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Life Builder Seminars is a women's Ministry utilizing seminars and conferences to equip and empower women for life.
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Band-Aids & Broken Hearts

23 Jul 2015, Posted by admin in Weekly Encouragement

Friends sitting together

Written By Remaliah Evans

They say time heals all wounds… I beg to differ. Time is a band-aid that covers the wound. As time passes the pain seems to diminish, until we hear a song or see a photo that brings us back to that heartbreaking moment. And the pain resurfaces because the wound was never healed, it was merely covered.

A band-aid is never a remedy for a broken heart. A band-aid covers a wound but it does not heal it. A heart can be broken by betrayal, prodigal children, a departed loved one, disappointment over shattered dreams, a breakup, or a divorce. What do you do when your heart breaks?

My heart was first broken when I was sixteen and I was betrayed by the person I trusted most, the person who was supposed to protect me and love me unconditionally. I did not know what to do because I had never felt that type of pain before. I was confused, hurt, frustrated, and angry and I felt powerless. I knew that I never wanted to feel that way again so I made promises to myself. I said I would never trust anyone again, I would stop crying, I would never give anyone the power to hurt me like that again, and I would stop feeling. If I could just stop feeling then I wouldn’t feel the hurt, or so I thought. I built walls. Walls are another type of band-aid. They hide the wound, but they do not heal it. Walls are also not boundaries. Boundaries are fences with gates, so you can allow people in at your discretion. I built my walls with the intention of keeping everyone out, even though I secretly hoped that a trustworthy person would get a ladder and climb over the wall. That secret hope was immature and unfair because people should not have had to jump through hoops to get to know me. Jesus Himself knocked at the door of my heart and waited for me to answer.

My heart was broken several more times as the years went on and I kept covering up the heartache. I covered it with denial, inner vows, food, partying, and busyness- whatever I could find that would make the pain go away, even if the pain only went away for a little while. Then I rededicated my life to the Lord and started attending church. I was a hot, mean mess. And just to make sure that God and I were on the same page I told Him, “I’m here for You, and for You only. I don’t want to make no friends and I don’t want to be involved. I just want to get right and come on Sundays.” The plan was to stay isolated so no one could hurt me or see my brokenness. God had a better plan and despite my best efforts I ended up in a small group.

In that group God showed me through His word and through incredible friendships that He is love, therefore I must love. 1 John 4:7-8 “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. [S]he who does not love does not know God, for God is love.” When they taught on this passage, I realized I could no longer refuse to love others. Later the Lord showed me that my unhealed heart made it impossible for me to love unconditionally.

Finally I yielded to the process and I asked God to heal me. Together we are tearing down walls and taking off band-aids. He led me to support groups, counseling, and to integrous people who told me the truth. I am still in the process. This past weekend I was talking with a friend about some old dreams that did not work out and I started crying. I thought that I had already dealt with the disappointment; however the Lord showed me that I was still heartbroken. He is faithful and He reveals to heal. I used to refuse to cry, now I let the tears flow and I ask God to heal me because He promised me that He would heal my broken heart and bind up my wounds in Psalms 147:3. I have a long way to go but the band-aids are coming off. Now, I give my heart to the Healer.

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A Positive Life

16 Jul 2015, Posted by admin in Weekly Encouragement

Written By Lynn Waters

I have been recounting the fantastic Life Builders Conference we had with Havilah Cunnington.  I didn’t know who she was walking the fine lineuntil I listened to her “I Do Hard Things” series on YouTube.  I enjoyed the series, learned a lot, and I was very encouraged by her upbeat ideas. If you attended the Conference you received her workbook and you can review the teachings on YouTube follow along with the workbook.

She has made it possible to take just ten minutes each day and be encouraged, because she knows how busy our lives are.  She has four small boys and she ministers, so she is quite busy.  If she can take to time to create the videos, we probably have time to watch them.

What is more, you can look at them as many times as you wish. They are there 24 hours a day.  You can listen first thing in the morning before the kids get up or late at night in your pajamas after the kids are asleep. After hearing the teachings, I would go to bed thinking about how I can be a better person.  WE CAN be better.  We can all improve ourselves in some way.

Havilah Cunnington has various books, and videos on YouTube to choose from.  This means you don’t have to stop listening to the fantastic speaker and have the Conference become a memory, you can keep it going for as long as you want.  You can make it an everyday event and be encouraged daily.

We can encounter much negativity day in and day out, so it is good to add positive bible-based teachings to our lives.  This could move us forward into new and positive areas and give us a brighter outlook on life.

Positive people attract positive people, and they are also likely to exchange great ideas, best practices, and ways to remain positive on a daily basis. Your positive disposition will also influence and affect your family.

I think we all want a happy positive life, moving toward what God wants for each of us.  A life where we encourage others to reach their goals, and others encourage us to reach our goals.  A life where we wake up each morning with a positive plan for the day, the week and the year. This more positive life begins as we spend time with God, and in the word of God.

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Praise.

09 Jul 2015, Posted by admin in Weekly Encouragement

A Poem and a Prayer.

by Ruby Heaton

What Kind of Praisers Are We?

Do we only praise God…

When the sun shines on us?

When everything goes our way?

When we get exactly what we ask for?

Do we still worship God…

When we fail?

When God delays?

When God tells us no?

Do we praise God…

When our dreams are shattered?

When people betray us?

When we hit bottom?

When we’re in the dirty dungeon

In the midnight hour

Can we still praise God?

Paul and Silas did.

Praise

You praise God,

Through hell or high water,

When you know who God is.

You praise God

When your memory is intact

Because you’ve trained and disciplined

Your emotions to stay out of the way.

You praise God

When he becomes real to you.

You praise God

When you’re fully submitted to him.

You Praise God

While everything crumbles around you

Because your faith is high.

You Praise God

When you know his voice

And you’ve followed it

So you know where his paths lead.

You praise God

Because your love is so deep

And you really believe.

Have you arrived at the place where you can praise God on the mountain

Or deep in the dark valley?

Have you arrived at the place where you have to praise God

Because that’s what you were created to do

And you’ve stepped into your destiny and power?

Prayer:  God teach us how to worship you in ways that please you. Help us to always remember who you are and all you have done for us.  May we long to worship you, so that praise is on our lips and songs come out of our heart.  In Jesus name. Amen.

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Written By Judy Smith.
If you think about it, we are stuck on planet earth until further notice, or as the hymn says, “till the roll is called up yonder.” I am so looking forward to that day, but for now I had better make the best of my time by choosing to pray and get unstuck.

Sometimes we stay stuck too long and then we take up emotional residence by getting comfortable and decorating that woman prayingstuck place with “I can’t, I tried, and I don’t wanna.” We need the Holy Spirit to reveal why we are stuck, and we need the Holy Spirit to empower us. Repeat Acts 3:6 to yourself, “In the Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.” We must keep walking!

John 12:35 Ask Jesus’ light to shine into your stuck places, “Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you; he who walks in darkness does not know where he is going.” Let the Holy Spirit reveal to you why you are stuck, and He can empower you to change yourself and your circumstances.

Imagine what will happen if we step out of our routine and deliberately walk in His ways, and stop trying to do it ourselves. 1 Corinthians 1:9 NASB God is faithful; through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

I used to have an answer for most problems in life and I had much to say about almost any subject. I now have fewer answers because I have discovered that God is faithful. I say it because through experience, I know it is true, and I have discovered that it is true no matter what is happening in my life. My child is sick and I don’t know what to do; God is faithful. I lost my job and I don’t know how I will pay my bills. God is faithful. My husband has been diagnosed with a fatal disease. God is faithful! My husband has left me and my heart is torn in two. God is faithful!

Through my troubles and trials of life, and with my forty-four years of knowing Jesus as my Lord and Savior, my expectations are still high. If the whole purpose of my life is to learn to love God and to show His love and compassion to the world, then what He is doing in me is more important than what He is doing for me. I have discovered through many tears and struggles that if I bring every damaged, jagged edge of my life to Him, He will continue to mold me to become the woman I am called to be, and I will not be stuck.

Whatever is happening in your life right now, as your sister in Christ, I urge you mediate on these words of life: God is faithful.

Pray bold confident prayers. 2 Corinthians 3:12 AMP Since we have such glorious hope (such joyful and confident expectation) we speak very freely and openly and fearlessly. Jesus is looking for men and women who will pray bold prayers. We often pray, “now Lord, I just ask that You protect us. God if you would just help us in this situation.” These prayers sound as if we are afraid to ask God for very much. In this context the word “just” means barely enough to get by. God wants to give us exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think according to Ephesians 3:20. That’s something to be grateful for! God wants to hear bold, confident, faith-filled prayers from thankful people who are secure in their relationship with Him. Don’t be afraid to ask God for too much because He loves you and wants to do more for you than you can imagine.

When you belong to God, you never have to fear. He is stronger than your circumstances. He is stronger than any enemy you could face and His perfect love will always protect you.

1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love; instead perfect love drives out fear.

Hebrews 13:6 ESV So we can confidently say, the Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?”

Ephesians 1:4 He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him in love.

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Proverbs 16:9 A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.

Ephesians 1:13-14 In Him, you also trusted after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory!

You are His beloved child. He chose you before the foundation of the world, to walk with Him along paths designed uniquely for you. Concentrate on keeping in step with Jesus instead of trying to anticipate His plan for you. If you trust that His plans are to prosper you and not harm you, then you can relax and enjoy the present moment. Your hope and your future are rooted in heaven, where eternal pleasures await you. Nothing can rob you of your inheritance of unimaginable riches and wellbeing. Sometimes He gives us glimpses of our glorious future to encourage us and lead us on. But your main focus should be staying close to Him. He sets the pace in keeping with your need and His purposes.

So get out of the rut and don’t be stuck! We have been set free by the blood of the Lamb! We are free indeed!

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Walking the Fine Line

25 Jun 2015, Posted by admin in Weekly Encouragement

Written by Ruby Heaton

When I say walking the fine line, I’m talking about the fine line of pride. I grew up lacking self-esteem because of the way I was raised. My upbringing caused me to be extremely shy. Friends often tell me, “Ruby you’re really smart.” Sometimes I feel like I can do anything and other times I still struggle. Many people teach on building up self-esteem. While we walking the fine linemust know who we are and what we are capable of, here is where the line can get confusing. We should be confident, but not overly confident. We should obtain knowledge and wisdom, while recognizing that our ability to obtain that knowledge and wisdom comes from God. We should take chances, yet tread carefully. We should let others know our strengths so we can assist, but not sound haughty. While we shouldn’t boast  or be full of pride, we do need confidence to be bold.  God’s word tells us to be bold and to have no fear. Proverbs 28:1 The wicked flee when no one is pursuing, but the righteous are bold as a lion. We need confidence to do many things, if not all, and we must present ourselves well.

 I once introduced an acquaintance to a Pastor. What should have been  a quick introduction dragged on as  my friend listed all of his accomplishments, what he had done in the past, and his current endeavors. Not only was it not the proper time, it sounded a lot like bragging. The Pastor finally changed the subject, gently. I felt very uncomfortable about the whole situation, as I’m sure the Pastor did too. Later that day I wondered how many times I may have sounded like that when I only wanted to convey that I was qualified to help or teach.

There is a time to share, a certain amount to be shared, and it needs to be shared in the proper way.  I forget who said this but I love it: Stay little in your own eyes. While we may indeed “stay little in our own eyes” it may look different to others. Maybe we want to connect or fit in so we say too much and it sounds like we think too much of ourselves. Maybe we have just won an award or accomplished something we really wanted to do, so we’re super excited about it and we come across wrong. Perhaps we are getting too big in our own mind and our heads no longer fit through the church doors.  We should always go to God and ask Him to check us and make our motives clear to us. Sometimes we are the last to see what is going on with ourselves.

 Join me in a prayer so we can make sure we stay in the right place.

God forgive us for anything that we thought, said, or did that wasn’t pleasing to you. Father help us to always see ourselves through Your eyes and help us to present ourselves as you would have us. Not as the world wants us to be, or family and friends think we should be, or even as we suppose we should be. Help us to be more Christ-like. Remove any wrong ideas and mindsets. Give us clarity and fill us with your wisdom. Help us to never try to take your glory. Give us wisdom and strength for each day and every situation we encounter. In Jesus name we ask. Amen

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I CAN

18 Jun 2015, Posted by admin in Weekly Encouragement

Written By Amber Lawton

Standing at the barre, facing my reflection in the mirror, I gaze at the beads of sweat dripping down my face. “Plie, and revere,” I hear the instructor call out. I quickly look to my neighbor’s feet in an attempt to catch on to the movements. The instructor continues, “Stay there, and pulse.” I quickly scan the room  of 15 women to see if I am the only one struggling. There is nothing more comforting than knowing you are not alone when it feels as if you are failing. On this occasion, however, I am not fortunate to find my ‘fail-mate’. With pensive faces, each woman continues her gaze in the mirror as we change from one position to the next. Our limbs pulse to the upbeat tempo of the music as the cheerful instructor, a petite brunette with a dancer’s body, walks the floor. “What did I get myself into?” I think, as we move to mats on the floor to do planks.

Only 10 minutes into a 55 minute Xtend Barre class and I was ready to give up. But right in that moment when I I Canwanted to drop my body to the floor and roll over on my back I heard: ‘I DO Hard Things!’

 I wish I could tell you that I elegantly continued as a graceful ballerina; as if out of a scene from the movies I could magically bend and stretch effortlessly with the rest of the class. Not quite. At almost 5’ 1” and approximately 90 lbs. overweight, I tilted, wobbled, and careened my way through the class to the very end. When the burn became unbearable, and my thoughts tried to turn to embarrassment I thought: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13 NKJV)

For most, finishing a morning workout wouldn’t require much thought, or scripture for that matter. I am definitely not like most. Walking out of the studio I felt empowered. My thoughts turned back to ‘I Do hard Things’. Why in that moment had that particular statement come to mind? What does doing “hard things” mean to me?

 For me, a hard thing was being able to try anything unfamiliar, surrounded by people I did not know. The former me would not have been able to make it out of her bedroom. Too wrought with depression, and overcome with anxiety, if she did make it to class she would have burst into tears 5 minutes in. You see lovely, I had the desire to be alive, but was crippled by fear and uncontrollable thoughts. Paranoia, skepticism, nervousness, and emotion hindered me from wanting to actually live. Living requires going, doing, and trying. None of which I had the courage to do. Thankfully God has a bigger plan for me. With the help of His word renewing my mind daily and years of therapy, I was able to take control of my thoughts. As I regain focus on what is important I am able to overcome my past and live in the present, as I become who I am created to be in the future. I am sure many of you know this is hard work, and tiresome at times.

 Quite possibly these are the reasons the theme of the upcoming Life Builder Conference came to mind while I was mid-exercise in a classroom full of strangers. “I Do Hard Things” is a statement, not a question. There is a call to action in the “do”. I have no idea what is on the agenda for the conference, but with a week away I am in great anticipation for some “ah-ha” moments, and inspired revelation.

Maybe you are not like me; eager and hopeful. Maybe you are saying right now: “your hard things are not anything like my hard things.” I would say you are absolutely right!  That is what makes this conference so great. If Pastor Cathy did not  grab hold of her God-given courage, talents, gifts, and wisdom to build safe learning environments to unlock every woman’s potential we would not have Life Builder Seminars or this conference.

From the founder to volunteers and attendees, we each have our own “hard things” to accomplish.

So lovely, what “hard things” have you faced or are facing? Share in the comments below! 🙂

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Perfect

28 May 2015, Posted by admin in Weekly Encouragement

Written By: Amber Lawton

“Give your self a break,” a friend of mine said to me over lunch. “It’s okay that you don’t know how to do it all, just start somewhere,” a relative said at dinner.  “Don’t worry if you don’t finish today, you will have time tomorrow,” another friend said to me days later. Sound familiar?

Heading into the halfway mark of the year I began recounting conversations of disappointment. Over the past few weeks I found myself sharing how little I felt I accomplished in the span of 6 months. With great persistence friends and family members reassured me I was right where I should be, while the perfectionist in me tended to disagree. These conversations made me realize I am in an abusive relationship with myself.

I don’t say this to diminish the reality for those who experience physical, emotional, or mental abuse from Succeedanother individual. I do, however, see that the perfectly straight white line of a bar that I set for myself is extremely high and way too straight for me. Actually, instead of one bar I have two perfectly lined bars set in front of me as uneven bars to a gymnast. Every day I jump to the lower bar already thinking about the high bar. I don’t relish in the victory of completing a full grasp, or finding strength to propel my body upward to stand. No, I am hanging onto the lower bar staring at the high bar as if I am still on the mat. Thinking from this place of ‘perfection’ means I am not good enough, and my accomplishments pale in comparison to that very high bar.

To be perfect is to be without mistake or flaw. Perfection is the state of being perfect. Yet, when I personalize perfect the definition expands to a vision. Perfect would mean: never having an awkward moment, speaking and writing with expressive freedom, being in my best health (spirit, mind, and body), publishing a magazine, and making a salary that covers my needs and wants. I would be married to my athletic, God fearing, world traveling husband (who, by the way, is at the top of his career). We would be bicoastal, raising our 2 children together. Although my career is demanding, I expect I would be afforded time with said children to read bed time stories, bake cookies, make lunches, learn languages, attend games etc. Of course perfect wouldn’t be complete without me sharing all of these experiences through my blog and a fabulous  Pintrest account.

This idea of perfection though is void of reality, and could use just a little more Jesus. In my mind, the type of perfection needed to achieve this list is built on pride and says it’s only achievable if “I can” do/succeed. The elaborate list of what a perfect life looks like is accompanied by an even longer list of accomplishments I must achieve flawlessly.

My perfect is covered in condemnation, and wrapped in fear. This kind of perfection can lead to rejection or ridicule (from self), depression, a feeling of worthlessness, or a victim mentality. Add to this a myriad of items that fall under the umbrella of fear (i.e. anxiety, shyness, etc.) that attempt to leave me powerless. Even now, this kind of perfect would have me believe I am wasting my time sharing with you friend.

As a Christian woman I know God did not give me fear or self doubt, but the struggle is real. How do I get up, put my big girl panties on and face the day? When will saying ‘thy will be done’ become easier than putting on my version of Sasha Fierce and attempting to slay the day? Instead of chasing caviar dreams and Oprah-esque mansions I should be giving all of myself to Him. Why does this feel so difficult to do?

My issues with being perfect go deeper than the inability to surrender all to Him. The continual feelings of not being good enough reflect how my interpretation of ‘perfect’ does not match with God’s. I try to start the day by asking “what are we doing today God?” God’s perfect is bonded by love Colossians 3:14 says But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection. His perfecting is a process. I am complete and spiritually made mature in Him (2 Cor 12:9). I can only attain the final goal through Him (Heb 10:1-10), and as I do so love increases and fear diminishes (1 John 4:17-18).

God’s perfect isn’t about being flawless, or without error. My perfection is not contingent of what I think, how I feel, or respond. Nor will it ever be based on the criticism and pressure I place on myself. God’s perfect is what allows me to live a life after Him, finding new beginnings, and immense joy.  Being perfected in Him is what allows me to live whole.

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God’s Grace, Mercy and Favor

21 May 2015, Posted by admin in Weekly Encouragement

Grace or gracious- showing kindness, courtesy, and compassion.
Mercy- compassionate and kind treatment, merciful
Favor- a helpful or considerate act; the condition of being held in regard, approval, or support.Succeed

To support or approve; to treat with special care. I thank the Lord every day for His grace, mercy, and favor on my life. The more obedient I become, the closer I walk with Jesus, the more I see His grace, mercy, and favor on my life. I don’t deserve it and I can’t earn it. Let’s focus on His favor.

Job 10:12 You have granted me life and favor, and your care has preserved my spirit.
Psalms 5:12 For you O Lord will bless the righteous; with favor you will surround him as with a shield.
Psalms 30:5 For His anger is but for a moment; His favor is for life
Proverbs 12:2 A good man obtains favor from the Lord
One day of favor is worth a lifetime of labor. Look at the life of Joseph. He was sold into Egypt as a slave and then he worked his way up in the house of Potiphar. That is favor. The wife of Potiphar attempted to seduce him, but he stayed true to God and Potiphar. She accused him of rape and then Joseph was thrust into the dungeon. He needed favor. He became the model prisoner and after several years Pharaoh called for him and the current of favor followed. Within 24 hours, Joseph went from the prison to the palace.

Favor will bring you to places money can’t buy. The woman with the issue of blood had great faith. Jesus favored her and she received her healing. Favor produces miracles you cannot perform. Favor is promised to the obedient and the Godly in Psalms 5:12 Favor can increase in waves in your life. Luke 2:52 And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man. In Ruth 2:13 Ruth pursued the favor of Boaz. In Esther 5:2 we see that favor is the ingredient that turned a crisis into a miracle for Esther. Proverbs 3:3-4 says that your personal integrity influences the flow of favor toward you. Doing your job well brings favor toward you from your boss, favor causes the greatness in you to blossom and flourish, and favor will take you further than money. Favor brings increase and multiplication. In Acts 2:47 when the disciples had fellowship and walked in joy praising God, favor flowed. Favor turns enemies into friends. It takes more than gifts, talents, or good intentions to generate favor! Favor requires God. I find myself thanking the Lord more and more for His mercy, grace, and especially His favor in my life. I am so thankful. I do not have a thing that God has not given me. When we want favor, we must sow favor. Favor is the attitude of giving to another. Favor is when you sow into the life of another. Start showing favor to everyone close to you. Proverbs 3:27 Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in the power of your hand to do so. Sow words of kindness and love to those around you. Expect favor everyday of your life. Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. Please take the time to look up and review the scriptures in this blog.  May God’s unmerited favor be on your life, every day of your life.

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Forgive

14 May 2015, Posted by admin in Weekly Encouragement

I was so consumed with unforgiveness and denial that I would not accept a sincere apology when my Mom apologized for abandoning me during my childhood. I dismissed her apology and told her it was not a big deal. Unbeknownst to me, I was in denial. Looking back, I believe that I was not ready to face the pain and my true feelings regarding her not being there. Instead I lied to myself and minimized the issues. I wanted to believe the lie that it was no big deal, so I did.

Fast forward a few years and my brother apologized. This time, I was all too aware of how I felt. Truth be told, I woman meditation on the beachshould have apologized for my behavior as well but I didn’t. Instead I was bound up in unforgiveness and I refused to accept his apology. I thought to myself, “how DARE you think you can just say I’m sorry after the hell you put me through!” I was livid and scared of what might come out of mouth so I just said “ok.” Except it was not ok because I refused to forgive him.

Sometimes people can do the most horrific things and never apologize. Whether they apologize or not we have a choice to make. We have the choice to do what God commands us to do: forgive, and forgive, and forgive again. Or we can hold on to unforgiveness. I chose unforgiveness for years. It turns out unforgiveness has some close friends- their names are bitterness, rage, and resentment. When I chose not to forgive I placed myself in a prison of rejection, self-pity, and victim mentality.

Whether or not we receive an apology, we can choose to forgive. God has blessed us with free will and that means that we have the power of choice. “I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live; that you may love the Lord your God, that you may obey His voice, and that you may cling to Him, for He is your life and the length of your days;” (Deuteronomy 30:19-20) When I refused to forgive, I chose death. There is a saying refusing to forgive someone is like drinking poison, and expecting the other person to die.” While I clung to unforgiveness my peace died, my joy died, and my hope died. My relationship with God suffered because everything He said or showed me was filtered through my heart of unforgiveness and bitterness. The person most affected by our unforgiveness is usually us.

When we choose to forgive, we choose life. Sometimes the wound is so deep that true forgiveness seems nearly impossible. But with God all things are possible. God empowers us to forgive through His Spirit. It’s not by might, nor by power, but by HIS Spirit. (Zechariah 4:6)
God is faithful and because He loves us He brings conviction when we are harboring unforgiveness. I had repeatedly asked Him to help me forgive over the years but I was unwilling to let go. I remember someone told me that I had to forgive my Mom even if she did not change. I wanted to slap that person for suggesting something so asinine. Like I said, unforgiveness’ friend is rage. That person was right; I simply refused to accept that truth. During those years of unforgiveness I decided that I would not forgive my Mom unless she changed. I lived with unforgiveness for several years before I was finally willing to let go. At that point, I went to God and earnestly asked Him for help again. This time, when I asked God for help I let go of my vow not to forgive unless she changed.

Forgiveness must be unconditional. If I say I will only forgive if she does this or if he stops that, then I am saying that I only have to forgive sometimes. The Word says that we are to forgive every time. Forgiveness is not condoning the behavior or subjecting oneself to abuse. Forgiveness is letting go of the resentment and the belief that they must pay, and cancelling the debt. Forgiveness opens the door to healing.

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Moving Forward

07 May 2015, Posted by admin in Weekly Encouragement

Written by Ruby Heaton

The world does not own us,
The culture does not define us,
The times do not invent us.

Man does not control our actions,
Social Media does not tell us how to interact.

We won’t fold,
We won’t sell out,
We’re not weak,
We’re not puppets,
We’re not foolish,
We’re not gullible.

We won’t conform,
We won’t believe lies,
We won’t follow pack mentality,
We’re not blind.

We are true believers,
We are many,
We are mighty,
We have authority,
We have power,
We have the mind of Christ.

We are a mighty army, we are his children.
We are his ambassadors, we are his servants.

We are anointed to serve and to teach,
To reach the lost and the hurting,
To move mountains and to crush barriers,
To trample the enemy, And to exalt the King.

Life Builders is here to equip and empower us, to build us up into the women God created us to be, and to activate us into our gifts and calling. With that in mind I want to challenge you today to take that step into your God ordained destiny with me. Decide with me to take on the challenge and to start moving in the direction of our dreams and our destiny. Can’t you hear God calling? It’s time for us to move. Perhaps you started to step out and as you moved you scared the enemy with all your potential, so he came at you full force with fear and doubt. Then when that wasn’t enough he tossed in some anxiety and worry, which caused you to procrastinate and put things aside. This happened to me. I had started to write a couple of Christian books and I had several editors interested in my proposals. But I never finished them. I’m going to get back to writing. I don’t know what you put aside or what you never started. Maybe you can share it with me? But I do know that the enemy has held us back long enough. It’s time to unite as God’s army and move forward together!

God has a plan for us and He has given us the key. Here are some tips that have helped me move forward:
· We must discipline ourselves.
· Ask God for His plans for us, and write it out.
· Keep focused on God and work the plan
· Stay connected to the vine, by spending time daily with God.
· Pray and then stay silent so we can hear God.
· Read the word daily, out loud, so we can hear and believe. Even if it’s just one verse.
· Praise God and thank Him daily for what we have and what we will have.
· Guard our words; no negative words, speak only life.
· Worship God, sing out loud. Be aware of the words that we are singing.
· Repent as soon as we sin. Forgive quickly. Keep our hearts pure.
· Remain united- avoid competition, comparison, jealousy, and gossip.
· Find a good accountability partner and people to encourage and pray for us.

Prayer: God guide us, bless us, and unite us as we step out and meet the challenge for your kingdom. Give us dreams, visions and strategies. Strengthen and encourage us. Let us have joy and laughter on the journey. Send confusion to the enemy’s camp. Empower your daughters and protect us. In Jesus name we ask. Amen.
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