Count your own blessings

I used to pride myself in the fact that I’m never that person that gets jealous over someone’s good fortune. If anything I’m usually quick to rejoice and celebrate with whomever it is that is celebrating.

So there’s this friend of mine and it happened to be that we were both believing God for the same thing. The thing ended up happening for her and it didn’t happen for me and all of a sudden I started questioning my standing with God.

As a matter of fact, I suddenly realised I’ve always tried to outdo her, comparing myself with her and I started beating myself up whenever I felt I was not as good.

So I prayed. I told God how I didn’t like the way I was feeling and if I keep going this way I will start resenting this dear friend of mine. Well you know what God told me?

He said I had started losing sight of who I was and who He is making me to be. I had stopped counting my blessings and had started counting other people’s blessings.

And I thought to myself that’s it, I’m distracting myself from counting my own blessings and it has helped me so far deal with the issue of jealousy.

You may think there’s really no ‘’blessing’’ in your life to count and It may be due to what you define to be a blessing. You know the cliché statement that it’s a blessing to be alive  well it is very true.

I didn’t appreciate being able to hear properly until I had an ear infection that had me partially deaf for a while. When I finally got better I appreciated being able to hear properly and acknowledged it as a blessing.

You’re alive for a reason, and don’t take it for granted. Remember where there’s life, there’s hope and the bible tells us that hope (on the love of God) makes us not ashamed (Romans 5:5). So let’s start counting our blessings and start trusting in his love for each and every one of us.

Love and Blessings…

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My Love Story (pt 2)…

For abit more context I suggest you read my love story pt1

So  I’m sure some of you are still wondering what is this love that I claim to have that has changed my whole life.

This Love is patient and kind. It is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. This Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

Say what?  No human being can give you that! As I’m guessing is the thought of some people reading this and yes you are very right, no human being can give you this kind of love.

Like me some of us have gone out to look for love in people to satisfy our selfish desires. We never really go out there thinking now who am I going love so hard no matter what, that they wouldn’t know what hit them. We rather think the opposite of that. So we finally believe we’ve found “the one” and this one falls so short that it paints a terrible picture of love.

Now I’m no expert on love and relationships so I’m not going to sit here and start giving r/ship advise lol. But here’s what I know.

You get to love so hard only because you’ve been loved so hard. In other words you can’t give what you don’t have.

You see that whole description about the love I have, came as a result of one being and that’s Jesus Christ. I opened my heart to his love for me and accepted it.

He loved on me so much that I now begin to love me the way he does because as unworthy as I am of this love, He made me worthy by loving me.

So now I’m loving myself based on his example of love; I start exercising patience with myself, started being kind to myself, stopped allowing myself to look out and get jealous but look in and find something of value to love.

I started forgiving myself, I stopped hating my imperfections, I begin to believe in who I was made to be, I became hopeful again and I started trusting God to help me continually love myself.

I’m still in the process and lest I forget, the preacher was right, this love does cast out fear- every time it’s being made manifest. Now, I can’t help but exude this love to the people around me because I know what it feels like to be loved.

And if you already have this love, do well to share it with our hurting world because only God loves best…

A Guilty Christian

There is therefore now no condemnation to them who are in Christ Jesus.(Romans 8:1)

Me: I have to be nice to people, I have to be loving, I have to be truthful, I have to be good, no room for going off course from time to time, I have to be perfect because I mean that’s what’s expected of me now that I am a proclaimed Christian. 

God: it’s not about you Faith, it’s about Me. You put yourself under so much unnecessary pressure. I don’t need you to try and be perfect in order to please me. As a matter of fact I need you to be the imperfection that my perfect nature shines through.

Me: What do you mean God? Are all these things I’m trying to be all at once not your perfect will? Did you not say in your word to be loving, and truthful, and good to people and strive to ultimately be like Christ?

God: Yes, but I never said you could do it yourself.

I’m going to save you the rest of the long conversation and get straight to the point. You see as Christians most of us know we are not saved by works but by grace but very few of us actually let that sink into our hearts. God has given us His Spirit to guide us into all truth not us to guide the Spirit into our truth.

Whenever I fell short and not reach the expectations I set up for myself as a believer, I felt guilty. But God told me that whenever I fall short and ask for mercy and still don’t receive his mercy fully by still letting guilt consume me then I’m beginning to try to do what only God is authorised to do in my life. I’m trying to save myself when Jesus already did.

God has given us His spirit as Christians to help our infirmities and be our teacher among so many other roles which he plays in our lives (John 14:26 amp). Now if God thought we could be all that by ourselves don’t you think he’d save himself the trouble and keep his Spirit to himself?

Basically God is saying relax I’ve got you, focus your energy more on pressing into Christ than making yourself look good outwardly. Remember the more you are in Christ the more you begin to be like him and people begin to see him in you.

 

Beauty for Ashes

He will give you his beauty for your ashes (Isaiah 61:3)

The trauma was so intense that you locked up the pain, the shame and the guilt away, so you don’t really have to deal. Maybe like me you make yourself forget about it and brush off your exterior so well that it hides how much of a mess it made you inside. I mean after all its all in the past now, you don’t need to talk about it and even the bible said old things are passed away right?

Now I have come to know Christ everything should all of a sudden be ok, not minding whatever wounds that needs to heal, what fractures needed to be made whole, what aches and pains that needed to be suited. Well for me everything didn’t become ok immediately.

So I went on, holding on to a particular pain that I made myself believe I had let go until one night. I was with friends and one thing led to another that I reopened this wound I had led myself to believe was not there. As I was narrating the story just out of mere contribution to the gist, I started tearing up unwillingly. I was able to convince my friends that no I was ok, I’m better now, not minding that I was still seriously tearing up. So I left to my room and that’s when it hit me that maybe I haven’t actually let go just yet. I remember blaming God that night for what happened; not coming through for me even after I prayed so much about it. Then I remembered I had this Joyce meyer’s magazine under my pillow that I’d been meaning to read. So I did and came across an article (not one more night with the frogs) and the words only told me that God was right there with me.

You see God helped me to see that I was unwilling to surrender my ashes for Him to give me his beauty (Isaiah 61:1-3) and until I did, I will not get the full beauty of being in him. Maybe what happened to you was not your fault, but it doesn’t have to be an excuse to stay unhealthy. You can’t undo what people did to you and you have to realise that the most important moment in your life is RIGHT NOW. Press into your relationship with God and get His beauty for your ashes, your joy for mourning and praise for heaviness.  Those were some of the words God used to comfort me that night. I’m not able to give proper answers as to why God allowed me go through what I went through at the time but I know I’m a better and stronger person now.

Some of you like me may need more prayers and teaching to bring you into full healing, whatever it is  you need maybe more counselling, just make sure to surrender your ashes. I surrendered my ashes to God and I got His beauty.

Love or Religion

We love because He first loved us (1 John 4:19)

They are too spiritual,  they should come down to earth,  they are too religious, they don’t get it, why do they make God too complicated, why do they have to stick to traditions and unnecessary rules??? I thank God I’m not like them, I’ve seen the light, I know the truth, etc. Those were the exact thoughts of a girl who thought she was better than those people and that girl was me, yours truly. 

Yes I got so caught up with trying to be current and point out to people about not being too religious, that I was ignorant of the fact that maybe I’m the religious one. So here I was reading this book Jesus is greater than religion by Jefferson Bethke shouting “preach”  while I read the book (*laughs*). Yet not for once did I think that maybe God was trying to show me something that needed working on. I was rather so engrossed with matching the behaviours of people I know with what I read.

Well God had to teach me that if I kept looking out for the speck in the eyes of people, what time will be left for me to actually take notice of the log in my own eye and remove it. In Jefferson Bethke’s words, I cared more about flaunting my Christian freedom than promoting Christian unity which in itself is not true freedom. God helped me to understand that this whole faith is not really about pointing out who’s right and who’s wrong, but being more concerned with showing the love of God. To preach the gospel of peace and not of war, to correct in love, to walk with love and ultimately to live in love.

I was reading 1 John 4 recently about how we love God because he first loved us and I got to understand that God’s love towards us is not necessarily a feeling but it’s who He is. Therefore having accepted his love and brought him into my life I’m infiltrated with his love. So I get to love only because I’m loved.