Episode 35: The Value of Prayer

prayer, value, the value of prayer, healing, healing our brokenness, Jesus praying, valley of grace, simple functional grace-filled living, katina horton, podcast, podcasting

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In case you missed our last episode on surrendering, you can find it here. Today’s episode is Episode 35: The Value of Prayer. What are some of the things that you value in life? Why do you value them? Have you ever thought about prayer having value? Tune in to our latest episode to find out why prayer should be at the top of our list.

The Value of Prayer Podcast Outline

  • Necessity of Prayer
  • Examples of Prayer
  • Praying for Our Children
  • The Act of Praying Over Food
  • We Can Pray Alone
  • Podcast Transcript

Welcome to Healing Our Brokenness. Today’s episode is entitled, “The Value of Prayer”.

prayer, value, the value of prayer, healing, healing our brokenness, Jesus praying, valley of grace, simple functional grace-filled living, katina horton, podcast, podcasting
Photo by Brodie Vissers

Value of Prayer

Prayer is necessary in developing our relationship with God.  Sometimes the hardest part about doing anything, including prayer is getting started.  Satan fills our hearts with so many excuses as to why we aren’t doing something, when the bottom line is that once we are willing to start, God can give us the desire, strength, and perseverance to finish: “For I am confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will continue to perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.   (Philippians 1:6, BSB)  Jesus’ prayer life was a perfect example of the who, what, when, where and how’s of praying. 

Luke gives us an account of the impact placed on one of Jesus’ disciples from watching him pray, and witnessing John teaching his disciples.  He wanted in on this action:  “Now Jesus was praying in a certain place, and when he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.  And he said to them, “When you pray, say: “Father, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. “(Luke 11:1-2, ESV) When we pray with earnest hearts and conviction, it rubs off on other people, and they want what we have.

Jesus showed us how to pray for our children:  “Then people brought little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked them.  Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” When he had placed his hands on them, he went on from there.” (Matthew 19:13-15, NIV)

When our children are little, there are so many ways that we can pray for and with them.  We can place them on our laps and pray for them, and as they get older, we can pray for them even as they are sleeping.  Sometimes I have found myself praying with my kids before they leave out the door on the way to school, or as we are literally pulling out of the driveway to begin our day.  There is no better example of showing that there are no restrictions when telling our children about God, his goodness, and his Word than in Deuteronomy 11: 19-21:  “You shall teach them to your children, speaking of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. And you shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, that your days and the days of your children may be multiplied in the land of which the Lord swore to your fathers to give them, like the days of the heavens above the earth.”(NKJV)

Jesus showed us how to pray over and give thanks for our food.  He showed us that even though he was the one distributing the food, the fact that he had it to give himself was God’s grace:  “After he said this, he took some bread and gave thanks to God in front of them all. Then he broke it and began to eat.” (Acts 27:35, NIV) 

The two fish and five loaves of bread multiplied after he said the blessing.  This was a pure reenactment of the story of Elijah and the widow at Zarephath.  Jesus showed us the results of what the power of praying and trusting in God with the little we have can do:   “And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children.  (Matthew 14: 19-21, NIV)

Jesus showed us the importance and power of praying with others.  Luke 9:28 tells us, “About eight days after Jesus said this, he took Peter, John and James with him and went up onto a mountain to pray.”(NIV)  There is something about experiencing the presence of the Holy Spirt as we pray with others.

Jesus also showed us the importance of praying alone: “After dismissing the crowds, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. When evening came, He was there alone.”  (Matthew 14: 23, Holman)  In order to avoid suffering burnout and spiritual emptiness, there is a need for us to pour into ourselves before we can pour into others.  Once we are filled up, we are ready to go out and serve.

Dear Father,

We thank you for your grace and power of prayer.  Please help us to remember that prayer reaches the doors of heaven, and changes things.  We also ask that you would help us to get into the habit of developing a routine for prayer, whether it is by ourselves or with others. 

In your name we pray,

Amen

Thank you for visiting Healing Our Brokenness, and if this episode has blessed you in any way, please tag a friend on Social Media, share it, review it on Itunes, and pray for the show as well.

Until next time,

Blessings!

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Episode 32: Surprised by Provision

surprised, abandonment, podcast, podcasting, episode 32, provision, disappointment, psychology, emotional health, mental health, katina horton, healing our brokenness, bread, Moabitess, Ruth, Naomi, Elimelech

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Surprised by Provision Podcast Outline

  • Disappointment
  • Naomi’s Disappointment
  • Naomi’s Surprise
  • My Disappointment
  • My Surprise
  • Podcast Transcript

Surprised by Provision

surprised, abandonment, podcast, podcasting, episode 32, provision, disappointment, psychology, emotional health, mental health, katina horton, healing our brokenness, bread, Moabitess, Ruth, Naomi, Elimelech
Photo by Sheila Pedraza Burke

Disappointment

There are a lot of things that happen in life that we are just not prepared for handling.  As a matter of fact, if God revealed to us what was on the way, we’d take off running in the other direction.  Sometimes one thing happens, and that one thing ends up changing your entire world for what you know it to be. 

Naomi’s Disappointment

That is what happened to Naomi.  She was surprised by disappointment, and then surprised by provision.

Naomi and her husband Elimelech, and their two sons decided to leave Bethlehem and reside in Moab because of the famine.  Instead of life getting better at this point, it got worse.  Elimelech died.  Their two sons found wives and got married.  Then their two sons died.

Naomi decided to go back to Bethlehem, since she heard that they had bread again.  She figured that this might be a small sign of God’s provision.  Naomi told her two daughters-in-law to head back to their homelands so that they could find husbands, since she didn’t have any more sons.   Orpah left, but Ruth decided to stay:

 

And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: (Ruth 1:16, KJV)

The Return

When they returned to Bethlehem, it was evident that Naomi was surprised by God’s provision:

So they two went until they came to Bethlehem. And it came to pass, when they were come to Bethlehem, that all the city was moved about them, and they said, Is this Naomi?

 And she said unto them, Call me not Naomi, call me Mara: for the Almighty hath dealt very bitterly with me.

 I went out full and the Lord hath brought me home again empty: why then call ye me Naomi, seeing the Lord hath testified against me, and the Almighty hath afflicted me?

 So Naomi returned, and Ruth the Moabitess, her daughter in law, with her, which returned out of the country of Moab: and they came to Bethlehem in the beginning of barley harvest.  (Ruth 1: 19-22, KJV)

Neither Ruth nor Naomi had a clue that going back to Bethlehem would bring surprise provision itself.  They went back for bread.  God had a little bit more than bread waiting for them.  He slowly began to reveal his plan.    

Ruth went out to glean corn, and she met a man named Boaz.  They had a conversation, and Boaz let on to Ruth that God was recompensing her work for her full diligence:

 

And Boaz answered and said unto her, It hath fully been shewed me, all that thou hast done unto thy mother in law since the death of thine husband: and how thou hast left thy father and thy mother, and the land of thy nativity, and art come unto a people which thou knewest not heretofore.

The Lord recompense thy work, and a full reward be given thee of the Lord God of Israel, under whose wings thou art come to trust.

(Ruth 2: 11-12, KJV)

When Ruth arrived back home, Naomi questioned her about the food.  Ruth told her that she had met a man by the name of Boaz.  Naomi knew this was good news:

And Naomi said unto her daughter in law, Blessed be he of the Lord, who hath not left off his kindness to the living and to the dead. And Naomi said unto her, The man is near of kin unto us, one of our next kinsmen. (Ruth 2: 20, KJV )

According to the law, a kinsmen could be the redeemer if a relative died.  In this case, since Boaz was a kinsmen, he could redeem the land that belonged to Elimelech and his two sons.  However, there was a kinsmen even closer than Boaz.  This meant that he had first pick.  This relative didn’t want to forfeit his own inheritance.  Therefore, Boaz became the kinsmen redeemer.

And Boaz said unto the elders, and unto all the people, Ye are witnesses this day, that I have bought all that was Elimelech’s, and all that was Chilion’s and Mahlon’s, of the hand of Naomi.

 Moreover Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of Mahlon, have I purchased to be my wife, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance, that the name of the dead be not cut off from among his brethren, and from the gate of his place: ye are witnesses this day. (Ruth 4: 9-10, KJV)

Surprise

What a surprise!  The women encouraged Naomi, telling her that God hadn’t forgotten about her:  

And the women said unto Naomi, Blessed be the Lord, which hath not left thee this day without a kinsman, that his name may be famous in Israel.

 And he shall be unto thee a restorer of thy life, and a nourisher of thine old age: for thy daughter in law, which loveth thee, which is better to thee than seven sons, hath born him.  (Ruth 4: 14-15, KJV)

My Surprise Disappointment

At the age of 25, I had my surprise disappointment as well.  I was pregnant with my first child, and I worked all the way up to the day before delivery.  At the time, I was the breadwinner for the household, and I had all of the family health insurance in my name.  My son had his days and nights mixed up, and so for almost six weeks, I had between two to three hours of consecutive sleep during the night.  I was at the point of extreme exhaustion, and I could tell that my blood pressure was up. 

This was confirmed when the home nurse came out to check on me.  As soon as she checked my blood pressure, she knew that it was from lack of sleep.  Four days before my six weeks was up, my son started sleeping through the night for four consecutive

hours.  However, I knew that I would need two extra weeks of this before returning to work, or else my health would plummet.

I called my job and requested an additional two weeks off.  I was informed that if I didn’t come back right away, it would be considered job abandonment.  With $50 left to my name, and no emergency money, this was a hard call.  I hung up the phone, and then wrestled with what to do.  However, I also knew that if they were like this about my health, then they would be like this about my son’s health as well.  I decided not to go back, not sure of how I would make it.

My Surprise Provision

My son was almost three months old when I took him to his three-month checkup.  After the appointment, I decided to visit my old job, which was five minutes away.  I got caught up with everyone, and my old boss asked me when I would return to work.  I told my old boss what happened, and he said,” Just like that?”.  I replied,” Yes, just like that. End of story.”  We laughed, and he asked me what I thought of working for him again.  I thought he was joking, but he was dead serious.  What a surprise!  

Within two weeks, I was back to working again.  In the beginning, I worked a five-day week, then a 10 hour four-day week while my son was little, before moving on to a different job.  I didn’t know, but God knew that his divine providence was waiting for me at this place.  Like Naomi, All I had to do was to go back and get it. 

Dear God,

Thank you for helping us to step out on faith, even when we are not sure what you have in store for us.  In your name,

Amen

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It’s Your Calling

Episode 31: Giving the Best Gift

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

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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
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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
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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!

Episode 26: The Sin of Cynicism-Part 2

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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! 

Episode 23: Sabotaging Our Healing

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Episode 23: Sabotaging Our Healing
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Sabotaging Our Healing Podcast Outline

  • Sabotage Our Healing with Busyness and Instability
  • Sabotaging Our Healing by Allowing Shame and Perception Of Others to Reign
  • Sabotaging Our Healing by Surrounding Ourselves with Clutter
  • Lastly, we Sabotage Our Healing by Refusing to Do What We’re Told
  • Podcast Transcript

Good morning!  Welcome to Healing Our Brokenness.  And today we are recording Episode 23:  Sabotaging Our Healing.  When we think of the word sabotage, it suggests the following: “getting in the way, damaging, intentionally interrupting, preventing something from taking place.  When we think of sabotaging our healing, it means that we are harming or preventing ourselves from healing.  Since the rewards of healing is astronomical, why would we want to prevent ourselves from doing it?  There are several reasons why:

  • We’re afraid to face the pain.
  • We don’t want the work.
  • We don’t want to use our free time to do it.
  • We really don’t want to be free because we have been in bondage for so long, and so, the bondage that we know is better than the freedom that we don’t.

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There are several ways that we sabotage our healing:

 

  1. Sabotage Our Healing with Busyness and Instability- We will fill our days up from morning till night being busy so that we don’t have to sit long enough to feel.  If we work outside the home, we spend hours shopping after work before going home.  If we work inside the home, we make sure that we are busy from morning to night.  We think that we can outsmart our mind and emotions.  I have been guilty of doing this one myself.  What I noticed is that one of three things usually happen.

Situation 1:  When we finally lay down to go to bed, our minds are going 100 mph with anxiety.  We start going over all the things that we did during the day.  The feelings start coming up.  Our past starts knocking on our door.  Unhealed brokenness starts bleeding out.  Obtrusive thoughts start settling in.  Then, we end up not being able to go to sleep for several hours because our minds are trying to process everything that we didn’t allow it to process during the day.  Several days of this can turn into weeks, and then weeks into months.  And if we didn’t have trauma before, there is definitely a chance of developing it then.  We can only go so many days like this.  Our bodies can’t sustain this lifestyle without breaking down.

Situation 2:  We conk out as soon as our heads hit the pillow.  Because we haven’t processed anything, we are running on empty in every area.  We keep putting off dealing with certain things until they are a must.  And when we have to deal with it, we end up shutting down, or having a complete emotional meltdown/tantrum.  This can play out at work, school, home, church wherever.

When we are on emotional and mental overload, there is no way to control when and where it will come out.  Even now, I have to remind myself to take a break from work and give myself thirty minutes to lay down and think about nothing.  This became an issue for me after the trauma that occurred within the last seven years.  Believe it or not, as soon as I begin to relax, I can feel emotions coming up.  I also like to have reflection time in the morning when I wake up.  If I am in a rush and have to leave out an emotional mess from backed up grief, my emotions only intensify as the day goes on.

Situation 3:  We become consistently inconsistent at everything.  Lack of structure gets in the way of our healing.  When we are all over the place, our minds are all over the place, and then our lives and relationships are all over the place.

 

  1. Sabotaging Our Healing by Allowing Shame and Perception Of Others to Reign-This is also one that I am guilty of having to watch myself. If I allow my brokenness of perfectionism and the shame that it’s friends with to kick in, I am more tempted to want to hold off sharing with my life-giving friends or therapist about what is going on now, or a situation that happened in the past.

 

I get caught up wondering what the person will think of me, how I will be perceived, and the list goes on and on.  I also get caught up in wondering whether or not I will possibly “lose it” and have an “ugly face” cry in front of others.  I have to remind myself that these are safe people, and if I cry, so what!  I ‘m human.  We’re all broken.  Satan will try whatever way that he can to discourage us from being vulnerable.  Vulnerability in a safe environment with time and space chips away the stone of shame.

 

  1. Sabotaging Our Healing by Surrounding Ourselves with Clutter-We fill up every knick and cranny of our homes and our cars with clutter.  It prevents us from being able to gain clarity about anything.  It prevents us from having structure and space to feel.  We also have problems making decisions because the clutter is serving as an emotional pacifier.  As soon as the clutter starts being lifted, then we can be tempted to go back again.  Our addictions take the place of feeling the hurt and pain that we are holding keeping at bay.  Being surrounded by excessive clutter takes the place of being able to dig into our feelings.  Therefore, we often go back to our addictions.  The pain becomes too much to bear.  And instead of pressing in, we press out to comfort.

 

  1. Lastly, we Sabotage Our Healing by Refusing to Do What We’re Told-If our therapists, coaches, friends, pastors, or others give us godly counsel in regard to our behavior, we have already come up with 50 excuses as to why we can’t begin to make changes.  We are intent on doing it the way that we want to do it.  However, nine times out of ten, our way isn’t going to work.  If it was, we would have started making changes.

 

Naaman went to see Elisha in order to be healed from leprosy.  He almost sabotaged his own healing because he didn’t want to do what he was told.  He wanted Elisha to come out and do a powerful healing ceremony.  He thought that he was “too good” to stoop to Elisha’s healing instructions.  Elisha instructed him to wash in the Jordan seven times.  He finally did it, with some prodding from his servant.  But, he definitely wasn’t happy about it.

2 Kings 5

So Naaman went with his horses and chariots and stopped at the door of Elisha’s house. 10 Elisha sent a messenger to say to him, “Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed.”

11 But Naaman went away angry and said, “I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy. 12 Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Couldn’t I wash in them and be cleansed?” So he turned and went off in a rage.

13 Naaman’s servants went to him and said, “My father, if the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much more, then, when he tells you, ‘Wash and be cleansed’!” 14 So he went down and dipped himself in the Jordan seven times, as the man of God had told him, and his flesh was restored and became clean like that of a young boy.

 

Naaman almost missed out on his healing because he wanted it “his way”.  What happens when we want things our way?  We miss out on everything God has to offer and more.  God uses wise people to lead us to make wise decisions.  However, he will not beg us to do our part.

 

So, what is the solution to combatting sabotage?  Desiring a life that thrives over a life of stagnancy.   No one can give us the desire and motivation to heal.  Unfortunately, there is no magic formula.  The comfort is that Jesus will be there with us in the fire.  We can teach our kids and leave a legacy behind that stops the generational sins of our fathers.

 

God bless!  Thanks for listening to Episode 23:  Sabotaging Our Healing

 

 

 

 

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If you are ready to heal from Trauma or Any Brokenness, and you are tired of the Sabotage Cycle, check out brokenpieces.teachable.com for Two Courses:  Broken Pieces:  From Survival Mode to the Life of Thriving & De-Clutter Your Home, De-Clutter Your Mind, and De-Clutter Your Life

 

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Episode 20: Just a Little White Lie

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Episode 20: Just a Little White Lie
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If you missed the last episode, you can grab it here. Today’s episode deals with something that we have all found ourselves doing. Click and take a listen!

Episode 20: Just a Little White Lie Podcast Outline

  • What are we lying about?
  • Two Stories of Biblical Lying
  • Podcast Transcript
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Hello!

Welcome to Valley of Grace’s Healing Our Brokenness.  Today I am featuring “Episode 20: Just A Little White Lie”.  Lying is something that we have all done.  When we lie, and someone calls us out on it, our response is usually, “Oh it’s just a little white lie.  Everybody lies.” 

So, what are some of the things that we are lying about?  Sometimes when we lie, it is to spare hurting someone’s feelings.  Other times we lie to make ourselves look good, or as if we “have it altogether”, when we don’t.  When we enter the church doors on Sunday morning, and we are greeting other Sisters and Brothers in Christ, and they ask about our status, we are afraid to tell them “Okay” or “Not too Good at the Present moment”, or “I’m going through trials at the present moment, but I know that God is good.”  Forbid if we get real.  No, we have to say, “Really Good” or “Good”.  Or better yet, “ Fine.”

The last one was one of my favorites until I saw how jacked up that made me feel afterwards.  If I was not fine at the time, and I tried to outwardly act like I was happy go lucky, my emotional and mental state knew that something wasn’t matching up.  It would actually cause me to experience the trauma symptom of having dysregulated emotions and depression.  Go figure.  

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A few months after I started noticing that was happening, I read a psychology article stating that it makes your emotions harder to control when you do this.  Not that we should wallow in self-pity or anything, but when you think about it, we are one way, and trying to signal our emotions and body to do a quick 360 degree turnaround and be okay.  The answer is “No” to that one.

r emotions and body to do a quick 360 degree turnaround and be okay.  The answer is “No” to that one.

What else are we lying about?

We lie about our jobs, the kind of cars that we drive, our marital status, and whether we were at home when someone tried to reach us.

When we’re at work, and the ladies or men are in a huddle talking about their kids and their extracurricular activities, material possessions, or their socioeconomic statuses, we lie about ours.

When we are in our church small groups, we lie about our woundedness for fear that everybody else will have lighter sins and issues than us.  We don’t want to look “too broken”.  We have to look as close to Jesus “perfect” as possible.  When we lie and head to the perfection side of things, we actually cause someone else to miss their opportunity to know that they are not alone.  Not only that, we quench the Holy Spirit , and miss out on our blessing.

No matter where we are, we find ourselves lying about our intentions to others.  We come to them, telling them one thing.  However, our agenda is another.  In a lot of cases, the person that we are lying to is totally unaware of what is going on.  One thing about being actively in the pursuit of lying, there is always someone who witnesses what’s going on.  And if there isn’t what the other person doesn’t know, God knows.  And such is the situation that occurred with David.

David was on the run from Saul.  He was without food and weaponry.  He went to Ahimelek the priest and lied to him about his intentions. 

David at Nob

21 David went to Nob, to Ahimelek the priest. Ahimelek trembled when he met him, and asked, “Why are you alone? Why is no one with you?”

David answered Ahimelek the priest, “The king sent me on a mission and said to me, ‘No one is to know anything about the mission I am sending you on.’ As for my men, I have told them to meet me at a certain place. Now then, what do you have on hand? Give me five loaves of bread, or whatever you can find.”

But the priest answered David, “I don’t have any ordinary bread on hand; however, there is some consecrated bread here—provided the men have kept themselves from women.”

David replied, “Indeed women have been kept from us, as usual whenever I set out. The men’s bodies are holy even on missions that are not holy. How much more so today!” So the priest gave him the consecrated bread, since there was no bread there except the bread of the Presence that had been removed from before the Lord and replaced by hot bread on the day it was taken away.

Now one of Saul’s servants was there that day, detained before the Lord; he was Doeg the Edomite, Saul’s chief shepherd.

David asked Ahimelek, “Don’t you have a spear or a sword here? I haven’t brought my sword or any other weapon, because the king’s mission was urgent.”

The priest replied, “The sword of Goliath the Philistine, whom you killed in the Valley of Elah, is here; it is wrapped in a cloth behind the ephod. If you want it, take it; there is no sword here but that one.”

David said, “There is none like it; give it to me.”

David made the assumption that lying to Ahimelek would prevent Ahimelek from getting in the crossfire of Saul’s hunt for David’s life.  What David didn’t anticipate was the fact that Saul’s right-hand man, Doeg, the Edomite, would be hanging around Nob, witnessing the whole transaction that occurred between him and Ahimelek.  Therefore, Doeg was going to give Saul the report according to his perception of what he saw. 

David underestimated the demonic forces that he was dealing with.  If Saul was willing to kill his own son, what would he do to someone who wasn’t? So, what ended up happening?  Just as we are thinking, Doeg tricked on David.  Basically, he said something like this, “Saul, guess who I saw over in Nob, getting Ahimelek’s blessing?”

Here is the scripture of how it played out: 

Saul Kills the Priests of Nob

Now Saul heard that David and his men had been discovered. And Saul was seated, spear in hand, under the tamarisk tree on the hill at Gibeah, with all his officials standing at his side. He said to them, “Listen, men of Benjamin! Will the son of Jesse give all of you fields and vineyards? Will he make all of you commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds? Is that why you have all conspired against me? No one tells me when my son makes a covenant with the son of Jesse. None of you is concerned about me or tells me that my son has incited my servant to lie in wait for me, as he does today.”

But Doeg the Edomite, who was standing with Saul’s officials, said, “I saw the son of Jesse come to Ahimelek son of Ahitub at Nob. 10 Ahimelek inquired of the Lord for him; he also gave him provisions and the swordof Goliath the Philistine.”

11 Then the king sent for the priest Ahimelek son of Ahitub and all the men of his family, who were the priests at Nob, and they all came to the king. 12 Saul said, “Listen now, son of Ahitub.”

“Yes, my lord,” he answered.

13 Saul said to him, “Why have you conspired against me, you and the son of Jesse, giving him bread and a sword and inquiring of God for him, so that he has rebelled against me and lies in wait for me, as he does today?”

14 Ahimelek answered the king, “Who of all your servants is as loyal as David, the king’s son-in-law, captain of your bodyguard and highly respected in your household? 15 Was that day the first time I inquired of God for him? Of course not! Let not the king accuse your servant or any of his father’s family, for your servant knows nothing at all about this whole affair.”

16 But the king said, “You will surely die, Ahimelek, you and your whole family.”

17 Then the king ordered the guards at his side: “Turn and kill the priests of the Lord, because they too have sided with David. They knew he was fleeing, yet they did not tell me.”

But the king’s officials were unwilling to raise a hand to strike the priests of the Lord.

18 The king then ordered Doeg, “You turn and strike down the priests.”So Doeg the Edomite turned and struck them down. That day he killed eighty-five men who wore the linen ephod. 19 He also put to the swordNob, the town of the priests, with its men and women, its children and infants, and its cattle, donkeys and sheep.

20 But one son of Ahimelek son of Ahitub, named Abiathar, escaped and fled to join David. 21 He told David that Saul had killed the priests of the Lord. 22 Then David said to Abiathar, “That day, when Doeg the Edomite was there, I knew he would be sure to tell Saul. I am responsible for the death of your whole family. 23 Stay with me; don’t be afraid. The man who wants to kill you is trying to kill me too. You will be safe with me.”

 David’s lying caused Ahimilek, and all of his household, except for one, and all the other priests of Nob to be killed. 

Stewardship Lying

The last thing that I want to talk about are the lies we tell about our stewardship.  When we find out others are giving more money than we are, we tend to lie about how much we are giving.  When it comes to lying about stewardship, we are lying to God, not men.

If we were able to, we would go back in time and ask Ananias and Sapphira about this.  The Christians over in the book of Acts were on fire after being filled with the Holy Ghost.  They operated on “one accord” at the time.  If there were any brethren in need, they would sell their additional land, and then offer it up to the disciples.  No one was without.  Ananias and Sapphira sold some of their land. Their desire was to keep back of the money for themselves.  They could have expressed this to the disciples, but they didn’t.  Selling your land was an act of the heart and will.  It wasn’t a force situation.

The thing is, they wanted to appear super generous like everyone else.  Unfortunately, their lies caught up with them, and then cost both of them their lives:

Ananias and Sapphira

Now a man named Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, also sold a piece of property. With his wife’s full knowledge he kept back part of the money for himself, but brought the rest and put it at the apostles’ feet.

Then Peter said, “Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? Didn’t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn’t the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied just to human beings but to God.”

When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died. And great fear seized all who heard what had happened. Then some young men came forward, wrapped up his body, and carried him out and buried him.

About three hours later his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. Peter asked her, “Tell me, is this the price you and Ananias got for the land?”

“Yes,” she said, “that is the price.”

Peter said to her, “How could you conspire to test the Spirit of the Lord? Listen! The feet of the men who buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out also.”

10 At that moment she fell down at his feet and died. Then the young men came in and, finding her dead, carried her out and buried her beside her husband. 11 Great fear seized the whole church and all who heard about these events.

And so, the question that I will leave you with is this, “What “little white lie” are we telling that could heap disastrous results?

Thank you for listening to another episode of Healing Our Brokenness.

Episode 19: Anxiety!

ptsd, self-inflicted, hereditary, anxiety, mental health, emotional health, blog, podcast, podcasting, author, blogger, valley of grace blog, healing our brokenness, katina horton,

Episode 19: Anxiety!
Healing Our Brokenness Podcast Seri...

 
 
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Anxiety is something that we will all face in life. The causes of anxiety and the solutions for dealing with this common problem will vary from person to person. Listen in to Episode 19 as I discuss this topic.

ptsd, self-inflicted, hereditary, anxiety, mental health, emotional health, blog, podcast, podcasting, author, blogger, valley of grace blog, healing our brokenness, katina horton,
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Episode 19: Podcast Outline

  • Introduction
  • Normal Anxiety
  • Clinical Anxiety
  • Trying to be Sovereign Anxiety
  • Self-Inflicted Anxiety
  • Trauma-Induced
  • David on Anxiety
  • Solutions for Anxiety

Good morning!  Welcome to Valley of Grace’s Healing Our Brokenness podcast.  Today, you are listening to Episode 19: Anxiety! 

Introduction

Picture this scene:  I was in 7th grade, and at the time, I enjoyed competing in oratorical contests for fun.  However, because my mother was a single parent, and had to work, she was never able to come to see me compete.  I should have been grateful that she was working.  However, I got caught up on her being there.  She finally decided to come.  However, she forgot to forewarn me.  I was on the stage, and she waved to show me that she was there, and my mind went blank after the first two lines.  I could hear my words trembling, and feel my whole body shaking intensely.  She hadn’t done anything wrong, but my lack of preparedness for her coming totally threw me for a loop.

Normal Anxiety

When we hear the word anxiety, all kinds of thoughts come to mind.  Anxiety is normal in certain cases.  For example, recently I was waiting for the test results from a mammogram, and as I was listening to the person on the phone, I became anxious as I proposed what her words would be and how I would react to them.  Anxiety can sneak upon us as we get ready to take a quiz, and it can cause us to forget everything that we were going to say. 

Hereditary Anxiety

Anxiety can be debilitating.  This type can often be hereditary and would fall under the column of anxiety disorder.  That means that if our grandparents and parents have suffered from anxiety disorder, then it is a high chance that we could be dealing with the same issue.  When we suffer from this kind of anxiety, it is something that we had no control over. 

Trying to be Sovereign Anxiety

There is, however, another kind of anxiety that I am going to discuss.  This type of anxiety is from the things that we place on ourselves.  Examples of this is trying to fix problems that we don’t have control over.  We try to control our adult children and the mistakes that they make in their lives. There is a desire to control whether or not people will accept or reject our uniqueness. 

We try to control whether the job that we have had for over 15 years will be the job that we retire from. Do you control the discipline that God gives to a family or friend in regard to their sin, and in the process, we began to enable the individual?  When we try so hard to control, it only makes us more out of control.  This eagerness to control creates an addiction within itself.  This is what the devil doesn’t tell us.  We don’t know until it’s too late.

Self-Inflicted Anxiety

Another type of anxiety that we place on ourselves is that of making changes for the sake of coming out of vicious cycles.  For example:  Stacy notices that she has an anxiety attack every morning in regard to getting out the door and getting to work.  Reasoning:  Every morning Stacy stays in bed until 30 minutes before it’s time to leave to go to work.  She has to rush to put makeup on, get her breakfast, and pack her lunch.  Stacy knows what is behind this problem, but she fails to make the changes.  Stacy is self-sabotaging.

Scheduling is another type of self-inflicted anxiety.  This is the area that I am guilty of, and starting to make progress in.  We pile as much as we can into a given day.  The more things we keep adding to that list, the more things will be added to our list of anxiety about.  The first thing that we don’t consider is exactly how long it will take to get each thing done.  There are only so many hours in the day. 

If we work outside the home, those hours are shortened.  Unless we are God, there is no way that we can get all those things done, but we try.  Sometimes it is possible to get those things done, but we have used this time up on social media, or doing a little bit too much relaxing, only to start the vicious cycle all about again.

Trauma-Induced Anxiety

The last type of anxiety that I would like to discuss is that of trauma-induced anxiety.  Unfortunately, this kind is one that I am very familiar with.  One kind of trauma anxiety is created from having to be in hypervigilant mode all the time.  The other part of trauma anxiety that I have noticed for myself is that I might have a flashback or a trigger of something. 

Then, what happens is that my mind may start to think about the details and feelings that this event caused.  I push the thought away, thinking that maybe it is unimportant, only to realize later when it resurfaces, and continues to occupy my emotional and mental space, that it is something that I need to deal with.  However, since trauma wants to be in control, it will cause you to start self-protecting, and then rationalizing why you shouldn’t talk about this thing. 

You think you’ve somehow outsmarted trauma, but it outsmarts you because when this event keeps coming up, it usually causes anxiety to go from 0 to 1000 in your body, while the flashbacks are occurring, and what you don’t realize is that avoidance of discussion of this event is keeping the physical energy in your body, and delaying the healing at the same time. 

I learned this the hard way when I tried avoiding talking about seeing my father abuse my mother in our apartment as a kid.  I kept delaying and delaying, scratching off on my therapy notes, and saying, “Nope, not this week!”  Weeks turned into months, and then finally when I couldn’t take it any longer and started feeling the impulse of swinging and punching at its peak, I did the best thing that I could do.  I talked about it with my therapist.  It got worse before it got better.

Now, when those feelings come up, I pretend like I am kickboxing in order to release the energy from my body.  Before discussing this event with my therapist, I would zone into worship music to calm the impulses.  What I didn’t realize is that the energy needs to leave your body.

We ask God to help us with all kinds of things.  However, we forget to ask him to help us with anxiety, and to get to the root.  In Psalms 139 David reminds us about how God knows everything.  We can’t hide anything from him.  His presence follows us.

Psalm 139 Amplified Bible (AMP)

God’s Omnipresence and Omniscience.

To the Chief Musician. A Psalm of David.

139 O Lord, you have searched me [thoroughly] and have known me.

You know when I sit down and when I rise up [my entire life, everything I do];
You understand my thought from afar.

You scrutinize my path and my lying down,
And You are intimately acquainted with all my ways.

Even before there is a word on my tongue [still unspoken],
Behold, O Lord, You know it all.

You have enclosed me behind and before,
And [You have] placed Your hand upon me.

Such [infinite] knowledge is too wonderful for me;
It is too high [above me], I cannot reach it.


Where can I go from Your Spirit?
Or where can I flee from Your presence?

If I ascend to heaven, You are there;
If I make my bed in Sheol (the nether world, the place of the dead), behold, You are there.

If I take the wings of the dawn,
If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea,
10 
Even there Your hand will lead me,
And Your right hand will take hold of me.
11 
If I say, “Surely the darkness will cover me,
And the night will be the only light around me,”
12 
Even the darkness is not dark to You and conceals nothing from You,
But the night shines as bright as the day;
Darkness and light are alike to You.

ptsd, self-inflicted, hereditary, anxiety, mental health, emotional health, blog, podcast, podcasting, author, blogger, valley of grace blog, healing our brokenness, katina horton,
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13 
For You formed my innermost parts;
You knit me [together] in my mother’s womb.
14 
I will give thanks and praise to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well.
15 
My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was being formed in secret,
And intricately and skillfully formed [as if embroidered with many colors] in the depths of the earth.
16 
Your eyes have seen my unformed substance;
And in Your book were all written
The days that were appointed for me,
When as yet there was not one of them [even taking shape].

17 
How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18 
If I could count them, they would outnumber the sand.
When I awake, I am still with You.

19 
[a]O that You would kill the wicked, O God;
Go away from me, therefore, men of bloodshed.
20 
For they speak against You wickedly,
Your enemies take Your name in vain.
21 
Do I not hate those who hate You, O Lord?
And do I not loathe those who rise up against You?
22 
I hate them with perfect and utmost hatred;
They have become my enemies.

23 
Search me [thoroughly], O God, and know my heart;
Test me and know my anxious thoughts;
24 
And see if there is any wicked or hurtful way in me,
And lead me in the everlasting way.

What are some helpful ways to reduce anxiety?

  • Taking a deep breath in and out
  • Meditating on worship music
  • Prayer
  • Exercise
  • Therapy
  • Sometimes medicine, along with everything lifted above.

I pray that you have heard something here today that has been helpful.

God bless!

For last podcast episode, click here.