I can sit here and honestly say that I love our church! I am blessed that we have such a wonderful church family. We are all continuing to grow in our relationship with God and I feel His love! Our Woman's group did a Bible study several months ago and I fell in love with the author. Lysa TerKeurst is now my favorite author! She inspired something in me! I feel like God put me in that group, in that study for a reason! Her writing sparked the idea to make this blog! Now I have had a blog (not this one) for over three years, but this one will have a purpose!
Don't get me wrong, I still really enjoy my other blog! I just haven't had time to focus on it! Throughout the past several months my focus has shifted and levels of importance aren't the way they once were. My life has changed, and will continue to change! I praise God for the amazing things He has done for us and will continue to do!
Lysa TerKeurst's book "The Best Yes" was a great way to get my attention! I think that is what had me hooked on the Woman's group. When I first started going I tried to hide in the back corner in hopes no one would notice me. Week by week things changed, and I opened up. Today I have a relationship with most of those woman I tried to avoid. I honestly couldn't even tell you why I tried to hide because now it seems silly. We had a conversation about that a few weeks ago during one of our Wednesday night meetings. The girls reminded me of how I was when I first started and how much they have seen me grow and blossom through Him. Wow was all I could think! I am ecstatic that others can see my love for Jesus!
After several months and different studies we came to a book called "Total Forgiveness" by RT Kendall. I got a little bit worried about this one. I have been sitting here building my relationship with God, and now I worry that I will look like a failure. Forgiveness was scary. I know that God forgave me for all my sins, but how am I supposed to forgive others...mainly my family. How can I forgive someone who tried to tear apart my life and hurt me beyond words? How can I forgive when I cant get over it...when I can't even think about it without anger, resentment, bitterness, and pain.
After the first two weeks of reading I opened up to my group. I told them some of my story and cried many tears. I showed them my pain and told them of my hurts. They opened their arms to me and we prayed. Then someone told me that I needed to pray for them, for the ones who hurt me. How on earth do I do that? How do I pray for someone I am so angry at and how on earth can I forgive. Then I was reminded of the story of Joseph and his brothers. They sold him and told their father he was dead. He suffered and hurt, but God had a plan far bigger than theirs. Joseph knew that and when he was face to face with his brothers he told them this (Genesis 50:19-21) 19 But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? 20 You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. 21 So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them.
It was time for me to search my heart and seek God in this. I cannot forgive without Him. I need Him to help me forgive. So I started to pray. And pray. And pray. Let me tell you that is not an easy task, but with God all things are possible. The bible study on forgiveness ended and I wasn't sure where I stood on the matter. When I thought about the situation that haunted me I would get angry again, but when I got angry I would pray. And pray. And pray.
I am going to stop here today and leave you with a quote from "Total Forgiveness"
“The ultimate proof of total forgiveness takes place when we sincerely petition the Father to let those who have hurt us off the hook—even if they have hurt not only us, but also those close to us.”
Keep an eye out for Part Five!!
Love and Hugs,