Filters: Add, Change, Replace

air-filtersWhen you are going through a divorce, there are so many things you have to deal with —  Emotions, financial issues, custody, loneliness, etc… It seems like it will never end.

During this time, too many people do not take the time to make sure they have filters in their lives that will help them through the healing process. Remember, filters are what stop the damaging elements that keep you from efficiently and purposefully working toward what is next, without breaking down.

There are so many different types of filters that we need, but I want to bring a different twist to this discussion.

The types of filters you need are:

1) Filters you ADD, 2) Filters you CHANGE, 3) Filters you REPLACE

ADD

When was the last time someone told you, “Maybe you should think about changing _______ about yourself” or “Have you thought that maybe things like this wouldn’t happen to you if you just ________”?

Do you need to ADD a filter?

Boundaries and limits are more often for our good than to deny us the chance to do something. When you have a correct set of values that you live by, it actually promotes freedom and will keep you from a lot of harmful situations.

A boundary of not having sex outside of marriage (filter) is one that so many people choose to ignore, especially after or during a divorce. All we want is someone to love and to be physical with, We may want to prove to ourselves that we are worth the affections of another. I would say you are, but not in this way. I am surprised by how many people will just get intimate with the first person that gives them any kind of attention, especially if they know you are not currently in a relationship. It may start innocent enough as friends or even old friends that come back around, but before you know it, you wonder, “How did that happen?”.

It is a lack of a filter that will keep you from that piece of dirt that flies in and just wants a little somethin’-somethin’ then moves along after you realize it is just you being needy.

If that is too harsh, I am sorry. I choose to think you are much more valuable than a one-night stand or a fling. A rebound relationship is one that does just that, bounces the emotions when what you need is stability.

Another filter to add could be a family/friend filter. You know, those folks around you that say, “Just get over it. It happens all the time. No big deal. I know a guy/gal………”. They mean well, but make sure the family & friends you choose to have around you and speak into your life, actually want what is best for you, not just what is good for them or what society says. If the divorce rate is around 50%, seems to me that a ton of people have no idea what is going on. They just want someone to join them at the bar next Saturday or they need you to watch their kids, now that you have “time”.

What kind of filters to you need to ADD to your life? Will you not date for 1 year after the divorce to allow yourself time to heal? Will you not go to the places and do the things that you know you shouldn’t do, like bar hopping with the girls? Will you be a man of principle and treat any future relationship with a lady like you should, as a gentleman and one who will actually live a life of honor?

CHANGE

Sometimes we have filters in our lives like the ones in our furnace, cheap and inexpensive. You get what you pay for.

Pricing out furnace filters at your local store can be eye-opening. They range from $3-$25 a piece. Why such a difference and why should I pay more for the same size of filter?

It is all about the effectiveness of the materials within that filter. The one you can almost see through does filter some of the bad stuff but so many of the little contaminants just go right through it. The filters on the high end will capture & stop 99.9% of anything bad flying around in the air, including dust, smoke, viruses, and things you can’t even try to see unless you have a microscope.

So, do you have filters you need to change, or upgrade? How about the rule that you will only have 3 beers at the bar with your buddies, that usually end up being 5+ and not really remembering how many? How about talking on the phone or online with someone and saying things that you know you wouldn’t ever say if you weren’t just seeking approval from someone? How about the tv shows you watch or the music you listen to? Are those things getting right through that cheap see-through filter? Maybe it is time to CHANGE that filter & give your heart the protection it needs to start healing correctly.

REPLACE

After a while, without us even noticing, filters get gunked up. They get filled with the things that will destroy our lives. We need to check them regularly and find out when they need to be replaced.

A clogged filter is almost worse than not having one in this way; it chokes off the airflow (life). The air/oil/fuel that carries what the machine needs to operate needs to get through. A plugged filter will just hinder the fuel that you need to heal. It will cause backups and starve the machine (heart/soul) until it malfunctions, too.

A plugged filter does you no good, but a fresh filter will restore the vitality and effectiveness of the fuel for healing.

You are not a bad person for having a full filter. Everyone needs to take time to evaluate and reestablish the filters they have and realize if they need an adjustment. We get bogged down with every day life. Don’t let it sneak up on you and choke the very lifeblood you need to move forward.

Take some time. Calm down long enough to evaluate your situations.

Do you have the right filters in place? Are they the right kind of filters? Do you need to replace your filters, if they are filled?

By setting safe boundaries and managing them instead of just letting life happen, you will start to gain more confidence and peace that things will get better. Trust me.

Take the high road. Be honorable. Know that you are worthy to have a great life. You have a value that no money can buy. Live that truth.

How’s your filter?

MustangKampNAirFilter1995_zps495bafa9“$25 for an air filter? I thought I only came in for an oil change. What gives?”

Unless you never take your car to a Jiffy Lube or a shop to have your oil changed, you know right where I am going. The guy tells you it is dirty and it needs to be replaced. (Cue uncomfortable discussion in 3…2..1…)

A filter is what blocks harmful contaminants from destroying machinery, like your oil filter, air filter, fuel filter, or your furnace filter. It is what allows the machine to work at peak performance by not being bogged down with the junk while letting through what it needs to perform it’s purpose.

Just like your car and furnace, you have filters. Emotional, spiritual, and physical filters help you to live your life to your fullest purpose without all the junk. They allow through what is needed for you to live at peak performance (full potential) while removing what is harmful.

Just like your air filter, you need to check it often and replace it when it is not keeping out those particles of disaster, aiming to choke off the life you are meant to live.

Some people are trying to live life with no filters at all. They allow every bad word, action, and impulse destroy their lives without any care for how it will affect them. They have no idea how these things cause problems and think they will just buy another “furnace” if this one breaks down.

That is not how it works.

Some people have filters, but they ignore them. They get so plugged up with dirt, grime, allergens, and viruses that eventually they start breaking down. “I have a filter so I am ok.”. Really? Yes you have a filter, but it is doing you no good.

In order to heal from a divorce, you need to change your filter. Get rid of that old, plugged-up, filthy one and install a fresh one. If you don’t have one, go get one!!!

In the next post, I will go into some of the filters you need to be able to recover and allow your heart and spirit to work the way it was created to work. It will allow you to live the life that God has for you, even through the pain and the hurt.

You can be repaired & restored. It starts with changing what we can change quickly and easily.

Looking Up

Eye17WOW! This dirt looks AWESOME, said nobody ever…..

When you have hit rock bottom, sometimes it just feels like you are plastered on the ground, with your nose shoved 1/2 way towards the back of your head, tears flowing down, questions of why flowing through your head, and a million other feelings. It is all about where you are. And you know what? IT SUCKS!!!!

I am not going to tell you that everything is ok. It is not. You are experiencing feelings that so many people can only experience if they go through it as well. No smoke here.

But, I care about you enough to say this… you need to look up.

Easier said than done. I’ve heard this before. I know.

Well, it is easier than you think. You can choose to look up, even if you do not feel like it or want to. Let me prove it to you.

Have you ever noticed someone who walks around with his head hanging down? What allows that physically? It is the neck.

The neck is our attitude. It thinks it is in control, and for most people it is. We use it to shake our head up and down or side to side. We use it when a noise startles us to change our head’s position. It must be what controls what we can look at.

Well, you would be right, but that is only partly true.

Our eyes were created to look in all directions; up, down, left, right, cross-eyed, rolling, etc.. They are so interesting, and as you will find out, almost totally in control.

Let’s get back to staring at the ground, on our face, nose in the dirt. If you look forward, you see just that, the bottom of your pit. Your neck has you pointed towards it, so that is what you see. Yes, your neck (attitude) is pointing you in that direction, but your eyes can still look in all directions. You can choose to look up.

What do you see? Just more dirt, but it looks different. You also notice a little light coming pass your forehead.

Are you really looking up or just at more of the bottom? Good question. I would say you and things are looking up.

You have the choice to close your eyes and not look. You can just stare at the ground. You can look in any direction, and you chose to look up, even if it doesn’t look like much.

Now, by seeing something different, you have another choice. You can decide to be satisfied with a nose in the dirt or you can tell your neck (attitude) that this hurts your nose and to shift up so that you rest your chin on the ground instead of your nose. It is a lot less sensitive to pain and the ground is hard.

Guess what? You are continuing to look up, just by lifting your neck (changing your attitude) to relieve the pain you are feeling. Even if you do not change the direction you are looking, you are looking up further than before.

Crazy how that works.

Does it sound a little simple to just do that? If you think it is harder than that, just keep staring at the ground. How long do you want to do that? My nose hurt and I needed to do something about it. It was bloody, bruised, and broken. I needed some relief from the pain.

If your neck (attitude) won’t move, just look up. Things will look a little different and eventually the pain you are feeling will cause you to adjust your neck (attitude) which will allow you to look up more and more. It may happen quickly or take a little time, but eventually that stiff neck will move, if you allow it to.

Look up. It will not be what you see before you. It will be different. Embrace it

Look up.

Waves

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Will it ever stop? Will I ever catch my breath? Why won’t they stop?!?

Just like waves crashing on the shore, our emotions will rise and fall with no rhyme or reason. At one moment you time you have it all together and then, out of nowhere WHAM!!! You get hit with a bigger and more powerful wave of feelings you don’t understand.

You are not alone. Statistics are now that over 50% or marriages will end in divorce. I don’t say that to make light of the situation, it is just the facts.

You look out pass the waves and you cannot see the end. You wonder why. So did I.

But just like waves, they have a beginning and an end. They have power to destroy and power to propel you forward. It depends on how you use that power.

Have you ever noticed that the waves are just rolling up & down out in the ocean, but it is as they get closer to the shore that they rise up? It is because at that point, the power has to go somewhere. Because of the shallowness of the water, the wave’s power is condensed. That is why it seems that on the beach (at the moment of your divorce), the crashing is so frantic–chaotic!!

If that is where you are at, know that there is calmer water behind those waves. You need to have faith to towards the deeper water. Things get calmer out there, but you need to move out.

My thoughts for this blog is to encourage anyone who needs it & to provide a place for you to move on to healing.

Feel free to comment & share with those that could really use it. We are also on Facebook & Twitter as well.

Be blessed.

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