Divorce to Healing devotional coming soon!!

Cover 2

 

Looking forward to finishing this up and publishing in the very near future. There is also a possibility that we will be involved with other projects that will be very exciting. Looking forward to what God wants to do with this project. Make sure you follow us here and on our Facebook and Twitter pages as well so you won’t miss out on all the news. Thanks and be blessed!!

Sharing a little of my story

My Story

“Jesus and I are movin’ on!!”

 

It was during a counseling session with my pastor and associate pastor in a small office in a small church where God gave me the statement that would carry me during the worst days of my life.

Looking back, I was still a baby in my walk with God. Even though I had been saved a few years before and did my best to gain wisdom through going to church and hanging out with the right people, I found myself trying to hang on with all I had.

Divorce papers were serve on the day that OJ Simpson was found not guilty in the murder of his wife and friend. The one thing I really remember that day was the thought that he was found not guilty and I was found guilty; of having to serve his sentence through divorce. Well that sucks!!

Now I can see how my inabilities to communicate my feelings, even on a basic level, led to issues in our marriage. I did everything I could to reconcile and in the end, she just wanted out. (Insert blame, speculation, and the past here)

Thank God I had my brother, Dave, and his family along with my church family to help me during that time. As a Christian and striving to be more like Jesus every day, it was the hands and feet of those God blessed me with around me with flesh and bones that just loved me through my struggles.

What Dave did for me was exactly what I needed, though it may not work for you. He told me that he loved me and would be there for me anytime, anyplace, and for any reason. He also said he was not going to be all up in my business about it, but to just come to him when I needed him.

My dad is a wonderful man and raised us boys to be rather self-sufficient. In so many ways, it has allowed me to figure things out on my own, thus learning through trial and error. It worked, to a point.

What Dave did was to give me the space to figure it out on my own while providing the support I wanted when I was ready. But I needed more, so much more.

That more was Jesus!! I had to fill in all the space with the love, grace, and mercy that only God could give me. I was saved, yet I needed to allow Him to guide and lead me, and heal me to make me whole again.

The best example of this was one night in an evening when I felt so discouraged and beat down. I just needed to spend some time with Dave and his family. Guess what. They decided to head out of town to get away for a couple of days without telling me.

I lived just a few doors down, so I walked back to my dingy apartment. I think I cried more tears that night than I ever had before or ever will again. I needed my brother, my best friend. I needed…….. God!!

Looking back, it was the best thing in my healing process. I needed to get to the point of total desperation. I needed to hit rock bottom. And I did!!

And then God. What did He do? Sitting here writing this, I have no recollection of what happened next, but I can tell you that it was Him using what I thought was my strength (Dave) to show me that God is now my strength. Fully and completely, I now received God as the only answer to all of my needs.

What is sort of funny is that the statement above was something God told me before I missed Dave that night. I finally knew, deep down in my soul, what it means to walk with Jesus.

Fast forward a few years and I am now living in another town and guess what? Yes, it happens AGAIN!!!

Divorce #2. What in the flip just happened, and now what? I trusted God and did everything right I thought, but yet again, I am facing the tragedy of divorce.

After only a few months, I am faced again with that foundational relationship with God. This time, I was prepared. Yet after two and a half years or trying to reconcile, it was final.

But God was there for me every step of the way. Dave and his family moved away right after I did, but I had a relationship with God now that was my foundation, unmovable and unshakable. Even though the enemy did his best to cause me to stumble, my God was faithful and held me in His arms through it all.

Now you may be wondering why I am telling you all of this. Well, I want to encourage you that God loves you and wants you to be blessed, even through your toughest and most difficult struggles.

After my second divorce was final, I immediately called my boss to tell him I was moving and had decided to transfer with the company. I had decided to become involved with an amazing church in Jacksonville, Florida and to join their worship team. God had something awesome for me, but I did not know how awesome, until I let go and let God lead me.

I met my brother, Dave, (this is now the third place where I have moved to be close to him and his family) at his work the moment I rolled into town and we went to lunch. He told me the worship team was having a little worship time as part of a huge New Year’s Eve party.

That night I met my wife, Christy. She was a member of the worship team and close friends with Dave and his family. On New Year’s Day, the very next day, she had already planned on being at Dave’s family’s house. God was up to something.

Within 17 days, were went on our first date and we were married less than 9 months later. We have now been happily married for over 12 years and have 2 wonderful children. Together we have helped hundreds of people in various marriage and divorce groups over the years while serving in other leadership roles at Celebration Church.

28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.   Romans 8:28

My point in telling you my story is not to tell you that everything will work out for you like it did for me. I wanted to share that what God did for me He can and will do for you, if you let Him. God gave me a foundation of peace and wisdom that led me to healing and wholeness in Him.

 

Divorce to Healing: Day 31

Joy

Joy

 

You may seriously question if you will ever have any real joy again. The answer is a resounding and whole-hearted YES!! Now, depending on your faithfulness to the healing process that God has for you, your joy may be great or small.

There are many kinds of joy from a child’s face or a playful puppy to a warm salty breeze to complete peace deep down in your soul. There is also an everlasting joy that only comes from knowing who’s you are, not just who you are.

Don’t settle for only joy in the company of others like the joy that you can manufacture by flying to a resort or finding your new mate. Strive for that joy that causes you to sleep well at night and look forward to what tomorrow brings.

Joy in the natural can be simple to attain and yet fast and fleeting. Joy in the spirit you don’t even need to worry about. It is always there, encouraging and calling you into a greater life. It may even bubble up in uncontrollable laughter, too.

Look towards those things and people that make you joyful, not just happy or comfortable. There are those that when you leave spending time with them, you feel enriched in your soul and that is a joy builder.

I can explain it to you this way: if you have to think about creating joy, you are not there yet. It will come as you let God fill up that well of joy that has run dry in you.

For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for a lifetime; weeping may last for the night,
But a shout of joy comes in the morning. Ps 30:5

Everybody wants and needs joy, but only the joy that comes from a healed and whole heart knowing how much they are loved by their Creator satisfies.

Prayer

God, may I feel the joy you have for me every day. Fill me with your love and peace so that your joy just rises up in my soul and heals, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

Divorce to Healing: Day 30

Peace

Peace

 

Do you long for peace? Do you pray for peace in your family and in your soul? Do you just need some peace (and quiet)? I may not be able to help with the quiet part, but if you have young kids, take it when you get it!!

There are those of us who need to just stop and give some peace to others. We need to end our wars and offer to at least be nice to one another. If that is you, for the love of all that is holy, please do it. Nothing rots a soul like a poisonous agenda looking to hurt someone else. To get peace, you need to start by giving it.

There are those of us who really just need peace, to make it through today. We need that quiet confidence that things are ok and are going to be better tomorrow. If that is you, do whatever you need to do to get it. Have someone watch the kids, call a friend or family member to talk, or get alone with God.

There will always be conflict, even in your greatest relationships. Don’t let that discourage you. Through struggle comes strength, if you use it positively. Peace is more an attitude than a feeling. You can choose to live in peace.

When you strive to see people through God’s eyes, you see them for who they really are; a child of God. Pray that they will see you the way God see you.

Take the high road because in the end, the view is so much more peaceful.

11 Finally, brethren, rejoice, be made complete, be comforted, be like-minded, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you. 2 Cor 13:11

Peace is not an absence of conflict, it is a quiet comfort in strength. Peace is not a lack of an enemy, it is the fullness of a relationship with the peace-maker, Jesus!!

Prayer

God, grant me peace today. Let me know how much You love me and allow my soul be renewed, refreshed, and restored every day, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Divorce to Healing: Day 29

Evidence

Evidence

 

The cop shows on TV and the local law enforcement are not the only ones that have to handle evidence. Searching, collecting, and examining evidence happens whenever something tragic happens, but there are so many ways to use it.

Evidence can convict and exonerate. It can lead and it can confuse. The person handling the evidence is the one who largely determines how best to use it, but it may not be the whole truth.

You are in the process of healing, and in that process there are pieces of the tragedy that shine a light on what happened.  There will also be evidence of healing and that is where I want to spend the rest of our time.

What do you see in yourself that has learned from your past, good and bad? Have you realized those thoughts, words, and deeds that have brought you to this point and how they are impacting your life today? Learn from the bad, but dwell on those things that you see that are good. Make a list of the good ones!!

At your lowest point, did you ever think you would have been able to do some of the things you are able to do now? (i.e. communicate better, handle finances, enjoy your quiet time, keep the kids alive, remember to take out the trash, etc..)

So many little things all the way up to the big things are improving daily, even if you do not see it yet. Each day you wake up, you are one day closer to your healing and one more day closer to the blessings God has for you.

11 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. Heb 11:1

Have faith!! Tomorrow will be better. Some days may not, but add them up!!

Prayer

God, may the evidence of my healing be revealed to my day by day so that it may shine through me so that others can also see your grace, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Video of encouragement

As we move on with healing from divorce, there must be evidence things are changing. I believe just you spending time with God, reading His Word, reading this blog, spending time with your family and friends, and letting others help you that you will see the evidence of your healing.

Maybe you need to see some evidence. I pray you are encouraged today and realize that you being here is evidence enough for me that you are healing. And that is encouraging me.

Be blessed!!!

Divorce to Healing: Day 28

Shame

Shame

 

When you saw the title for today, how did it make you feel? What did you think of that was negative? Was it about something you did or said?

Many things cause us to feel shame, to feel condemnation, to feel less than perfect. Wrong thoughts and actions always have the worst waiting for us right before that corner of revelation, when we finally see what is not right.

Examine what others may be saying about you, but only to the extent that you can evaluate your thoughts and actions to bring forth positive growth. Don’t allow them to continue to use it as a way of control. Take steps to right any wrongs, and then realize you were meant for better and to be better. Now go be better.

You do not need to live in a situation or a life filled with regret over things that have happened in the past. Consequences may follow, but you can get through them. Learn new life skills and communicate to others that things are new in you and that you are moving on in a positive manner to all God has for you.

Do you think the woman at the well felt shame? With all that Jesus knew about her, He brought revelation in her own spirit that her past was not right. What happened next? He showed her love and forgave her so she could tell live free.

So many more days lay ahead of you and you have so much more life to live. Don’t spend one more day feeling shame and guilt. Do something about it now.

15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth. 2 Tim 2:15

When you spend time in the Word of God, you will gain the strength and wisdom to move past all of your feelings of less than healed and whole.

Prayer

God, help me to live my life in such a way that I will not feel shame for any reason while I strive to live more upright each and every day, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Divorce to Healing: Day 27

Reconciliation

Reconciliation

 

An amazing number of people that are separated or divorced have seriously considered and desired to reconcile, even if the other person has moved on with a new relationship and even married. It is more than understandable.

But for those of you wanting to throw your phone, tablet, or computer across the room towards me, I know there are a large group that are in the ‘Good Riddance’ gallery, and for many valid reasons.

I would like to encourage those that have a sincere and Godly desire to allow God to bring you back to your first love, make sure they are not married and get with a pastor or counselor that will help you. For those not able to do that, I say this:

Reconcile yourself and what you can of the relationship. Especially if children are involved, you need to be able to be civil and able to co-parent well so that it will cause less long-term damage to your relationship with them. You will always be their mom and dad, and both are needed. Work together to make that happen.

Mutual friendships may need to be reconciled as well. They may not know what to say or do and often really don’t want to lose you both as friends.

When you can honestly be reconciled (not hostile) to those that hurt you, you will be able to give an amazing testimony of how your healing is making you whole.

18 Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation 2 Cor 5:18

Reconciliation is more about bringing people back into fellowship and civility than about returning to something you had in the past. Do it for your wholeness.

Prayer

God, whether our relationship can ever again include us being married I ask that You help to bring forth a mutual friendship between us, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Divorce to Healing: Day 26

Patience

Patience

 

Why is it so hard to wait? Is it because we have become a culture of instant microwave gratification? The world demands more, bigger, faster, more efficient, more beautiful, more exciting, and now, now, now………

With modern technology, even if a child is born earlier than the normal development time of nine months, we can do what we can to bring full development along. It is not without its’ own challenges.

“How long will it take?” — “How perfect do you want your healing?”

There is a perfect time for you to have a fully healed and whole heart again.  If you want a life that is allowed to move forward in joy, peace, and wholeness, you will need to allow whatever time it takes. Everyone is different and every healing process takes time, sometimes longer than others.

If you rush into another relationship, engage in destructive behaviors, and try to shortcut the process, your healing will be full of developmental and possibly life-long challenges that you will end up regretting. It is not worth it.

Just like after planting a seed, it depends on the quality of the seed, the amount of water, how far it is buried, among other factors that determine what kind of harvest you will receive. That little seed will not care if we want it right away.

16 Yet for this reason I found mercy, so that in me as the foremost, Jesus Christ might demonstrate His perfect patience as an example for those who would believe in Him for eternal life. 1 Tim 1:16

Just like it still takes 9 months for a baby to fully develop, God has allowed his perfect timing to bring forth the perfect healing in you. Don’t rush perfection.

Prayer

God, please help me to calm down and allow You the time to fully and completely heal all of the broken pieces left in my life, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

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