Good Morning Ladies (and few gents),
Today’s devotion included below “Distracted by The Voices” is a reminder from GiG Gwen that, “A tongue that is led by the flesh falls easily into speaking destruction, corruption, or gossip. A tongue that takes its cues from the leading of the Holy Spirit does not. Period…”
GiG, let’s search our hearts and ask God for a well-instructed tongue. Yes, let’s recognize our personal limitations but God’s limitlessness.
Ah, it is summer. The school year has ended for some and will soon end for others. I am happy that students are still getting time off to recharge. As society changes, I suspect this luxury will one day be a thing of the past. But for now students, parents, grandparents and teachers enjoy it while you can.
For the past 18 years, I centered my life on recharging from June through early August. However, a new career, new schedule and new responsibilities have entered my life and gone is the “reset button.” It’s funny to me that the Holy Spirit brought to the forefront of my mind a conversation I had with Da’rell a few years ago when he was scheduled to work through his first summer at Duke Medical. I gave him the standard, “Welcome to the real world” speech. Now that same speech is on my brain’s internal MP3 player and playing back to me. OUCH!
GiG, it’s amazing the things we’re influenced by whether in our childhood or adulthood. Let’s begin by clearing the air. Yes, let’s get something out in the open—no one’s childhood was perfect. I meet with people every day who’ve lived childhood experiences that have profoundly impacted their lives that continue impacting them even in adulthood—good or bad. There are things they (and we) saw, heard, felt, and even things they (and we) did not feel can affect us later in life. As one might expect, external influences do help to shape our personality. However, the result is not always predictable.
In Isaiah 61:1-3, Jesus helps us understand that we suffer for many reasons—our own mistakes, someone else’s mistakes, injustice. Maybe you’re like me and know someone who can only remember the painful experiences that have left deep wounds, but then another member from the same household that same wounding contributed to the development of depth and perseverance.
Whether your younger years were joyful or painful, it can be valuable to consider what their impact was, back then as well as today. I pray that we all ask God for healing and freedom from the patterns we may have developed in response. Then shift our focus to godly attributes we want to exhibit instead, such as peace, grace, and gentleness.
Our heavenly Father wants to free us from any negative trends that took root early in life. He can break any unhealthy pattern and replace it with hope and deep satisfaction in Him.
GiG, one inexpensive way to expedite healing is by participating in Emotionally Healthy Discipleship Courses. On Friday, June 21 at 6:30 pm at OVC we will be starting round two of both courses: Emotionally Healthy Spirituality and Emotionally Healthy Relationships. If you haven’t taken either course, may I strongly recommend doing so. Start with Emotionally Healthy Spirituality which teaches you how to love God. These courses will change your life. They have changed mine and so many others across the country.
Today, as you explore the effects of childhood experiences, I pray you see through a lens of truth!
GiG, when we recognize ways that others negatively influenced us, examples of jealousy (like Joseph’s brothers), harassment and/or lies (like Potiphar’s wife), or saying they’ll do one thing but end up doing something else or simply forgetting assistance once they got what they wanted (the baker).
May we be encouraged to pray for strength to forgive and for God's help in mending areas of brokenness—whether spiritual, emotional, relational, or mental. Yes, seek answers for our life patterns and get help if/when needed.
God’s Got It…so we can HOPE—Forrest Gump said it best, “…life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get.” However, we know for certain that prayer changes things, changes us.
Called to serve and encouraging others to thrive
DEA: Embracing a Work-Hard, Rest-Well Life and Loving My Priorities, Loving My Life