“Soften our hearts…”

by Jennifer Goodson
Relationships come and go . . .
We’ve heard this said so many times and there is truth in it. However, how many of those relationships were ended because our flesh was offended in a way that brought in a wall of unforgiveness? Being a human is tough enough, being a woman seems to be even more so. Nevertheless, for God to ask us to walk in love towards another person who has wronged us . . .


How many questions have we listed on our ‘secret notepad’ to ask God in heaven?
We toss relationships so easily in a minimal way in the words of ‘what doesn’t kill me makes me stronger’? To be honest, strength is a good God characteristic; but when not balanced with the love of God we lose our gentleness towards others killing our reflection of Christ. The question then rises . . . How tough do we want to be; tough enough that we miss God’s leading in areas that exemplify His love.

Yes, there are those relationships God does direct us to end because they are unhealthy. Then there are those relationships that we need strong Godly boundaries in order that God’s hand can be in the midst. However, how many relationships did we deny, shove out of the way, cut off with a sliver blade in the name of God when in fact it was our offense, our fear, our past hurts that caused us to walk away and in some cases run.

There is a fine line in knowing
which relationships are God given gifts;
which ones are God assignments;
which ones are God given to strengthen us
.

As women, we tend to run our lives by emotions if we are not living in the spirit of God. This causes us to compare, judge, accuse, and make assumptions of others. Why do we do this . . . because we are a vessel that lives in a spiritual and natural world that ultimately is directed orchestrated by our choices – our responses.

When we are living in the spirit, (our goal), we make Godly choices producing Godly responses that lead to Godly relationships. Likewise, when we are living out of our flesh, (our emotions), we allow our choices and responses to lead us into areas of fear and doubt which in turn opens the door for offense. In some cases leading us to isolation or areas of control and manipulation.

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:: A PRAYER :: Francis of Assisi

May God bless you with a restless discomfort about easy answers, half-truths and superficial relationships, so that you may seek truth boldly and love deep within your heart.

May God bless you with holy anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you may tirelessly work for justice, freedom, and peace among all people.

May God bless you with the gift of tears to shed with those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation, or the loss of all that they cherish, so that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and transform their pain into joy.

May God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you really CAN make a difference in this world, so that you are able, with God’s grace, to do what others claim cannot be done.

And the blessing of God the Supreme Majesty and our Creator, Jesus Christ the Incarnate Word Who is our Brother and Savior, and the Holy Spirit, our Advocate and Guide, be with you and remain with you, this day and forevermore.

– Francis of Assisi

24 Hours of Hope

24hoursofhopeStudies show one in four adults in America will be affected by a mental illness at some point in their lives. On Friday, October 10, 2014 (World Mental Health Day), Rick and Kay Warren will host “24 Hours of Hope,” a free global online event designed to encourage individuals living with a mental illness, educate and support their families, and equip church leaders for compassionate and effective mental health ministry.

The “24 Hours of Hope” broadcast features messages from the historic Gathering on Mental Health and the Church (including additional new interviews and messages) from over 30 speakers. These messages are designed to offer hope as well as practical tools to those living with depression, Bipolar Disorder, eating disorders, addictions, anxiety, and Borderline Personality Disorder. Topics include removing stigma, suicide-risk reduction, church counseling, support groups, crisis management, and holistic care.

For more info, visit http://mentalhealthandthechurch.com

YouTube Soaking Playlist

YouTube soaking playlist. A collection of restful, reflective pieces that draws me closer into God’s presence. Includes some Vineyard, Jesus Culture, Rivera, Delirious, etc and some spoken word accompanied by soothing instrumentals. The songs are different from what you hear in the Soaking.Net playlist. This YouTube playlist was compiled and put together by Katherine Walden of I Lift My Eyes Ministries.