Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Forgiveness What It Is- What It Is Not and Why Do It

My friend and I were having tea at the kitchen table and she looked into my eyes and began her story.
“My mum brought her boyfriend home when I was 17 and still a virgin – she, she was drunk and she let him rape me……I got pregnant and then lost the baby……. I have never been able to forgive my mum…..”

I got out of my chair and went to hug her with tears streaming down my face. A mother who is supposed to be a place of safety, the teacher, the comforter of her children, the example…. I simply couldn’t understand. We were both sobbing as I prayed and asked the Lord Jesus to comfort and draw my friend ever so close to Him. “I just held her and let her cry and was saying “I am SO sorry, I am so sorry….”

Their relationship has been rocky over the years. Her mum is still an alcoholic and taking many things out on those around her. She is really negative about the Lord and the fact that my friend calls Jesus her savior.

After that time, when we were back to writing to each other, we’d talk about forgiveness.
We discussed about how it is not a warm fuzzy feeling but an act of your will to choose to forgive.

We talked about some of the reasons you should choose to forgive:
*bitterness coming from unforgiveness eats away at the person who holds it
*unforgiveness breaks God’s heart
*we might initially forgive in obedience to God
*by forgiving we release that person to the Lord to deal with
*forgiveness is freedom to the one giving the forgiveness
*to forgive frees one from the enemy

We also discussed what forgiveness is not:
*it is not necessarily giving our trust to that person, trust needs to be earned
*it is not an act leading to becoming friends again, although that could happen
*it is not a feeling, although feelings may follow; it is an act of our will

Forgiveness can also come in stages – maybe because the Lord knows we can only handle so much at one time. It is not uncommon to sense “I thought I had forgiven that person – so what’s this then?” That might not mean you haven’t forgiven, only that there is more to the ongoing process, a further relinquishing and letting go.

Some of the best mental health examples and solutions are spoken of in the Bible. I am listing them in two versions for those who would like something in more modern English than King James.

For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people. (KJV)

Hebrews 10:30 

For we know him who said, "It is mine to avenge; I will repay,"[a]and again, "The Lord will judge his people." (NIV)

Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath (KJV)

"In your anger do not sin": Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry (NIV)

And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins (NIV)

With regards to Mark 11:25, it is like the law of gravity in a way. It is either functional or it is not. With forgiveness, if it isn’t functional on a horizontal level in our lives with us forgiving others then apparently it isn’t functional on a vertical level with us obtaining forgiveness from God. Perhaps it is something like electricity and the switch being off. That is not a place where I’d want to find myself.

Several years went by and my friend was looking at representations of Jesus during the crucifixion and the Holy Spirit began to move on her about forgiving her mum, she was able to. Her depression lessened and she sensed a freedom she hadn’t known. Her mum is still an alcoholic who is hateful to Christians, including her own daughter. They haven’t become bosom buddies but there is a liberty in my friend. Though her mother is in her 80s she could still come to Jesus and that is just what I am praying for.

Monday, June 5, 2017

A Challenge for My Readers

Not sure about any of the rest of you but there is so much which is an abomination to the Lord - whether done seriously or "in jest" - I am thinking it is time to make a comment about His love and His provision for us and to call most of this what it is - sin.... God gave a very dear price to set us free and to walk in freedom (His SON!!!) Why should we tinker and tor around with that? So much of what is "out there" today is an absolute abomination to God... We need to honor Him and the sacrifice made on our behalf. Once again, I am hoping the "silent majority" will no longer be silent - when we are "silent" it is perceived as our tacit stamp of approval... God forbid... DOES THIS STRIKE A CHORD WITH ANYONE?
TIME IS SHORT.... I want to make it count for JESUS!!! Please join me?

Friday, June 2, 2017

GREAT new book on end times written by a long time friend - his life work!!!

The very best Sunday School class I ever participated in was taught by Cliff Kelly and was his first venture into the book of Revelations. We all were kept on the edge of our seats hanging on to what the Lord Jesus Christ would reveal to us the next time we met. This became a “life work” for my dear brother, Cliff. I highly recommend this easy to understand yet riveting “dig” into the Word of God. So much of this is making “front page” headlines today. A most incredible, Biblical work! - Marijo Phelps
"Entire forests have been cut down to provide paper for books on the end times, especially since the publication of The Late Great Planet Earth, by Hal Lindsey in the 1970s. Very few of them have combined piercing biblical exegesis with a broad understanding of the cultural and political situation in the world as a whole. In The Sixth Seal, Cliff Kelly provides a brilliant biblical understanding of the entire basis of the concept of ‘end times,’ as well as of the political and cultural challenges facing the body of Christ and the entire human race all over the world. No matter what kind of Millennialist you are, Kelly’s book makes more sense of the Scriptures and current global actuality than anything you are likely to read in the near future." – Dr. David Aikman, author and journalist
“Cliff Kelly has crafted a masterpiece in his book, The Sixth Seal! This riveting story should come with a warning on the cover: CAUTION! DO NOT READ IF YOU NEED TO SLEEP OR EAT OR WORK! Kelly’s Sixth Seal is a spellbinding work written for such a time as this!! It will stick with you for days after you read the final page and lay the book down!” – Bodie Thoene, author and film consultant

You may get a copy on Amazon
Get ready – it was really difficult to put down!! Marijo