It’s Your Calling

calling, resistance, simple functional grace-filled living, redemption, trauma, ptsd, anxiety, leaving Egypt behind, freedom, thriving

Why are we so afraid to step into our calling? There are various reasons. However, when we see and feel the freedom that it brings, we will wonder why we ever resisted displaying and embracing that irresistible mission.

It’s your Calling

calling, resistance, simple functional grace-filled living, redemption, trauma, ptsd, anxiety, leaving Egypt behind, freedom, thriving
photo by Sarah Pflug

It’s Your Calling, It’s Your Calling.

It’s God Sent.

Why are you stalling?

Your Life’s Traumas will not be wasted.

The end product cannot be hasted.

It’s your calling, It’s your calling.

Leave Egypt behind.

Forget its hauling.

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Episode 31: Giving the Best Gift

emotional health, mental health, spiritual health, Peter, John, Beautiful, podcasting, katina horton, blog, episode 31, best gift

Episode 31: Giving the Best Gift
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Giving the Best Gift Podcast Outline

  • Analyzing Gift-Giving
  • Shame over Gift-Giving
  • Peter and John’s Gift

There have been quite a few times over the years when I would see someone that’s homeless on the streets and was deeply moved with compassion and empathy for their situation. Majority of the time, when this happened, usually one of two things were going on: either I didn’t have cash on me, or I literally didn’t have the money. I would feel bad inside, then let them know that I wish that I had the money to give, and then say, “God bless”. Then, they would usually nod.

emotional health, mental health, spiritual health, Peter, John, Beautiful, podcasting, katina horton, blog, episode 31, best gift
Photo by Hassan OUAJBIR on Pexels.com

What I said didn’t fill their physical need. However, saying, “God bless” told them that I did care. Sometimes, we see Christians and non-Christians, and we wish that we could help, but for whatever reason, we just can’t. Satan often uses these times as tools to place a stronghold of shame on us. Money isn’t all that we can give others. We also have our time and our talents that we can bless others with. However, once we start the comparison trap, then this reality goes out the door along with everything else.

Peter and John faced the same situation with a man at the gate Beautiful, asking for money from the passersby. They didn’t have money to give him. They had something better: the gift of salvation leading to eternal life:

Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour.

Acts 3:1-9, KJV

And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple;

Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms.

And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us.

And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them.

Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.

And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.

And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.

And all the people saw him walking and praising God:

Dear God,

We thank you for when we have money to help others who are in need. We also thank you for when we don’t have the money, knowing that the best help that we could ever give is the plan of salvation. Please help us to remember this when we encounter certain situations.

In your name we pray,

Amen

Lest We Forget Podcast: Episode 30

Episode 30: Lest We Forget

lest we forget, commandments, raising kids, discipline, God's words, parenting, healing our brokenness, emotional health, mental health, psychology, katina horton, podcaster, podcasting

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Episode 30:  Lest We Forget Podcast Outline

  • Introduction
  • Kids and Our Hearts
  • What We Give Our Kids
  • God’s Commandments
  • Hindrances
lest we forget, commandments, raising kids, discipline, God's words, parenting, healing our brokenness, emotional health, mental health, psychology, katina horton, podcaster, podcasting
Photo by Eric Smart on Pexels.com

Introduction-Lest We Forget

Welcome to Healing Our Brokenness Episode 30: Lest We Forget. Have you ever left out the door and locked your keys inside of the house?  What about something spiritual? Like the promises of God when you are going through.  Today we are gong to talk about just that.  Passing information down to our children lest they forget.

Kids and Our Hearts-Lest We Forget

When it comes to our children, they can really pull on our heartstrings. We all want what’s best for them. We want them to be happy, healthy, attend the best schools, participate in sports, have great friends, and the best manners when they are around other adults, especially our friends. Lastly, we all want them to have a better life than we had as kids.

What We Give Our Kids-Lest We Forget

Don’t get me wrong, education, sports, friends, and manners are all on my list of important things to help with a child’s development. However, God wants our major focus to be training them on giving him their hearts, having character, and a relationship with him. Everything else becomes a bonus.

God’s Commandments

Giving our children God’s commandments and instructions for our daily living should be just as important as passing down family history. When we tell our kids about the history of God’s goodness in our lives, it will become contagious. They will want the God of Abraham for themselves. They will want to tell their children. The best teacher of Christ to anyone is living a life that oozes out Jesus wherever we go. Our kids will see that, and even as they get older, they will remember.

Deuteronomy 6:4-12

God gives us explicit instructions on what we are to tell our children: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And

thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates.  

And it shall be, when the Lord thy God shall have brought thee into the land which he sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give thee great and goodly cities, which thou buildedst not, And houses full of all good things, which thou filledst not, and wells digged, which thou diggedst not, vineyards and olive trees, which thou plantedst not; when thou shalt have eaten and be full; Then beware lest thou forget the Lord, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage. (KJV)

Hindrances-Lest We Forget

One of the main hindrances to feeding our children God’s Word, is that we make it legalistic, and we compare with how our friends are doing it. We focus on how their family holds hands and pray, whereas, we are just going over one verse or song per day.

When my kids were little, I found myself getting caught up in this. When I let God’s Spirit reign during teaching time, then God was glorified, and I felt freer. Being free to allow God’s

Spirit to move in whatever manner he sees fit for our families is enough. When we legalize it, it discourages us from wanting to give them the Word in the first place.

If we don’t feed them God’s Word, then they can’t pass down the knowledge to their children. When they are adults, and they have been brought out of their struggles, they can know beyond a shadow of a doubt, that it was only the Lord who did it.

Dear God,

Thank you for how you created our families.  Please help us to teach our children about you in a way that is God-honoring first of all, and secondly, in a way that reflects who we are as families.

In your name we pray,

Amen

Episode 27: Simply Grace

Episode 29: The Power of God

podcaster, podcasting, power of God, broke down car, simple functional grace-filled living, katina horton, healing our brokenness, emotional health, mental health, psychology, brokenness, ptsd, divorce, marriage, breakdown, anxiety, ptsd

Episode 29: The Power of God
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The Power of God Podcast Outline:

  • Dissection of Relationships and Our Brokenness
  • My Witness to the Power of God
  • Saul’s Witness to the Power of God
  • Podcast Transcript
podcaster, podcasting, power of God, broke down car, simple functional grace-filled living, katina horton, healing our brokenness, emotional health, mental health, psychology, brokenness, ptsd, divorce, marriage, breakdown, anxiety, ptsd
Photo by Rodolfo Clix on Pexels.com

Welcome to Healing Our Brokenness Episode 29: The Power of God. Have you ever seen the Power of God in your life? Well, today I am going to give two examples of his power at work. First of all, let’s do some a little dissection.

Dissection of Relationships and Our Brokenness

Whether we are at church, work, or in our neighborhoods, it is important to cultivate relationships with people. Sometimes, in the process of doing this, people become jealous, or they turn on us for no reason. If there is a reason, it is one that doesn’t make sense to us.


However, since we are all broken, we all do things that are characteristic of our sin nature. In a few of these instances, there are times when the people who turn on us are toxic, and the best thing to do is to setup boundaries. In many cases, this may involve little to no contact at all. Prayer from a distance is the best way to go.

My Witness to the Power of God


When I was going through my divorce, my ex-husband’s behavior got so out of control and toxic, that I had to setup a boundary that he could not come back to our marital residence to visit the kids for some months. They could walk out to the car to go with him.

However, that was the extent of it. What led to this decision? His behavior was so out of control during one particular visit, that it cut through my soul and crushed my spirit. It was also during this time that my grandmother was dying in the hospital. I ended up having an emotional breakdown of sorts and was hanging on by a thread.

All correspondence was done via email for a while. What I didn’t find out until later from my son, is that he had decided he was going to come in anyway. However, as the Lord would have it, the first time that he attempted this, his car broke down. Every time that he decided that he wouldn’t follow the paperwork from the court for his financial obligations, his car would break down. My friend joked with me and said that she would never
cross me. I said, ” Why?” Her response was that once I started praying things happened.

Saul’s Witness to the Power of God


Saul became jealous of David because the women sang songs about how David had slain ten thousands and Saul had slain thousands. Saul’s anger got so out of control, that he decided that he would kill David. He sent his messengers ahead of him to find out his exact location.


As God would have it, his messengers ended up prophesying. They entered the place where Samuel and his prophets were praying and prophesying, and God caused this to happen to them. Saul sent messengers out two more times. The same thing happened. Finally, he went himself, and God caused him to be filled with the prophesying spirit. This was done long enough for David to escape.


When David had fled and made his escape, he went to Samuel at Ramah and told him all that Saul had done to him. Then he and Samuel went to Naioth and stayed there. Word came to Saul: “David is in Naioth at Ramah”; so he sent men to capture him. But when they saw a group of prophets prophesying, with Samuel standing there as their leader, the Spirit of God came on Saul’s men, and they also prophesied. Saul was told about it, and he sent more men, and they prophesied too. Saul sent men a third time, and they also prophesied. Finally, he himself left for Ramah and went to the great cistern at Seku. And he asked, “Where are Samuel and David?”

“Over in Naioth at Ramah,” they said.
So Saul went to Naioth at Ramah. But the Spirit of God came even on him, and he walked along prophesying until he came to Naioth. He stripped off his garments, and he too prophesied in Samuel’s presence. He lay naked all that day and all that night. This is why people say, “Is Saul also among the prophets?”


Talk about the power of God moving! When we do the praying, God does the acting.

Prayer:


Dear God,

We thank you for your grace. Thank you for having our backs when we are literally up against the wall from our enemies. Please help us to remember to set boundaries and pray when we are surrounded by toxic people.

In your name,
Amen

Episode 28: Bad Advice

Episode 28: Bad Advice

advice, emotional health, mental health, Rehoboam, Jeroboam, stoning, bad advise, katina horton, pdocaster, podcasting, blog, blogging, blogger

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In case you missed our last episode, Episode 27, Simply Grace, you can check that one out first. Click here. Today’s episode is entitled, “Bad Advice”.

advice, emotional health, mental health, Rehoboam, Jeroboam, stoning, bad advise, katina horton, pdocaster, podcasting, blog, blogging, blogger
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

Bad Advice Podcast Outline

  • Dissecting Decision-Making
  • Younger Adult Advice
  • Same Age Group Adult Advice
  • Older Adult Advice
  • What the Bible Says About Advice
  • Bad Advise
  • Rehoboam’s Advice
  • Solutions for Advice
  • Our Charge

Welcome to Healing Our Brokenness Episode 28, entitled, “Bad Advice”.

Dissecting Decision-Making

When it comes to making decisions, some of us take way too long.  Others of us make decisions too fast.  We wish that we had thought things over well.  A lot of times, bad decisions can’t be erased.  The domino effect can be felt for years.  When we make decisions, sometimes we include God and other times we leave him out.   God also uses other wisdom-filled people filled with discernment to help us make decisions.  Ultimately, we have to decide what we are going to do.  Other people can’t make us decide to do what’s best.   

Younger Adult Advice

It is good to gather advice from our younger friends.  These friends are more than likely raising children younger than ours.  They can cause us to have a come to Jesus moment about some of the crazy perfectionistic moments that we had with our kids when they were little, use this advice for our grandkids, and see how it is when younger adults are active in community.  Some of our younger friends have been through a lot, and they have old souls.  They can give as much advice as an older person. 

Same Age Group Adult Advice

The next group of advice can be given from same age-group friends.  These friends can give us a different view than we are currently using in raising children, making friends, and living in community.  Since God hasn’t made any two people the same, our same-age group friends can help us to reframe what we are thinking regarding life, and vice versa.  We tend to share parenting kids of the same age group, and thus we can share similarities and differences.  If we are in community with safe friends, then they will go there and tell us what we need to hear.

Older Adult Advice

Our older friends have been there and done that.  They have years of advice and experience to give us.  They can serve as mentors for the younger and middle-aged adults.  They can tell us the lessons they have learned from their struggles in life.  Older people are less into the comparison trap and caring what other people think.  They have more of the you do you and let me do me.  They help us to be more at ease.  I praise God for my older friends who are indeed old enough to be my mother.  They have helped me in parenting, living life, and being me. 

What does scripture say about giving advice/training different age groups?

In Titus 2, it reads:

Titus 2 New International Version (NIV)

Doing Good for the Sake of the Gospel

You, however, must teach what is appropriate to sound doctrine.Teach the older men to be temperate, worthy of respect, self-controlled, and sound in faith, in love and in endurance.

Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.

Similarly, encourage the young men to be self-controlled. In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us.

Bad Advice

 We’ve all had times when we’ve gotten bad advice.  And this is where we have to use discernment and proceed with caution.  Healing advice from a person who has been stuck in self-pity or blame for 15 to 20 years and is seeing no way out wouldn’t be in our best interest.

Getting advice for how to deal with your spouse from a person who hates all men or all women because they were wounded by one wouldn’t be in our best interest as well.

Rehoboam got advice from the younger men in his age group.  And it was the worst advice ever.  Jeroboam had expressed to Rehoboam that his father Solomon had a heavy labor load on them.  They wanted the load to be lightened.  The older men who advised Solomon said to lighten the load. The younger men who were Rehoboam’s friends, said to increase the load.  Not only did he deliver this awful news to Jeroboam and the people, but he was filled with contempt and nasty with the message’s deliverance:

Let’s listen in:

1 Kings 12 New International Version (NIV)

Israel Rebels Against Rehoboam

12 Rehoboam went to Shechem, for all Israel had gone there to make him king. When Jeroboam son of Nebat heard this (he was still in Egypt, where he had fled from King Solomon), he returned from[a]Egypt. So they sent for Jeroboam, and he and the whole assembly of Israel went to Rehoboam and said to him: “Your father put a heavy yoke on us, but now lighten the harsh labor and the heavy yoke he put on us, and we will serve you.”

Rehoboam answered, “Go away for three days and then come back to me.” So the people went away.

Then King Rehoboam consulted the elders who had served his father Solomon during his lifetime. “How would you advise me to answer these people?” he asked.

They replied, “If today you will be a servant to these people and serve them and give them a favorable answer, they will always be your servants.”

But Rehoboam rejected the advice the elders gave him and consulted the young men who had grown up with him and were serving him. He asked them, “What is your advice? How should we answer these people who say to me, ‘Lighten the yoke your father put on us’?”

10 The young men who had grown up with him replied, “These people have said to you, ‘Your father put a heavy yoke on us, but make our yoke lighter.’ Now tell them, ‘My little finger is thicker than my father’s waist. 11 My father laid on you a heavy yoke; I will make it even heavier. My father scourged you with whips; I will scourge you with scorpions.’”

12 Three days later Jeroboam and all the people returned to Rehoboam, as the king had said, “Come back to me in three days.” 13 The king answered the people harshly. Rejecting the advice given him by the elders, 14 he followed the advice of the young men and said, “My father made your yoke heavy; I will make it even heavier. My father scourgedyou with whips; I will scourge you with scorpions.” 15 So the king did not listen to the people, for this turn of events was from the Lord, to fulfill the word the Lord had spoken to Jeroboam son of Nebat through Ahijahthe Shilonite.

16 When all Israel saw that the king refused to listen to them, they answered the king:

“What share do we have in David,
    what part in Jesse’s son?
To your tents, Israel!
    Look after your own house, David!”

So the Israelites went home. 17 But as for the Israelites who were living in the towns of Judah, Rehoboam still ruled over them.

18 King Rehoboam sent out Adoniram,[b] who was in charge of forced labor, but all Israel stoned him to death. King Rehoboam, however, managed to get into his chariot and escape to Jerusalem. 19 So Israel has been in rebellion against the house of David to this day.

This one bad decision that king Rehoboam made caused a domino effect. 

So, the question is:  how do we combat bad advice?

  1. Remember God’s advice is the best advice.
  2. Pray!!!!
  3. Don’t forsake the advice of our elders, especially when they have proven that they possess wisdom and discernment.
  4. Test the spirit as the scripture said.  God often uses what we think he is telling us by giving us confirmation through other people.

The question that I want to leave with you today is: “What bad advice were you given that you are still paying the price for today?

Thank you for being a part of our listening audience for Healing our Brokenness’ Episode 28:  “Bad Advice”.  If this podcast is making a difference in your life, please submit a review, tag a friend, subscribe on YouTube, iTunes, or wherever your podcast medium is located.

God bless and have a good week!

Entertaining Toxic People

psychology, emotional health, mental health, toxicity, emotinal abuse, emotionally drained, gossiping, discernment, entertaining, podcaster, recording, blogger, author, author life, katina horton, valley of grace

Weekend Food for thought.

When it comes to toxic people, it’s not a matter of if they will gossip, judge, or criticize others, it’s a matter of when. Have you ever entertained a toxic person? If you did, what were your reasons? Did you have a lot of regrets afterwards? Do you remember other people being hurt?

Chime in. Would love to hear your thoughts!!!

Simple Split Pea Soup

katina horton, simple split pea soup, soup, recipe, healthy eating, vegan, spinach, tomatoes,

Simple Split Pea Soup Book Exploration

A couple of days ago, I starting reading the book entitled, “The Gifts of Imperfection” by Brene Brown. I have only read a little bit so far. However, there is a story that Brene tells in the beginning that deals with a shame reel after she has given a presentation. I am very familiar with that reel myself.

We all have a series of events that happens when shame knocks at our door. When it comes to mine, it is usually trauma-induced. When a traumatic memory comes up, it may or may not be foreknown that this memory was traumatic for me. Not only does shame play itself out, but anxiety comes in.

I feel embarrassed, start self-protecting, anxiety sets in, and then I start wondering if I should be vulnerable and discuss this issue with my therapist. My shame reel plays by replaying how I will tell my therapist, what I will say, how she will react, and what she will say. This will keep playing until I am vulnerable and get the issue out. Shame is reduced at this point.

I think of it like God chipping away at a brick wall of my shame with a hammer when I allow vulnerability to take over.

Katina Horton

“Simple Split Pea Soup” Recipe

katina horton, simple split pea soup, soup, recipe, healthy eating, vegan, spinach, tomatoes,

Now, on to the recipe. I wanted to make something quick, and with adequate protein, and so, Easter weekend I made what I call, ” “Simple Split Pea Soup” .

This recipe only requires a few ingredients. The longest length of time is spent on the split peas boiling. Other than that, everything else is straightforward. As you are learning by now, I love using the combination of spinach and fire-roasted salsa tomatoes to add into a lot of my concoctions.

Total Prepping and Cooking Time:

1 hour 45 minutes

Ingredients

1 can of cut-leaf spinach

1 can of fire-roasted tomatoes

1 16 oz bag of split peas

3 tablespoons of oil or vegan butter

1 container of vegan broth

onion powder- 3 tablespoons

curry powder- 3 tablespoons

parsley – 3 tablespoons

cumin – 3 tablespoons

chili powder – 3 tablespoons

turmeric- 3 tablespoons

1/2 cup of quinoa

Directions

  • Boil the bag of split peas for 1 hour 45 minutes after quickly rinsing them off.
  • Boil the quinoa for 18 minutes.
  • While the split peas are boiling, saute the spinach and tomatoes with 2 tablespoons of oil or butter.
  • Add the saute mix and quinoa to the peas after 1 hour and 10 minutes, along with 1 tablespoon of oil.
  • Add the broth after 1 hour and 20 minutes, along with all the seasonings.
  • Let the soup boil for another 25 minutes and enjoy.
katina horton, simple split pea soup, soup, recipe, healthy eating, vegan, spinach, tomatoes,

Other Recipe Posts

Vegetarian Bean Party

Black Bean Mishmash


Episode 27: Simply Grace

recipes, healthy eating, poetry, poems, healing, brokenness, PTSD, trauma, abuse, katina horton, author, poet, healing our brokenness, episode 27

Episode 27: Simply Grace
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In case you missed our last episode, “The Sin of Cynicism-Part 2”, you can find that episode here. Today’s episode, Episode 27, is entitled Simply Grace. I hope that you enjoy this special poetry reading.

  • Simply Grace Podcast Outline:
  • Introduction
  • Dissection of Topics and Reading of Poetry
  • Closing Remarks
  • Show Transcript
recipes, healthy eating, poetry, poems, healing, brokenness, PTSD, trauma, abuse, katina horton, author, poet, healing our brokenness, episode 27

Welcome to the Healing Our Brokenness Podcast Episode 27: Simply Grace.  The intro and ending song that you hear on the podcast is entitled “Valley of Grace” and is song by Timothy Horton.  Today is a special episode.  Why is that?  I will be ready poetry from a book that I published back in February entitled, “Simply Grace”.  It is available on Amazon.  Simply Grace is a compilation of simple, healthy recipes that are mostly non-meat, along with poetry that tackles tough issues that we face every day.  However, these issues are seasoned with grace.  I deal with truth, so that the truth brings healing.  We are set free by true.  I also deal with raw emotions.

The first poem, entitled “The Quench” deals with Approval Addiction/Perfectionism/People Pleasing:

Reading of the poem

The next poem, entitled “The Source of Self-Worth” dissects our need for self-worth, and not just the need, but the struggle to get it from things, rather than the main source.

Reading of the poem

The next poem, entitled” Coat of Favor” deals with the Life of Joseph, his trials, and his redemption.

Reading of the Poem

Have you ever taken matters into your own hands, instead of waiting on God?  The next poem deals with just that.  It is entitled, “Oh, The Pain of Waiting”.

Reading of the Poem

For those of us who have been through abuse, we must relearn what love is.  That is what” Abide My Love, Dance with Me” is all about: God’s love poured out on me to reshape my thoughts on abuse.  Secondly, it describes how I danced with my Heavenly Father during a period of trials and financial despair, and how God “showed me his back” as his showed Moses, so to speak, by allowing me to feel his presence for several hours.

Reading of the Poem

The last poem, “I am the Vine, And So Is It Time?” deals with a combination of things:  the Crucifixion of Jesus on the Cross, John 15, and the Clematis vine that I attempted to tie to the trellis last spring as I was getting bit by mosquitos.  The first time that I attempted this adventure, there were too many mosquitos out.   The second and final time I was finally able to do it.  However, just within the few days of break in between, the clematis vine had completely wrapped itself around one of the heucheras.  It was a wonderful way to see the scriptures in action.

Reading of the Poem

Thank you for listening to Episode 27: Simply Grace, and if you are enjoying the Healing Our Brokenness Podcast, please recommend a friend, share on social media, and/or subscribe to hear us on Youtube, Itunes, Google Play, Stitcher, and Spotify.  You can also listen to us on the blog.

God bless!! Until Next time!

Vulnerability

poetry, katina horton, podcaster, author, poem, emotional health, mental health, connecting, heart matters, vulnerability, trust, safe people, unsafe people

Today’s poem, “Vulnerability” discusses the apprehension and reward that occurs when we embrace vulnerability. Enjoy the journey!

poetry, katina horton, podcaster, author, poem, emotional health, mental health, connecting, heart matters, vulnerability, trust, safe people, unsafe people
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

Vulnerability

Connecting.

With People.

Go Deeper.

Be Strong.

Inviting.

Them in.

Is it Safe?

Am I Wrong?

poetry, katina horton, podcaster, author, poem, emotional health, mental health, connecting, heart matters, vulnerability, trust, safe people, unsafe people
Photo by Vlad Bagacian on Pexels.com

Vulnerability.

Is A Journey.

Once

They’ve Proven.

They Are Safe.

And

Our Path

of

Discovery

Helps Us

Finish

Our Own Race.

Other poems:

The Work of the Potter

Refusal to Heal

Episode 26: The Sin of Cynicism-Part 2

emotional health, mental health, psychology, spiritual health, katina horton, podcasting, podcast, blog, author life, scornful, prodigal son, Jonah, bitterness, resentment, cynical, sin, anger

Episode 26: The Sin of Cynicism-Part 2
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In case you missed last week’s recording, “The Sin of Cynicism-Part 1”, you can find that here. Today’s recording is Episode 26-The Sin of Cynicism-Part 2.

The Sin of Cynicism-Part 2 Outline

  • Reflection on Part 1
  • Dissection of The Older Brother
  • Jonah’s Rights
  • Our Rights
  • Solution
  • Closing
  • Podcast Transcript

Welcome to Healing Our Brokenness Part 2.  Today’s recording is episode 26:  The Sin of Cynicism-Part 2.  Just as a quick recap from Part 1, we discussed the fact that Cynicism has several factors that lead up to its brokenness as a state of mind:

Reflection on Part 1

Those factors are:

  • You have experienced a lot of issues with betrayal.
  • There are historical patterns of things not working out in your favor, or working out in a way that is undesirable to you.
  • You get to the point of seeing too much and hearing too much to think that things will be different.
  • Most of the people that you trusted let you down.
  • The few times that you thought things would turn out good, they turned out bad, and you lost faith in believing that things could be different.

In the case of the two stories that we are going to look at today, the two biblical characters carried out the sin of cynicism because of two main reasons:

  • The historical pattern of character of the authority figures.
  • The lack of legalism that existed for these authority figures.

The two men that we are going to dissect is Jonah and the older brother of the prodigal son. 

Their reasons for cynicism contradict the normal factors.  Cynicism set in with both of these men because of the recognition of the good qualities of the father and God.

Dissection of The Older Brother

  • Let’s explore the story of the prodigal son first.
  • The dad was gracious, merciful, slow to anger, kind, forgiving, accepting, non-judgmental, long-suffering, and compassionate.

After the prodigal son returned home penniless, hungry, and exhausted from wild living, the father could have greeted him with judgment, coldness, and distance.  Instead he accepted his son, welcomed him with a grateful heart that he was safe and sound, and embraced him for who he was. 

The fact that he ran to meet him to diffuse being shamed by the community was a bonus.  It showed the son that he was going to be welcomed.  There is nothing worse than messing up big time, and not knowing what other Christians are going to say as you reenter the house of God or run into them while you are in public.

Luke 15 tells us:  But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.

And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.

22 But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:

23 And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:

24 For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.

The father knew that hitting rock bottom was enough of a consequence for the younger son.  He didn’t need to enforce further punishment.  He also possessed enough self-acceptance that he didn’t worry about being embarrassed in regard to the reaction of the community.

Oh Self-Pity

The older son dwelled on his sin of cynicism that is evidenced through dialog that is filled with scornfulness, bitterness, and resentment.  He felt that he had been failed.  He didn’t focus on his younger brother’s condition of going from “lost to found”.  Along with his cynicism, he was filled with self-pity and envy: Luke 15: 28-31 reads:  “28 And he was angry, and would not go in: therefore came his father out, and intreated him.

29 And he answering said to his father, Lo, these many years do I serve thee, neither transgressed I at any time thy commandment: and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that I might make merry with my friends:

30 But as soon as this thy son was come, which hath devoured thy living with harlots, thou hast killed for him the fatted calf.

31 And he said unto him, Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine.

32 It was meet that we should make merry and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.

The father tried to get the older son to go in twice.  We are left wondering what eventually happened.  Did he stay outside and continue to sulk?  One thing this clear about the brother’s dialog is that not only is he resentful, but he is filled with broken thinking.  Two words suggest broken thinking when resentment is present: “always and never”.

Our dialog goes something like this: 

“I always have to clean the house.”

“She always gets to do something special.”

“I never have the opportunity to do anything.”

Nine times out of ten, these statements aren’t true.  If they are true, there is some type of dynamic that has been setup that needs to change.  Or, perhaps, the financial situation has changed that allows you to do more for the younger child than you were able to do for the older child.  Whatever the case may be, broken thinking is present.

First-born children tend to be rule-followers.  With that thought in mind, the older son definitely felt that he was cheated since he was the “rule-follower”.  However, one thing about rule followers is that they can get caught up in being legalistic because they follow the rules.  God is more concerned about our hearts than checking off boxes to say that we did something.

Let’s explore the story of Jonah.

Jonah was told to go to Nineveh to warn them about their sin and God’s judgment for their sin if they continued going in the direction that they were going.

Jonah decided that he knew best, and so, he skipped out on the trip altogether, and took a boat ride to a different part of town.  God had a fish to swallow Jonah.  And Jonah prayed inside of the fish for God’s mercy and grace, and the fish released Jonah. 

Let’s discuss the character of the authority figure in Jonah’s story.

In Jonah’s story, this figure is God.  Not surprisingly, the dad in our first story is actually a representation of God.

What are the characteristics of God that Jonah was familiar with?

  • God was gracious, merciful, slow to anger, kind, forgiving, accepting, non-judgmental, long-suffering, and compassionate.

In Jonah’s story, Jonah was bitter, resentful, and cynical because God proved that his heart was all of those characteristics that were just mentioned.  It was okay for God to have all these attributes when it came to saving him.  However, it wasn’t okay for him to possess them when it came to saving the Ninevites.

 

God gave Jonah a chance to get it right.  He sent him to Nineveh a second time:

 

Jonah 3 King James Version (KJV)

And the word of the Lord came unto Jonah the second time, saying,

Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee.

So Jonah arose, and went unto Nineveh, according to the word of theLord. Now Nineveh was an exceeding great city of three days’ journey.

And Jonah began to enter into the city a day’s journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.

Part 2

So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.

For word came unto the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and he laid his robe from him, and covered him with sackcloth, and sat in ashes.

And he caused it to be proclaimed and published through Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying, Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any thing: let them not feed, nor drink water:

But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn everyone from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands.

Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not?

The Ninevites didn’t have to suffer consequences because they repented right away: 

Jonah 4: 10 says:

10 And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not.

Like the older brother in the prodigal son story, Jonah was so angry that he didn’t know what to do with himself.  God tried reasoning with him.  Unfortunately, Jonah wasn’t haven’t it.

His cynicism showed up in verses 1-2, when he basically said, “See, this is why I didn’t do what you told me.  I know this is how you would respond.”

Here are his exact words: “But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was very angry.

And he prayed unto the Lord, and said, I pray thee, O Lord, was not this my saying, when I was yet in my country? Therefore I fled before unto Tarshish: for I knew that thou art a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repentest thee of the evil.

God told Jonah that the people were lost, just as the father tried to help his older son to understand about the prodigal: 

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Jonah 4: 7-11, KJV

But God prepared a worm when the morning rose the next day, and it smote the gourd that it withered.

And it came to pass, when the sun did arise, that God prepared a vehement east wind; and the sun beat upon the head of Jonah, that he fainted, and wished in himself to die, and said, It is better for me to die than to live.

And God said to Jonah, Doest thou well to be angry for the gourd? And he said, I do well to be angry, even unto death.

10 Then said the Lord, Thou hast had pity on the gourd, for the which thou hast not laboured, neither madest it grow; which came up in a night, and perished in a night:

11 And should not I spare Nineveh, that great city, wherein are more than sixscore thousand persons that cannot discern between their right hand and their left hand; and also much cattle?

Jonah and His Rights

Jonah pouted outside of the city underneath the tree just as the older brother pouted outside of the party celebration that was going on inside for the prodigal son.  Both men felt that they were right.  Both authority figures tried reasoning with them twice.  Both were caught up in anger, bitterness, resentment, and cynicism.  And both missed out on blessings because of it.  But why?  They ignored the sovereignty of God.  We have all been in both of their shoes.  WE know best.  WE know what justice should look like.  WE can play God and have mercy and grace poured out on us, and others should not.  When we don’t adhere to God’s plans, his timing, and his will, we trade whole faith for broken pieces of bitterness, resentment, and cynicism every time.

When cynicism becomes our brokenness, it becomes our idol, and we began to scorn God directly and indirectly because of our trials and other peoples’ success.  This is how Satan works.  If he can get us to lose trust in our faith due to our trials, others’ brokenness, and the hurt and pain of “church hurt”.  Then, he has got us.

Solutions

So, the question is, how do we get out of this sin.  Prayer.  Lots of it.  Cynicism is spiritual like all other sin.  Getting grounded in our identity.  Getting rid of our broken thinking.  Changed thinking equals changed talking and changed talking equals changed behavior.  Accept that God is sovereign.  Pray and ask God to help you to be able to trust again, knowing that we can’t live in this world without it.  It takes time to heal, but it is possible.  Trust God’s sovereignty and plans for our lives.

I hope that you have enjoyed today’s episode.  Thank you for listening, and if today’s episode has impressed upon your heart, share it with a friend or coworker.

God bless!