Not Unredeemed

… living the beautiful tension between what is, and what will be …


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Walled In

I heard nothing as I listened to him talk, or watched him walk around. That is – my spiritual ears heard nothing – nada. Silence to a discerning person is very eerie and unusual. It’s like the modem from your spirit to heaven stops sending and receiving data, and all connectivity ceases. I had become unplugged when around this person. Why?

Offense.

I was offended. And then I was offended to learn I was offended! Last summer the Lord took me on a very revealing growth journey with offense – what it was and how to deal with it. Although I’m a passionate person, I’m also very easy going, so I would never have thought of myself as someone who could be offended. I wasn’t bitter or angry with this person, but I was walled in around them.

Proverbs 18:19 says that:

A brother offended is harder to win than a strong city,
And contentions are like the bars of a castle.

I always read that verse with the idea that if I had offended someone they would be harder to win back than getting into a walled city. Offense creates walls in both the offender and the offendee. I was the one that was walled into my frustration and distrust of this person. Offense had walled me in and shut off my spiritual gifts. I saw the person who had wronged me only for what they were not, rather than for who they could be, or were in Christ.

Offense takes on many forms and looks very differently in each person, but we are all exposed to opportunities to be offended every day. In Luke 18, Jesus even tells us that offense will come! So how do we respond when they do?

John Bevere wrote a book called The Bait of Satan: Living Free from the Deadly Trap of Offense, and in it he walks through what offense is and how to handle it in a way that free’s both people. The Lord used this book to radically change my life last year, and I want to pass that opportunity onto someone else. I’m giving away a copy of The Bait of Satan, over at Kindred Grace. Will you join me over at Kindred Grace to win a copy of the book and read a short  review? Click here. The book give-a-way ends on Thursday 3.13.14 at Midnight.

 

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Wounded Extremes (On Girls Marrying Guys Like Their Dads)

Q

My dad and I don’t get along at all, and my mom says girls marry guys like their dads. Is that true?

A

Yes, and no. The short answer is the choice is yours, but it will require a lot of work and healing on your part.

The desire that many girls have to NOT marry guys like their dads comes from hurts and heart wounds (emotional pain) that their fathers have caused. Why would a girl end up marrying a guy like her dad, when our natural response is to run from characteristics that cause us pain?

Let’s step back for a moment and look at the fuller picture. Proverbs says that,

“Desire without knowledge is not good, and whoever makes haste with his feet misses his way.” Proverbs 19:2

We need to understand where wounds come from and the sin behind them, before we can understand why we sometimes do the exact thing we are trying to avoid.

Pure and simple, wounds create extremes. A wounded heart swings to an extreme in the haste to get away from the factor creating the wound. Wounds are circular, however, not linear. So when we run (without healing) we run right back into the original sin.
Wounded Extremes

Take a girl whose father is cold and aloof, resulting in the daughter never feeling connected to him or understood. She naturally avoids seeking a spouse with the same aloof exterior. She seeks a guy who seems vulnerable, softer, and shares everything with her, but before long she is back to feeling disconnected, not understood and alone. Why?

The men were very different but the core sin was the same. In this small example, the sin was insecurity, stemming from pride. While the dad’s insecurity made him put up walls he hid behind, the young man’s insecurity is displayed in a selfish neediness to be understood at the neglect (once again) of the daughter’s feelings and needs.

Understanding the core sin and heart issue (not just looking at the outward manifestations of it) is the beginning of knowledge that we need. A favorite professor of mine used to say – “your family of origin does not have to be your family of destiny”. Meaning we can change and break (by God’s grace) the sin patterns in our families.

Ladies it starts with us – the sin in our lives is what allows wounds to swing into extremes. (In the example above, the daughter, wounded by her father, tries to find healing in a man, rather than in Jesus Christ – allowing her woundedness to continue).

Only Jesus Christ can make our paths straight and not circular. <— Click to Tweet. Join me over at Kindred Grace today to discuss three reasons and areas that girls can find healing in with regards to their fathers and marriages? Click here to continue reading at Kindred Grace.

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How You Learn It -31 Days of Truth {Day 26}

A 67!! My heart sank as my stomach rose into my throat and they crashed into each other, making me want to hurl as I ran out of the student center. A 67 on my Family, Church and Society mid term?! How could this be? I was a 4.0 student back home! I knew Focus Leadership Institute was going to be more difficult academically, but this was ridiculous. I was beyond mortified!

To read the rest of the story please visit me over at YLCF, as I share one of the many life changing experiences I had at FLI.

One of the greatest lessons I learned at Focus Leadership Institute was how to learn. How to learn, and what to learn.  FLI is a semester “abroad” type of program. It’s a fully accredited school that takes students for one semester. It combines the beauty of community, the academic level of a university, the hands on application (internship) of a vocational school, and the Christ centered leadership development  classes of a Bible school. It’s the best of all worlds.

I grew up in a very strong Christian home, but my time at Focus was the broader foundation I needed. Marriage and family, worldview, and identity and leadership classes gave me a foundation that I have grown and built on every day since. To say it was a life changing semester for me doesn’t do it justice. I learned how to identify my passions, and live them out. FLI is a lot about self discovery. Not in a weird  “it’s all about me” way, but it’s about learning who you are, so the Lord  can use you most effectively in the Kingdom. The Marriage and Family class will revolutionize every relationship that you have for the better. Communication and conflict resolution styles – the list goes on! The Lord also uses the classes, professors and community to bring about a tremendous amount of healing in the students (or at least the from my class!).

Listen as we share what the semester meant to us:  Continue reading


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Surviving

Hello friends! Writing as been almost non existant for me for the last while do to some health problems, but by God’s grace I’m still here and kicking! 😉 I’m praying about sharing with you all some of those struggles at some point, but for now, I would love if you joined me over at YLCF. This month I’m talking about how to survive the unscheduled happenings of life (something I’ve experienced a lot this past summer).

Join me as I discuss the 4 Keys to Surviving the Unscheduled .

One thing I’ve realized this fall is that writing is therapeutic for me! How I’ve missed it, and the interaction with you all! Stayed tuned for the launch of a mini series on Truth in October (Lord willing!)

 

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The “Second Mom” Sister

You know you’re the second mom in a big family when…

  • You start saying the same things to your siblings that your mom said to you.
  • Your siblings accidentally call you Mom.
  • You’re always counting heads to make sure everyone is accounted for.
  • Your siblings ask you what’s for dinner even when it’s not your night.
  • Your siblings come running to you first, or call for you when they get hurt.
  • You long for a small “normal” family, but when you go visit one, you find yourself bored.
  • You start referring to everyone in the family younger than you as “the kids”.

If you answered “me, too!” or filled in the blank above with your own “second mom” sentence, then this post is for you! As the oldest of twelve children I have 20+ years of experience as a big sister aka “second mom” will you join me over at YLCF as I share some of my dos, don’ts and do overs? Continue reading here! 


 


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Saying “No” to a Date or Relationship

“I have known this guy for a few weeks and he says he is in love with me. But I don’t really want to be in a relationship right now. I have no idea what I am doing.  I just need some advice on how to turn him down gently.
-Laura”

I’ve hesitated to write on how to say no to a date or relationship for a long time. It’s one of those awkward topics to write on but one that everyone wants to read when they are facing the situation. As a single person, writing about how to say no is like shooting yourself in the foot – who wants to date a girl who writes about how to say no to a relationship? 🙂  I laugh at myself as I write this and thank the Lord for changing my heart and filling my insecurities. I am who I am by His grace and the rest doesn’t matter. Don’t ever let fear of what people will think stop you from ministering to others with the grace the Lord has given youContinue reading


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The Women’s Resolution – review and give away

Friends, I’ll let you in on a secret – I’m a rebell at heart. If everyone is doing it, I don’t want to do. Especially when it comes to fades and trends, and Christian book trends. And I really don’t like books the follow movies!  So it was with a lot of skepticism that I began to read the Women’s Resolution following the movie Courageous. But it was a bandwagon worth jumping on! It blew away my skepticism. I was very pleasantly surprised at the content of the book. Priscilla Shirer’s book The Resolution for Women is for married and single women alike. Laid out in very simple, easy-to-follow sections and chapters, the book address what it means to live as women of integrity and grace in our world today. Priscilla hits on many areas of life and the book flows naturally from one section to the next. To read the rest of the review and to enter a contest to win a copy of the book, please join us over at YLCF. 

(To read a review on the companion book — The Resolution for Men, please visit the Manturity blog.)