PRAYER TIME: I claim Jesus FIRST.

Waiting to die is not the abundant LIFE Christ has for us or died for.

There is a time in our church service when Pastor asks what our prayer needs are. And as I looked around, I see and hear what is contradictory to FAITH. It seems to me thatbeach many Christians have faith in the Pastor and Church, not so much in what Jesus did for each of us at the Cross. Has the Church given up on the basics of Faith and left it at the foot of the….pulpit?

Do we limit God? We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed…” 2Cor 4:8-9.

In many churches, there is too much sickness and strife, and I have to wonder if they think that prayer is a magic wand for other people and they just get the bits and pieces left over. Do they not have enough or any faith for themselves?

Where is Faith? Yes, Faith in the Cross is key, but are Christians leaving Faith there rather than living through Faith in Him because of the Cross?

Can we ever truly realize the power God gave us? Is this preached or taught in the Church? The Pulpit has to equip their flock to have this power. Then, is the Pulpit keeping this ‘secret’ to themselves or are they NOT equipped? I wonder at times if Pastors want their flock to believe only he or she has the answer.

Paul said: “I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling. And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.” 1Cor 2:3-5

Protestant Churches [Episcopal, UMC, UPC, etc] deny the power, thus the deity, of Christ and put themselves in the position to be as God to their congregation. They go AWAY from the Cross of Christ TO a worldly appreciation of abortion, gay agenda, and liberal social justices that deny God. Parishioners of theses denominations expect the ‘Pastor’ to do the work for them, using the Pastor’s magic wand.

Then, when I see our wonderful Saints in Church who are in agony and without hope, remember that healing and restoration is in the Atonement, and we simply have to have Faith:

And the apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith.” So the Lord said, If you have faith as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be pulled up by the roots and be planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.” Luke 17:5-6

Get your head out of your hands, look up…and believe.

Narrow Way

When we go through this life, it’s not unusual to feel unloved…but some people are displaced and unknown, or so they think. Sin will take you where you never thought you’d go….here you are.

We are not forgotten or forsaken by God [Deut 30:6], and He remembers us even in our worst of times.

God has KNOWN us AND has a plan for us since the beginning of the world [Jer 1:5]!

Do you feel worthless…hopeless…useless? Are you full of strife and pain?

YOU ARE NOT DISPOSABLE! YOU ARE NOT OVERLOOKED!

“Then why can’t I overcome this miserable life?” you say, I’ve said it, too. I had to ADMIT, BELIEVE & COMMIT…ABC. The Plan of Salvation is for EVERYONE, not just an elect few. Your mountain is not too high, your valley is not too low for Jesus.

Are you afflicted? Addicted? Alone?

A = Admit you’re a sinner who needs to be saved.
(Romans 3:23) “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

 B = Believe that Jesus died for you & rose again
(Romans 10:9) “That if you will confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”

 C = Commit to accepting Christ as Savior & Lord
(Romans 10:10-13) “For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation… for whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved!

Let Jesus be the LORD of your life today!

 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” John 14:6

Just as it was, so shall it be.

We have spent so much of our lives telling God NO or LATER or SOME DAY. We took our lives, created and purposed by God, and rearranged them with sin and idol worship.

God does not change, we do. Seek Him, get back on the narrow path, don’t look back:

v24 Then the Lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven;
v25 And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground.
v26 But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt. [Gen 19:24-26]

Let this encourage you! No matter how far you have gone, you can come back! Yes, there are consequences and repercussion for sin but He gives us STRENGTH mightier than Goliath!

Then, just as it was, so shall it be:

Know that the Lord, He is God;
It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves;
We are His people and the sheep of His pasture. [Ps 100:3]

RockOfPraise

©revkatherinemarple

On the OTHER Side of Addiction

We hear on the news, internet, and other media sources about addiction, the addict, what the addict did, etc. Addiction is ugly and deadly. But I’m on the OTHER side of addiction, I’m his mom.

What seems like a million years ago, I was married to an addict. Saw it all with my own eyes…and so did my kid.

Every day I wondered if this was going to be THAT day. Will I find him dead? Will he crash his vehicle again? Is he in jail again? Will he come home? Will he hurt us again? Again and again, over and over…I waited for the other shoe to drop. It’s a surreal thing watching someone slowly commit suicide with drugs and alcohol and be completely helpless.

And every day of this marriage my young son watched and was witness to this daily chaos. As parents we want to protect our kids and home, but when you are married to an addict you’re too busy dealing with the addiction than trying to keep a home and family and a job. And for that I have begged God for forgiveness that my sweet child had to see this horror when all I had to do was just leave. I had to find out many years later that the cancer had spread.

The last day I saw him was 25 years ago, TODAY.

I won’t go through all of the gory details, that’s for me and God to know. But I do want to address what it’s like on the OTHER side of addiction….because that addiction spread like a cancer to one of my children.

Unlike a very bad marriage, you can’t just ‘leave’ your kids. An addicted adult child is much harder to understand and deal with because they are forever your children, not a bad marriage. I truly thought that after seeing with his young eyes how bad addiction was that it would be the absolute last thing that would happen to him. The cancer spread anyway and without any fanfare…yes, I was totally blindsided because I was never a drug user. Remember this the next time you think your kids aren’t paying attention to what you are saying or doing.

About thirteen years ago, I gave my life to Jesus and eventually became ordained…all before I found out about my son’s addiction. Now I have different eyes to see through and a different heart to love with. The hard thing for my kid to do was confess his addiction to me, the hard thing for me to do was accept the fact that it happened.

Just like with my ex-husband, I have to deal with codependency and enabling. I don’t want to make his addiction worse, I want to make his recovery extraordinary! But isn’t that just like a Christian, wanting to give the devil a great big ole black eye? Then what does a person do, on the OTHER side of addiction? Every day for me I struggle with wondering if I’ll get THAT phone call and every day he struggles with the real pain of detoxing. It’s harrowing, it’s hard and it’s exhausting.

Certainly I am NOT alone, although for the rest of you I wish it were just me. But as people on the OTHER side of addiction, we have to band up with the LORD and each other to face that precious face of our addicted adult child. This is a love I never knew I had but God is GOOD! He gives us this supernatural strength to see our kids with His eyes.

If there is one thing I would say to ANY addict, it is this: YOU HAVE NOT BEEN FORSAKEN. You are NOT an accident or mistake. Your life is NOT over. You are important to GOD! And here’s why: The Bible says “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.” This scripture says that we are all known by God since the beginning of the world with a purpose and path already assigned to us. There is no mistake or accident, God does NOT make mistakes! God cannot lie! We are all His, and He is ours. 

If there is one thing that is foremost on my mind about my addicted adult child is that I never want him to feel hopeless or worthless. That kind of desperation paralyzes me; and if it does that to me, I cannot imagine what that does to him.

As a mom, I have said that I would die for my child if it meant saving theirs. I’m sure you’ve said the same thing. But One mightier than I has died for him, and died for me! Jesus is the only way to true salvation and restoration! I could die for my kid but that would do nothing for him when Jesus can give him the true love that will save his life!

Addiction is forever, so is Eternity. And for as much as I LOVE my son, God loves him even MORE!

Every day I wake up giving my kid to Jesus and trusting God to heal and restore him from drugs, then I ask God to keep my heart full of love and understanding with the right balance to help my kid, not hurt him. After that I thank God for a husband who cares for and loves my kid and me. I can’t imagine my life without either of these guys.

Recovery…restoration is one day at a time, for all of us, even on the OTHER side of addiction.

“To console those who mourn in Zion,
To give them beauty for ashes,
The oil of joy for mourning,
The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;
That they may be called trees of righteousness,
The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.” Isaiah 61:3

TRUSTJESUS

 

30 DAY PARENTING PRAYER CHALLENGE: Day 26

Many years ago I was forced to leave the area in which I was born to begin a new life. I had to leave my family because of my now ex-husband to do it. My ex, who was raised by hard working never-in-debt church-going family-oriented people, was an adult kid that had a drug, alcohol and gambling problem [that led to domestic violence] which eventually became my problem. I remember so vividly my EX-mother-in-law saying, “You knew him when you married him“. NOT true, I did not know these things…but that really isn’t the point. The point is that SHE knew he had addictions and did not warn me; it was as if she was passing him off to me so she didn’t have to deal with it anymore.

Some of us, who never exhibited addiction, have children who may eventually have an addiction. But should a parent just pass them off? When did they stop being a parent? I have a myriad of cousins that are grandparents already, and they are still battling alcohol, meth, crack, etc. At least half of them are still living with their parents. I know their mothers, not one of them is an addict of any kind.

Dear Mom & Dad: Your children’s poor choices are not your fault. But enabling them to continue their ‘choices’, is. Don’t clean up their messes, pray over them – they need restoration.

There are some parents that have children and practically gift them the generational sin they have. How often have we seen a generational problem with alcohol and claim it’s in the DNA to justify it? Generational sin is passed on through mimicking what we see while we grow up. God has never created one single person that is an alcoholic or addict BUT they are born into sin with the propensity to sin [the sin nature] BECAUSE of the Fall of Adam:

“v1 There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. v2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.” Romans 8:1-2

And then:

“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” Romans 12:2

The answer is that we NEVER stop being a parent. EVER. Ignoring or passing off a problem and acting unaware is just plain evil. However, I do realize we can’t make these kids do anything. But one thing we can do is PRAY and NEVER FLINCH.

Pray to be an open book to your children, not an open checkbook. They need to hear about Jesus incessantly, they are our ministry!