Coincidence? Or Communication?

Just sharing with you another God Moment in my life:

Last Saturday, I was ‘down’, bummed…..despairing and crying out to God.  I hadn’t been that way in quite a while, but Christmas-time will do that to ya.  I had prayed for Terry….again.  His healing and homecoming.  BUT, with a twist.  Gods glory in his healing was preeminent.  I need never see Terry again, but I lifted him up before the Lord for his spiritual and emotional healing.  And of course, I wept.  I cannot plead for…..I cannot stand in the gap for….my husband without shedding tears.  And I cried out to God:

I need You!  Where are You?  Hold me!  I need You!  Why are You silent?

Weeping, crying out to God….weary….I went to bed that night, waiting for God to let me know He’s here and it’s all going to work out, for His glory and my good.

Sunday morning dawns and I had heard nothing from God.  Oh well….I groaned….whatever, and I got ready and headed over to my friends house to take care of her cats while she’s out of town. I got there, fed and watered the cats, and then went to grab a plastic trash bag (grocery sack)….to go clean out the cats litter box.  Having been balled up into a small wad, I grabbed the handles and shook the bag open.  I glanced inside, which I always do….making sure there’s no bugs, aka scorpions, in the bag.  There were no bugs in this bag, but there was a picture, torn to pieces.  I thought, “Ha….someone got angry.”  and I chuckled….having ‘been there, done that’ in the recent past as well.  But then something…or Someone, compelled me to look at the pieces of the picture and I took one small piece and brought it out of the bag. 

It was a portion of …. Terry.

Shocked, I threw the bag onto the counter and stepped back away from it…..as if it was something on fire.  “Oh come on, God!”  I shouted.  “What’re you doing here?!”  And I started to cry….because just the night before….I had given Terry to God and left him there.  Determined to walk on with the Lord….in His way….and without my husband.  Figuring this is what God had in mind all along.

Slowly, I took the bag back and took all the pieces of the torn picture out and put them together.  It was a photo of Terry that I had torn up, in anger/frustration……many, many months ago.  I was still shocked, and tears ran down my cheeks.  How could this be?  I tore up that picture in my living room at home and threw the pieces away!  And now….here I find most of them, not all, but most, enough to put the picture back together enough to clearly identify the person in the photo and the location. and it was my husband. 

I took the pieces and put them into my pocket and then went to clean the cats litter box and then locked up and went home…..where I managed to tape the pieces back together as best I could. 

God showed up….in a very real….very supernatural way.  How pieces of that photo….torn and tossed into the trash got into that bag at my friends house for me to find months later, amongst many other plastic trash bags is beyond me.

Or is it?  God heard.  God answered.  I’m no longer bound by the covenant of marriage, or am I?  After all, I didn’t break it.  But whether or not I’m bound by covenant, there is one thing I AM bound by….and that’s the Word of God.  As a child of the King, I am called to be like Him, and if that’s so, and it is….then I am in the process of becoming like Him:  Unfailing love, faithfulness, compassion, forgiveness, mercy.  I feel those things toward my husband because of Christ.  For He has all those things for us, as His creation as well.  Even though the world says I should ‘kick Terry to the curb’…..even hate him.  I cannot.  Because of Jesus.  Look what He did for us, when we did nothing to deserve His love and mercy.

I spoke humbly to the Father: “Unfailing love, faithfulness, compassion, forgiveness, mercy…Lord, you have given me these thing to gift to my husband…but Jesus….he doesn’t deserve it.” Indeed….did any of us?

The saved picture is taped and kept….and prayed over.  Nothing can thwart the plan of God.  Look to the Supernatural of God, not the natural of this world. 

Another moment happened about 2 wks ago….I had prayed the night before: “Is my standing Lord for the healing of my marriage YOUR idea, or merely mine?  I need to know so I can do Your will.”

The next morning, I had errands to run….and I had my route pre-planned, but then remembered that Chandler downtown was having their Christmas parade and I didn’t want to get into that mess, so planned a different route, still heading east I would hit the bank, WMT, then go east on Pecos and then up and over to the Post Office.  However, when I turned out of the parking lot at home, I went west.  I have no idea why.  I just went west and went to the other Post Office first, and then back over to the bank, WMT, etc. 

On this route I pulled in behind a white Dodge Grand Caravan (Terry has one.)

On this route I then pulled in behind a Dodge Sebring car, with a Florida license plate (Sebring, FL is where Terry lives)

On this route I then pulled in behind a CenturyLink van (Terrys employer) 

I didn’t plan this….I didn’t see the cars and pull in behind, purposefully.  It just happened.  Gods timing on a route I had never intended to take.  I didn’t even realize that this could be the answer to my prayer of the night before until I was about to turn into the parking lot at home and suddenly it dawned on me…..what the heck?  If it had been just one car….no big deal.  But three?  With distinct relation to Terry?  I just thought that was kinda weird….or should I say….Supernaturally God.

Barbi…………….From article: In John Ortberg’s book “The Life You Always Wanted”, he posed a similar question that resonated with me: Why are people ok about praying TO God for everything…but seem skeptical and call people crazy when they suggest that He talked back?…as if God only hears and never speaks! Or in our case…why are they surprised when He responds through another person or event in our life?

I’m here to tell you that God does speak to us, and I firmly believe that there are no coincidences. We don’t always recognize them at the time, but hindsight has a way of revealing them to us. I believe God CAN speak to us audibly (although it’s arguably more rare…and apparently not His preferred communication style). More often than not He speaks to us through other people, animals, events (coincidences), His Bible, a sunrise, the look  on the face of a small child, an innocent and unknowing question that strikes deep into our heart to address an issue we were struggling with, etc… (Yes Lord, amen!)

 

 

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A Rose on Wings

So there I was this past weekend, praying…..reading the Word….

hangin’ out with Jesus.  Speaking His word, praying, talkin’ with

the Savior…..singing along with Anthony Evans…..for the Lord.  It was

wonderful.  There was one song about ‘we will mount up on wings as eagles..”

love it.  After my prayer, I continued to sit there….just basking in His love…

and how cool it is to spend time with Him, and I was editing “Journeys…”

too…..and well, I noticed the design the setting sun was casting

on the wall.  Dang if it didn’t look like a rose opened up (not a bud)….

and dang if there wasn’t wings, like a Dove in flight, above it (but attached.)

I thought, ‘A rose?  With wings?’  Then altered it to ‘arose on wings’….as eagles.

And it stayed there, and I actually was able to snap a pic of it with my cell. 

Thank you Lord….that was Saturday.

Sunday…..same prayer, reading, spending time with the Lord, singing, editing….

praying His word over my loved ones…..and about the same time the rose and wings

showed again….though not as distinct.  However….this time there was also a waving banner, leaning forward into battle.  Picture a flag, on a flagpole, waving in a strong wind….and the pole is leaning into the wind….charging into battle.  It’s almost like God is painting a picture for me on the wall.

“Onward Christian Soldiers!”  Reminded me that this is not my battle to fight, but is the Lords who goes into battle for me.  Amen!

Wonder what todays picture will look like?  God is amazing in love, grace and power!

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Canceling the Debt of Divorce

Cancelling the Debt of Divorce

          I don’t do divorce well.  I don’t like it, don’t agree with it, don’t condone it.  Nope, it’s not for me.  Don’t want to have anything to do with divorce.  Yet I have a whole binder in my closet, full of legal documents that are all about…yep, you guessed it…my divorce.  It’s a sad tale of Loved One vs. Loved One.  Christian vs. Christian.  Wrong vs Right.  The worlds way of dealing with conflict vs. Gods way as put forth in the Bible. 

               A long time ago, I crocheted a cross and glued it to the front of that binder.  I agonized over that binder.  I prayed over that binder.  I asked God to turn all the papers held within that three-ring tome into ashes.  I even thought about placing the binder on the floor in the center of the living room and marching around it seven days in a row, and on the seventh day…parading around it seven times!  I went through a phase where I just had to find something, anything to march around…seven times!  Bring the walls down, Lord!  Bring the walls down!  Okay, so yes He instructed Joshua in the Bible to take such an action, and of course, as we all know, it worked…beautifully.  Gods plans always do.  The walls of Jericho came down!  However, God had never told me to march, it had been my own idea, so therefore, not being of God, the plan would not work to my liking.  The neighbors might think I was weird, but who cares.  I am fighting for my marriage, y’all!  So stand aside and watch me march!

            But God had other ways in mind.  He reminded me that all I needed to do was position myself, be quiet and watch to see the salvation of the Lord who…and get this….is with me!  Isn’t that incredible?!  He, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, is with me!  Hallelujah!  And it is He who fights for me.  I’ve got the easy part…just stand there and watch Him work.  At times, this is not so easy for an Irish lass to just…you know, stand still, keep quiet and let Him work.  But, I’m happy to report that it is possible.  Again, hallelujah!  Miracles abound!  So, in short, no, I don’t do divorce well, but then I wouldn’t exactly want to excel at something that God hates either. 

“For I hate divorce!” says the Lord, the God of Israel.  Mal. 2:16

            Yet for some, what the Word of God says doesn’t mean anything to them.  Or, if it does, they rationalize its meaning, molding His word into their own form of truth, you know, making it something that they can live with.  Making it into something with which they can rationalize their sin and still manage to get their own way, no matter how deluded they may become.  But understand this people…your unbelief does not change the Word of God!

            Basically, divorce is like the tearing of an arm from your body.  What God has joined together, man is not supposed to take apart. 

            Marriage is ordained by God and meant to last a lifetime.  Only through death, by the hand and will of God, can the union of marriage end.  Not the laws of the land, no court, no decree, nor any judge on this earth has the right, or the power, to separate the joined hearts and lives of two people.  Neither Christian, nor unbeliever, but especially this should apply to those who are of the body of Christ.  You profess to be a Christian?  And yet you devise a plan to rend your God-given union?  You take your marriage partner to court?  Well good, let’s just announce to the world that there is no difference whatsoever between belief and unbelief.  Saved and unsaved.  Saved gets Heaven at the moment of earthly death, but shouldn’t we, in the meanwhile, be living differently?  We are set apart by God to show the world the love of Christ, so should we not conduct our lives according to the Word of God and shine as a light, a beacon in the darkness of this lost world, to those without Christ?  I should say so. 

            Divorce is wrong, as it severs a holy union.  Still, divorce continues, and it tears apart two lives.  Lives that have been inexplicably merged into one, according to Gods plan, and the two have become one. 

“Since they are no longer two but one,

let no one split apart what God has joined together.” 

Mark 10:8b &  9

“Didn’t the Lord make you one with your wife? 

In body and spirit you are His.”  Mal. 2:15

            Sin.  Self.  What was intended, according to the Bible to be something beautiful and forever, has become something defiled, dirty and ugly.

            Sin enters the picture.  Feelings from past hurts grow within hearts that are prone to feel more for the self than the other.  Whether with conscious intent or not, wrong-doings are kept, cradled and filed away deep within the psyche waiting for that moment of vengeful payback. 

Love…”…keeps no record of being wronged…” 

I Cor. 13:5

            Rather than forgiveness, we opt for another way.  A devious treachery falsely designed to extract revenge on a loved one, thereby exonerating ourselves.  Having wreaked our havoc, we slink back into ourselves to wait for the next opportunity to destroy again.  Piece-by-piece, bit-by-bit, and tear-by-tear.  Only, in the end this sort of mockery of the Biblical concept of marriage that God intended to be the earthly example of His own relationship to His church, doesn’t work.  We deeply hurt those that are of our own flesh, and damage ourselves in the process. 

            Yet, the constant, nagging ache of memories are kept locked deep within the vault of the soul, and the injury festers.  Usually, the ache is so mild that, at first, the discomfort is hardly even recognized.  Then, over time, the pain deepens and the infection, like a wildfire out of control, spreads rampant and unabated.

            Then without warning, one day your mate takes you by the arm and gives a tug.  Chuckling, you gleefully dismiss their apparent attempt at teasing.  But they aren’t teasing.  Again, they tug at your arm but this time, it’s different.  Suddenly growing more somber, you look at your mate, and try to brush their hand away.  They are holding tightly to your arm, and their grasp begins to sting.  Panic begins to rise from deep within your soul, what are they doing?  Again, they pull, wrenching more stridently at your arm.  You ask them to stop.  Becoming frightened, you tell them to stop.  You shout, “Stop!  Please!  You’re hurting me!” 

            But…they no longer care.  They’ve been blinded, and their heart…hardened.

            However, in Christian divorce, an oxymoron if I’ve ever heard one, the husband and wife combatants are not the enemy.  Satan is the enemy, and the enemy…by whatever means, has infiltrated your camp.  There is a spiritual battle going on, and though you’re most certainly involved, this is not your battle to fight. 

“You shall not need to fight in this battle…”  II Chron. 20:17

            Your beloved mate has fallen prey to the tactics and wiles of the enemy.  Your mate has become a pawn in Satan’s grand, though doomed, plan of undermining the family of God.  Having believed his lies, your mate may even be going as far as believing that what they are intending to do is the good and perfect will of God, and in fact God will be glorified through this divorce.  This is nothing more than your mate having been lured away from the truth of the Word of God and like a young lamb, they have been led astray.  Face it, Satan’s good at what he does and leading Gods children astray is his deviant goal. 

            Again your arm is pulled and the pain worsens as tendons, ligaments and muscles are stretched to their limit.  Tears fill your eyes, you can’t understand why they are doing this to you.  You never hurt them.  Or did you?  This much?  This deeply?  What did you ever do to deserve this?  Nothing.  But it’s their own twisted version of the truth on which they are standing now.  However, God knows the truth.  He see’s all, and He knows.  Nothing is outside of His control. Nothing on this earth or of this world can thwart the plan of God and nothing is beyond His power. 

            Still, in your pain, you wonder…why Lord, why.  What did you ever do to deserve this?  You stood by them through all the long years, indeed decades.  You weathered each storm together.  Health storms, and the financial storms of unemployment, bankruptcy and foreclosure.  Blessings and storms, good and bad.  There are all kinds of storms in life and marriage is about weathering them all together.  And the good times. 

            As tears roll down your cheeks you wonder why your beloved mate no longer recalls the good times.  All the years, good and bad, have been blended into one agonizing memory of lost opportunities and unhappy recollections.  They want their past to be reborn in a new life, with a new mate.  A mate that can make them happy for once in their life.  And that mate is not you.  They believe they have one chance at a happy life and they must have that which they so desperately want, and to do so means that they have to rid their life of…you!

            You look into your beloveds eyes and see only a dark glaring expression of malice, treachery, deceit and yes…judgment.  After all these years together as husband and wife…as a couple doing everything together, and the profession and expressing of deep and abiding love for one another…this beloved mate is now sitting as judge and jury on your marriage, indeed your life as you know it.  They have taken it upon themselves to determine your future and your future is going to be without them!  In their mind, it will be done, there is no turning back.  You have no choice in the matter.  Your love, devotion and yes, even forgiveness means nothing.  Your cries of suggestions fall on deaf ears. 

            “Let’s make it work,” you cry.  Their answer is No. 

            “Let’s get back into church.”  Again, their answer is No.

            “Let’s get counseling.”  With an eerie tone of voice filled with dismissal and finality, they proclaim their answer:  No!

            Nothing matters but what they want, and they will have it at any cost.  All the years have become worthless.  You and your children, the life you have known and the mate you love so dearly is being wrenched from your life.  A part of you is being torn from your flesh.  Torn asunder.  What God has joined together, let man not separate. 

            And it hurts.  A pain like no other.  Inexpressible cruelty, heart-wrenching torment.

            Suddenly the pulling is so vicious, so strong that you feel your shoulder joint dislocate.  Tendons snap, muscles rip.  The pain is excruciating.  In desperation, you fight back…to no avail.  This is going to happen.  Again, you have no choice in the matter.  You can’t stop it, yet you can’t endure it, and you can’t fight it.  You are powerless.  Or are you.

            Inexorably, you feel your skin start to tear.  You cry out!  But your cries fall on deafened ears.  You try to fight off the attack, but you are far too weak now.  The pain is too intense and it assails your every sense, weakening you further. 

            Finally, they take one last, firm grasp on your broken arm and wrench the limb completely from your body.  You scream in anguish and sink to your knees.  They look down upon your broken form, crumpled into a sobbing heap on the carpet by the end of your bed.  By this point they feel nothing.  They won’t allow it.  If they did allow themselves to feel anything for you, their will would not be done.  In their humanity they would hunker down next to you and beg forgiveness, and try to make it better.  But the very basics of humanity have left their being.  There are no feelings.  Only cold.  A friend that was at one time closer than a brother that had professed love and commitment, and with whom covenant vows before God had once been pledged, now sadly has a heart that has turned into stone and has grown cold.

            Their task completed, they casually toss your broken arm down onto the floor and without another thought, they turn and walk away.  They leave you, broken and battered, there on the floor.  The pain is overwhelming as you watch them leave.  You wonder how could they do such a thing?  How can they just leave like that?  Didn’t all the years, all the decades, mean anything?  It will never make sense, so don’t try to figure it out, though no doubt your wounded heart and perplexed mind will try…over and over and over again.  It’s not your mystery to unravel.  Not anymore.  You lie there, wounded.  Disabled, but not destroyed.

“We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. 

We are perplexed, but not driven to despair.”  II Cor. 4:8

“…We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed.”  II Cor. 4:9b

            Sobbing, the tears just won’t stop, and they cascade freely for a time.  Eventually, the weeping slows, and then only occur at random intervals.  Going to bed tonight, alone…may be one such time.  Fixing dinner…well, you probably won’t do much of that, especially if there are no more kids living at home.  Because what you used to fix for the two of you, just doesn’t have any flavor when dinner is prepared for just one, and when someone is missing.  Grocery shopping may be a challenge as the PA system is usually playing music.  Love songs.  Aren’t they all?  And tears fill your eyes.  You fight back the tears because you really don’t want anyone to see you crying over which brand of spaghetti sauce to buy, right? 

            And life does go on, even if you don’t want it to.  There are day-to-day things that have to be taken care of.  Life doesn’t stop, just because you feel it has, or should. 

            A wound that was caused by your beloved mate.  Still you weep.  You want to get up, but you can’t.  You want to run after them, but you haven’t got the strength.  You hear the door slam and the sharp sound makes you cringe and tears flow anew.  Wearily your head slowly sinks back down onto the carpet, and you rest as your world collapses.  You have been wounded.  You have been left for dead.  You cannot understand. 

            But it has happened and you have to come to grips with that.  You will, eventually.  It’s not what you wanted, it’s what they wanted and they wanted it badly enough to do this to you in order to get it.  You will never understand it, so like I said before, do yourself a favor and don’t even try.  Actually, I always felt it was a good thing if you couldn’t understand it, the rationale being that if you could, then you just might be capable of such actions yourself, and no one ever wants to be able to do to someone else, what they did to you.  Never.  Ever. 

            You lie there on the floor gasping for breath.  Blood and fluids oozing from the gaping wound stain the carpet all about you.  A wound that was caused by your beloved mate.  And quietly…you weep.       

            Amidst the pain you wonder has anyone else ever suffered so horribly?  Has this happened to anyone else, ever?  In such a terrible way?  Suffered so badly at the hands of another?  And the answer is…yes.

There has been another.

            Actually they suffered far worse than you are right now.  There is another who was also treated unfairly           and judged unjustly.  They were betrayed and abandoned by someone that was close to them, whom they loved, and trusted.  Just like you.  They were mistreated and beaten.  They too were bruised and bled, and left to die…and they were completely innocent. 

            Yet, just before they breathed their last breath, they cast their gaze Heavenward and asked the Father to forgive these people for what they had done to Him.  And so must you. 

            The debt that your beloved mate owes you for what they took from you: your marriage, your mate, your best friend and buddy, your family, your self-esteem, your dignity…when they tore a part of you from your soul and walked away that day. 

            They owe you.  They owe you big time.  No one will dispute that with you. 

            There is one thing though.  The debt they owe is far too great for them to ever repay.  They could come back home and try to make it up to you.  They could spend the rest of their days making amends, trying to right a horrific wrong, but even after all of that, even after a length of time, and the wound will have long since healed over…the scar remains.  It’s big, thick, ugly.  The pain is gone and you’re living your life again and because God promises that everything, even this, would work out for your good….and surprise!  It IS good!  And you praise Him for that and sing His glory…yet in spite of that, there is the scar.

            Every now and then a twinge of discomfort touches your senses, but it’s not really bad anymore.  Occasionally, because of missing the marriage and family you once shared together, a stray tear will slowly inch its way down your cheek.  But it’s no longer a big deal.  You wipe it away, and focus again on Jesus and He is near.

“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted,

He rescues those whose spirits are crushed.”  Ps. 34:18

            But, there’s that darn, unsightly scar.  What to do about the scar.  It’s always there, unsightly and reminding us of what happened.  Scars minimize over time.  The bleeding and oozing stops, a scab forms, the pain ceases and the wound heals.  But there’s the scar.  You will hardly never see anyone with a huge, ugly, disfiguring scar on the cover of Vogue, am I right?  But, be that as it may, the scar will always be there to some extent.  There will always be the memories of the day your mate attacked your soul and voluntarily tore themselves from the very root of your being. 

            The day they took it upon themselves to be your judge and jury. 

            Instead of looking to God and seeking help from the only One who could render emergency aide, they decided their way was the only way, and left you lying there wounded and broken.  But not destroyed. 

            Jesus was broken too.  Not in the same way, but in a far worse way.  Yet He lives.  He died an excruciating death, voluntarily….for you.  He died so that you could live.  And live you will, if you choose to.  No matter where in this life you are it is your choice to accept Him, or not.  It’s been said that no one ends up in Hell by accident.  It’s a choice.  A choice that comes complete with a ticking clock, and time is running out. 

            Slowly, you sit up.   Dazed, you lean over, reaching for your broken arm.  Grasping it, you pull it toward you, and you sit there stunned by what has transpired.  Wearily you brace yourself against the end of the bed, sitting on blood-soaked carpeting, cradling your broken arm to you bosom, or could it be your similarly broken heart?   The wound is too great for a doctor to heal.  This limb is too injured, too badly mangled to ever be reattached by any human physician. 

            You have one hope.  And one alone. 

            Jesus Christ.

            He lives, and so can you.  But like I mentioned, it’s a choice you have to make.  This is too big for you, you can’t go it alone and rushing into another relationship will not help anything.  Depending on friends or family will help but not for the long run.  You do need family and friends, but many of them, in this type of situation, will not know what to say, or do.  Sensing their plight, and feeling ill at ease about the whole thing, they too might walk away, simply because they don’t have any idea of what to say to you, or how to help. 

            Now, if there had been a death…they would know.  They’d come to your door by the droves, bearing flowers, cards, hugs, and food.  But not in this case.  Very few show up.  Because very few know what to do with a situation like this.  What you’re experiencing is grief without death.  Mourning a deep and profound loss, but without a body, nor the closure of a funeral. 

            Frankly, I detest that term ‘closure’.  I also am not fond of the phrase, most often used by friends who just don’t know what else to say, advising that you need to ‘move on’.  Okay, you try sitting on a tear-soaked, blood-stained carpeting of your own first, and then tell me I need to just ‘move on’.  Then, we’ll talk, savvy?  Thus, this is not always a good time to make new friends.  Savvy? 

            In time, as healing occurs you will find that you’re ready to have the funeral.  The time of grieving is done.  Now, it’s time to leave.  Personally, I learned that from a sermon by Dr. James MacDonald and I highly recommend it.  It was Biblical.  It made sense.  It was preached with the profound love of a brother.  Perhaps its time to stand up straight, square your shoulders and by the power of the living God, dry your tears and…close the casket.  Now, my friend, it is time for you to walk away. 

            You may only be strong enough right now to walk, you’re not ready to sing and dance just yet.  But do not despair, that day will come.  Give yourself time to heal, but do not dwell on it.  Emotional wounding is not a mortal injury, though it may feel like it at times.  The trick is in giving it all to the One who can heal you.  Rest and fluids, and an occasional dose of Amoxicillin may do its work in the physical body, but your wounds run far deeper than skin level, you need more. 

            You need Jesus.  He knows.  He understands.  Only He can heal your injuries and your wounded heart.  Simply put, it’s what He does best!  You may wonder why He’s not healing you faster.  You may say, like the sisters of Lazarus said, “Lord, if you had been here, our brother [my marriage] wouldn’t have died!” 

            But, He was there.  The silent witness to every quarrel, to every hurtful word and every intentional action.  He was there, somberly watching when your mate wrenched your arm from your body and He grimaced, and then watched as now satisfied, your mate turned and walked away.  God could have prevented, or stopped completely the whole sordid mess.  At any time He could’ve said, “Time out you two!”  But, He didn’t.  He allowed it.  And He allowed it for a reason.  Trust Him, He knows what He’s doing.

            Again, you cry out to Him when the pangs of hurt begin once again to overwhelm your burdened heart.  He allowed it to happen.  “But I thought He loved me?!”  I can hear you plaintiff cry, indeed your pleading for understanding.  Oh, how I can hear you, for you see…I’ve walked in your shoes, and I know the hurt, the questions, the emptiness.  Only God can fill the void in your heart, and trust me…He is able.  The One who stated, “I AM”…is able.  Reach out to Him.  He will be there.  Yes, He does love you, more than you will ever be able to fathom, and He knows the plans He has for you, and whereas it doesn’t make sense to you now, it will one day.  But there is never any question that He loves you, with a deep, unquenchable, unfailing…love. 

“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord.  “They are plans

for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope”

Jer. 29:11

            In short…He is rescuing you. 

            He is saving you for Himself.  He alone knows the reasons, the whys and the wherefores.  Leave it with Him, and do yourself a favor and don’t try to ‘lean on your own understanding’, for that will get you no where. 

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not upon your own understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your path.”  Prov. 3:5

            With His death on the cross, Jesus paid your sin debt in full.  In short, He canceled your debt.  And if we, as the children of the one and only, living God, are called to be like Him, then you need to cancel your mate’s debt as well. 

            You were wounded, not killed.  Jesus Christ paid your debt, now you need to cancel your mates debt.  It’s far too much for them to pay.  Face it, even if they genuinely attempted to make amends they could work and work and work, and still they would never be able to pay you back for what they stole from you.  So cancel the debt, by the power of the name of Jesus release them and set yourself free.  In your heart and before your God, release them from their debt.  They no longer owe you one cent.  The debt is stamped: PAID IN FULL.  Just like He’s done for you!  The past forgiven, the future promised.

            It’s personal now. 

            This is between you and your Creator.  His name is God, I hope you’ve met Him.  He’s worth knowing.  This is for your healing.  This is about you still…after all this time…still sitting on the floor…physically healed, but still grieving your loss.  I understand.  I’ve sat on my own blood-soaked carpet too weak to stand.  My only hope was the healing power of Jesus Christ and He is your only hope as well.

            He is there with you, even when you feel like He’s a million miles away.  He is there.  My declaration, His promise.  My declaration doesn’t amount too much to you, but His promises are good, and they have withstood the tests of life throughout all the eons of time, both past, present and future.  He is with you.  He is standing right there, looking down at you, His hand held out to you.  Will you not take it?  Will you not accept help, healing and health from the only One who can give it? 

“O Lord, if you heal me, I will be healed; if you save me, I will be truly saved. 

My praise is for You alone.”  Jer. 17:14

            What are your alternatives?  Well, there’s several choices:  chocolate, a local pizzeria with delivery service, alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, anti-depressants, another relationship, just generally withdrawing from life.  None of these are the answer.  Only Jesus.  Hear that?  Only…Jesus.  He said, in John 14:6, “I am the way, the truth and the life…” there is no other way around this problem, or around Him.  You have to go through it.  But that’s a good thing because that means there’s an ending to this season of grief.  You’re going through something.  For only a season, and He is guiding you every step of the way. 

            Take His hand.  He is your only hope. 

            Hesitantly, you raise your good arm, holding out your opened hand to Him.  Do you see it?  The brightening smile on His face?  He loves you.  Trust Him!  Reach out, go ahead!  You can do it! 

            Your fingers touch, that’s enough for Him and He fully clasps your shaking palm.  Your single, simple act of faith is enough.  You feel His strength start to course through your soul, and suddenly you feel like you just might be able to stand up.  You try, and your legs are working, and have strength!  He helps you to your feet.  The healing warmth of His hand touches your wound and it immediately starts to heal.  The pain eases, the bleeding stops, your tears dry.  He gently binds your wound, and soon you’ll have a new arm in place and working just fine.  Not an artificial limb, but the real thing.  You’re being made brand new in Him. 

            Lovingly, He puts His arm about your shoulders and together you walk from the room.  Lean on Him, He understands your pain, He understands your hurt.  Depend on Him that’s what He wants and what you need.  You need Him, none other.  Together, you and Jesus will do just fine.

            Walk onward, Christian soldier!

Footnote:

            I believe that it was no mistake, or some kind of freaky, coincidental accident of random timing that this text was given to me early in the morning.  While it was still dark outside, I lay awake in bed and the text was just suddenly running through my mind as if someone were reading a book to me.  Thinking, wow…this is good stuff! and being the author that I am, I jumped out of bed to retrieve my laptop.  Climbing back into bed I wrote this prologue, not as an original script, but from memory.  I kept praying, “Lord, please let me remember all of this!”  He did.    The title even just came to me.  So easy.  Not through any conscious thought, or planning, or working different possible titles out in my mind, as I’ve done in the past.  It was just there. 

            You see, today is March 16, 2013 and had the divorce not happened it would’ve been our 39th wedding anniversary.  And let me just quickly interject here that Jesus Christ forgives, saves, heals and restores for His glory and our good.  He is the power within His children.  I take no credit whatsoever for His revelations in my life.  If I have any strength, it is His.  If I have any hope, it is because of Him. 

            Now, yesterday was Friday, March 15th, it was not only payday at work, but it was also my 59th birthday.  At work, there were numerous, and quite unexpected, wishes of Happy Birthday.  Flowers delivered, cards, emails and hugs, and it was a wonderful day for this middle-aged child of God.  All expressions, delivered by friends, were the Lord pouring out His love for me.

            I was no accident that earlier in the day I had been kinda bummed about my life, and the way things have gone with the abandonment and divorce and wondering where the Lord is going with all of this and sometimes it’s a bit hard to feel loved.  I mean, you know in your heart you are, and that God loves you above all.  Still, there are times when the mind wanders and the heart wonders.  Amidst this reverie, I decided to walk out to check the offices mailbox at the curb, something I do every now and then, as usually we do not get mail at this particular address.  At the mailbox, I noticed a car parked at the curb about 6’ from where I stood.  It’s license plate?  URLOVED.  I grinned and whispered, “Thank you, Lord”, and smiling I walked back into my office.  Just goes to show that God can, and will, use anything to get His point across, even an SUV.

            As the Lord would have it, for luck doesn’t exist in the life of a Christian, in the mailbox at home was a DVD from Walk in the Word that I had ordered.  I was glad it had arrived, now I would have something new to watch on the TV that evening!  Happy Birthday, to me!  Right?

            I popped the DVD into the player and sat down on the couch, my folding dinner tray in front of me, and watched.  Oh-oh, it was one of those sermons that strikes a cord in the heart.  Target sighted, and locked on.  It was good.  It made sense.  It touched my heart.  James MacDonald preached.  I listened.  And God spoke.  After viewing the sermon, and then with prayer and submission to God and His will, I was convicted (compelled by the Holy Spirit) to cancel my beloved husbands debt that resulted from our divorce.  It could only have been Gods leading and desire for me.  I did have to obey His voice, and there was a time many years ago that would have been difficult, if it happened at all.  But now?  After the valley He, and He alone has brought me through?  You bet’cha I obeyed.  The sermon made sense, and hearing my Fathers voice, I humbly did what my King said to do.  It was good, and right, and His will, and as a result I was blessed.  That’s just how God rolls, ya know?

            With the television now turned off, I opened the Word of God and read a little, and then put the Bible down, but it was still open to where I had been reading.  I sat in my rocker, contemplating this turn of events and watching the last rays of sunlight as the day was being brought to a close.  The house was quiet, and a page turned in the Bible.  Ok, now that has to get one’s attention, right?  It got mine.  Tentatively, I picked up the Bible.  “Lord, is there something you have for me here?”  So, what do you think?  That’s what I thought.

            Here is the Word God had for me:  “So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time He will lift you up in honor.  Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you.

            “Stand firm against him [the devil], and be strong in your faith.  In His kindness God called you to share in His eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus.  So after you have suffered a little while, He will restore, support, and strengthen you, and He will place you on a firm foundation.  All power to Him forever!  Amen.”  I Peter 5:6 & 7, 9a,-11 

            Obedience and affirmation.  Oh, how I love Jesus!  Thank you, Lord!

            And then, the following morning was Saturday, March 16th, what would’ve been our 39th anniversary, and that was when I received this God-inspired chapter on canceling debt, and I just had to share this blessing.  God is so good, and treats His children with such tender loving care.  With Him, there are no accidents, everything is done right on time and according to His plan.  He is trustworthy. 

            May His Name be glorified in my life with every step I take, guided by Him.

 

   

 

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Barbi’s Big Adventure

The Adventures of Monday

Yesterday was “Court” Day………..again.  Makes a total of 8 times I’ve had to toddle on down to Florence, AZ (about 105 miles, round-trip) and though the court is very nice (nearly brand new), on the leading edge of town and right next to an older facility (have no idea what it is but has lots of tiny windows and is surrounded with miles and miles of barbed-wire fencing, and a couple of towers……must be a cookie manufacturing plant.  Yes, Ha. Ha.   Anyway……it’s a hassle to have to ‘go to court’.  Though Judge Stephen McCarville is quite good looking, making ‘going to court’ not an entirely bad experience. 

BUT, I digress…..

Long story short………glory to God!  Everything turned out just fine!

The Saga of the Rental Car…

Back in late August, when Ginny (sister) came to visit.  I rented a car from Enterprise.  I’ve rented from Enterprise since 2002.  Anyway, it was a terrible experience.  I got there to pick up the car and they didn’t have one.  And they knew about this rental for about two months!  So I had to wait for the car to show up, and then I took it to add gas and the oil light was on, so I took it back and would’ve had to wait for another car, but got them to take me home and they brought the replacement rental to me and all worked out fine, but it was an unnecessary hassle, but argh. 

After a week, and I returned the car, the manager asked how my experience with them had been, so I told him I was a bit disappointed and explained the story.  He asked, “What can we do to make it better?”  I said, “Give me a free days rental, I may be needing it”.  He said, ok and handed me his own ‘coupon”.  I thought that was nice.

As it turns out, I had to return to court on Oct. 24th, though I’d been praying that the Lord would intervene and have the court date canceled.  He didn’t. 

Now, Enterprise is only open 8-noon on Saturday and closed on Sunday, so if the court time was 9:00 a.m., like it was the last time, I have to rent the car for 3-days.  Pick-up on Saturday, have it Sunday, use it Monday and return on Tuesday.  But, I figured at least one of those days would be a freebie, and maybe I could score the Weekend Special too. 

As it turns out court was scheduled for 2:30 in the afternoon, meaning I could pick-up the car Monday morning, so no……..’3-Day Rental’ was needed and the one day that I did have it, on Monday, was FREE.

Hence, in the Bible where it says that ‘all things work together for good to them who love God and are called according to His purpose.”  What was a hassle at the end of August, turned out for my good at the end of October!   Praise be to God!

I left the office at 12:45 p.m.  The court appointment was scheduled for 2:30.  I had rented a CUTE little silver Hyundai Accent and with K-LOVE blasting, she and I ‘got our motor running’……’headed for the highway’…..and setting cruise control on, which for this car, was placing my foot in one position and keeping it there……we drove.  In the mid 80’s, the weather was partly cloudy and lovely, windows down, hair blowing.  Flipping between K-LOVE and KBAQ (my classical station.)  Praying too.  A lovely day, wide open freeways…..until…….Apache Junction, where the road narrows to 4 lanes, divided, and my side of the ‘divided’ was under construction……re-paving work.  And what traffic there was (a whole lot more when 10 lanes of open freeway, becomes 2 lanes)….anyway, we all slowed to a Southern Californian Commuter Speed of somewhere between “Repaint Your Nails….2 mph” and “Read the Newspaper….5 mph”.  I followed, at close range, a small SUV with Saskatchewan license plates for 12…..long…long….long…..lonnnng miles.  The clock ticking away.  Eventually, I refused to look at the time….and just sat back enjoying the ‘view’ of ‘desert’…..as it rolled past in agonizingly slow motion.  If I had a nickel for every empty booze bottle I saw…..well, that’s another ‘digress’ that I don’t want to get into.  Suffice it to say, that the urge is strong to carefully place every hurriedly tossed bottle into a plastic bag, then dust it for prints, run it through some police computer and then go find the perps who were ‘drinking and driving’ and then trying to destroy evidence by tossing it out the car window, and pin their fanny’s to the wall with an arrest warrant!  But….that’s another story.  

Anyway, the thing about this is that I didn’t sweat it.  The clock is ticking, I’m slowed to a crawl and still have a ways to go yet, and ‘what’ll happen if I’m late’!  Etc.  I sat back and enjoyed the trip.  Resting in the love of my Father and the peace of the Holy Spirit.  It was amazing, and it was all God.  Hey folks, I’m a natural redhead, being calm is not my forte.  But, I didn’t get upset, I didn’t freak, I didn’t anything…..but steer, roll forward and gaze at the arid, ugly landscape.  God must’ve been ticked off when He created Arizona, that’s all I can say.  Anyway…..none of this was a surprise to Him.  He knew about the traffic and road construction all along.  It was a surprise to me, but not to Him, and nothing was out of His control.  He knew where I had to be and He knew the clock was ticking and I just did my part and left the consequences up to Him.  God….is….amazing. 

Eventually, the traffic broke loose and went tearing off and back up to speed in about a minute-five and we’re breezing along again.  Took the turn-off for Hwy 79….also known as “The Highway So Far Out That Even Coyotes Get Lost Out There”, and headed toward Florence.  2-lane road all the way, not much traffic, I’m up to 75, but edge back down to 70 (speed limit is 65.) 

“Watch For Animals”.   I’m pretty sure the sign meant the 4-legged kind and not what’s behind the steering wheels of the cars approaching me, and the one’s passing me as if I’m standing still.  I can’t speed, it’s an unstated law of nature with me.  I speed and a cop pops up out of the pavement and nails me.  I can’t speed.  It’s an 11th Commandment, just……for…..me.  Thou Shalt Not.  Ok.

Got to court.  Parked.  Ran in.  Checked the ‘Arrivals/Departures’ monitors…..didn’t see it, and was running too slow to wait.  Judge McCarville usually hangs out on the 3rd floor, I’ll chance it, and I hit the button for the elevator……………..after first getting through Security and setting off the alarm, again.  Belt Buckle, them big western ones…..always does it.  Exiting the elevator, I head right, check the listing for Court room 3B, not there, went on down to 3C….pulled open the door, no one in there but Judge McCarville and associates and talking on the phone with the former Mr. Butterfield………….the time is 2:35.   Thank you, Jesus!

The whole reason for this court date was that after the court (the last time) reduced alimony by 75%……….still trying to figure that one out, but whatever………..God IS in control and He knows what He’s doing.)  Terry over-paid in July, and wanted the over-payment refunded.  He said he wanted “redress”.  I thought to myself perhaps he’d do better in this life if he stopped wearing dresses and actually put on a pair of pants…..but ….. yes, you’re right………..I digress.  So, this was to get $244 dollars refunded, even though he claimed he’d paid $277 over, but I had my bank statement proving otherwise.  So, that was the situation.

Anyway, with my approval….they already had all the particulars worked out by the time I ran into the courtroom, panting.  I had to fight the urge to fling wide both doors and stand there and yell……….STOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Dramatics are best left to Hollywood.  Though it might’ve been fun, what do I need with a police record, right?

So, as it turns out……they’re ‘rolling over’ the overpayment and applying it to the final payment in seven-and-a-half years.  So the last payment he’ll only owe $18 bucks.  Though the actual price for what he’s done against God and his family will be far, far more than any amount of money he can pay.  But, I digress. 

I was literally in the court room for no more than 3 minutes and I was back in the elevator with two people who’d just come out of their courtroom and looked…I don’t know….just….looked, and I kept my distance from and listened to their every word, just in case.  She seemed nice enough, but him…..not so sure about him.  Kinda wondered what he was in court for though.  Better not to know, in some cases.  At least, he didn’t seem headed back to the ‘cookie factory’ across the parking lot! 

So, I got back into my Little Silver Accent…………..and drove home, rejoicing and praising the Lord.  I didn’t have to pay the former Mr. Butterfield back, and the car rental came to $20, including gas.

And yes, Brother Paul……………I’m counting it all joy!!!!!! 

It was a hassle, and stupid and un-necessary, but the Lord got me through it.  It was Him, not me.  Because I was pretty down Sunday evening.  Why, God, Why.  When, God, When.  I was grumpy.  And He said, “Just trust Me”, and then proved just how trustworthy He is.   Glory to God!!!

And one of the lines…of one of the songs we sang in church on Sunday, the day before Court Day, was: “…Do not worry about tomorrow…”   How appropriate. 

And that was: Barbi’s Big Adventure.  ; )   Oh, and one more thing:

One other thing……as I sat there in traffic.  Stop and go, roll and stop.

Of the few roads out there, I thought maybe I could just turn off and take another road.  I didn’t have a map though, and way out there, I could end up almost anywhere but where I was supposed to go.

So, I decided to just tough it out, weather the storm and stay my course.

Is anyone ‘getting’ this analogy? 

God has us on the road He has for us.  If things aren’t moving along fast enough or as we’d like it, we can choose to take a detour.  Or we can choose to remain steadfast, stay on the right road, which trust me, is indeed, narrow.  And wait for the Lord to work things out.  Eventually, if we stay true to Him,

He’ll bless your life.  Wait on the Lord and soon you’ll be traveling again, at high rates of speed on newly paved road.  The road He put you on to begin with is the best road for you to be on!

Taking detours (choosing sin) you can get lost, and it can be hard to find your way back. 

Some never do.  It’s better to………….

Just trust Him.  He’s the ultimate GPS for your life.   

And to all of my friends who lifted me up before the Lord in prayer about this…………Thank You!       Give the glory to God! 

P.S. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   P.S.

And so I need to add more here, but I’ve come to the decision that God’s not intending to return the former Mr. Butterfield.  I’ve been shown that praying for ‘some’ things, if He were to answer as requested would be harmful for me, or even destroying.

 

God is a really good ‘Papa’ and He desires to give us all the good things He has for us.  He knows the plans He has for us, plans to prosper us, not harm us.  Plans to give us hope and a future.  (Text compliments of the Book of Jeremiah!) 

 

So, He is not going to give me something that would hurt me, and would not bring glory to His Name.  Instead He will provide something else, someone else….that HE knows will be jusssst perfect for me, and I for him….and all to the Glory of God!

 

It’s been a lengthy process, a long and narrow road.  But our Heavenly Father knows best and I trust Him with my life.  It is, after all………….His.

 

 

 

 

 

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Prayer or Complaining? Hmmm….

Well, here we are, goin ‘round that same ol mountain again.  No matter how hard I try, no matter how hard I beg the Lord that He take this cup from me….the desire of my heart remains:

That He heal my husband and bring him home again.

I have tried so hard to run (egad, like Jonah and Tarshish?) and have pleaded with the Lord to take this from me and let me just live: Him and I together, perfect.  And still He says, “Never Give Up.”

So, again…..I go to my knees and beseech the Lord for answers.  Dog-gone-it I want my ‘suddenly’, and I want it NOW!  Hmmm, don’t think that angle of attack will work too well with our Heavenly Father.  Kinda like saying, “I want patience!  And I want it NOW!”  Not the best thing to say, ever. 

So, I pray.  Wait, and pray.  The most powerful things I can do is to relinquish my beloved husband into the arms of God…..place him at the cross, and pray.  I’ve only, merely invoked the power and promises of the Sovereign Creator of  all things ever!  Hey, I mean business, and I went straight to the top with this issue! 

My problem is that I want my ‘suddenly’ and I want it now.  It’s over-due.  My husband walked away four years ago yesterday.  So I complain….I mean, pray…..and ‘explain’ to God that isn’t FOUR YEARS enough?  Or rather, I believe I put it this way, “God, four years IS long enough!”  Hmmm, also not a good angle of attack to use with an all powerful, yet totally loving….GOD. 

Growing frustrated, I signed up for yet another online dating service.  I mean there’s no one anywhere…..there must be one Godly Christian man, single and the right age on this planet?  Right?  Of course.  Geez…..so it’s a free site, goodness knows I can’t afford the one’s that require moolah be exchanged.  Yeehaw!  This will be the one!  This is the right time!  Wait.  Nothing?  Nothings happening?  How can an online dating website that proclaims 10,000 members……..yet not have ONE, just one for me?  “Lord….!”  I begin to ‘pray’ and then cease and desist, temporarily.

Sorry, can’t do it, can’t pursue someone else, when the one I’m supposed to be with, according to the Will of God, is still kickin around this planet.  Nothings changed.  FOUR years….YEARS and nothings changed.  I still can’t do it, or is it that God doesn’t want it?  Maybe, I’m not so stubborn after all.  Surely God could orchestrate the circumstances of my life to bring that one Godly Christian man into my life!  “I’m ready, Lord!  Let’s do it!”  And He says, “NOT!”

Hey folks, this ain’t my problem, it’s God!  Ack, now I’m blaming Him.  Note to self: Remember to ask God to forgive me for this later tonight. 

Nothing is happening that God doesn’t want to happen.  And if that little fact frustrates me then that’s just tough noogies on me. 

So I read testimonies from other Standers:

“Praise God, I did not give up on my spouse. God wouldn’t let me even though almost daily I begged Him to give me permission to let go.”

Well, doesn’t THAT sound familiar…and:

“When everyone else said to get over it and move on, you encouraged me and led me to the trust in the Lord.”

Oh my gosh, trust?  In the …. Lord?  What kind of advice is that? 

The best. 

And then I think, Dang it, where’d this FAITH come from, and not only that but the TENACITY? 

The Holy Spirit.  You see, God wants to do something in and through my life.  Something that’s important to Him.  Only He knows the whys and wherefores, at this time.  But all that I should be doing isn’t complaining, but praising His name.  Who am I that He should choose me to bring glory to His Name?  Just me and Gideon, I guess.  Thank you, Lord.

“I am once again filled with hope and expectancy for the day my husband will ‘come to the end of himself and return to his father’s house from the far country.”

That pretty much sums it up, and me….never having been very good at math.  But I CAN add, and according to the Word of God:

1 + 1 = 2……and the two shall become one.   It all hinges on the Word of God, His Will and His Promises.  Hitch your wagon to the Word.  He will not, cannot let you down, ever.

Yes Lord.

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And Sister Ginny Replies…

Please rest in the Lord and let it go.  Terry is not and never was deserving of such a lovely, talented, Godly woman as yourself. Be encouraged for the future, dream new dreams and trust God.

Ahhh, the encouragement of good friends in Christ.  Truly a blessing in my life.  Thank you, Jesus.

Yes Lord.

 

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And Barbi Buttercup Replies…

Oh crap. 
I’m stubborn.  I KNEW something was amiss.
Some things are hard to understand, yet…..they do not need to be understood.  But THAT statement, I’m also apparently deep, very deep. 
LOL…..

As sent to Pastor Randy:

I ALWAYS appreciate your input.  You have a way of getting to the truth without making me feel like a dork.  So, it’s all good.  It would really help if I could just be angry with him and cut him loose.  But, we’re not supposed
to be angry.  Now….righteously indignant, maybe I could get away with some of that!?!?  ; )
A few months ago….I’d met (online) a wonderful man.  A former Gunnery Sgt in the Marines.  “My Gunny” was 61 yrs old, a vibrant man….whose love for the Lord shone through his life and his smile.  A sense of humor, and a man of honor and integrity.  He lived in TX and was coming out here to meet me for dinner on June 24th….and then coming back July 18th for a longer visit.  He called me “His Lil Darlin’.  He had his health issues due to ‘Nam and Agent Orange, but nothing he couldn’t live with. 
The day after Easter, My Gunny went home to be with the Lord.  We never even got to meet in person.  I kept all his letters, and still shed a tear at the loss of this new friend. 
This is a question you can’t answer: Why’d God take My Gunny home, and leave someone ‘old and dead, unfeeling and heartless’ like Terry on this earth?  I recently saw a pic of Terry, he looks awful.  Not happy, and very obese now.  I’ve never seen him so heavy.  I was startled.  In short, he looks terrible. 
I miss “My Gunny”.  No answers there.  But, we’ll have our dinner together in Heaven one day.  Perhaps God was showing me that there ARE indeed some decent, good, honorable men of God on this planet (present company accepted there, so don’t take offense, Bro.) 
I think I’m hanging onto Terry out of sentimentality, so yes, that’s no bueno and it sucks.  I’m glad I realized it, though it took a heckuva long time.  But it’s hard to just ‘right off’ 30+ years together, at least it is for some of us.
In one of my Bibles, in the ‘teaching’ notes, it explained in one verse in Ezekiel or Jeremiah….heck if I know….it’s in there somewhere (confirmed Jeremiah 14:11), that explains that these “people” were so wicked and so stubborn that God knew they would never come back to Him, so He cut’em loose.  I’m beginning to believe that Terry may fall into that category.  Sad.  But, he is one albatross I don’t need around my neck.  Hmmm, if I cut Terry loose, I’ll lose a good 270 lb load!  : )
Ooooh, walk around with the ol spring in my step again! 
But to be so lost that God knows one will never return to Him, so He ‘puts one on the shelf’, as Pastor Charles Stanley preaches.  Very sad, indeed. 

Thanks Bro.
Love ya muchly!
Yo Sistah Barbi B…………………is there an Rx to cure Stubborn?  ; )

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