My journey to forgiving my Ex husband

Group of Women Happiness Cheerful Concept

By Christine Baskin

My separation and divorce was a mixed bag of emotions. Rage, fear, anxiety, disappointment…more fear. I had so many decisions to make all at once, and didn’t receive the support I really needed at the time from people I thought would always be there for me. People I’d invested years of my life into, were suddenly absent and couldn’t handle the valley I was walking through. So I know a thing or two about failed relationships, and now I can safely say-true forgiveness.

I tried praying for the people who had abandoned me, were in the process of hurting me, and even the people who were spreading false rumors about me all over town. People I once called family were now my enemies in a sense. I was shocked to say the least.

No matter how much I prayed, meditated on the Word, went up for altar calls, nothing seemed to work. Every emotion would rise to the surface again and again, every time I heard one of their names I’d cringe, and try to explain my side of the story, justifying why I was right, and they were wrong. Why God approved of me, and not of them. I was filled with pride, and though I had been wronged, every time I ran the re-runs of what happened, what had been done to me, it all re-surfaced. My motive was always to love the people who betrayed me, but I was guilty of not giving these offenses over to God, and the un-forgiveness stuck to me like gum on my shoe. Everywhere I walked, it followed me, squeaking with every step, preventing me from taking a normal stride. I wanted to scrape the gum off my shoe, but wasn’t willing to ask God how.

Today, four years later, I can laugh at all the lies that were said about me. Some of them absurd, some hurtful half-truths, and some just straight up lies. After I was convicted in my spirit for long enough, I decided to take it to the problem-solver, Jesus. And here’s what happened.

I was once an advocate for Christian counseling, and still am in certain circumstances of course. I think it can be very productive! However we don’t need to get stuck in a place of re-runs. In other words, we may never get answers to why someone mistreated us. We may never get apologies, or see repentance from them. But one thing we can do is move-on, and get on living our lives NOT talking about the betrayal of our enemies. Listen, people are gonna hurt us. It’s part of life, and Jesus even promises us that we will endure many trials, and people will even hate us for loving God! 1 Peter 1:6 & John 15:18. I know it feels good to vent, and tell someone your side of the story, to be justified before man. But if you want to get free, truly free, you must take every offence directly to the Father. You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord. Leviticus 19:18.

There were so many times I wanted to give my ex a piece of my mind…If I’m being truthful I still feel that way sometimes. Then I remember the example Jesus set for us, allowing us to follow in His footsteps as Daughters and Sons. When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. 1 Peter 2:23. This always helps me to get back on track! When I take my issue directly to God, and allow Him to do the work instead of me trying to fix it, reprove, rebuke someone in my own strength. Though justified, it wouldn’t do any good. Typically the person who has become your enemy is in that position for good reason. They aren’t seeking the heart of Jesus, or reconciliation, or repentance. So, don’t waste another minute trying to make things even-steven, or make someone see why they are wrong, and why. 1 Peter 1:8 reminds us why we should’t allow the pebble of offence to become a huge boulder, tripping us up, A stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense. They stumble because they disobey the word. Your destiny is to let those things go, at the throne of God, let Your Father be your defender! It may be helpful to you to study some of the names God is called by in the Word. Here are some of my favorites when you feel discouraged:

El Roi means “The God Who Sees” – I love the kindness and care that this name holds as it points to God’s character. He is one who chases after us, who follows us with goodness. He is the one who sees us when we feel lonely, all on our own, or when we just need the reminder that God is close. The name El Roi says to us that God is watching over all, that He sees the affairs of people, and knows when we feel lost and unloved.

Yahweh-Yireh means “The Lord Will Provide” – God will provide for our needs. Every one of them, He is faithful, He is able, nothing is too difficult for Him. Sometimes His timing is different than ours, maybe we feel that He’s forgotten and hasn’t heard our prayers.

Jehovah Rapha means “Healer, the Lord who heals you” – This name brings so much comfort and hope to many of us who have prayed for healing and deliverance from disease, illness, brokenness, or painful circumstances. It reminds us that God knows we’re in need of help, He understands we’re in need of healing, and He promises to redeem every broken place in our lives.

Some scriptures to think about:

It (love) does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful…1 Corinthians 13:5

So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Matthew 5;23-24

Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips! Do not let my heart incline to any evil, to busy myself with wicked deeds in company with men who work iniquity, and let me not eat of their delicacies! Let a righteous man strike me—it is a kindness; let him rebuke me—it is oil for my head; let my head not refuse it. Yet my prayer is continually against their evil deeds. Psalm 141

Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger Ephesians 4:26

And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved. Ephesians 2:1-10

Credit to : http://www.ibelieve.com for names of God

Advertisements

Father to the Fatherless

by Christine Baskin

Growing up without a Father’s affection can be hard on anyone. Particularly in girls, statistics show fatherless girls typically grow up promiscuous, trying hard to achieve the healthy doses of attention and affection she never received growing up. Many predators see the lack of protection girls’ lives and take full advantage.

I was told I was beautiful, but I used it as a means to get men’s attention, not relish in the beauty of what God made me to be for His purpose. I tried and tried to no avail, to get from the world what I felt I didn’t receive at home. I’m now 32, and a single mother. Many days since my divorce I have felt like an atomic bomb was thrown into the ocean that is me. Now, on the road to recovery, and at the shore of my trial, I know there isn’t another bomb coming. But the ripple effects of that bomb are often come crashing into my feet.

The one consolation that has produced massive healing in my heart, and buoyed me back to shore, has been knowing God as my loving Father. When I began to see myself as His Daughter, everything changed. I began to see addictions crumble, bad habits fall to wayside, and sin was forgotten, powerless, and emasculated. The enemy’s power over me became feeble, and impotent.

I believe knowing God as our Father is just the first step in salvation. Seeing yourself, and living like a Son or Daughter in Christ is the icing on the cake of Christianity. Deuteronomy 32:6 teaches us, “Is not He your Father who has bought you? He has made you and established you”. When we place ourselves at the feet of the God our Father, who has bought you with a price Jesus blood you begin to see there was a sacrifice made that no other could have made. Your earthly father made you from pleasure, it was no hard task! Your Heavenly Father created you, and birthed you in purpose. He formed you in your mother’s womb, and couldn’t do His will here on earth without you! You are a piece to the big picture puzzle that God has planned since before time.

So, how does one establish herself in being a Daughter of the Living God? Matthew 7:11 makes it very clear. “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him!” I began with baby steps of relying on Him as my source, rather than myself. If your child is hungry, you feed him. If he has to go to the bathroom, you take him. Likewise, if you ask your Father for something, and trust He will bring it to you when the time is right, He will bring it! In Matthew 6:26 Jesus instructs, “Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?” I started walking in faith about my needs during my separation. I would ask for little things. For example I wanted to start tithing, but had no money. Zip, zero. I was actually in over 25,000 debt, on food stamps, and had no job. I had a baby girl I was still nursing, and a four year old son with me. We had nothing, less than nothing in fact. But I knew that if I began giving, I would receive a bigger blessing than I could carry. See Malachi 3:11.

I was cleaning out my Christmas bins for set up that year, and began setting out stockings. When I hung mine up, something told me to check inside. There was a twenty dollar bill inside. I wept, uncontrollably with joy and placed the $20 bill in an offering envelope for that Sunday Service. I couldn’t wait to sow that seed! I could barely believe God provided the money for me to give back to Him. Over the years, I’ve seen countless blessings, some too hard to believe, come my way. I give all the credit to God, my Father because I learned that day I could trust Him to provide or my family. Many trials, and tribulations have come since that day. Many times I wondered if God is even listening to my prayers, if He even cares. Then I get down on my knees and immediately feel His presence. I feel the Prince of Peace sweep over me, and relieve my stresses. “Leave them at my feet.” He instructs me. “Give them to me, I want them.” Like a good Father, He wipes every tear, and encourages me in His Word to press in, to count it all joy when I fall into the valleys of this life. Knowing this, that the trying of my faith worketh patience, so that I may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. When those voices come, and they will come; to rob you of your joy, peace, and contentment, speak the truth over those lies! The truth which cuts between the bone and marrow fill feed your soul, and change the enemy’s mind about messing with you.

You shall call Me, My Father, And not turn away from following Me .-Jeremiah 3:19

He is a father of the fatherless -Psalm 68:5

And He said to them, “When you pray, say: ‘Father, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come’ -Luke 11:2

For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.-Gal 3:26

…so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. Because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” Therefore you are no longer a slave, but a son; and if a son, then an heir through God. -Gal 4:5-7

See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are For this reason the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.-1 John 3:1

“Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has chosen gladly to give you the kingdom. -Luke 12:32

jesus

A joy-filled Church

By Christine Baskin

Church conflict  is nothing  new.  The Apostle Paul writes from prison to each of the Churches in his charge, addressing conflicts that arise from every sin imaginable. Incest, adultery, idolatry, anger, you name it.

Millennials bring many new advantages into the church today, additionally some Churches have members who have been faithful to the same church their whole lives .  We can glean from the wisdom of folks who stayed in the same body of Christ for Generations, as well as new believers we have never stepped foot in a church in their lives. There is much to learn, and so many areas of growth we can glean from together . As a former employee of my church, I believe the following principles help each member of the body work together to create the church Christ is coming back for.

#1  Do YOUR job.

Simple enough, but how often does our flesh rise up to tell people how they should do their jobs? If you focus on YOUR job, you won’t have to worry about what everyone else is doing, because your whole focus will be set on what God is doing in you right now! You will be more productive, and won’t even have the time to worry  about what other people  are doing.

#2  Don’t fall in love with anything.

The Word says that eventually everything we see is going pass away (Revelations 21:1). You can go visit a garbage dump, and find it is filled with what was once people’s dreams. Dream cars, dream clothes, dream furniture.

Likewise, if we get so in love with the way our Church is supposed to look, or the way a service is supposed to run, etc; we are going to be disappointed when inevitable changes happen. In order for a Church to grow, there must be constant strides, and often the vision changes. God lays new dreams and new revelations on the hearts of the leaders, and change is coming whether we like it or not! Though the main principles of your Church stay the same, oftentimes change comes as a huge shock to people. They get stuck in their ways, and fight change of any kind. We can even get stuck on having a title, a front place parking spot, or place of authority.

I know because I WAS that person! I grew up with so many changes, and so much inconsistency, I never wanted anything to change because it felt uncertain and scary to me, much like my childhood. I’d be upset if the carpet was changed for heavens’s sake!! I was that person. Now that I’ve seen how change is healthy in a Church, and NO change whatsoever is unhealthy- like a think dust covering a fan, people are eventually gonna smell the stink and want some fresh air!

#3  I’m doing this for the Kingdom.

The work we do inside of a Church is not for us. I’m gonna say that again. The work we do inside the Church is NOT FOR US! Yes, God loves His people, but we are here not to get comfortable in a fancy building, with tasty coffee, and good lighting. All those things are great! But that’s NOT why we’re here. We are here to save the lost, feed the hungry physically and spiritually and to build up an army for God, and present her as His Bride. The other stuff…they’re tools we use to help people get there. If you are trying to glorify yourself, take the credit, or make sure your name is on the end of every successful project; you are walking in a pride that is going to over-bloat your soul, and what comes after pride?…The  fall! You trip over your own shoes,  trying to be seen, heard, and credited. All the while, our mission and objective as believers should be to point people the the Lord, not what you are doing in your Church. Every person who seeks the platform, or a coveted position is looking to be seen. In reality, it takes complete humility, and fear of God to be in a position of leadership.  God says He judges those in leadership positions more strictly (James 3:1).  Remember your work is not for you, or the Pastor, or the people even…It’s for God. Psalm 127:1 reminds us, Unless the LORD builds a house, the work of the builders is wasted.

#4 Remember who your authority is.

God is your ultimate authority, but God also uses his people to shepherd and protect His people. When we as a Church have a healthy shepherd, a good, strong man or woman who seeks the heart of God, and follows the leading of the Holy Spirit, we know that we can trust him to do his job and protect us. How often have you questioned your Pastor about something, only to find out later he knew exactly what he was talking about! He has a responsibility to shepherd you, and is accountable to God for that responsibility. Romans 13:4a says, For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good.

#5 Remember you are on a team.

Have you ever walked into a church, or somebody’s home, and you can’t quite put your finger on it; but something’s off? That’s the spirit of strife! You know you’re encountering the spirit of strife when you feel like you could cut the tension in the room with a knife! The enemy knows there’s power in unity, so he uses weapons of warfare to divide and conquer. And I’ve seen him do this in the church, families, businesses, you name it. If there’s unity, satan sees it as a threat, and he will start to working on dividing. If you can come together when there’s disagreement and do what Paul instructs in Ephesians 4:2-6 you can break that spirit’s power!

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all,who is over all and through all, and in all.

I believe with humility, when we see ourselves as part of a team rather than an island,  God can open the doors for the spirit of unity. You will seek the solutions to problems rather than focusing on the problems.  You won’t criticize, but instead work to help your team be better!  Pray for them and intercede on their behalf.  You will begin to see your team in the best light, their strengths, and purposes for their position. Psalm 149:4 proves true: The Lord lifteth up the meek: he casteth the wicked down to the ground.

You may be in a situation at your workplace, or at Church with a person who’s really stepping on your toes.  They’re maybe even lying about you, gossiping behind your back, or trying to push you out of your position.  That’s okay, because God sees their motives, the condition of their heart, and yours.  He is a just God who will determine the best outcome for you, if you allow Him to lead you. Remember Ecclesiastes 7:8, The patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.

If you humble yourself, and let the King of Kings show Himself to be faithful through this situation, I believe you will see victory.  He has you in this position for a time such as this, to help you be conformed to His image, and likeness.  He is going to give you a double portion (Deuteronomy 21:17,1 Samuel 1:5, 2 Kings 2:9,Job 42:10) if you continue to press in, and not shy away from what He is doing in you right now!

 

 

 

 

 

un-QUALIFIED

by Christine Baskin

dedicated to Olivia Moore

I was taught early in my thirties… okay I’m still in my thirties, that there are people in life who are “qualified” for certain positions, and there are those who don’t qualify.  While it is true we don’t typically want to place people in positions of power unless they have some leadership values, I think God sees qualifications different than we do.

Remember Esther? She was a poor, orphan Jewess with a funny accent, and no treasure or dowry to speak of. She certainly had no resume a King would see as sufficient. But the kingdom plucked her from her home, the only family she had, her faith, everything that she knew, and placed her in the King’s harem. Yikes.

But Esther trusted God, used wisdom, and became Queen over the most powerful superpower in the world at that time. Oh, and she saved her people (millions…of people) from being slayed. Why would God use her? Because He loves to use people who are otherwise un-qualified, but have a heart after God.

Esther could’ve complained, moaned and groaned… expected the King to use her just one night, and be done with her. She could’ve told herself justifiably to just make the best of her situation, and just try to survive. Instead, she held her head high, sought the wisdom of the King’s Chief Adviser, and reminded herself she was a child of the Almighty God. The Lord was her keeper, and redeemer! She gave herself over to the role God had given her. She could’ve been branded, and thrown into the harem as a concubine (forever used for sex alone), or worse…

Instead she focused on her value in the Lord, and proved her worth by making friends who should’ve been enemies… afterall she was kidnapped from her home in the middle of the night to be used for sex…

Instead she saw them not as enemies, but people, who-just like her were about to be used by God in a mighty way! Esther ended up being the redeemer of her people by knowing who she was, and being brave by standing up to the enemy…And we still talk about her today!

If you are telling yourself you are un-qualified for a certain position, job, relationship, or some specific goal like finishing your education, think again! You are QUALIFIED in Christ Jesus when you hold your head high, put on your Daughter-Of-the-King shoes on, and walk in the position God has placed you in for such a time as this!

Christine is a writer, and aspiring public speaker.

Christine1736@gmail.com

What I Wish Someone Told Me…

facebook_1519157803699 (1)

Every new believer , or “baby Christian” not my favorite term is truly like a newborn. In so many ways they are opening their eyes to the world around them for the first time, and have so many questions and surely they deserve truthful answers!

Here are three simple points I wish someone had told me when I was a new believer:

1. Your leaders are people too.

How often do we as church members take advantage of our Pastor’s time? Well, hopefully, never… But in truth we do look to our Pastors and leaders as life-givers. The honest truth is that our Pastors are there to lead us as God sees fit. But they are not gods! They are not our source, they are simply there to point us in the right direction and lead us in the way of Christ. We as sheep very often lose our way, sometimes we run away from God’s plan altogether!

I believe that the Pastor’s role is to lead us back to the flock, keep us on the right path, and show us what the Word says about sin, and the redemptive blood of Jesus. Knowing this, we must remember that they are just men and women, like us, and have weaknesses and strengths just like anyone else.

2. Appearance is not everything.

In fact, I would be as bold as to say that appearance is very futile. Oftentimes, the people who hold up an amazing appearance have just as many issues in life as we do! People who look like they have it all together do not in fact have it all together all the time. Everybody has their own problems, and putting on a show as if you have no problems, is simply that- a show. Yes, there are people who truly rely and depend on the joy of the Lord as their strength. And that’s amazing! But no person could do it one hundred percent of the time! Let us not forget Jesus who himself in the Garden of Gethsemane sweat drops of blood. He wasn’t always smiling, He wasn’t always happy, and had emotions just like you and I.

3. Nobody has it all together.

And I mean no one! There is no perfect man, or woman that has their whole entire life together. We are all working through our own individual sin. Likewise, some of us are believing for healing in our bodies, some of us financial breakthrough, and some of us need extra dose of grace just to make it through the day!  For each person it is a different issue. The good news is, God knows this, and He allows us to walk each day line upon line, precept upon precept. In fact, Jesus sought out those messy situations, and distraught people. He loves the challenge, and He loves you! He loves to redeem the most hurt, damaged, down on their luck people! And I would dare to say He loves them the most. He came to seek the sinners and the lost, not the pharisee perfect people, not the religious….you! And all your mistakes,flaws, and imperfections… Your sin and wavering faith, He still loves you just the way you are! He will take you where He needs you to go so long as you allow Him to pull the cart and lead the way. The trick is to hop-in, and allow Him to do His job. You just do yours, and let Him take you where He wants you to go.

Fear’s Many Disguises

By: Christine Baskin

Fear has come in various disguises to meet me at my door.  I was taught there was healthy fear, and unhealthy fear.  For example, the fear of jumping out of a moving vehicle going 70 miles an hour is a valid fear, right?  I’ve since learned that using wisdom, taking time to make good decisions, receiving the counsel of many, and standing on a firm foundation of faith, are all great stand-ins to any ‘smart kind’ of fear.

The First guise of fear, is escape.  When men fear the future, they feel trapped in their circumstance, and want to break away.  I mean, who likes conflict anyway?  Who likes to make a budget every month knowing you may not have enough to make ends meet?  I’d rather be on a sunny beach any day than tell my kids ‘no’.  So we escape… in our minds, and often times from all practical reality.

My 96 year old Grandmother still recounts her Dad telling her, and his 10 other children one day that he was “resigning as a Father”.  He was quitting his job as Dad, & Husband.  And then he left.

He couldn’t find means to face his fears of failure.  In turn, he left my Great-Grandmother with the burdens of her already tedious life in the midst of the Great Depression.  Now she was bearing the burden of fear alone.  You see, fear never dies, but is merely transferred.   Pop didn’t  dissolve his fears, he simply transferred them.

The second guise of fear is over-thinking.  Let’s just be honest with ourselves for just a minute, fear is the ugly twin sister to over-thinking.  We wonder, we speculate, we question the outcome of a particular situation.  We even over-think as we pray, and offer God our idea of what a good solution would be.  We get frustrated and ask ourselves “why this is happening to me?”  We victimize ourselves, and get down on ourselves.  We suddenly are reminded of all of our past mistakes, attempting to take control over the whole conflict, and leave nothing to chance.

Once over-thinking has it’s big dirty boot in the door, fear just pummels the door down.  You may find yourself having a complete panic attack over something that hasn’t even happened yet!  Sound familiar?  It certainly does for me.  I used to have panic attacks, over-thinking every single thing I said or did in front of a boss, leader, pastor, etc.  I worried I’d be judged and thrown away like yesterday’s garbage.

However, when we are confident in our abilities, and the giftings that our higher power has given to us, we find we have nothing to fear.

Some of the most talent-less people I know, have some of the best jobs.  I mean that as  a compliment.  They realized early on that talent doesn’t necessarily equal success.  It is determination, and willingness to mold yourself into a useful tool an employer can use, that creates success.  If you are a willing, determined person who desires to be used for the greater good, you already have an advantage over most people.    Don’t chase a paycheck, chase being a better you.  If you have even a morsel of faith, not cockiness, that you can be of some use in a department, or as a Parent, or leader; develop some concrete solutions, and remind yourself daily that failure is not in your future!   Say it out loud, and shut down those voices of defeat.  Believing in yourself is more than half of the battle.

And last, but not least is the depression guise.  Let me tell you, this guy’s a real jerk.  He’ll lie, he’ll tell you it’s all over, that nothing will ever change.  He’ll tell you, “This is your lot in life, and you better get used to it!  Things will never change!”  This sad sorry sap always comes knocking on my door when I’m close to the end of a difficult season.  He tries to use his buddy discouragement to intimidate you.  They team up and bully you reminding you how hard things have been for you.  They will beg the same old questions over and over again; “Where’s your breakthrough? Where’s your God now? Why hasn’t he delivered on his promise yet?”  I told you he was a jerk…

You can sit there and get down on yourself, your situation, remind yourself how many years you’ve been waiting and waiting…Or, you can put your dukes up and fight back.  This takes quantifiable effort when you’re depressed, I admit.  But after losing so many fights in my mind, I’m ready for a Rocky showdown with this guy.  He doesn’t leave without a fight.  But you can take him down in Round 1 if you’re trained properly.

You’ve probably heard the story of David and Goliath.  Little David was nothing but a short, unwanted, unloved Jewish boy.  No money, no education, just a sheep-herding, harp-playing loner.  He was rejected by all those who should’ve loved him, but he developed a relationship with God as his Father.  That changes everything in this boy’s future as all of Israel is about to find out.  He stepped uninvited, and unqualified into what would be his very first showdown versus a ten-foot tall, heavy-weight champion of the world named Goliath.  This guy’s sword was taller than David himself.  But here comes David, squeezing through the crowd of men who were picturing their wives and children being turned into slaves. David’s brothers mocked him, his only strength came from God, his Father.

 “As the Philistine moved closer to attack him, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him.   David said, ‘This day the Lord will deliver you into my hands, and I’ll strike you down and cut off your head. This very day I will give the carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds and the wild animals, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel.  All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give all of you into our hands.’  Bold statement for a sheep-herder.

But this is how we must battle depression.  As David did, with our mouths.  The end of the story goes as such, ‘As the Philistine moved closer to attack him, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him.   Reaching into his bag and taking out a stone, he slung it and struck the Philistine on the forehead. The stone sank into his forehead, and he fell face down on the ground.  So David triumphed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone; without a sword in his hand he struck down the Philistine and killed him.  David ran and stood over him. He took hold of the Philistine’s sword and drew it from the sheath. After he killed him, he cut off his head with the sword.’ 

When that very real voice of depression comes, we must be like David.  We must be courageous enough to go into the battle with the victory already on our tongue.  We say to that thing, “Every person in my life is gonna know it’s not by my talent, or by luck, or the sweat of my brow that I receive the breakthrough. The battle is the Lord’s, and the whole world will know that I am victorious over depression because He is my Father, and I will triumph over my enemies.”

 

Christine is an writer, and Mother of two amazingly brave children.

 facebook_1519157803699 (1)

Turning Trauma Into Trust

trust

By: Christine Baskin

To me, rejection feels like being pushed off a cliff.

I am often reminded of the events which have hurt me the most since my new life as a believer. The most traumatic, were from the people I trusted most. The more I trusted the person, the harder the fall.

After my divorce, entering into a new Church was one of my worst fears. I felt rejected by my leaders, and felt like my sin was too big a burden for any Church to handle. I contemplated staying home, and studying the Bible on my own for a year, to cover my shame, and to prevent having to explain what I felt was my biggest failure.

I ended up in a at a church service where the Pastor was preaching God’s unfailing love for His people. Wondering if I’d be accepted, he spoke these words from the pulpit, “If you’re here today, and you’re wondering if this is the Church for you, God is saying, ‘YES’, you are accepted. This is where you belong.” I got my answer quicker than expected!

But I was still licking my wounds from the last Church. Afraid to trust again. Fearing this Pastor would let me close to him, then push me away like the former. He would see my flaws, and then be disgusted with my sin. I wouldn’t even sit near the front lest I be seen by him. I’d go home and cry my eyes out. I literally didn’t want to ever meet this Pastor, just come late, leave early, and talk to as few people as possible. Then one day, a friend dragged me over to meet the Pastor’s Wife. And I really liked her. She didn’t look down on me because I was a single Mom, with no college degree, no real career to speak of. She didn’t view me as a burden, a failure. Quite the opposite, she welcomed me. That Christmas that church presented me with a gift that really blessed my family, (and all the single moms) during what is normally a very difficult season. I insisted to myself that I still did not have any interest in meeting her Husband. I would let him preach to me, but I wouldn’t form a relationship built on any kind of trust. I wasn’t ready to be pushed off another cliff.

Each week I attended, my heart swelled with gratitude for the Pastor. I knew he was led by the Spirit because of his preaching, and the fruit of it became evident in my own life. I studied the notes I took, and began to grow a hunger for God’s Word I hadn’t known since my initial commitment to Christ six years prior. I began to see the habits of Jesus played out in my own life like never before.

I studied my Pastor, and began to see him walk out forgiveness, humility, and righteousness. He wasn’t perfect (none of us are), but I noticed the way he always made a point to reach out to the people in the congregation no one else seemed to take note of. He wasn’t interested in the popular, the rich, the handsome. He wanted the poor, the humble, the meek. The man who swept the floors was just as important to him as the guest speakers.

One day he noticed me, and I shook his hand. I remember feeling scared, but welcomed. He spotted me each week, and made a point to come over to me. The divorced, single Mom. I often felt I had a big red “D” stamped to my forehead, but he never seemed to notice.

I began to respect what I knew about him, also what I did not know. I know that in some ways, I would eventually get hurt, as it happens with every relationship here on this side of Heaven. I realized the closer we get to people, the more risk for pain is at stake, but also the most reward. The more we invest, the more the return. I began to plant down seeds of trust, willingness to get hurt, vulnerability.

As I grew in my relationship with my Pastor and his Wife, I began to see their strengths and weaknesses, and I’m sure they’ve seen mine. I began to feel comfortable making new friendships in the Church. I didn’t feel judged. Day after day, my trust grew, and I no longer feared being pushed off the cliff. I realize now, I’d been standing on the edge, expecting to be pushed. Who wouldn’t? Rejection is tricky like that.

In the end, His redemption comes. Not overnight, But it comes all the same.

One of my favorite books in the Bible is Job. I know, its weird… But I love a good redemption story! Even when all hope seems lost, Job was recompensed twice what satan had stole from him. Job 42:10b says “..the LORD made him prosperous again, and gave him twice as much as he had before.” v12, “The LORD blessed the latter part of Job’s life more than the first.” I love that Job replied to the Lord in v2, “I know that you can do all things; no plan of yours can be thwarted.” It wasn’t God’s plan to torment Job, it wasn’t even his idea. God knew that what fails here on earth, what seems lost, can always be renewed if it’s God’s plan. And better yet, if we stick with Him, it will be better than before!

We see things from an earthly perspective, God sees from an eternal perspective. God sees the rejection, and pain from your past, and He’s saying to you right now, “I am bigger than the hurt. I am stronger than rejection.” No matter how much pain your past has brought you, my God says that love truly is the strongest force in the universe. God IS love, and His son (Jesus) accepts you! That’s the gospel! Every pain, every scar, every gaping wound is redeemable by Jesus!

The Savior of the world doesn’t want you to run away from Him, rejected and pained by the weights of this world. He wants you to come to Him: the brokenhearted, the rejected, the shamed. No shame is too heavy for him! No sin is too big! He already carried it with Him to Calvary. He already died for it. Your rejection was no surprise to Him, but He desires to restore you, and turn those ashes into beauty. If you’ll come to Him, and ask Him, over time, He will restore your soul.

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.[a]
3 He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness[b]
for his name’s sake.

4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,[c]
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.

5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6 Surely[d] goodness and mercy[e] shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell[f] in the house of the Lord
forever.[g]
A Psalm of David 23:1-6

It always comes down to our faith in God, not man that thwarts us into God’s will for our lives. Because I trust God, what can man do to me? The next test of my life will surely be harder, as each stretch of my faith takes me closer to His glorious Kingdom. But I know that as God has redeemed me once, He will surely do it again! And He will for all those who Believe…


forever.[g]
A Psalm of David 23:1-6

It always comes down to our faith in God, not man that thwarts us into God’s will for our lives. Because I trust God, what can man do to me? The next test of my life will surely be harder, as each stretch of my faith takes me closer to His glorious Kingdom. But I know that as God has redeemed me once, He will surely do it again! And He will for all those who Believe…

A Psalm of David 23:1-6

It always comes down to our faith in God, not man that thwarts us into God’s will for our lives. Because I trust God, what can man do to me? The next test of my life will surely be harder, as each stretch of my faith takes me closer to His glorious Kingdom. But I know that as God has redeemed me once, He will surely do it again! And He will for all those who Believe…