Find Healing When You’ve Lost Someone You Love

We’ve been on a run lately of people we know passing away.  My wife said, “I’m ready for a break.”  The problem is too they seem to be getting closer to my age.

I know you can relate and have felt the hurt of losing someone you love.  All the encouraging words and hugs help but the empty hole remains.

Nothing you can do ever completely heals the wound.

If there was no other reason for wanting a relationship with God than that it would be enough.

David writes, “The days of the blameless are known to the Lord, and their inheritance will endure forever.”

Aren’t you glad?  No matter how much God promises to bless you in this life he promises even more in the next.  And those loved ones you’ve lost wait to greet you.  How much better could it be?

That gift is given not to those who are perfect because none of us are, even David who wrote these words.  Rather the blameless are those who come to God and say, “Forgive me and accept me.”

Then he says, “You are forgiven.  You are my child.  Live with me forever.”

I’m glad.  But I still wish people would quit dying closer and closer to my age.

 

*Psalm 37:18 (NIV)

Find Power in the Midst of When You Feel Overwhelmed

I’ve heard said, “The problem with life is, it’s so daily.”

At times it can seem like series of challenging puzzles coming one after another.  And the biggest problem is often you don’t get one solved before next one hits.

You tirelessly work day after day.  And frankly after a while you can start feeling, “If this thing called life just wasn’t so daily I could get some rest and get on top of it.”

It’s what I love about what David writes, “The lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.”

We all have days when those those lions seem like a step up don’t we?

Yet, into the midst of this daily grind God brings his goodness.  And when you stop and seek his answers a feeling of renewal comes.

Renewal based on believing that God sees your struggle and knows the answer.  He sees your need and has the solution.  And when you feel overwhelmed he mysteriously gives you his peace.

When the challenges of life become too much for today, you can rest in him and find the strength to go on tomorrow.

So welcome to life.  Be careful out there, it’s gonna be daily.

*Psalm 34:10 (NIV)

Are You Feeling Smashed? Time to Unleash Power?

Most everyone I know feels smashed.

We’re called the sandwich generation.  I’d call us the flat tire generation.  We have a crisis blowout concerning our kids and before we get it fixed another happens with our parents.

Friends have said, “We’ll get together when things settle down.”  Two years in we’re still waiting.

But it can leave you feeling crushed with no ounce of reserve left.

I was refreshed though last night when I read a favorite verse again.

Zechariah writes, “‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty.”

Wow!  All my chasing and crashing often accomplishes little more than stress.  But when I settle back into trusting that God will accomplish everything I need I find his power again.

No matter what crunch you’re facing right now, just take the time to give it back to God.   Settle down into the rest he wants to give you.

Then you’ll discover a peace in your heart and mind that will help you think clearly.  You’ll find renewed strength in your body.  And you’ll see God’s power enter into your pressure cooker life and release the steam.

Personally, I think I’ll go sailing.  I’m going to let God have his shift for a while.

*Zechariah 4:6 (NIV)

Stop Worrying and Get Some Sleep!

Have you ever had those times when you were so consumed with worry you couldn’t sleep?  Pressures and the challenges kept you staring at the ceiling most of the night?  And the longer you stayed awake the more frustrated you became?

I have more than a few times.  But see I was raised by a family of worriers.  They perfected worrying to an art.

Yet really, there’s always something to worry about isn’t there?

I discovered a promise though that shocked me and helped calm those sleepless nights.

Solomon writes, “In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat — for he grants sleep to those he loves.”

Wow!  He says you can strive and worry if you want to.  Or you can rest in God’s care and enjoy a good night sleep.  It’s up to you, whatever floats your boat.

See God enjoys giving that gift to those he loves.  No special formulas required.  Simply when you come to the end of your abilities and say, “Ok God, I’m tired.  It’s your turn now.”

Then, with that minuscule seed of faith, God works his miracle and you find peace again.

So have a good night sleep.  Let’s talk further tomorrow.

*Psalm 127: 2 (NIV)

Do You Need New Strength to Conquer Your Mountain?

Do you ever just feel worn out?

You’ve push and struggle against an unconquerable problem until you feel like you can’t go on anymore.  Yet, giving up isn’t an option either.

Yeah, I’ve been there,  way too many times.

That’s why I love what David wrote, “He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he enables me to stand on heights.”*

No matter what we face when we come back and just relax in God he renews and guides us.

Often I find this hard to remember as a full member of the type A personality club.  But I’ve also learned there comes a time to stop pressing and wait for God’s answers and strength.

It’s not doing nothing and saying, “I’m waiting for God.”

It’s more like productive waiting.  Praying, listening, reading, thinking, trying to understand your heart and God’s directions.  Oh, and resting too.

Then he promises he’ll give you renewed strength so you stand on top of your mountain.

*Psalm 18: 33 (NIV)

How to Experience a Miraculous Healing

I was sitting in my office chatting with a friend when he told me a story of his amazing healing.

He’d dropped by after golf and desperately needed cold water.

 

Child Healing

 

We got to talking about a mutual friend whose daughter is addicted to drugs.  He’s known her since she was a little and said, “She’s a lost soul.”

He went on, “I know what that’s like.  I’m a recovered alcoholic.”

Then he told me his story.

“I’d been sober for about 15 years.  Then I retired and started playing golf a lot.  Every day we’d smoke cigars on the course then come in and my buddies would have a few beers.”

 

“Pretty soon I found myself back smoking cigarettes and drinking.”

 

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4 Keys to Seeing God Work the Miraculous

I suffered with a misdiagnosed sickness that ravaged my body.  My digestive system imploded and I continued to lose weight uncontrollably.  Yeah,I know, that was a problem I wished I had all my life too.  But this was for real and serious.

Friends later told me they thought I was dying.  Honestly, there were days I wondered.

I prayed for God to heal me but I grew worse.

 

Walking Sunrise

 

After a couple of months tracking the symptoms and researching on line I figured it out.  I’d mysteriously and suddenly become lactose intolerant.

I was so extremely lactose intolerant that even a hint of butter on some green beans would wipe out my system.  I was trapped in an ill functioning body and chained to the vicinity of a bathroom.  For an outdoor adventurer I felt like I was living in a suburb of hell.

I prayed, “God why me?  Why won’t you heal me?”

At times I felt God had deserted me.  I’d prayed for and watched others on occasion be healed miraculously.  Yet, when I needed it most God was silent.

 

I struggled to understand and felt frustrated and at times angry with God.

 

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Do You Really Want to See God?

A friend told me about a colleague whose son became deathly ill. Nothing the doctors tried seemed to work. His son was literally dying.

The father knew my friend was a Christian and, though he didn’t believe in God, he asked him to pray for his son.

 

Photo Credit: Kim Seng

Photo Credit: Kim Seng

 

The son remarkably recovered back to full health.

My friend later was talking with the father who said, “You know, we just can’t explain it. We were really lucky. But I just still can’t believe in God.”

Hmm, what else would God need to do?

Yet, not to be too hard on him, I’ve seen this happen way too often. God works a miracle and the response is, “Wow, what luck!”

 

In fact, it happens so often my friend renamed the Holy Spirit, “Lucky”.

 

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3 Perspectives That Determine if You’ll See a Miracle

When I entered into a relationship with Jesus, as I’ve written about, I was blind-sided by some of the responses.

My life was radically changed. I mean, I went from messed up, self centered and depressed to directed, caring, and joyful.

Yet the responses were all over the board.

 

Photo Credit: Anita

Photo Credit: Anita

 

One acquaintance, who’d recently experienced a similar transformation, said, “Fabulous! Let’s talk. Tell me about it.”

And we grew to be close friends.

An on and off girl friend, who lived in a distant city, remarked when I saw her afterwards, “Yeah, I heard you’d become a Jesus freak.”

I laughed and replied, “Wow, I’m not sure I’m a Jesus freak but I have always been a little wacked out.” And went on to tell her what had happened.

She responded, “You know, that’s great for you. It’s just not my thing right now.”

A third friend was one of my closest growing up. His mom was like a second mom.

See they were Armenian so there was always lots of family events and eating going on. And I was just one of the kids. So often I spent more time at their home than my own.

He told me, “I talked to my mom about what happened to you. She talked with our priest and he said I needed to be careful. This isn’t according to their doctrines.”

 

To say I was bewildered would be an understatement.

 

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How to Keep from Getting Duped by a Religious Conman

I was sitting at my computer in our sunroom laughing and swearing at the same time watching a TV video replay.

It was a humorous yet indicting expose’ of some prosperity preachers showing clips of their preaching and interviews.

Some was so ridiculous it was pathetically humorous.

 

Photo Credit: Richard Cooper

Photo Credit: Richard Cooper

 

One preacher reached out towards the TV camera and told the audience to reach out and touch the screen to touch his hand.

I’m thinking, “Wait, what? His hand isn’t there folks, even if this was a live broadcast.”

Another prophetically described an illness that someone watching the program had and he was praying for that person right now.

Well, first this program was recorded, who knows when. And second the illness described was so general that about half the adult population of the U.S. could claim it on any given Tuesday.

One greasy pot bellied southern preacher bragged about buying a corporate jet for several million dollars cash. Then said, “And now I’ve bought a bigger one for all cash. And those who criticize me are just jealous.”

And I thought, “No, I’m not jealous. First, I really don’t want a corporate jet. And second, I don’t like you because you make me feel like throwing up.”

They fill whole TV networks with programs and send out endless high pressure letters to raise millions. They prey on the most vulnerable and often the least illuminated pressuring them to send money to “invest” in God’s blessings.

 

I was angry for those who were duped.

 

But I was also sad for those who see this and think this is Christianity. And it’s crazy.

Frankly, I don’t blame them. I’ve been there and thought the same things.

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