Tag Archive | God’s Promises

#SayWhat

Today is Blog Hop day over at Proverbs 31 Online Bible Studies! I am writing about a time specific time God spoke to me and I had a “say what” moment.

My life has been full of searching for someone or something to fill a void I have had most of my life. I have searched for acceptance, valued and loved. As a child and a teenager, I didn’t feel accepted, valued or loved by my family. Now that I am older I know they did loved me – very much so – they just couldn’t love me in the way I needed.

I married and had children very young so that I would feel loved. What a surprise to me that marrying and having children didn’t fill that void. I blamed my children, my husband, and the things that happened to me as a child. I was mad at everyone around me, especially God, for the life I felt I deserved and didn’t have. I wanted a life full of happiness, peace and love.  I didn’t want the life I had that was filled with conflict, anxiety and stress.

As I entered my thirties I realized I needed to bury my past and get over myself. I began to rebuild my relationship with my dad, I quit being so angry and I started accepting my life. I began to go to church regularly and read my Bible. For the first time ever in my life I was feeling a sense of peace.

And then my world was shattered at 32 years old when I lost my mom very suddenly and unexpectedly. I felt like an orphan, even my dad and I had reestablished our relationship. Less than 5 months later, on my mom’s birthday the relationship with my dad ended. I was drowning in the feelings of worthlessness, feeling unloved and angry. It was too painful to open up and getting hurt repeatedly. I came upon this Scripture:

”And if your eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away…” ~Matthew 18:9

My life application study Bible notes said explained: We must remove stumbling blocks that cause us to sin. For the individual, any relationship, practice or activity that leads to sin should be stopped. “AHA – there it is right in the Bible. Any relationship – must be stopped.”

I asked my husband “does this means I can walk away, having nothing to do with my family ever again?” He looked at me with sadness and concern asking “why does it matter?” I replied “I don’t like the person I become when I am around my family.  I get resentful and bitter.  I don’t want to hope and then be disappointed.” He asked again “why does this matter so much now, you have been hurt and disappointed before. Why does it matter so much this time?” Tears were running down my face, there was an empty hole in my heart.

Finally I had the answer I was searching for my whole life. And without thinking I blurted it out:

”I want just once, just once in my life to know that I matter, that I am the most important person to someone. Just once I want someone to love me enough to fight for me, to stand up for me.”

As the tears ran down my face, I heard clearly, distinctly and lovingly…..

“I do Veronica and I did”

I knew instantly I heard the voice of Jesus! I understood what He whispered to me:  I did matter to Him, I was important enough, and He did fight for me.  All that love was shown on the Cross. That day changed my life – that was my #saywhat moment and the day I decided to say yes to follow Him.

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Prevailing Through God’s Plans

Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails. ~ Proverbs 19:21

My Plans

Oh I had all sorts of grand plans for when I grew up. I was going to marry prince charming, have four adorable and well-behaved children, own my own dream home with a white picket fence and a wrap around porch where I would sit in the afternoon admiring my children at play. Inside my home would always look like Martha Steward herself lived there. I would be a picture perfect mom and wife. Our home would be filled with the laughter and love of family and friends.

My Reality

I became a mom for the first time at 17. I married at 19 and had our second (and last) child at 20. Nowhere in my plans did I dream:

  • Raising a son with autism and cystic fibrosis
  • My daughter struggling to learn to read due to severe dyslexia
  • My husband and I working so very hard at our marriage
  • Our home being empty of family and friends, because we were just trying to survive the day
  • Only sleeping 2-3 hours each night for 22 years
  • Being very lonely, stressed and at times miserable
  • Fighting a public school system for my son’s right to be educated as he needed
  • Fighting with a different school that my daughter was in fact dyslexic
  • Having a daughter who would rather play basketball and baseball with her cousins instead of having pretty dresses and tea parties
  • Being broken, lost and isolated
  • Being a hands-on parent 24/7 for 23 years
  • Spending a life time in hospitals (both medical and psychological), thousands of doctor’s office and many ambulance rides

Fast Forward 23 Years

I could never have dreamed of the blessings that came with God’s plans for my family. Yes, I called all of that a blessing. Why?

  • Most marriages don’t make it through the kind of stuff we went through: married early, two small children, Marine Corps, special needs children, and life-threatening illnesses. But God knew exactly who would stick by my side through all of it, even if we didn’t like each other very much on some days. We will celebrate 22 years of marriage this year.
  • I questioned, ranted and raved asking God “why? why me?” Then one day I realized God was teaching me about unconditional love, patience and the bigger picture.
  • Because we didn’t have close friends we depended on each other very much and our dependence on God increased.
  • Because I didn’t have a girly girl my daughter opened up the world of sports to me. I look forward to going to basketball or baseball games.
  • I never thought our son would be able to move out. God knew though. Our son is flourishing in a new home learning daily life skills with the hope of one day moving into his own apartment.

When our son moved out in April 2011 and our daughter was in her own apartment at college I thought “finally smooth sailing – it’s been a very long 22 years!” I thought surely we have faced and conquered enough obstacles to last three lifetimes…….

God Had Other Plans

Six weeks ago our 20-year-old daughter was diagnosed with seizures. As we look back over the years we realize now that what we thought were migraines were seizures. This is a pivotal time in her college education – Spring semester of her junior year. Her life has changed. She needs other people to drive her. She has to ask for help and that bothers her greatly. I have to once again rely completely on God.

Do I still say all of this is a blessing? Yes – a thousand times over yes!!! The one central unchanged theme in my life has been I have needed God at all times, in all circumstances! Each time I thought “whew, that’s behind us, it should be easy peasy from here.” I would find myself on my knees asking God to see us through.

If I would have had my dreams come true, I wouldn’t have needed God for anything. His plans require that I need Him minute by minute. I have lived through hell, been broken and had my dreams crushed but through it all God has been and will continue to be my Refuge, my Rock and my Shield. Yes, His plans are always better than my dreams.

By the way – I absolutely married my prince charming.

 

Fabulous Friday with Cheryl & Link Up

The Light in a Dark World by Cheryl Bardwell

Have you felt overwhelmed with all the political stories and mudslinging going on? Not sure who or what to believe? Did you have a disagreement with a spouse or family member? Want to crawl in a hole and hide until it all blows over?

I feel that way sometimes. Life just seems too much to handle. Until recently, I found it easier to run away from my problems or situations rather than deal with them. However, I have now learned to take God’s hand as I walk through the pain and fear of whatever situation that I am facing. It makes me stronger not weaker. I grow in confidence, not only in myself but in my relationship with the Lord. There is a Light on the other side of pain and that Light is Jesus. The greatest thing is that He leads, guides and walks me through the pain, frustration and fear.

Turn to Him my friends in times of turmoil for He is the only Light in a dark world.

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12 NIV)

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I ask all readers to say a prayer for Cheryl today, she will be having surgery later on this afternoon.  Thank you!  It’s time to for our Link UP party.  To link up your blog click on the link below…..

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Fabulous Friday & Link Up

God Keeps Opening Doors For Me by Cheryl Bardwell

We have all heard the expression “When one door closes another will open!” right?  I want to challenge you, the next time you hear that expression picture God holding open that next door just for you.  How awesome is that visual picture!

That our Heavenly Father loves us so much that He is holding open the door beckoning us to go through! Motioning and pointing us the way He wants us to go. Yet at times we are so hung up on the door that closed, we fail to see the open door and our Father.  What if we miss the gift that God has for us because we fail to follow and trust Him?

I have done this more times than I can count! At times I am so focused on what I believe is right for me that I forget to ask Him what He wants for me! I forget to trust my Father to know what’s best for me, His child. We ask our children to trust us as parents when they can’t see we are trying to protect them from things they are not yet ready for, but can we do the same for God? Can we trust Him and follow his lead?

“So I say to you; Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; and the door will be opened to you” ~Luke 11:9

 

NOW FOR OUR LINK UP PARTY:  Please join us by linking up your blog with us today.  Whatever is encouraging to women is the only guideline!

 

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Wendy Blight Visits…..

I am thrilled to have Wendy Blight stop by for a visit on my blog today.  There are not enough words to describe the special place she holds in my heart.  Her book Hidden Joy literally changed my life.  If you have deep hurts that are causing you to live with bitterness, anger and maybe even hatred in heart, I encourage you to read her book.  Wendy has a special message today:

Veronica, thank you for inviting me to be a guest on your blog today.  But even more, thank you for being such a blessing in my life.  You have a beautiful servant’s heart, and I am so thankful to call you friend.

As I prayed about what to write, the Lord laid on my heart a woman who feels unworthy, unimportant, average, and most of all without purpose. At one time, that woman was me.   What is my purpose God? How could you ever use me?

But as I journeyed with God through some painful years, years I believed would never have any value in my life, He taught me very powerful Truths.

For those of you sitting in the place I just described, this post is for you.  May you never forget God created you with a special purpose.  He says in His Word…

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place.
When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, 
Your eyes saw my unformed body.
All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.
~Psalm 139:13-16

God says in Jeremiah 29:11

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, 
plans to prosper you and not to harm you,
plans to give you hope and a future.

Sometimes we hear a voice whispering in our ear:  You are unworthy. God could never use you. But Jesus tells us in His Word that words like these have one source and one source only.  They are spoken by the evil one, the one Jesus identified as “the father of lies” in whom there is no truth.  He seeks to steal, kill, and destroy all that is God’s and all that is good.

You, sweet friend, are God’s child.  As His child, you are good.  Satan’s goal is to keep you from believing this and prevent you from being the wonderful creation God created you to be.

Please, please do not listen to him. Instead of believing lies, believe TRUTH from the One Who says, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life.”

Hear Truth from God’s Word today:

You are LOVED

with an everlasting love. (Jeremiah 31:3)

You are PRECIOUS and VALUABLE

your name engraved on the palm of His hand. (Isaiah 49:16)

You are WORTHY

for He gave the life of His only Son, Jesus Christ, for you. (John 3:16)

You are FORGIVEN

you need only repent of your sin. (Acts 3:19)

You are REDEEMED

the old is gone and the new has come…in Christ you are a new creation! (2 Corinthians 5:17)

You are SAVED FOR A PURPOSE

one which He specially created for you. (Ephesians 2:10)

Will you believe with me today that God created you for a great PURPOSE…one that only you can fulfill?

If you don’t know that today, promise me you’ll spend time in these verses and ask Your Father in heaven to make them very real to you! As I close this post, I am going to pray for each one of you that God brings here today…pray that this is a day you will have an amazing God moment…where you KNOW that you KNOW He is working in your midst, listening to the cry of your heart. He desires to heal your hurt and bring you back to wholeness.

I am praying for you!

And if you have a story or truth you would like to share on this topic, please leave a comment today.  From the comments left, I will choose a winner to receive a signed copy of my book Hidden Joy in a Dark Corner:  The Transforming Power of God’s Story.

Veronica, thank you again for allowing me to be your guest.  I pray the Lord uses the words He laid on my heart to bless and encourage someone today!

Blessings,

Wendy
www.wendyblight.com

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Thank you so much Wendy for guest posting today.  For all the visitors here today, check back later in the month for a follow-up to this post from me.  God’s timing is always perfect.  At the exact moment that Wendy sent this to me, God had just whispered to me my own special purpose.

Hidden Joy IS life changing, grounded in scripture, written by someone who knows exactly what it means to be fearful and have shattered dreams.  Wendy’s journey to healing shows that God redeem any shattered dream and making it so much more.  I don’t just believe in it, I am living proof, so I too will be giving away a copy of Hidden Joy in a Dark Corner:  The Transforming Power of God’s Story.  Leave a comment for Wendy and she will pick TWO winners to receive a signed book!  Thank you all for visiting today.

An Old Tree Stump

I have some exciting news!!  Welcome to the very first “Fabulous Friday with Cheryl.” Fridays will now feature one of my bestest friends, Cheryl.  We have jumped into some adventures over the last couple of years ~ adventures that have thankfully turned out to be incredibly funny stories even through our own stupidity.  I am so excited that she has joined me on this adventure.  A few words that describe Cheryl.  Generous ~ Kind ~ Loving ~ Caring ~ Laughter ~ A Smile that Lights up a Room ~ Inspirational ~ Beautiful ~ Endearing ~ Jesus’ Light Shining ~ A Friend that Gives Everything.  If you have Cheryl in your life, you have more than a friend, you have a sister forever!  Please help me welcome Cheryl!!!

When I was a little girl, long ago, and needed time to myself, I would walk down past the stinky chicken coop into the garden, through the tall rows of corn and the tomatoes, finally past the potatoes and squash I would go. There it was, just past the hog fence, which was not the most pleasantly smelling place to sit, yet there in a small line of trees was a very large tree stump.  That was my favorite “alone” place.

I would crawl up onto the old stump, and talk to God.  I would cry out to Him “Why is this happening?  Why doesn’t anyone love me?”  I would yell, stomp, scream and cry. As usual I felt as no one heard me.  But then I would hear a voice in my head that would say “Are you done now?”  He would say “My child, I have never left you, I am always here!”  He would then dry my tears and want to see me smile.  He would say “look at those silly pigs playing in the mud!”  I would giggle until it was time to go back to the house.

I really believe that God met me there in the middle of that line of trees on the big old tree stump.  Why as an adult do I not feel free to find a safe place to yell,  scream, cry and ask God “Why?”  It may not be that old tree stump out by the hog pen, but it could be a room, a car or even inside my head.  I don’t allow myself to feel these emotions, in denying them I have hopes of being normal.

But what if it is normal to feel these things? What if it is normal to ask God “WHY?”  His Word tells us to come to Him as little children.  What if we all had an old stump that was waiting for us through the garden right past the fence of the hog pen? What if we took all of our troubles to Him even if it means yelling, screaming and asking “WHY?”  What if we were real with God?  What would happen?

I think I would be much happier with myself, my life and my choices if I were “real” with God.  He is still with me every step of the way.  When I remember that  ~ I smile!  What makes you smile?  Do you have your own version of an old tree stump?

And He said “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven…”  ~ Matthew 18:3

My Thoughts or His Thoughts

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the LORD.  “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.  ~ Isaiah 55:8-9

Ever thought you knew more than God?  Thought you were smarter than Him?  If you are like me you probably are thinking “Yeah, been there, did that, have the t-shirt.”

Whenever I look back at the confusing moments in my life it’s easy to see He was there all along.  That His plan was so much better than anything I could have dreamed.  Yet each new “moment” causes me to fall back to thinking I know best, saying “Let me show You LORD how to fix it.”  I know how that line of thinking ends.  I get knocked down flat, finally uttering “Ok LORD You are in charge.”

I have entered a season of confusion. I want to fulfill a dream that I have had since I was a little girl.  Only in the last two years have I admitted I had a dream.  One that I believe was placed on my heart from God.  Yet I allow my thoughts of inadequacy, fear and rejection to stop me.  When things don’t go according to my plans, feeling like a failure, I want to give up.

“…and My ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.”

How foolish we are to try to make His plans and purpose for us fit into our ideal box.  How much better would it be to openly embrace His ways, believing He has far better in mind than we could ever imagine.

I want to encourage you today to stand on His word.  When your “moments” take a left turn when you wanted to go right, trust His ways.  Sit back, enjoy the view knowing He will take you further than you ever dreamed.

Dearest LORD I want to boldly proclaim Your word into my life.  Give me wisdom to offer up to You not only my thoughts by my dreams and my future.  When I want to give up remind me of all the marvelous ways You have already spoke into my past and present.  Give me a spirit of joy and peace.  In Jesus’ Name .  Amen!