appreciation in good times AND bad?

After my brother died(Over 25 years ago), I had many disturbing dreams.  None of them were comforting. I longed to hug him one last time and hear an assurance that he was okay. I desperately wanted to say goodbye and enjoy one last conversation, even if it were only in a dream. This never happened. My grief was devastating and at the age of twenty-five my grief left me shattered and broken.

My sorrow drove me out into a black and very deep sea of depression. One moment I was drowning in despair and the next moment I was tossed to the beach. On dry land I had but a few seconds to catch my breath before high tide pulled me back into my living grave. Hopeless and exhausted, my tears would then mix with the seawater. It seemed as though this endless cycle would never end. 

How then do we recover from depression and despair? It is only by crying out to God and accepting His helping hand that we are able to overcome our greatest sorrows. When we finally choose to lay down our wills and surrender our complaints, trusting in His goodness, we permit Him to mold and work us into the image of His son. Through yielding to His sovereignty and by declaring His right to work within us, without the slightest need for understanding, we enter into an even deeper and more intimate walk. 

As we forgo our urge to wrestle with past events and their painful effects, we experience the rolling back of suffering. In its stead, we find ourselves within the supernatural peace that transcends all understanding. Through our submission to His will, and by acknowledging His ways to be so much higher than our own, our tragedy becomes bearable. He had a plan, and it included the circumstances of our heartache even before He knit us together.  At all times, our need for understanding must side step when faith wants to take the lead. 

Turning our wailing and sorrows into joy and dancing will happen with the passing of seasons. By allowing some time to pass, we will eventually look behind us and thank God for the precious moments, days, and years we had with the special someone we so dearly loved, or the life we were so content to play out. Faith helps us to accept and find comfort in knowing that “All things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”  (Ro. 8:28). 

Loss, be it the death of a loved one, deteriorating health, lost dreams, or some kind of divine interruption ….. Will usually include a measure of pain.  Your positive attitude, perspective change, and faith are what will turn your wailing into praise and joyful dancing. The Lord equips you to sing songs of joy in good times and bad times. On some days you may have to look a little harder for the blessings in your life but they are always present.

God rescues His children from pits filled with vipers, caves, cisterns, and sinking ships rocked by hurricanes. Sorrow is only for a moment and joy WILL come! Since we are called to praise Him at ALL times, even when our hearts are breaking, a hushed and barely audible “thank you” is considered a glorious sacrifice of praise….  A very pleasing one indeed.

May the grace of our God be with you always. As He has turned my wailings into dancing, I humbly ask that you too find yourself in the same place I am now resting….in joyful wonder and awe of His miraculous healing power and love. 

TAKE SOME TIME TO CONTEMPLATE THE FOLLOWING WORDS 

“Most assuredly, I say to you that you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice; and you will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will be turned into joy.”  John 16:20 (NKJV)

“Then shall the virgin rejoice in the dance, and the young men and the old, together; for I will turn their mourning to joy, 
will comfort them, 
and make them rejoice rather than sorrow.” Jeremiah 31:13 (NKJV) 

“We can experience joy in adverse circumstances by holding God’s benefits in such esteem that the recognition of them and meditation upon them shall overcome all sorrow.”  ~John Calvin

Overcoming Depression

*Depression

“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail.They are new every morning; 
great is Your faithfulness.”  Lamentations 3:22-23 (NIV)

“Finally, brothers and sisters, 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 (NIV)

Many strong and inspiring figures of the Bible suffered from depression: David, Jonah, and Job are just a few. David had Saul breathing down his back and trying to kill him. (1 Sam. 19:1-2) God commanded Jonah to warn his Ninevite enemies to repent. Instead, he turned tail and ran away. God then sent a whale to swallow Jonah, but only after sailors tossed him overboard hoping to calm a raging sea. (Jonah 1:4,11-12, 15). God tested Job’s faithfulness by permitting Satan’s request to afflict and torment him (Job 1:8-12). Each man had a strong relationship with God and a deep faith, yet they suffered from depression. Why?

One reason for their depression is because they all faced very painful or challenging circumstances. When you are asked to do something incredibly hard, or when you face persecution, injury, or loss…. you too will find your faith tested. You may also fall prey to depression, which springs forth from roots of hopelessness. Even the mightiest of believers can tumble into this debilitating trap. The enemy is adept at spreading lies of hopelessness and fear. He schemes of ways to infiltrate our heart, which is the seat of our emotions. He persistently harasses and taunts the children of God.

Remember, he is that “prowling lion” who always watches for opportunities to devour his prey! As his intended prey, we need to remain with the flock and not isolate. Depression often causes a believer to step out of fellowship. This is an unwise and dangerous move. The times when you least FEEL like going to church are the occasions when you most need friendly interaction and support. By choosing isolation, you give the enemy a big opportunity to drag you down into a pit of despair.

Our God is a God of HOPE. Depression contradicts the promises of God, which are intended to encourage. There is always a new beginning to look forward to with each new day. Your trial might not end or improve tomorrow, but there are new blessings in every day, including the hope that the next sunrise will bring relief.

If you find yourself down and out of sorts, believing your situation is too much for you to bear….bend a knee. Ask God to send His ministering angels your way to lift you up. Humble yourself and ask others to pray for you. Offer up a petition and ask God to send cheerful advocates your way who will speak words of comfort and encouragement.

Why not ask your heavenly Father for insight and understanding? Try to change your perspective by asking God to give you His eyes and insight. Consider what His point of view might be regarding your struggle. Then, follow the directions given in Philippians 4:8. When you meditate on things that are praiseworthy, you will discover that your trust and hope in the provisions of God are reinstated. Your strength will also be restored.

Finally, consider God’s promises and how faithful He has been over the course of your entire lifetime. Because our heavenly Father knew we would walk through dark times and painful adversities, He made sure to include countless words of encouragement in His Word. Go ahead and stand on each promise you read today. Let your faith shine bright. I pray it is bright enough to guide you out of any dark pit that has robbed your joy. May His peace lead you to greener pastures of hope so that you find rest and comfort in your day.

MEDITATE ON THESE SCRIPTURE VERSES AND BE ENCOURAGED

“Anxiety weighs down the heart, 
but a kind word cheers it up.”   Proverbs 12:25 (NIV)

“The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”  Deuteronomy 31:8 (NIV)

“Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth;Shall you not know it?I will even make a road in the wildernessand rivers in the desert.”  Isaiah 43:19 (ESV)

God Will Soften A Hard Heart

This is a devotion from my next book, FACING STORMS: DEVOTIONS FOR THOUGHT AND MEDITATION. Be sure to check out my other books on Amazon!                           

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=cheryl%20zelenka&sprefix=chery%2Caps&rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Acheryl%20zelenka

*Hard Heart

“You will begin to heal yourself when you let go of the things that hurt you in the past, forgive those who have done wrong to you and learn to forgive yourself for the mistakes you have made.” – Anonymous

“But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; 
the punishment that brought us peace was on Him, and by His wounds we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5 (NIV)

Jesus suffered many physical injuries on His road to Calvary. The beatings, whipping, and crucifixion left him barely recognizable, even to His family and friends. Because of His great love for us, He took up the cross. It is by His wounds that we are healed. It is through His blood sacrifice that our sins have been forgiven.

Jesus took the sins of the world and pinned them to the cross. Through this act of love, and through His resurrection, we no longer need to fear death. Eternal life has been granted to everyone who repents and acknowledges Jesus as his or her Lord in Savior! In addition to this glorious gift, we have a constant hope through the assurance of grace. With our sincere confession of sin, forgiveness is always granted.

Why, when we have such a forgiving Savior as our role model, do we wrestle with the issue of forgiveness….. Both in giving it and receiving it? Did not our Lord love us first, even while we were blemished by sin and active in worldly pursuits? Should we not be grateful that He looks past the sin we still struggle with and recognizes the being we have yet to become?

John 15:13 says, “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” Oh my, what a friend we have in Jesus! Contemplate His sacrifice! He left His heavenly realm to live as flesh and blood, then willingly died to set us, The Captives (to sin and death) free.

Mercifully, God has equipped you and I to overcome every adversity in life. Through faith and the gift of prayer, we may call upon His supernatural strength any time we feel weak, overwhelmed, or discouraged. He is always willing to help, advise, protect, encourage…. And forgive! He wants to commune and fellowship with us. Since sin separates us from His presence, He is constantly pardoning His children.

Rebellion and personal sin will intensify personal sufferings, so your obedience and submission is factored in to how well you weather a storm. Sin, disobedience, and rebellion always complicates life. Even so, what REALLY matters is the following point. If you acknowledge and confess your sins, you will ALWAYS receive forgiveness. Jesus never ignores a sincerely repentant heart.

So once again I ask, why do we withhold forgiveness when others ask it of us? Is it possibly due to a cold and hardened heart? If so, how is a hardened heart mended?

A hardened heart is surely a sign of an unhealthy spiritual state. With all probability, it belongs to a hungry and thirsty soul who has neglected the Word of God and the Springs of Living Waters. It has become parched and weak for a lack of supernatural spiritual food and water.

A hardened heart needs to hear the loving and healing promises within the Word of God. However, the difficulty comes in getting the loved one to listen. In all probability, they have not been open to the wise counsel of others and has stopped communicating with God, even ignoring prompts from the Holy Spirit. The truths within the Word can supernaturally break through all self-protection, pain, and anger. It will eventually untangle the lies Satan crafted and therefore crack the marble heart of stone. Look for opportunities to share even the shortest of scriptures with this person.

Another important part to healing a hard heart is fellowship. All of us have sinned. When somebody is not walking in close communion with the Lord, they usually avoid any interaction with others who are. They tend to become anti-social and isolated. This solitude gives the Devil a foothold and even more opportunity to tempt, deceive, and lie.

It requires a humble heart, softened by the prayers of others, to acknowledge a detour from the path of God. Pride is a sin we are all guilty of and it will lead to spiritual stagnation, decay or even death. However, once a hardened soul decides to enter back into fellowship with the Body of Christ, and honestly faces what has hardened their heart, peace and joy will once again return to their life. Unforgiveness is a ball and chain. It is tightly fastened around the leg of those who refuse to forgive.

Forgiving yourself of past sins is also required if you want a softer and more pliable heart. When you refuse to forgive yourself (and others) you dishonor Christ and all He did for you on the cross, and through His resurrection.

When you confess sin, it is cast as far as the east is from the west and is forgotten. Please, dear reader, stop reminding your Father of things He has already forgiven and forgotten. He was beaten and bruised so that you would not have to suffer an eternity absent from His glorious presence. He wants you to rest in this truth: By His wounds you are healed.

Will you not extend forgiveness and provide healing for the one wounded by your unwillingness to forgive and forget?

“But He was wounded for our transgressions,He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5 (NKJV)

“As far as the east is from the west, 
so far has He removed our transgressions from us.” Psalm 103:12 (NIV)

“ Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”   John 15:13 (NIV)

“It is better to heed the rebuke of a wise person than to listen to the song of fools.” Ecclesiastes 7:5 (NIV)

“God pardons like a mother, who kisses the offense into everlasting forgiveness.” ~ Henry W. Beecher

Plumb Sings I NEED YOU NOW

*Need
“And the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.”   Romans 16:20 (NKJV)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dkig2dttSNw&feature=youtu.be

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