Navigate Deep Waters

Navigate Deep Waters

Navigate Deep Waters:

Our world is changing fast. It reminds me of a World War II movie I saw. An SS man roughed up a citizen and told him to learn the new laws or else. That’s not far from our situation today, especially with the recent death of Antony Scalia. Regardless of how we vote, we feel as if we have no voice in our government, and we worry that we’ll be told what we believe isn’t legal anymore. It’s easy and even tempting to become victims, or simply to give in. I’ve heard people talk about going with the flow. In Scripture, however, we are called to make choices. Joshua lined up the Israelites as they readied themselves to enter Canaan. He said,  “Choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell…” That’s a powerful command. He didn’t want them to be passive.

We aren’t, however, the first generation to face hardships. In particular, World War II was a dark time in history. Nobody wanted another global conflict. Too many men died in the Great War, and peace at any price sounded good. (Remember that speech by Neville Chamberlin?) But when Hitler swallowed most of Europe, people began to realize the tyrants overseas wouldn’t go away.  Today we face spiritual warfare that rivals that war. Conflict in the spiritual realm isn’t new either, but the intensity we see worries us.

We’d all welcome good news.
Today I have Sarah Sundin. World War II is her favorite era, and she completed extensive research on the living conditions of that time. She wrote Through Waters Deep, regarding the opening of the war. Listen to her lessons from history. Enjoy!

Author

Sarah Sundin

Learn more about Sarah Sundin here.

Valentine’s Day: Love Your Husband

Valentine’s Day: Love Your Husband

Valentine’s Day: Love Your Huband:

Today’s media overwhelms us with talk of the sensual side of love. Clothing, perfume, toothpaste, and other merchandise will help you achieve‘sexy’ or ‘hot.’ TV and movies depict unmarried couples engaging in sex as if were no more important than lunch. As Christians, we believe sex belongs in marriage. The world might see our convictions as negative and prudish. But, on the positive side, since sex belongs in marriage, we should embrace and encourage sensuality in that context. 

 Years ago when I was shopping with my girls, I stopped to admire a fancy nightgown. One of my daughters looked horrified and commented that only a prostitute would wear such a garment. I knew right there it was time for a lesson, and I said,”Don’t ever call a married woman a prostitute.” Looking back, I probably came on too strong, because she frowned and walked off, rolling her eyes. But that’s a message the church needs to give to married couples and our young people. We should be shouting a big yes when we discuss sex after the ceremony.

 I encourage women to be careful about relationships with men other than their husbands. Hormones work well. Things can make things get out of hand and create problems. I tend to be a little distant or even a little cold in that situation. Often I’ll address the man’s wife if she’s present. However, a woman can and should let go with her hubby. Come on, ladies. Flirt a little. It’s fun and appropriate. Check out Song of Solomon 1:2 where Solomon and his wife talk about their love for each other:”Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth! For your love is better than wine.”

Many of us, however, get a bit stuck because of our self-image or a painful past, but there’s hope. Shannon Ethridge is my guest for Valentine’s Day. She has geared her entire ministry toward helping women get past their hangups and enjoy sex.

Best Selling author and Speaker

Shannon Etheridge

To learn more about Shannon and her ministry, click here

 

 

 

Finding Rest Amidst Busy Lives

Finding Rest Amidst Busy Lives

Finding Rest Amidst Busy Lives

Women today are very busy. We all carry cell phones and have access to Facebook, Twitter, texting, Instagram and Pinterest and other social media. in addition to all our family responsibilities, we pack our calendar with activities to benefit out children and use our microwaves to prepare quick meals. Most of us don’t set aside much time to rest, even though we like the thought. I find it interesting that God talked about rest in the early chapters of Genesis, and it’s a huge theme in Scripture.

I believe God knew how crazy our lives would become. He talked about rest in the early chapters of Genesis. It’s a huge theme in Scripture. Consider Genesis 2:2. “And on the seventh day God finished his work, and he rested on the seventh day.” Take a moment and think about that. God doesn’t need anything, yet he rested once he completed the creation. I don’t think he rested because he was weary. God doesn’t get tired. Instead, he wanted to show us a pattern, a balance of work and rest. I really need that.

This was a typical day for me when my children were young: a crying child woke me in the morning, and I hurried out of bed to get breakfast while his sibling hung onto my housecoat whining. Another maddening day. I stopped a squabble while trying to pay bills and then hurried off to an appointment while watching kids poke each other in the back seat. Ballet, Bible study, runny noses, a hasty lunch, a child who won’t stop crying from a minor injury. Fifteen text messages and three phone calls. The postman needed my signature.  All day I ran nonstop and then fell into bed and stared at the ceiling, wishing for sleep. I’d think about resting and laugh.

Does that sound like you?

Yet Hebrews 4: 9-10 says, “So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of God, for whoever has entered God’s rest has also rested from his works as God did from his.” What does God mean by Sabbath rest?

Today I have Gwyn McCaslin as my guest. She’s going to give us her thoughts on rest.

Gwyn is a counselor in Sugar Creek, Ohio. Learn more about her here.

You can learn more about rest here.

Marriage and Family Counselor

Counselor Gwyn McCaslin

Too Blessed to be Stressed

Too Blessed to be Stressed

Too Blessed to Be Stressed

I could win an award for worry. Years ago, when I attended nursing school, we studied various diseases while learning how to care for each type patient. As I read over the symptoms, I would swallow hard and remember having all those things happen to me. I’d decide I had that particular disease. After worrying over every malady we studied, I saw the pattern and tried to stop.

But I didn’t stop worrying, especially during those early years of marriage. If my husband was a little late coming home from work, I would imagine him in a smashed up car on the side of the road. He’d be dead every time. And then I’d envision the police coming to my door. At times when he was very late, I would think about what I might wear to his funeral. By that time, my emotions would be so intense, that I’d lose it when he walked in the door. The worry turned to fury, and I wouldn’t want to talk to him.

It took me a long time to understand how my thoughts produced anxiety, but I finally learned to pray about my fears and think about good things. It’s still hard, even today. Like a dog licks his wounds, I want to focus on the part of life that’s not right.

Philippians 4:6 says, “do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Further along in the chapter, it says, “…whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

I believe God put those verses there just for me. As I grow older, I’m learning more and more ways to handle stress the right way.

Today I have Debra Coty with me. She’s a delightfully funny lady who has written a book called Too Blessed to be Stressed. She’s going to share her heart with us so we can even chuckle a little as we let go of anxiety.

She has a cookbook, Too Blessed to be Stressed Cookbook. This month her readers are competing in a contest to lose weight. You can learn more about Debora here.

Be a Bondage Breaker

Be a Bondage Breaker

Be a Bondage Breaker

Surely everyone would want to be released from bondage.  Right? You can be a bondage breaker.

There’s an interesting story told in the OT about that.

Theologians dubbed Jeremiah the weeping prophet. He had to deliver bad news and was often despondent. The spiritual failures of his nation tormented him because God had revealed his plan. Bondage. Jeremiah didn’t want his job, but the heartrending message burned inside him. He worked hard delivering God’s decrees, even employing creative imagery. His fellow citizens, however, preferred the soothing messages of the false prophets. Despite Jeremiah’s concern, his people plotted against him and threw him into prison. What a burden he carried.

Jeremiah had prophesied an upcoming invasion. And As he predicted, in 605 B.C. the Babylonians attacked and carried away the first captives. Daniel another prophet in the Old Testament was in that group. King Nebuchadnezzar deposed the King Jehoiachin who reigned in Jerusalem and placed Zedekiah, a man Nebuchadnezzar thought he could control.

Now, I don’t know about you, but after that incident, I like to think I would have listened to Jeremiah. He was correct. But most of the people continued living exactly the same way. Ignoring the alarm. After that event, Jeremiah predicted the fall of Jerusalem

I find it so interesting that King Zedekiah called Jeremiah to the palace and asked him what to do. Jeremiah told the king he would live if he gave himself up to the King of Babylon. The king refused and suffered the fated Jeremiah predicted.

I can relate to this story. I want our nation to turn back to God and avoid the judgment that will come. I want to be a bondage breaker.

Singer and song writer, Dennis Jernigan is my guest today. He’s written a book and completed a video series called, Stand in Love. It’s for churches and others who want to break their bondage.

Learn more about Dennis and his ministry here.

Writer and singer

Dennis Jernigan

Broken Chains

Bondage Breaker

 

Love a Dying Friend

Love a Dying Friend

Love a Dying Friend? What a tough assignment! But let’s start at the beginning of the problem.

All of us, realize something is wrong. We live in a world of disappointment, sadness, sorrow, and misery. However, God designed us to live in perfect world, without pain. We can share times sorrow left us devastated, empty and alone.  Even those of us who grew up in healthy families can share deep hurts. For instance, in ninth grade I took Spanish. To master the language, my friend and I wrote each other notes. Someone ridiculed me in front of an entire class for that. That’s nothing compared to what others have suffered, but it was pain. I was embarrassed and devastated.

My grandmother moved into our house when I was young, and I suffered verbal abuse at her hands. She made me feel worthless and useless. I could never please her. Even now at times I feel like I don’t measure up.

Ladies, I believe Satan finds a way to leave an ugly mark on us all.

Romans 8:22 – 23 For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.

I feel that groan, and I’m sure you do also.

What a blessing when someone comes alongside as a friend and shares that pain. I think about that passage in Hebrews three that says “But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called “Today,”

Today I have Jill Buteyan. She just completed a book called Just Show Up.  She walked alongside a dear friend suffering with cancer and she gives advice on how to do that.

Learn more about Jill’s friend here.

Learn more about Jill here.

Her facebook is here.

Twitter: @JillLynn

Author Jill Buteyan

Jill Buteyan

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