Crush the Pain

I absolutely love crushed ice. I love it so much that it makes me drink water when I need it. We don’t have an ice crushing machine at home, and I don’t really want to take up the counter space to get one; so, I crush my own. I have found that if I will just take the few extra minutes to crush the ice, I will drink almost a whole quart of water in one sitting.

I have also found that crushing ice, often times, releases tension and even frustration within me as I take the spoon firmly within my grasp and “pop” each ice cube into nice little slivers of crunch. It will usually bust holes in the ziplock bag I use, but that’s ok. I just consider it the vessel that’s “suffering for a good cause.” There have been moments when I’ve looked at each cube of ice and taken true “vengeance” out. It is truly a refreshing moment. 😂

It’s a great little lesson in “proper venting methods” that maybe someone reading this might find helpful.

This may sound silly to some, but for a moment, just think about it. I’m not screaming at my kids because of my frustrations. I’m not fussing with my husband, because I’m angry or feeling tension, and I’m not kicking a wall or driving erratic, because I’m struggling with trying to find some sort of ever evasive ‘inner peace.’ (not that I necessarily would do the latter, but just stay with me here…)

Maybe someone out there has been down this road of reactionary discontent, and you need to find a different outlet to release your stress. Now, this simple exercise might not work for everyone. You may truly need to go to the gym and run or hit a punching bag, but if you’re a “steam kettle,” like me, and you just need to release a little steam from time to time, you might want to try it.

Once, all the ice is crushed, pour it in your glass, fill it with water, and Enjoy! You’ve succeeded in refreshing your mind and your emotions, and you’ve done something beneficial and healthy for your body as well, without some medical application, crazy substance abuse, alcohol consumption or erratic behaviors.

Welcome to the world of emotional self control! 😉💕

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Are You Thirsty?

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Being thirsty in our faith can lead to grouchiness, scattered and haggard feelings, aloofness and just plain neglect or meanness. God never called us to lead lives proclaiming He is a great big God and He loves everybody while grouching on everyone we meet. He didn’t call us to be His disciples and share His light with this world and totally ignore those in need because our agenda is too full that day. No, this ought not be the way we live our daily lives, and when we get to this point, we really must step back and evaluate the root of the issue.

 

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I’ve mentioned this before, but it bears repeating. Now, look, I’m going to interject here and tell you, this post is in no way giving credence to those who are in rebellion against the faith and are always trying to harass and demean the Word of God and His people. I am in no way, shape or form going to give credit to that kind of foolishness. I know too many great Christians who are loving, kind and compassionate.

However, I have seen too many really good followers of Christ who just simply “miss it” when God opens a door of opportunity, because they are at the point of parchment, and they can’t see for the dust in their eyes and the dryness on their tongue. I know this place all too well, and I have to daily refill or I will return to old habits that take me right back to that desert land. We all can get there when we don’t realize this truth:

WE HAVE TO WORK FROM THE OVERFLOW!

You see, it’s kind of like we are like a conduit through which the Lord flows, and when we stop getting filled, it’s as if we shut off His flow and try to continue on our own. Our strength is only so strong. Our faith is only so faithful. Our diligence is only so diligent, and that is because we are only human. We are not God. From God, all blessings flow. In God is found all the love, mercy, hope, joy, everything for which the world is looking. Through God, we have all the strength, faithfulness, and dedication we could ever need. He is our everything, but we must go back to Him for the filling.

When we allow Him to pour into us and through us, all this world needs comes gushing out. Let Him fill your cup to overflowing today; so, it might “gush all over” those around you and to whom you minister.

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Tears Flow Like Rain

Sometimes, you just have to let the tears flow. Let them flow like rain. I’m not talking about manipulative water works here, those kind of tears found springing forth when a person is trying to work their own way in a situation they do not belong, or the kind of show that is selfish, ambitious, full of jealousy and greed.

No, I’m talking about drops of rain that rush forth from a broken and contrite soul. Tears which flow from a heart that is humbled before a righteous God.Tears can purify our thoughts as we allow His Spirit to wash over our soul. Tears can cleanse a wound and bring healing to the mind. Tears that are mingled with the conviction and power of the Holy Spirit can bring repentance, forgiveness, clarity and wholeness to the heart.

Personally,  I have always been the kind of person who can “cry at the drop of a hat,” not because I make myself, but rather because it seems I don’t know where the shut of valve is. 😂 Honestly,  there are times when that can get really annoying! Haha!😂 There was a time in my life when I hated crying, because I thought it made me appear weak, without strength or stamina; then, there were a few times I’d relish in those droplets that flowed, because I noticed the compassion that often followed. Over the years, I think I’ve just accepted them as my way of allowing God’s Spirit to cleanse mine.

I have concluded, it’s just a part of who I am. Tears are a part of my human make-up, and unless, I become hardened, bitter and mean, tears simply come with the territory of me. I suppose, I’d much rather be tender, sensitive and quick to shed a tear than rigid, barbed and hateful. At least this way, I can still fight the enemy with tears streaming down my face, and remain steadfast until the end, rather than becoming a robot, simply going through too much pain to even process and further damaging those within my sphere by my lack of empathy and love…

When The Pain Sets In

Sometimes, your heart is bound up with so much emotion, words are hard to find. Your mind is so consumed with an avalanche of thought that you can not grasp even one. It’s like water droplets over a waterfall. 

Sometimes, the pain is so baffling, it feels as if time is standing still. Your destiny is too far to imagine, and your past comes in like a flood. It can be overwhelming… Suffocating… Constricting and condemning.

Sometimes, in that very moment, is when you need the reminder of His love and His grace. It is comforting… It is reassuring… It is strengthening and redeeming… 

He will heal. 

Only believe. 

In Whom Do You Trust?

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Walking through life without faith is like standing before a mighty wave, looking at its beauty yet never realizing the peril that rises before you. Traveling this journey without God’s guidance is like gazing at this wall of water believing it will simply recede and never bother you again, because you are human and you can avoid the ocean rushing in. 

No, the tide comes in slowly but surely, and the mood of the sea can change in an instance to leave you broken and desolate. If you are not prepared, and if you do not have the proper lifeboat, you may be swept away, never to return. 

Does redemption save you from all the heartache in the world and make your little orbit perfect? By no means, but it sure does give you peace through the storm, and it pours out strength in the valley. 

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So many taunt and say, “Your cross is just a crutch, something you lean on, because you are weak.” I can declare boldly, and without reservation, “I can’t even walk without holding onto His hand!” I am stronger with Him than I am alone! He is my Redeemer. He is my Joy. He is my Peace. He is my everything. 

If you doubt Him, I challenge you to simply ask Him to reveal Himself to you. Just say His name. Once you give Him a shot, you’ll never be the same. I promise. 

Answer to Friday’s Angle #64

How did you do yesterday? 

  
If you guessed water, or more specifically, a mason jar of water, you got it! 😊 

   
I hope you had fun, and we’ll see you again next week! (Or on Monday for another blog post! 😉) 

Rushing Waters

   

Is anyone thirsty?

 

“On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, ‘If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.'” John 7:37

“…but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.” John 4:14

Just A Cup Of Water

This is a little cup of water…doesn’t look like much, does it? It’s just about 2-3oz.  

If you’re really thirsty this morning, it might not be enough to quench your thirst. If you’re wanting a big 36 oz. “Thirst Quencher,” it would take quite a few of these to get there, wouldn’t it? To fill a 5 gallon bucket, it might seem to never be enough to do the job!

…but, at youth camp a few weeks ago, to a little child out on the outdoor, sand-filled, volley ball court, standing in the sweltering heat, or to a teen who just played human foosball with a bunch of others guys in the noonday sun, this little bity cup of water does wonders! At camp, the rec staff had a huge supply of these cups on the golf carts, carrying them to every station where the kids were, because this little tiny cup of water kept those kids hydrated throughout the day. That little cup of liquid quenched their thirst until they could get inside to cool off.

This world is dying and going to hell. It’s like they’re out on the volleyball court of life, and they’re dying of thirst. Some of them don’t even realize they’re thirsting to death until a cup of water is brought to them, or worse, when they pass out from the “heat” and have to be rushed to the ER is when they recognize their need for something more. They are desperate for life-giving water. Jesus is the living water that they need.

As Christians, it is our job to give Jesus to them. We are His vessels. We are His “cups.” What we have may not be fancy; it may not be big; it may not even seem to be enough. Yet, if we don’t reach out to this lost and dying world, if we don’t bring His living water to them, how will they ever survive? How can they live?  Even if  a 2-3oz. cup of water is all we have, with Jesus, it can save a life!!

Matt. 25:35, 40 “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in,…The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’”

Light Pierces Through

  When the storm seems the darkest, when the waves are crashing in, just remember, light always pierces through the darkness. He is the Light which never fails. There is no storm so strong that He cannot prevail. There is no darkness so deep that He cannot shine. 

He brings peace where there is chaos. 

He brings love where there is hate. 

He brings healing where there is brokenness. 

He brings life where there is death. 

He is able. He is faithful. He is God. 

Just hope. 

Just trust. 

Just believe. 

What’s Inside?

  
When you’re upset, you upset what’s really in you. -Ann Voskamp

You’ve heard it said, “When you spill the glass, you see what’s inside.” If sweet tea is inside, you see tea, and if it’s sour milk, you surely don’t get sweet tea! 😉 This is so true for each of us. No matter how pretty of a face we paint on, no matter how many smiles we flash, if our character is ugly, when pressures come, (and they will!) ugly is what will come out! 

In the moments of stress, it’s never a matter of what we know, who we know, or even what we’ve learned. It’s a matter of what we’ve allowed inside our hearts, what we’ve processed and what we’ve consumed. What is within our hearts is what is brought to the surface when we face hard times. 

I long for good to flow when I’m spilled out. I don’t like sour milk, never have; yet, when pressures arise, sometimes, sour is all that’s left. It gets messy. I long for purity. I long for less mess, and I’m really working on this; I truly am. 

Yet, I have found that it’s not a matter of the mind. You can’t just make yourself act better. You can’t just decide in your mind, “Ok, today will be different. No more spills. No more sour milk. Today, I shall be on a better course. I shall be better!” No, it’s not just a simple making up of the mind, and all is well. It’s a matter of the heart, and, oh, how that heart can be so stubborn sometimes…

I can determine in my mind that I will not doubt. I will not grow angry. I will not be afraid. I can convince myself that this time will be different. I will be different; however, if I’ve only convinced my mind, and I’ve not dealt with my heart, that heart will rebel. That heart will even revolt. When the heat of the moment comes, and my guard is let down, that heart will adamantly revert back to its comfort zone of fear, doubt, anger, or whatever emotion consumes it at the time. 

You see, the heart holds all the wounds, all the pain and all the joy. The heart is full of all the emotion, all the wonder, all fear. When troubles come, it’s really the heart that speaks, and this is why it is always a matter of that stubborn heart which determines what will spill out. 

This is why Jesus longs to rule our hearts. If He can hold our hearts, He can change our mind. He can transform our will. He can even change the world. If He can have our hearts surrendered to His will, He can consume our whole being. 

If we want the inside to be purified, to be empty of the mess, to be as pretty as the outside we paint, we must lend Him our hearts. We must surrender our emotions, our pains, our wounds. We must allow His living waters to wash over our hearts. We must let Him heal us from the inside out, and then, we won’t have to worry when the glass is spilt. There will be no sour to pour. It will only be full of fresh, living water, flowing from His heart to ours, and out to the world. 

“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.” Matthew 23:27-28


**Note: I did not take picture, nor do not I own picture. Simply taken from google search.