Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Self Esteem's Lasting Effects. . .

Today my burden is heavy and I am not sure if I can even write this post. I especially don't know if I can post it.  Ever have one of those times that for a brief moment the Lord allows you to have a glimpse of more than your eyes can normally see? Well, that happened to me yesterday. God allowed me to see a picture of how my lack of self-esteem is effecting current relationships (especially my marriage).  I have known since I was an early teen that self-esteem was an issue. Actually, before that but that is when I had a name for it.  So many things happened or didn't happen that contributed.  Little by little my self-esteem became chipped away as I became molded into the woman that I am today.  Some things were done by others and some by myself in order to try make things better.

I started early on trying to find ways to fill the holes. They don't fill so easily.  I picture it as each self-esteem blow leaving a gaping hole in which I promptly filled with a new outfit or a new boyfriend, etc, etc.  But since the human body is flexible, grows, moves and changes nothing stuck. Each fell by the wayside.  In fact, I have discovered over time that only our Lord and Savior is able to fill in the holes and make me complete.

Now all that is well and good. Honestly, it is nothing new as I have known that for a long time.  As I am sure you know, often we know the answer without knowing how to get there.  But now I feel like God took my blinders off a bit. He allowed me to see how even today (or especially today) my lack of self-esteem is effecting every relationship that I own part of.  It was humbling to see.  It brought to light a truth. . . I need His healing in this area.  No matter how much growth there has been. No matter how much I have felt His presence.  There is still much more work to be done.  The Lord has been merciful enough to give me the opportunity to deal with this before it causes more hurt and destruction.  The next problem that began to overwhelm me is not having any idea how to fix it.  When that is the case then the Bible is the only place to turn.  He is a partial list of some verses I found.  I hope you will work through them with me. Please, I beg of you to let these Bible verses wash over you anew and speak to you.

Psalm 139:13-14 -"For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well."
Praise God that I can be assured that He created me according to His will!
Song of Solomon 4:7- "You are altogether beautiful, my love; there is no flaw in you."

What sweet words of adoration the Lord speaks over each of us.
1 Samuel 16:7- "But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”  

This reminds me that whatever weakness or shortcoming I perceive is inconsequential for the Lord has a plan that exceeds human perception. He sees my heart and that should be my only concern. 
Genesis 1:27- "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them."

God created me in His image!

1 John 3:1- "See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him."

I am a child of the Most High God! As such, I cannot be valued by the world's standard for the world did not even know Jesus. They persecuted Him.
Jeremiah 29:11- "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope."

I am on earth at this point in time because He has a plan just for me.  

Ephesians 2:10- "For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them." 

Again, I must continually look to Him for the work He has prepared for me.

Joshua 1:9- "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”  

When my weaknesses standout, this is my verse. He is always with me. I can stand on His courage and strength.
James 4:6- "But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”

Thank you Lord for grace. It is exponentially more than I deserve or could ask.  Please help me stay humble before you.
Psalm 145:18- "The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth." 

Thank you Father for never giving up on me but always being there when I call. How amazing that the God of the universe is ALWAYS there when I call. 
Psalm 46:10- “Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”  

My favorite verse! I don't have to fix anything on my own. Just be still and remember who I serve. Daddy will take care of everything.

And finally, I ask in prayer that the Lord "God himself, the God of peace, sanctify me through and through. May my whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ." 

I am sorry if this post was a bit of a ramble or not helpful, but it was very important for me to write.  Even at this point, I feel so much more free.I hope it has helped at least one other person.  When your husband or children say something hurtful, remember these verses.  Filter the words and action through these verses before responding. Allow those you love to only be responsible for the current issue and not every issue you have ever dealt with in your life.  After all, when I make a mistake regarding my husband I certainly hope I won't be blamed at that point for every hurt he has ever experienced. It is a price which I could never pay in full.  So how can I ask those around me to pay in full (for every loss of self-esteem) when they blunder.  It is not fair to them or our relationship and it is an impossible price for them to pay.

I fully understand that this is a battle fought on my knees and the enemy will hate the victory. So be sure if you are fighting this battle also that you put on the Armour of God.  We will need it. But and this is big but. . . God is the victor! The end has already been written!!! All we need do is go before Him with humility allowing Him to show us each step. Praise God for His Living Breathing Word!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Forgiving, Forgiving and Forgiving

When I write these post, often times I write because I need the lesson myself. Writing causes me to reflect on what I know to be true and then compare it with what God says about it.  It seems that I have a hard time learning many of the important lessons necessary as a part of sanctification.

One such lesson is forgiveness. For the most part, I can handle forgiving someone. Problem is that it doesn't stop there.  I have found that often times we must forgive time and time again.  Not because we haven't forgiven that initial mistake or hurt that was caused us but because that person (being human) often repeats the same or similar hurt. Being human myself, it is hard to understand why you would do that when you know it hurts someone you love.  Oh, if only it were that simple.  I am no physiologist so I must just declare that there are some things I will not understand this side of heaven. Plus I am sure that same person who hurt me, I often hurt as well.

What I have learned it that I must forgive! Again and again and again if necessary.  Otherwise the pain of dealing with the hurt caused will rip me apart.  I think this is why there are so many verses in the Bible on forgiveness and why God felt it so important for us to do. He knew how much lack of forgiveness could destroy us (most importantly) our relationship with Him.

Probably a most known verse is,  "Then Peter came up and said to him, “Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven."Matthew 18:21-22  These verse tells us that our forgiveness should be limitless. WOW! I love when God's Word washes over me anew.  So everyday, as many times a day as necessary, I must forgive.  Now I know (and I am speaking this to myself) that we don't always want to forgive and it is easy to think that the forgiveness is solely for the person we are forgiving. Not true.  In Matthew 6:14-15 scripture says, "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses."

I have also noted that living with an unforgiving heart causes other sins.  How about anger, bitterness, hate and the list goes on. Still it boils down to how difficult it is to forgive.  Fortunately, our Savior was gracious enough to even provide for that.  He says, "Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light" Matthew 11:28-30.

Our rest must be found in Him! He is the only way that we can forgive, forgive, forgive, forgive. . . . Isn't it fitting that the one that provided forgiveness for our sins also teaches us to forgive.  Hope this speaks to you as it has me. Blessings to you.


Monday, January 23, 2012

A Treasured Jewel

Bath time has become princess time at our home. Our 7 year old gets in the tub and get her hair all wet and ready. She then calls me to come and make her tiara. It is simply a circle of the sparkling shampoo upon her head. She is not a prissy girl
but longs to have that special feeling. That same feeling may come from a hug, a kiss, or telling her how amazing she is to us. As I watch her grow, I think she is just like her mom, her brothers and even her dad. We all want to feel special. . . treasured.

I think that making each other feel treasured is something that has gotten lost in the busyness and even the selfishness of life. Sometimes we don't take time and sometimes we don't even know how. This might be because we didn't feel treasured growing up or we just forgot.
I have noticed that when you open you eyes to really see people it is clear that "feeling treasured" makes so much difference in everything about a person. When they feel treasured, they love freely, laugh easier, serve with gladness and are plain old just more fun to be around. On the contrast, not feeling treasured tends to isolate a person even more. They feel alone and hurt. Extending the smile would be like giving $100 when they have only $10. Striking up conversation may cost even more. Simply put you cannot give what you do not have to give.

I believe that this is one of the reason why so many are depressed and, furthermore, so many marriages have failed. Have you ever heard someone say that they are surrounded by people but so lonely. I would guess that that person does not feel treasured by those around them. They exist together and interact when they must. This is such a serious matter. It hurts the people we love, hurts ourselves and worst of all hurts relationships with Christ. For how much harder is it for a person to understand God's love when they don't feel loved bu those that are suppose to love them. Here are some verses to hopefully lift you and encourage you:

"…you can't manage, God says: I will supply all your needs" (Phil. 4:19)
"…afraid, God says: I have not given you a spirit of fear" (II Tim. 1:7)
"…worried and frustrated, God says: Cast all your cares on ME" (I Pet. 5:7)
"…too tired to go on, God says: I will give you rest" (Matt. 11:28-30)
"…you're not smart enough, God says: I give you wisdom" (I Cor.1:30)
"…alone, God says: I will never leave you or forsake you" (Heb.13:5)
"…you can't forgive yourself, God says: I FORGIVE YOU" (I Jn. 1:9; Rom. 8:1)

What is your worth in the Father's eyes?

"Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows." Matthew 10:20-31

Remember that God is the "King of Kings" (1 Timothy 6:15)  Since you are His child that makes you the Princess! You are indeed treasured! The Father says "It is my desire to lavish My love on You" 1 John 3:1
He is waiting to lavish us with His amazing love. A love that has the power to change us instantly from within. All He requires that we spend time at the foot of His throne talking to Him and worshiping Him. Then the joy can overflow.

So next time my daughter ask for her tiara, I will remember that I am helping learn how to accept the love of the Father!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Great Debate

My inbox and voice mail are being filled with all kinds of political information.  We don't even answer our home phone any more.  It is tiring and confusing.  Wouldn't it be amazing if we could connect a device to each candidate that makes all politicians tell the truth? Then a debate would mean something. A message left on my voice mail would mean something. The ads would mean something. We could simply gather the facts and make our decisions.  I suppose the down side would be that it would be hard to find any candidate that we would want to elect.

I have noticed that even among those that have researched and are passionate about making the right voting decision, the gap is wide.  How can that be? Shouldn't there clearly be a right candidate?  Just think about all the confusion the ads cause.  Our 16 year old has decided to be interested in the upcoming election. Yesterday as we discussed the candidates, he was greatly put off by (in my opinion) one of the best if not the best candidate.  He spouted out information that was derogatory about this candidate. I knew immediately that he didn't have all the facts. So I asked, where did you get that information? Was it from commercials? Yes, it was.  So it seems, the negative commercials are being effective at least on a 16 year old.

So with that, I urge you greatly.  We are facing probably the most important election in our lifetime.  Your vote means something. It is incredibly important that you know the facts and make the best decision. As Christians, we are in a battle where prayer and knowledge are our weapons.  Research, research, research.  Use the responsibility God has given you wisely.

All that being said, I will remind you lest you still worry that  God sets up Kings and Kingdoms.  The Bible says, "He changes times and seasons; he sets up kings and deposes them. He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to the discerning." Daniel 2:21.  So I know you may be thinking, if that is the case why should I research or vote.  It is simple, God means for us to stand up.  The Bible is full of stories where people looked upon God with faith and He poured out His favor upon them.  He gave them victory of all sorts.  Plus did you notice that verse also says that He gives "knowledge to the discerning." We need His knowledge!

We have been going downhill for a long time and we need His victory.  There is not a candidate out there that can be successful if His hand is removed from the USA. So I think this election is about so much more than who wins, it is about what we will do.  Will we turn to God and petition Him to protect us and restore our nation? Or will we continue to desperately seek prosperity on our own?

Thursday, January 12, 2012


A friend of mine reminded yesterday of one of the biggest challenges of raising a daughter.  Clothing! How can that be?  If you have shopped in the last few years for clothing for a girl then no doubt you could write this blog.  You have seen the selection. Therefore you know what I mean when I say. . .I do not want her midriff showing, no mini mini-skirts, no plunging necklines etc. Don't even get me started on bathing suits.  Sadly, these are issues we face with a 7 year old.  We have spent days just looking for a couple decent outfits.  Please can we just have clothing that a self respecting, sweet, pure 7 year old should wear? 

As I began to contemplate this, a thought came to mind. If we let our little girls dress like this then how will they dress as teens?  By allowing them to wear these clothes aren't we teaching them to feel comfortable in them? How can we explain that it is different as they get older? Or should it be?  I don't think so.  There are a number of passages in the Bible that address this and I fear they are often not given the importance they deserve.  Why is that?

I think it is easy for us to look at some passages and think "that was for Bible times." It is different now.  I agree wholeheartedly it is different in many ways. However, if we apply those passages to the time and culture in which they were written it becomes more clear. The wording may be a bit different but nothing has changed. The issues are really much the same.  The core of it is modesty.  Will we as women choose to dress with modesty and teach our daughters the same.  The Bible says, "Likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire, but with what is proper for women who profess godliness—with good works." 1 Timothy 2:9-10  Before we go on, please note that I do wear pants, cut my hair and wear jewelry. So that is not the issue I am addressing here. As I think about, maybe that would be easier.  It is so much harder to dress fashionable and modest.  I certainly can't say I am there.  Have you ever noticed someone who does this well and thought how incredible it is.

Even as we shop with our daughters, they are learning this lesson if we choose wisely. Or maybe, we just come home and add to the outfit in a way to make it more modest. Since I am also mom to two teenage sons, I will greatly thank you!

My friend whom I mentioned earlier did an amazing job of helping her teen daughter make the right choice.  She was looking for a dress for a dance. Rather than settle for something a bit too revealing, she had a dress made. Think of what she is teaching her daughter beyond dressing appropriate (self-respect for starters). She makes me proud of her.  I am so glad she is blazing the ground before me and I can watch her example of how to apply God's word to dressing my daughter.

I truly hope that you are enjoying these blogs. I do welcome comments or notes. Hope to hear from you soon!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Lessons from the Grocery Cart

It seems like I have known most of my married life that I should be planning out meals. However, for the most part I have not. Like so many, I would go to the grocery store and just fill the buggy with what I thought we would need or like. As a result, I would often find myself in the kitchen scrambling to decide what I could fix for dinner and then possibly making a quick run to the store. Assuming I did a good job of cooking most of the meals through a week, it would not be uncommon to make three or four trips to the store. Unfortunately, often it would end with "let's just get something out." I knew this was blowing our budget and our waistlines but felt powerless to change anything (admission: just didn't want to). Isn't that the case with most things we don't think we have time to do?

Now let me start by saying, I never on my own became motivated to change. I simply didn't want to. But one day when we were at Lifeway Christian Store there was a book on sale that caught our attention. It was this book: Cut Your Grocery Bill in Half. As I read the book, it inspired me. I already had Family Feasts for $75 a Week which is a wonderful book with lots of good cheap recipes.

So I set out on a mission and started planning our meals two weeks at a time (I would like to do four weeks but not there yet). I have to say it is amazing. The rewards have far outweighed anything I could imagine. Here are some benefits we have discovered:

1) We almost never eat out and don't even miss it. Thus helping our budget tremendously.
2) Our grocery bill has been slashed. I buy what is on my list and items that are on a huge sale that I am positive we will use. I spend less in a grocery trip than I did without planning the meals and have everything I need to actually make the meals.
3) We have exponentially more time together as a family.
4) We tend to stay home more in general since this is where our food will be and there is less reason to "go out anyway."
5) I am sooo much less stressed. Dinner no longer hangs over my head. It is so much more a treat to cook when there is a plan.

While all of these are amazing, number three is the greatest. I had no idea how much time we were wasting or what it would do to our family to get that time back. Last week we sat down as a family to play a game  4 or 5 times. I couldn't believe as much as we had going on that we found time to do that.

So I am thinking there is definitely a family lesson in this but what about a Bible lesson. Yep, there is. Hebrews 12:11 says, "For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it." So you know where this is going. . .apply that same lesson to quiet time!!! I already know that self-discipline brings peaceful fruit. God showed me a real life example but what about the fruit of righteousness? Now I can just be stubborn which obviously I am good at. How about you? Are you good at stubborn? If you are like me then let's choose to be stubbornly self disciplined. I think if we step in the right direction then God will show us the rewards.  As I think about the meal planning example, I really think we will want more and more time with Him once we see the rewards.

"The soul of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, while the soul of the diligent is richly supplied" Proverbs 13:4

The supplies of my pantry will not even compare to what the Lord Jesus Christ has for me.  What joy even this brings!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Are computers taking over?

I am definitely asking myself that question post Christmas. When I say computers, I am talking about all the gadgets. We are so busy these days with our phones, music devices (with games no less), reading devices, and laptops that move with us. I am wondering if family and relationships are getting lost in technology. Don't get me wrong. . . I love my smart phone and computer. Plus my Nook is among my favorite things. But how many words are being spoken face to face? Are we loosing all the emotions of relationship to computers. How many times have we stared into one of those devices and spouted off life changing words. Yesterday, I told my husband that I forwarded a link (that he sent me from work) to our 16 year old. Now keep in mind we homeschool so the 16 year old was a few steps away. My husband said do you not talk to each other any more? Do you just email? So true.

I am worried about what computers are doing to us. I see them taking a tremendous amount of time in our family. Perhaps we already see in our children less ability to communicate. From an earthly viewpoint, perhaps the implications are troubling but don't alarm us enough. But I am concerned about eternity and there impact on that. First and foremost, I think we witness (tell people about Christ)and disciple through personal relationship best. Do we really want to miss those opportunities? Do we really want to chance not hearing, "Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!" Matthew 25:23 Just because we are too busy to talk face to face. I think not. And while serving Christ and being a faithful witness for Him is more important than anything else, I want to share something else.
What about our families? Are we slowly but surely giving away our family to these devices? How much time do we really spend talking? I am so thankful that with homeschooling and the fact that our family dinner time has remained in tack. . .we do have some time. But I wonder if even that is enough. I have discovered that it takes time and quiet to let down my guard and open up. Not something that happens very easily.
As I write this, fear is creeping in as I think about the impact of this on marriage and children. What legacy do we leave? How will the people I love know how I feel or why I feel that way? I think Satan must love our devices. As long as we are busy with Facebook, Ebay, Angry Birds or whatever calls to us. . . then we let real life pass by not even realizing how much it is falling apart. Is this you? I definitely know that I am guilty. So my prayer for myself and challenge to you today is to place healthy limitations. I can't say what that might look like for you but I am praying for God to show me what steps to take. I know in my family I can't change everyone's habits but I can set an example and will pray. Besides I wonder how many times they aren't engaged because I don't ask for interaction. Looking forward to some family time this evening! I hope you are too!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The Rice Cooker

While I love kitchen gadgets, as a wife you are always hoping for that romantic gift. For my November birthday, I received just such a gift. . . a rice cooker. I admit that I was a little disappointed even though I had previously mentioned a rice cooker.

This morning, I tried yet another recipe in the cooker. As I measured the oats and other ingredients, I once again thought this is a gift that keeps on giving. It cooks perfect rice. Is amazing with soups, stews, pot roast, and now I find it makes perfect oatmeal. The more I learn to incorporate it into my everyday cooking. . . the more I appreciate it's value.
This is not unlike our time spent with God. Before we start spending time with God, we don't know or understand the benefits. Yes, we think it would be good but it requires commitment (and worse yet TIME). Yet we will spend time and even money on an appliance or tool that we are hopeful of the results. In Isaiah 55:2-3, it says "Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare. Give ear and come to me; hear me, that your soul may live. I will make an everlasting covenant with you, my faithful love promised to David." Oh that everyday I might discover that the best of what comes out of the rice cooker doesn't compare to the "riches of fare" that God has for me when I spend time with Him.

I have noticed that one of our biggest difficulties as Christians today is living between two worlds. We struggled between living on earth and our eternal home in heaven. Jesus said that you are no longer of this world any more than He is (Jn. 17:14-16). Still I find that to be hard to grasp daily and, in fact, impossible without God's help. That joy that I found in the rice cooker is about all the joy I can muster on my own. However, He is the true source of joy. When He is our foundation (meaning we spend time learning from Him), then the ability to stand and cope with the problems of life with joy becomes a reality. It is one of those things that you must give effort to or you will never see the benefit. Sadly that means that we would miss out on what could be our most valued possession. Not only that but think of all the scorched rice, I mean messed up marriages (or fill in the blank with any other huge mistake we might make) while we try to deal with life without His constant whisper in our ear of what to do next or how to handle that situation.

So who knew that a rice cooker could teach about joy. I love God's little surprises as He uses the everyday to teach us. Now I hope to apply this lesson. I hope it was a blessing to you as well.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


Today I spent some time in 1 Corinthians 2 but with a message God keeps pleading with me to fully accept.  It is not that I don't know that wisdom comes from God, quite the contrary. However, knowing and doing what I must don't always go hand in hand.  Today as I read this message and remembered other recent times He used various methods to convey it ~ it washed over me anew.

As we know, God God the Father , God the Son (Jesus), and God the Holy Spirit (that lives within us when we accept Christ) are one.  In our quest, to understand or at least deal with life we seek to understand all sorts of things.  Why do people do things? What does tomorrow hold? How was the universe created? What is Heaven like? What should I do next? How can I continue to live in a difficult situation? And the list goes on and on. There are more questions than we could ever imagine answers for.  In 1 Corinthians 2:10 the Bible says, "But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God."  Did you hear that? It says, the Spirit searches the deep things of God! Now since the Holy Spirit is God maybe that is not so surprising but did you realize that as a mature believer in Christ that Spirit is within you? That means that when you spend time with God, He that is within you can answer all your questions.Verse 12 says, "Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God."  I am so excited about this! 

Why would we not spend time with God? Don't we want answers and direction? I truly think we do. I believe it is selfishness and fear that keep most of us from spending time with God. First we are selfish of our time.  We know what we should do but do what we want to do. Second, perhaps we sometimes fear that God's direction will not line up with our desires.  Yep, we would do that. Miss what is precious for what is of no use.  I know I do that often. 

God created us to spend time with him and has so much to offer us during that time. I think we just get so caught up in the wisdom of this world that we forget the power in the gift of true wisdom which can only come from the God who created EVERYTHING!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012


Yep, I said it.  Contentment! I have decided that it mostly feels like a dirty word.  It has plagued me to varying degrees nearly always.  There were years that I felt restless and didn't know why. But more recently, I know what caused the lack of being content.  Let me start by saying that simply put, contentment comes from Christ. But oh my, we live in the world so it gets all messy.  Life happens. People we love disappoint and sometimes deeply hurt us. Jobs are not always a joy or even available. These days financial difficulties are commonplace. Dreams are crushed. Things we have dedicated our lives to slip from our fingers. Lifes difficulties introduce fear, hurt and angry.  Not to mention that with lack of self esteem comes lack of contentment.  Oops. . .I think contentment just went out the window.

So I wonder how many people are like me and have kept their lack of contentment as their dirty little secret. After all, I am a good Christian. I am married to an amazing man and have great children.  Yet, again and again that nasty little thought (urging really) peaks it's nasty head.

Like everything that matters in life, God has help for us.  He gave us Paul.  “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through Him who gives me strength” Philippians 4:12-13. He had been beaten, stoned, imprisoned, and hunted by his enemies.  When I read about Paul, it gives me hope. His situation was so much worse than mine and yet he was a bond servant to Christ. He really got it!

As I thought over the new year, I realized that rather making a resolution to change something that what I really need to focus on is contentment.  I know I can't do it. I have tried practically forever. It is too much of an emotional battle and the enemy knows how to get me on this one.  Praise God . . .He is faithful to do it in me.  "God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work." 2 Corinthians 9:8  Yes, that included being content!

I will leave you with a couple more verses to ponder as you decide, is it worth it? Because, let me tell you, I understand how hard it is.  After all, these are my hard earned hurts, bumps and bruises that we must put aside. I didn't ask for my self esteem to be crushed or life to be full of hurts.  How can I put all that aside? I am there with you but you know what?  All we have to do is ask our Lord Jesus Christ! He can do in us what we cannot do alone!

Here are your verses:

"Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, I will never desert you now will I ever forsake you." Hebrews 13:3

"If we have food and clothing, with these we shall be content." 1 Timothy 6:8

And finally, "True godliness with contentment is itself great wealth." 1 Timothy 6:6 I really like knowing this. I have recently discovered something. People notice when a person is content. They may not fully understand what is different but they notice. They even enjoy being around such a person. So today, my resolution if you want to call it that will be to pray for contentment on a regular basis. It will be better for me, better for my marriage, better for my children and, most of all, improve my walk with the Savior! Happy New Years!