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Posts Tagged ‘Romans 8:28’

BLOGWORDS – Sunday 14 April 2019 – FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – FORGIVING

FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – FORGIVING

Forgive and forget. We’ve all heard it countless times. And it sounds oh-so-holy, doesn’t it?

 

But the human heart doesn’t let go so easily. And I’m not sure Father God actually intends us to. He forgets, yes. Casts our sin as far as the east is from the west, and remembers them not.

 

As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. Psalm 103:12

For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more.” Hebrews 8:12

 

As the once-trending movie and song says, “Let it go.”

 

“But you don’t know what they did to me.”

“They don’t deserve my forgiveness.”

“I tried. I just can’t.”

 

Oh, but you can.

Like love, forgiveness is a choice. Too often in this life, we let emotions rule us. We wait for that “certain” feeling, and go with it.

 

Father God created those emotions and instilled them in us. But He did not intend them as our GPS for life. Only His Word can guide us; our feeling are to follow our spirit as we walk in His Truth.

 

Several years ago, I was in a Ladies Study group and we were discussing the topic of forgiveness. The points I’ve just made were brought up and discussed, when I piped up with the thought of forgiving… God!

 

Excuse me? Forgive God? You’ve got to be kidding me, right? He’s God, He does no wrong.

 

Ah. But here’s the beauty of forgiveness—it’s not for the one who wronged us; it’s for the one who forgives—us. While forgiveness releases the trespasser into Father’s hands, it also releases the one who was wronged.

 

Chew on that for a minute.

 

I’ve seen a meme floating around social media that likens unforgiveness to poison, drinking it and waiting for the other person to die.

 

But it whittles away at our soul and hardens our heart. It destroys from the inside out.

 

To the natural mind, forgiving someone who has done us wrong goes against the very fiber of our being. It rankles. We fight it and resist.

 

But it we abide in Him as He bids us, when we “let it go,” and forgive, ah! such sweetness, such release, such peace.

 

 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55: 8-9

 

Father can do more when we take our meddling hands off than we ever could. And He does.

 

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who arethe called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28

 

When we get out of the way and let Him be, well, God.

 

More than forgive—what? There’s more?

 

Yes.

Bless them.

 

Wait, what?

 

But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you… Matthew 5:44

 

Isn’t that the definition of forgiveness? The very epitome of letting go?

 

He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.  Matthew 4:45

 

Besides all that, all the logical explanation and reasoning, Jesus gave us the ultimate example.

 

Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.”  Luke 23:34

 

From the cross. He said this about the people who had just driven spikes into his feet and hands.

 

Forgive them.

 

How can we do any less?

 

Blogwords, Front Porch Fellowship, #FPF, Sunday Devotion, Forgiving, Psalm 103:12, Hebrews 11:12, Isaiah 55: 8-9, Romans 8:28, Matthew 5:44, Matthew 5:45, Luke 23:34

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BLOGWORDS – Sunday 7 April 2019 – FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – WHERE IS GOD WHEN THINGS GO WRONG?

FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – WHERE IS GOD WHEN THINGS GO WRONG?

“What’s wrong with me?”

 

I’m sure I’m not the only one who has ever asked that question. I didn’t word it exactly that way, but in January of 1995 I did pose the premise to Father God. More along the lines of, “Your Word says this, and my life is this. You’re God, so the problem must be in me.”

 

“Sit down,” He said. “This is going to take a while.”

 

Who hasn’t asked that at least once? Where is God? Doesn’t He care? Why doesn’t He do something?

 

He does not step out for some other, more important task. He is never distracted, nor is He ever late.

 

He is, however, God. And His ways are not ours.

 

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55: 8-9

 

A few weeks ago I mentioned a book I had read, Living the Lord’s Prayer. And in it, the author (whose name escapes me) gives a vivid image of God vs man.

 

 

Pretty simple illustration. But so profound.

 

Basically, we’re not God. He sees and knows things that we cannot begin to understand. And when we have questions, sometimes we have to do the thing that goes against every fiber of our natural being, and accept the unacceptable.

 

Let me be brutally honest. I’ve been in a difficult season. And it has languished for so very long I feel like quitting. Giving up. I can’t, and I won’t. But I feel helpless and frustrated and so damned tired. And not a little bit angry. I’ve fended off depressions trying to creep back over me—I REFUSE to fall back into that abyss.

 

Add to that the waves of fatigue and weakness associated with RA, and the mysterious lack of words to write…

 

Everyone has hard days. God never promised any of us a rose garden. Even in the center of God’s will for your life, it won’t all be easy. Going through valleys is normal, and inevitable. You are either in one now, just got out of one, or will be going back into another one. God is more than the God of the mountain tops; He’s the God of the valleys too!

 

Think about Joseph in the Bible, and Job. These were two men that were righteous and who sought to honor God with their lives! They didn’t do anything wrong, yet they both had to endure hard days, and much suffering. It seemed like their journeys took them through valleys more often than not, but in the end, they came out on the other side!

 

But He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I will come forth as gold. My feet have closely followed His steps; I have kept to His way without turning aside. Job 23: 10-11

 

The same can be true for you—and me, too. Just because you are going through a hard time doesn’t mean you did something wrong. Hard days and seasons come to all of us.

 

He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good , and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.  Matthew 4:45

 

As a child doesn’t grasp how a parent provides food and toys, neither do we always grasp what Father God is doing. And as ingredients subjected to heat become bread or a cake, we don’t see how it happens. Neither do we always see how Father God manifests His will for us.

 

But know this—He is always working all things for our good. Sometimes, perhaps usually, “behind the scenes,” where we can’t, or don’t, see.

 

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.  Romans 8:28

 

Not all things in life are from His hand. And while yes, He does bring us to difficult things to test us, I would venture to say that the vast majority of hardships in our lives are by our own hand.

 

But God.

 

He is ever faithful, and takes those very things borne of our own stupidity or ignorance or negligence—or just by being in this world—and brings about His blessing and goodness to us who love Him.

 

That path to the rainbow will be different for each one of us. Betimes, He bids us, “be still,” or “wait,” or “trust Me.” Other times, He shows us what to do, what to say, where to seek help. But only when we pause to hear His voice, for we will only hear Him when we pause to listen.

 

Always, always seek His face. And as we know the sun is behind the clouds on a rainy day, so too, we know Father is there and he has not changed when circumstances cloud our faith.

 

Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.  Ephesians 3:20

 

 

#Blogwords, Front Porch Fellowship, #FPF, Sunday Devotion, Where is God When Things Go Wrong, Isaiah 55: 8-9, Job 23:10-11, Matthew 5:45, Romans 8:28, Ephesians 3:20

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BLOGWORDS – Sunday 3 March 2019 – FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – WHERE IS GOD WHEN THINGS GO WRONG?

FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – WHERE IS GOD WHEN THINGS GO WRONG?

 

Who hasn’t asked that at least once? Where is God? Doesn’t He care? Why doesn’t He do something?

 

He does not step out for some other, more important task. He is never distracted, nor is He ever late.

 

He is, however, God. And His ways are not ours.

 

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55: 8-9

 

A few weeks ago I mentioned a book I had read, Living the Lord’s Prayer. And in it, the author (whose name escapes me) gives a vivid image of God vs man.

 

Pretty simple illustration. But so profound.

 

Basically, we’re not God. He sees and knows things that we cannot begin to understand. And when we have questions, sometimes we have to do the thing that goes against every fiber of our natural being, and accept the unacceptable.

 

Let me be brutally honest. I’ve been in a difficult season. And it has languished for so very long I feel like quitting. Giving up. I can’t, and I won’t. But I feel helpless and frustrated and so damned tired. And not a little bit angry. I’ve fended off depressions trying to creep back over me—I REFUSE to fall back into that abyss.

Add to that the waves of fatigue and weakness associated with RA, and the mysterious lack of words to write…

 

Everyone has hard days. God never promised any of us a rose garden. Even in the center of God’s will for your life, it won’t all be easy. Going through valleys is normal, and inevitable. You are either in one now, just got out of one, or are going back into another one. God is more than the God of the mountain tops; He’s the God of the valleys too!

 

Think about Joseph and Job in the Bible. These were two men that were righteous and who sought to honor God with their lives! They didn’t do anything wrong, yet they both had to endure hard days, and much suffering. It seemed like their journeys took them through valleys more often than not, but in the end, they came out on the other side!

 

But He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I will come forth as gold. My feet have closely followed His steps; I have kept to His way without turning aside. Job 23: 10-11

 

The same can be true for you. Just because you are going through a hard time doesn’t mean you did something wrong. Hard days and seasons come to all of us.

 

He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.  Matthew 4:45

 

As a child doesn’t grasp how a parent provides food and toys, neither do we always grasp what Father God is doing. And as ingredients subjected to heat become bread or a cake, we don’t see how it happens. Neither do we always see how Father God manifests His will for us.

 

But know this—He is always working all things for our good. Sometimes, perhaps usually, “behind the scenes,” where we can’t, or don’t, see.

 

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.  Romans 8:28

 

Not all things in life are from His hand. And while yes, He does bring us to difficult things to test us, I would venture to say that the vast majority of hardships in our lives are by our own hand.

 

But God.

 

He is ever faithful, and takes those very things borne of our own stupidity or ignorance or negligence, and brings about His blessing and goodness to us who love Him.

 

Always, always seek His face. And as we know the sun is behind the clouds on a rainy day, so too, we know Father is there and he has not changed when circumstances cloud our faith.

 

Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.  Ephesians 3:20

 

 

#Blogwords, Front Porch Fellowship, #FPF, Sunday Devotion, Where is God When Things Go Wrong, Isaiah 55: 8-9, Job 23:10-11, Matthew 5:45, Romans 8:28, Ephesians 3:20

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BLOGWORDS – Sunday 10 February 2019 – FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – HOPE DEFERRED

FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – HOPE DEFERRED

 

I WANT IT! AND I WANT IT NOW!” Sounds like a small child, throwing a tantrum, doesn’t it?

 

But in this age of instant everything, don’t we as adults still do the same thing? We bring our petitions to God, blink, then ask, “Where is it?”

 

That’s not how faith works. God is not a genie in a golden lamp, and our prayers are not wishes cast upon his whim or mood.

 

Prayer is communication with Him, both speaking and listening. And in this noisy world it can be hard to hear His still small voice.

 

Then He said, “Go out, and stand on the mountain before the Lord.” And behold the Lord passed by and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice.  I Kings 19:10-12

 

But what about those prayers that are heart deep, soul-born? Prayers that are birthed from communion with Holy Spirit?

 

Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.  Psalm 37:4

 

Several years ago Father God showed me that verse is talking about desires He has placed in our hearts in the first place, and when we truly delight in Him, our desires are His desire. Of course, then, it is His delight and will to give them to us.

 

Why, then, if we are in line with Father’s will, do we have to wait. So long. For some of those dreams and desires?

 

I wish I could answer that, I truly do. Lessons to learn, human stubbornness and interference, timing.

 

I see memes about God’s timing all.the.time. And it doesn’t make the waiting any easier. Not one little bit. What I do know is to lean on Him in the waiting. It doesn’t make time go faster, but it does make the wait more bearable.

 

For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” So we may boldly say:

“The Lord is my helper. I will not fear. What can man do to me?” Hebrews 13:5-6

 

Even in that no man’s land of Waiting.

 

The problem is, the bit that makes the “heart sick,” is when we take our eyes from Father God. When we focus on the problem, or the dream, and not on Him.

 

But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.  Matthew 6:33

 

This is a basic “first and then” equation. But in our urgent, hurry everything lives, we try to rush to the “then” part, and it doesn’t work. What it does do, is create the “heart sick.” Anxiety, worry, angst, pressure to make a thing happen—a thing that’s not in our power to make happen. We take on what was never ours to bear, and are crushed beneath the weight of it.

 

And yet, He is always there, waiting for us to turn to Him, to release what was never ours to perform back into His hand.

 

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.  Philippians 4:13

 

… is not a command to “do all the things.” Rather, it is a promise of Him enabling us to do “all things” He asks of us.

 

The more I spend time in Scripture, the more I meditate on His Word, the more I seek His face—the more I realize it is all about relationship with Him. That is where true peace is found. No matter the circumstance. And no matter the wait. He holds us in the palm of His hand—how, then, can our heart be sick?

 

Our hope is in Him. What He has promised, He will do.

 

… being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ…  Philippians 1:6

 

He is our hope, and our all.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vWxb6VvPrkE

 

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28

 

 

#Blogwords, Front Porch Fellowship, #FPF, Sunday Devotion, Hope Deferred, I Kings 19:10-11, Psalm 37:4, Hebrews 13:5-6, Philippians 4:13, Philippians 1:6, Romans 8:28,

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BLOGWORDS – Sunday 3 February 2019 – FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – BOLDNESS and COURAGE

FRONT PORCH FELLOWSHIP – BOLDNESS and COURAGE

 

There is a misconception that once we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior that somehow our life is suddenly golden, days of ease and bliss.

 

This is a Pollyanna ideal. And it is totally false.

 

While eternal life is golden, our days are filled with peace when ease eludes us, and joy when bliss seems a fairytale.

 

Jesus told us we would have trouble. But He also told us to be of “good cheer.” With one condition: that we remain in Him.

 

These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer—I have overcome the world. – John 16:33

 

So many times, we as believers, go about our lives by rote, including our churchy life.

 

I got news for ya. It don’t work that way!

 

To truly live as Christ, to live our lives IN Him, we cannot sit idly by and expect someone else to fight the battles. Certainly we must guard our hearts, and our personal time with Him—prayer time, Bible reading and study.

 

But as warriors for God’s Kingdom, we must step out of our comfortable box. And sometimes that means conflict.

 

I don’t know about you, but conflict is a very difficult position for me—I am a peace maker. It is in my nature—my God given nature—to smooth difficulties, not create them. To ease discomfort and allay differences. I don’t mean to make us all imitations of each other or make us all the same—Father God didn’t do that. Why would I want to do that?

 

But it is in my nature to find the most peaceable way to resolve conflict. And it is certainly NOT in my nature to stir up conflict. In fact, where I can, I look the other way… But that’s another post for another time.

 

Betimes, Father calls us out of our comfort zone. (usually, in fact) To step out of the boat, and walk on the water with Him. And for all that our faith sustains us, that step off a cliff—even knowing He is holding us up, and that we will not smash into the jagged rocks—that step is the hardest thing we’ll ever have to do.

 

And it’s not a one-time occurrence. Not daily, but surely as we grow in Him, He calls us to deeper waters. Higher waves. Taller cliffs.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FBJJJkiRukY

 

Two weeks ago was one such event for me, and on Friday 25 January, I posted one of my boldest posts. Ever. In the days since, I have become more outspoken about the topic: abortion. WAY out of my comfort zone.

 

But it is something Father has laid on my heart. Something I cannot passively look the other way. It is, in fact, the thing that breaks my heart to the point of boldness.

 

But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth. Acts 1:8

 

He will and does for each of us. Are we all called to speak out on abortion? For all the horror it is, no. (And I don’t mean remain silent or turn a blind eye.) Father God stirs each of our hearts differently, individually.

 

That boldness? That’s all Him. 100% Holy Spirit. ‘cause I sure don’t—correction, didn’t—have the courage to speak out like that before.

 

There have been numerous times He called me to step out of the boat. Have I always? Surely not. One instance, one that was deeply personal to me, caused much grief and agony in the aftermath. In stepping out, I had to take an action I didn’t want to take, and I was met with great opposition. Accusations were spit in my face: “What about your faith?” and “I thought you had faith.”

 

I was crushed, devastated. And yet I knew I had done as Father directed me. I had, not terribly unlike Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, begged and pleaded with Father God for another way. Some other option than the action I had to take. But faith does not mean sitting idly by, waiting for Father to wave His magic wand and make everything all right.

 

He tasked me with a thing that propelled the necessary change. It was mine to trust Father’s heart in every detail and aspect of the situation.

 

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28

 

Faith is a call to action. Sometimes that action is active prayer. Keeping out of the fray. Sitting by—not idly—as the tempest moves. Sometimes it is stirring the tempest.

 

Knowing the difference, knowing when to act and when to be still, can mean the difference between life and death. Knowing the difference comes only from being still before Him, listening to Him when we pray.

 

And stepping out in obedience when He calls us to task. There is great peace in obedience. Joy, too, though perhaps not always immediately.

 

Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice… I Samuel 15:22

But this is what I commanded them, saying, ‘Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you shall be My people. And walk in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well with you.’ Jeremiah 7:23

 

The reward, the blessing in following His command, in heeding His voice, is beyond measure. Peace. Joy. Strength and courage.

 

He strengthens me, encourages me. Emboldens me. Because that’s what this life is about. Living as He lives. Living as though He’s right here next to me.

 

Because He is. Always. Every day, in every moment.

 

For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” So we may boldly say:

“The Lord is my helper. I will not fear. What can man do to me?” Hebrews 13:5-6

Oh, and my situation? The one that so nearly crushed me? Changes, though slow in coming, have begun. Hope is shining where darkness and brokenness once were the only landscape. Father is making manifest His perfect will.

 

 

#Blogwords, Front Porch Fellowship, #FPF, Sunday Devotion, Boldness and Courage, John 16:33, Acts 1:8, Romans 8:28, I Samuel 15:22, Jeremiah 7:23, Hebrews 13:5-6

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BLOGWORDS – Friday 25 January 2019 – HEADLINE NEWS and CURRENT EVENTS – ABORTION and the REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH ACT

CHAT THURSDAY – HEADLINE NEWS and CURRENT EVENTS – ABORTION and the REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH ACT

 

I’m breaking a cardinal rule and writing on a hot trending topic—abortion and the “Reproductive Health Act.” I do not write this as a debate, but as my conviction as a follower of Christ.

 

 

“New York State passed a bill this week that feminists are celebrating with glee, lighting up the top of the Freedom Tower with pink lights as they claim victory for women’s health reform and women’s rights.”

 

I am a woman and this is NOT a “right” for me.

 

It is an abomination.

 

There are six things which the Lord hates, yes, seven which are an abomination to Him:
haughty eyes, a lying tongue,  hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that run rapidly to evil, a false witness who utters lies, and one who spreads strife among brothers.  – Proverbs 6:16-19

 

I read a comment on a Facebook post a while back that blasted God for asking Abraham to sacrifice his own son, raging at the horrific notion of… sacrificing his child to God.

My immediate thought was of Molech, the Canaanite god who actually did expect infant sacrifices. And gruesomely done, too.

And—GET THIS—done willingly. By the parents.

WARNING: graphic description ahead—

Some of these sources suggest that babies were roasted to death on a heated bronze statue. According to Diodorus Siculus, “There was in their city a bronze image of Cronus extending its hands, palms up and sloping toward the ground, so that each of the children when placed thereon rolled down and fell into a sort of gaping pit filled with fire.” They placed their children alive in the arms of a bronze statue of the lady Tanit.

The hands of the statue extended over a brazier into which the child fell once the flames had caused the limbs to contract and its mouth to open. The child was alive and conscious when burned. Philo specified that the sacrificed child was best-loved.

According to Stager and Wolff, there is a consensus among scholars that Carthaginian children were sacrificed by their parents, who would make a vow to kill the next child if the gods would grant them a favor: for instance, their shipment of goods were to arrive safely in a foreign port.

* source: Wikipedia

 

I am reeling from the news of this decision in New York. Never is abortion warranted, but to poison a child who might otherwise live, but for which side of birth he or she (and yes, only two genders) resides is unfathomable.

 

This means that a woman has carried this child, felt its movements within her own body, has heard (potentially) the heartbeat, that she knows that a person is inside her—and still chooses to murder him or her. This means that a woman has had weeks, months to make a decision to give life outside her womb to the life she carries. This means that a woman who makes this decision, this late in her pregnancy, has a hardened heart. Cold. Stone.

This means that it is no panicked, irrational decision. It is calculated, and callous, unconscionable. Premeditated.

 

Facebook is glutted with reaction to the New York decision, and because of my circle, that reaction overwhelmingly is grief, sorrow, lament.

 

Melissa Ferguson talks about the “bystander effect,” in which we, as Christians, grouse and gripe and grumble about a thing—but actually DO nothing. She shares a time when she had an opportunity, and reached out:

 

https://www.mlferguson.com/uncategorized/time-to-rise-up/?fbclid=IwAR39spD86B-NKb3oVGiq3NqVEvuT93F6eGns19_xJ2PMXR_U51kBCfcvQWI

 

Each of us, as believers, is called to step up, to speak out, to DO something, anything, to make a difference. This post is, for me, one thing I can do.

 

Whatever we do, we must do it in love. And boldness. Never superior-minded, never brash or aggressive. But neither timorous or reticent or diffident. Rather, we must be confident and gentle and meek, sure in the One for Whom we live, and act, and speak.

 

Right is right, and wrong is wrong. Not subjective, dependent neither on whim nor emotion. Truth is truth, and it is absolute.

 

And when the unthinkable happens, when a child is conceived and born with defect or deformity, it is not a punishment or a test. It does not mean God has forgotten us, or looked the other way.

 

Rather, it is our chance to look to Him IN the difficult and heartbreaking circumstance. To trust Him when He says He works all things together for our good. (Romans 8:28)

 

My friend, Kimberly Wyse, shares her experience:

 

http://kimberlywyse.com/2019/01/24/lord-have-mercy-a-response-to-the-new-new-york-state-abortion-bill/

 

And lest you think me a naïve commentator, who is ignorant of the issues, let me assure you I am not. All three of my own children were very much wanted and cherished, even though one was a product of rape—still, never did I wish to murder my unborn child. So yes, I knew those anguished emotions. But a wise friend told me, in those early days of that pregnancy, that God had a special purpose for the child—as He does for all of us.

I pray God’s mercy upon our land. I believe this has rocked us to our core, and that the righteous will rise up and rout out such evil. Yes, the days are dark, and yes, the enemy is growing bolder. But he is also growing careless. He is desperate, for he knows his ultimate end. Oh yes, the enemy is surely alive, but he is not well. Not at all. We, the righteous, we are alive and well, and we are strong in His might. Our God is not desperate, He is not grasping at straws, He is never careless. He is firmly seated on His throne, steady and sure as all eternity. And when we look to Him (Psalm 121:1-2) we, too, are steady and sure in the face of evil.

 

 

 

 

#Blogwords, Headline News and Current Events, Abortion and the Reproductive Health Act, Jeremiah 1:5, Proverbs 6:16-19, Bystander Effect, Romans 8:28, Psalm 121:1-2

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NEW WEEK NEW FACE – DANELE ROTHARMEL

 

 

 

Danele Rotharmel—Romans 8:28

 

Sometimes, it’s really hard to understand why things happen the way that they do. I was a Christian my whole life, and I thought that being a Christian would protect me from “bad things.” Unfortunately, my viewpoint was rather naive. I’ve learned through experience that when we become Christians, God doesn’t promise to keep us from every hardship, but He does promise that He will be with us always. This message was demonstrated to me in graphic detail when I almost died.

You see, after college, I began to feel ill. My doctors were puzzled, and they grew even more puzzled as my symptoms became more severe. Eventually, I couldn’t walk without staggering or talk without stuttering. My body was shutting down, and no one knew why. Finally, it was discovered that a low-level leak from a faulty furnace in my home was slowly poisoning me. If the leak hadn’t been exposed, I wouldn’t have lived much longer.

I thought that when the furnace was replaced, things would get back to normal, but the carbon monoxide had triggered severe Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, and whenever I was around perfumes or other chemicals, I would become extremely ill. This illness progressed until I ended up quarantined in my home. I thought the quarantine would last for a few months; instead, it lasted for seven years. For seven years, I could only talk to friends and extended family through a closed window. For seven years, I couldn’t go to church, restaurants, stores, or out to lunch with friends. Seven years is an extremely long time.

During quarantine, I began reexamining my faith. I felt betrayed by God, but I came to the conclusion that Christianity isn’t a magical formula for warding off bad things—it’s an invitation to experience God’s peace through the good times and the bad times too. Eventually, I decided that in spite of quarantine—and in spite of all my shattered hopes and dreams—God was still real, God was still good, and God was still trustworthy.

I began using my time to study the Bible and write my books. I’d always enjoyed writing, but I’d never had the hours needed to pen my novels—now, I had all the time in the world. I began immersing myself in “The Time Counselor Chronicles.” I would sit at my computer for eight to eighteen hours a day—it was as if I couldn’t stop writing. Once I finished my first book, “Time Tsunami,” I couldn’t stand parting with the characters I’d come to love, so I began immediately writing “Time Trap.” Once I finished “Time Trap,” the other novels quickly followed: “Time Search,” “Time Awakening,” “Time Inferno,” “Time Nightmare,” and “Time Flashback.”

I used my novels as a distraction from pain and loneliness. I filled my books with comedy, romance, friendship, action, and suspense. I used them to brighten my days and bring me joy. I also used them as vehicles to explore my journey back to faith. In the novels, my characters explore hard questions about God, and eventually, they find the answers that I personally found—God is real and God is trustworthy.

My books are clean, and I filled them with plot twists and surprises. When you read them, you’re not just reading a book, you’re looking at how I dealt with disillusionment and pain. I included a time travel aspect in my novels because I wished desperately that time travel existed. I wished that I could go back through time and warn my younger-self to buy a carbon monoxide monitor. I included serial killers in my books because I was facing a serial killer of my own. Many people don’t survive what I went through. Each time my characters stood up against a killer and won, I would cheer—knowing that I was metaphorically trying to do the same thing in the real world.

Eventually, my quarantine began to work. As I slowly recovered, I took brief fieldtrips from the safety of my “chemical-free” house. Going into a grocery store and choosing my own vegetables felt amazing! During this time, I felt God telling me that it was time to publish my books. I still became ill very easily, but I stepped out in faith and went to the Colorado Christian Writers Conference in Estes Park. While I was there, I had an interview with a representative from Prism Book Group. Prism took an interest in my books, and they published the first book in “The Time Counselor Chronicles,” “Time Tsunami,” in January 2016. “Time Trap,” the second book in the series, was published by Prism in June. The third book, “Time Search,” is scheduled to be released soon.

Prism encouraged me to start a blog, and after prayer, I decided to name my blog https://dragonflydanele.wordpress.com/ and write about the lessons I learned in quarantine. I wasn’t sure that anyone would read what I had written, but to my surprise, my articles about God’s faithfulness resonated with the public. Currently, my blog is being read in over 80 nations around the world.

When I look back on my life, I have to admit that things haven’t gone the way I expected. The plans I made before my illness have all faded and withered away. During the first part of my seven-year quarantine, I really thought my life was over, but God had new plans in mind for me. These plans were better than the ones I had made for myself. If I hadn’t become ill, I never would have written my books or become a blogger. God took what I thought was a death sentence, and transformed it into a doorway of ministry, and now my words are reaching people all around the globe.

Romans 8:28 says that God will transform everything into something good in our lives. Before I became ill, I didn’t comprehend the reality of those words—but I understand them now. Christianity doesn’t ensure that we won’t have problems, but it does ensure that we have a God to run to when those problems hit. Even though I’ve spent almost a third of my life ill—and even though I’ve spent over seven years in quarantine—I can say without reservation—God is real, God is good, and God is trustworthy.

 

Time Trap

 

My newest book, “Time Trap,” has just been released by Prism Book Group. Here’s a look at the back cover blurb: When problems arise during a field exam, Director Peter Matthews and Dr. Laura Nelson are sent through a time portal to investigate.  While they search for their missing cadets, they encounter an enemy who is calculating and brutal—a mysterious nemesis who is holding a grudge against the TEMCO program.  As Peter and Laura race to unravel clues directing them to their kidnapped cadets, their own survival comes into question.  A deadly trap has been set, and they are forced to pit their wits against a serial killer who is intent on playing a deadly chess game through time itself.

 

 

 

Danele RotharmelDanele Rotharmel’s life took an unexpected turn when a mysterious illness brought her close to death. Eventually, she learned that a carbon monoxide leak from a faulty furnace was poisoning her. This poisoning triggered Multiple Chemical Sensitivity causing her to be put in quarantine. For seven years, she could only talk to friends and extended family through a windowpane. During this time, she wrote the first six books in The Time Counselor Chronicles.  Although her journey back to health was difficult, it provided her the opportunity to grow closer to God and write her books. For that, she’s forever thankful.

 

If you would like to learn more about me, please visit my blog.

My Blog: https://dragonflydanele.wordpress.com/

Amazon: http://amzn.to/24LKruh

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/time-trap-danele-j-rotharmel/1123886056?ean=2940153055428

 

 

 

 

Danele Rotharmel, New Week New Face, #NWNF, Guest Post, Romans 8:28, Time Trap

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