Friday, June 17, 2016

Book Review: Woman thou art Healed and Whole By T. D. Jakes

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            Through this devotional, Reverend T.D. Jakes continues to encourage women who have fears and unease because of their background or their health issues.
           
            He speaks kindness to his readers. Each devotion begins with a scripture. Then he interprets the passage. Following this, he includes a section, called Your Healing Journey.
 
            I enjoyed this book. I shared a devotion from it with some of the women in a prayer group I attend. In a phone conversation with the leader of this group, I told her I thought of her when I read certain devotions in it.
 
            I would recommend this book to anyone who has difficulties with letting go of her past due to illness, addiction, or any mistakes she might have made. I would also recommend it to anyone in the counseling field, either a pastor or a Christian in the secular field.


            I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Destiny Image, Inc. through the website, Book Club Network. All they asked of me was an impartial review.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Encouragement

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“If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose.”
Philippians 2:1-2 (NIV)

            Paul tells the believers in Philippi several things in this short passage. He breaks down the vertical relationship between Christ and each believer.

           
            Are we encouraged by being close to Christ? We learn that Jesus helps us through the harsh circumstances of life. I have found that has been a gift to me.

            Does God comfort us by His love? As I sat writing on a very warm Saturday evening, He brought to my mind the facts that I was able to bear up under some heavy loads in my life. That has been a comfort to me at different times in these past few years.

            Have we had any fellowship with the Spirit? When I have trouble sleeping most nights, I turn my thoughts into prayers. This helps me unwind and, eventually, I do fall asleep. I consider these times very sweet. I need to practice this on a regular basis.

            Do we model tenderness and compassion? This one I have to work on. I get frustrated at things; I know I should not, but I do. I get upset when things do not go, as I believe they should. Sometimes I have a short fuse on my temper. I also am sensitive to the tones of voice people close to me use.

            Paul then tells his readers to think as Jesus would think. He continues by telling his readers and us we should love as He loves. He loved people, not what they did wrong. He further tells us we should have kindred spirits and pursue the same purpose. At our church, we are preparing for Vacation Bible School. There are several of us working on different areas. Registration, Snacks, Crafts, A Comfort Room for Special Needs kids, Setting up a tent,

Seeking volunteers to lead each class, and giving the lesson each night. We all have different gifts and skills. Nevertheless, we are all working for the same goal-bringing Christ to the children of our church and our area. 

Monday, June 13, 2016

Another Look at Faith


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             “For this reason, make every effort to add to your faith, goodness, and to goodness, knowledge, and to knowledge, self-control, and to self-control, perseverance, to perseverance brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness, love.
2 Peter 1:5-6 (NIV)

            Peter speaks of faith as the basis of the traits that, when we let Jesus guide us, makes us become more like Him. When I consider the order in which these qualities appear in his writing, I believe Peter experienced the presence of his journey to who he became because of his experience with Jesus and the Holy Spirit.

            Faith is basic to our belief in God. The passage in Hebrews (11:6) plainly states we have to believe in God before we can approach Him. We learn faith when we face difficult times and place our trust in Jesus Christ.
            I have had several friends in my lifetime whose faith attracted me to them and to the Lord. My memories of them sustain me in times when I could feel overwhelmed with certain issues that affect my life. As I have experienced some “surprises” in life, I realize I have also matured in the faith.
            Last autumn, I went through the hardest time of my life. I broke my ankle in four places. Because of this injury, I was in a rehab center for three months. I was 100% non-weight bearing for about 8 weeks. I had to learn to transfer from a bed to a wheelchair and had to have all my meals in my room. My only times out of my room was to go to therapy and, later on, to the in-house beauty shop.
            I learned the importance of saying, “Thank you!” to all who tended to my needs. I felt humbled by the CNA’s willingness to stay after a shift change to help me. They worked 12-hour shifts. These women were on their feet the whole time of their shift. What I am trying to say is our faith can grow because of difficulties we face.
            Whenever we face tragedies, we should not pray. “God, please take this away from me.” Or, “God, get me out of this mess.” Rather, we should pray, “God, what is it you want to teach me through this?”
            In our life experiences, there are lessons God wants us to learn that we would miss if we did not have certain issues in our lives.


             

Heirs Because of Hope

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