Kathy Schwanke

Savoring Light

The Inevitable War

IMG_7528 I pulled the car door closed, it had been a long time since I felt this weight of darkness drop heavy on me. The devil knows what chokes me. Schemer.

Fear encompassed me as I imagine an MRI machine would make me feel, fear of suffocation.

Her words, “you failed to keep your word . . .” had reopened an old wound in my soul. A wound she had nothing to do with. The lesion that bleeds whenever I fail, whenever I miss the mark of making me enough to be worthy of love.

I had sought to do the thing I promised, but it didn’t work out and then life took me a different direction and limited me. And I forgot…
I felt horrible.

Whether a person’s expectations are truly make-or-break and do-or-die expectations . . . or only those I perceive to be the litmus test for my value.

When will I ever be free of people-pleasing? When will I be emancipated from fearing rejection? When will I be able to keep my mind on the things that are good and true and pure and right and excellent and praiseworthy? When will I be able to keep Jesus in my view . . . the Spirit . . . instead of my performance? [me, seeking to keep an impossible law]

I fear the answer is:
When I die.

I seem to fall into this trap most often when my life is wound so tight that I can barely breathe. When there is “trouble on every side” … that’s when the eyes of my heart seem to land on my weaknesses.

That’s when I fall into the old slave-mentality of “perform to save self”

That’s when I forget to remember the truth.
That is when my own expectations are placed on myself instead of depending on God.

It’s not up to me.

Not one can save self.
Only Jesus can save.
And He helps me remember His truth the moment I bow my head and seek His grace.

I remember Jesus.
All these years with Him teaching me.
My long-suffering Savior, giver of grace, epitome of unfailing love.

It’s coming quicker than it once did, my repentance.
I feel the weight of slavery, and I know now to turn to the Emancipator.

My face.

It’s about where I face.
When my face falls for the feels,

head hung low . . .
self is in view.
When I lift my face to the rising sun, where mercy resides, where grace frees . . .

Jesus is in view; I am facing Him.

Him, in the hills, that place where my help comes from. Psalm 121:1 KJV

Lord Jesus, I am relying on SELF again! Forgive me! 

And He gives me more grace. Again. Praise Him!

The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.

Flesh . . . when God mentions it, He means that part of me that acts independently of Him.
Self-reliant.
That is flesh.
It’s the 666
Three times short of seven with a sabbath where I rest in Him.

The flesh or the self is opposed to the Spirit of God. Galatians 5:16-18

When I allow a human being to have power over my value, I am worshiping the human being.
God calls that idolatry.
And idolatry is slavery.
I default to slavery.

But He split the sea so I could walk right through it!!!
Egypt is in my rear-view mirror!
Get behind me Satan! You are a defeated foe!

My Christ has won the victory!

Where O Death Is Your Sting?

I covered my legs with my boiled-wool sweater. I keep it in my jeep in case I get stranded and need another layer. Today I need another layer on my legs. Dear Jeep of mine, you’re laboring hard, and your heat is . . . not warm.

And my fingers are frozen.

My hands take turns. One on the steering wheel and the other beneath my thigh.  And I whisper a prayer, “Dear Lord, fix my heat.” And as I do, I know I am spoiled. Images of homeless people, freezing . . . flash across my heart. Is it from a movie I saw? Or the man standing, holding a sign at the freeway exit?

And the song comes on, Waiting Here For You by Christy Nockels “You’re everything You’ve promised. Your faithfulness is true and we’re desperate for your presence. All we need is you.”

All we need is You, because you are everything. You are the Giver of all Good Gifts. Author of Life. Almighty and Good. Faithful and True.

Another thought comes, “None of us is guaranteed tomorrow. Life is precious. I know this now more than ever. In fact, I think all the losses, all the trials, all the death has served me in gaining an eternal perspective. I feel so much less attached to this world.”

My HOPE is High.

Even as my heart is broken again . . .  and strained from circumstances bearing down that get me out of bed to cry out to the Lord for His mighty hand to move.

I trust Him. I really do. He has proven His goodness over and over. But so often I have to wrestle my doubt and fear down to the ground with truth. Remembering His faithfulness. His promises are true. He IS a good good Father. Oh yes He is.

My son-in-law lost his job a few weeks before Christmas.

We get this news in the middle of our painful move. [more on that later]

We are still waiting for the next job to open. In the mean time, God has done amazing things. He has provided. Their rent was paid. They have food. And He blessed them with greatly needed, and sweet gift of bonding time. Andrew just finished his six years with the Air Force Reserves which took him away from home often during their six years of marriage and having three babies.

His gifts are indeed above all we could ask or imagine. Right in the middle of hard, Ephesians 3:20.

This week we lost another grand baby. Our son and his wife letting go of two treasures within six months. Two babies getting heaven before we do.

Our Anchor Holds, our faith in our Savior.

I’m on my way in the cold jeep to watch their firstborn treasure for the day, I’m thinking on all these things.

This little man that we are so thankful for, the smiles [or funny faces] keep joy unhindered, and right on the surface. Sorrow can not win.  IMG_7322

It amazes me that because of Jesus, we can do this thing. The sorrowing, yet always rejoicing. 2 Corinthians 6:10

Yes. Death is inevitable for us all. None escape. But we, who have placed faith in Christ Jesus have this blessed assurance of eternal joy in God’s presence, a joy and a glory that far outweighs all trials we experience here.

Heaven. This is where we fix our gaze, with Jesus as our prize.

And the things of earth? They grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace.

 

1 Corinthians 15:54- 55 “When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory” “O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?”

The Memories, The Sorrow, & The Joy

I hadn’t stepped my foot in a gift shop for quite some time. Since we sold the farm two years ago, I’ve been reducing, simplifying, and even changing my decorating style.

But, back in the process – again – of house shopping, and gathering info for the banker to secure us a mortgage, I needed to wait around in town for him to find a lost file.

So I stepped into the overstocked shop with no agenda but to browse.

And there they were, the man-gifts. Mugs, wallet-boxes and framed prints displaying rifles, deer with large antlers, and ducks. For the hunter in your life.

Fond thoughts of Dad instantly filled my heart, and just as quickly the reminder, “he is gone.” The cloudy sorrow-feeling settled in my heart like those eclipsing the sunshine that morning, a blanket of dark on the already colorless landscape.

Soon after, as I followed the path past shelves of mugs, walls of scarves, gloves, serving dishes, and seasonal floral, I came to the baby section.

Theodore would be making his arrival any time now, had the Lord allowed him to stay safely tucked in. But we had all said goodbye back in August, and the little cloud of sorrow grew as I processed in a nano-second, all that was not going to be in the coming holiday celebrations.

And the pain of the others who have suffered the same. My mom. My siblings. My kids.

I turned my mind to thanks. I knew I must; I did not, by any means want to leave the shop with red eyes and black streaks running down my cheeks. But still, sorrow lingered.

Later, at home in my own space, I processed the string of losses with the Lord. I re-surrendered my desire for things to be heaven-like here. I reminded myself of the truth of the old hymn. This world is not my home, I’m just passing through.

Then I sang the lyrics that struck me one Sunday morning . . .  “Bless the Lord, O my soul . . . Ten Thousand Years and THEN FOREVERMORE.”

The words stunned me. Who can conceive of even a thousand years, much less TEN thousand . . . and THEN . . . forevermore. [?]

This is the way Jesus calls us to live. 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
This is the way to balance sorrow. 1 Thessalonians 4:13-16

So, I allow myself to grieve. I thank Jesus for the years and reminders of my dad. I praise Him that we will know Theodore on the other side into forever.

Image-1 (14) He calls us to not love our lives too much here. He knows we are easily distracted.

This broken world will afford each of us many losses, but when we trust Jesus, we find the sweet promises of God to bring us out into the spacious place of hope and anticipation. God never asks us to give something up without a promise to give us more.

And along with the promise, there is the blessed gift of remembering that this world is not our home. So I can find joy in every day of this life because of this I know: The Presence of God, which never leaves us alone here, will welcome us all who love Him HOME for the great Wedding banquet on the Day of celebration at the start of forevermore.

I drove myself to the Thanksgiving Eve service last night. Upon entering, I was met by about eight men standing in a semi-circle. I’d worn my “Boyfriend jeans” from H&M. Holes above the knees, fraying.

“Would you like us to take up a collection for you to buy yourself some new pants?” said one of the men.

“Sure!” I said, taking his jesting lightly.

And as I walked away, I smiled at God because only He knew how that would stir up fond memories of my dad. His teasing always brought me smiles, and those memories still do.

Maybe you too are facing empty place-settings at your holiday table, I pray you will find comfort in the hope and promises of banqueting together in eternal glory on that Great Day.

Happy Thanksgiving Family and Friends!

Day 30 ~ Walking With God ~ A Journey Of Being Altar’d

When God calls, it sounds a bit like, “Come, [or leave]  follow Me . . . and I will bless you . . .”

The Lord had said to Abram, “Leave your native country, your relatives, and your father’s family, and go to the land that I will show you.  I will make you into a great nation. I will bless you and make you famous, and you will be a blessing to others.  I will bless those who bless you and curse those who treat you with contempt. All the families on earth will be blessed through you.” Genesis 12:1-3

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Will you leave your career in hair, and be a SAHM?” [StayAtHomeMom]
Altar’d and blessed.

“Will you leave your sweet little home in White Bear Lake, MN and move to a remote place in WI where you don’t know anyone? Because, to your surprise your husband wants a hobby farm?”
Altar’d and blessed.

“Will you trust me with the trauma of this early birth, and this six-week-old needing surgery?”
Altar’d and blessed.

“Will you trust me in this painful financial trial with all these medical bills as your car died while you are living in the ‘boonies’ with these two babies?”
Altar’d and blessed.

“Will you put your house on the market, and when it sells rather quickly, endure moving in the basement of your friend’s house with your two little ones because you won’t find a place to live for two long months while your home and business is boxed up in several locations by accommodating friends?”
Altar’d and blessed.

“Will you risk looking weird and homeschool your children?”
Altar’d and so blessed.

“Will you trust I am leading you and put your children in public school?”
Altar’d and blessed.

“Will you endure the pain of rejection a hundred and one times because you are following Me and people don’t get you?”
Altar’d x 101 and blessed x 101.

Will you endure this lonely and terrifying journey through anxiety and depression?”
Altar’d and blessed.

“Will you leave your beloved big brick home across from the beautiful lake and the sunset view that you love and move with your husband to [another] farm?”
Altar’d and blessed.

“Will you take a risk dear cautious one, and open a gift shop on this farm?”
Altar’d and so blessed.

“Will you endure the scorn of those who don’t understand what is happening as you endure this trial with your daughter being judged and misunderstood?”
Altar’d and blessed.

“Will you let go of your children – again? and again? and again? and again? and trust me with them?”
Altar’d Altar’d Altar’d Altar’d and so, so, so, so blessed!

“Will you close the shop, sell the farm, move and move and move again? Giving up your rights, your reputation, your proximity to your children and grandchildren, the church you love, the people you’ve come to know as family . . . and come with Me?
Altar’d * Altar’ing * Blessed *

. . . and looking forward to the blessings.

Then Peter said to him, “We’ve given up everything to follow you. What will we get?

Jesus replied, “I assure you that when the world is made new and the Son of Man sits upon his glorious throne, you who have been my followers will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or property, for my sake, will receive a hundred times as much in return and will inherit eternal life.  But many who are the greatest now will be least important then, and those who seem least important now will be the greatest then. Matthew 19:27-30 [emphasis-mine]

#WalkingWithGod is a journey of being Altar’d [Romans 12:1-2]

Selah – I Lay Me Down

I’ve kind of bombed at writing consistently for 31 days . . . it was a lofty goal, I knew that, but thanks for hanging in here with me.

And for today . . .  I hope you are encouraged to count the blessings you’ve received in all the places you have left and followed Jesus. <3

Day 24 ~ Walking With God ~ When You Are A Granny

Yes, I do call myself Granny, but my little men call me Gramma just like my kids called theirs Gramma and I called mine Gramma.

Sixteen month old Oliver stayed overnight for his first sleepover on Thursday. He is starting to talk. Every time we see him there is more. And we see him most every week. He says, “Da-daa” and “Ma-ma” and “foof-foof” for dogs, and I think it’s something like “Foo” for shoe. He has a thing for shoes. Not for wearing them as much as for hauling them around the house.

Grandchildren are the best.

All the grannies say that. But when you get to BE one . . .then you know just what they mean. They are like whip cream and cinnamon on your mocha. Sweet. And spicy.

But … being  a granny isn’t all chocolate and coffee and whip cream with cinnamon.

Sometimes being a granny means you need to get put in your place. Because even though you have white-hair wisdom, you forget some stuff, and your sympathy trumps your reason.

When Oliver was here and the day was all glorious fall beauty, I invited daughter and her three little men to come for a walk. She was tickled to bring the bike for the 5 year old to the “country” vs their in-town location with streets to cross.  IMG_5839 IMG_5851

Well, I didn’t think his little legs could put on the miles we were walking, so at the first minor whimper, my heart stirred toward him, and my “ohhhhh, Honey . . . “ was met with a sharp rebuke from my girl.

Mama knows best.

This I’d learned from my own parenting days. :) So we proceeded, with her encouraging her 5-year-old to keep going, and keep going, and keep going.

He complained occasionally, and she would prod him on with promise of reward of walking his bike if he made it “to the next driveway” or to the bottom of the hill. I’m telling you, it was as grueling for granny at times as I was thinking it had to be for his little legs.

But, I kept thinking about how mamas know best.

I’m telling you, holding my tongue and not just hoisting the boy in my arms was a hard thing for me during parts of the walk. This was a true exercise in self-control!

But, you know what? The boy DID it!!! He put on the miles and he learned that he can press on in times of feeling like he can’t!!! [I currently needed that little lesson for myself-and am amazed at the ways God chooses to speak- the humbling ways . . . *ahem*!]

Daughter emailed me afterwards, revealing her own struggle with me seemingly undermining her authority, making the course of our lovely-autumn-day-walk a mite more awkward than either of us had anticipated.

But hard and awkward are often indicative of living life. And, I truly do believe mamas know best! 

[That part, I got right yesterday . . .  holding back my sympathy to let her be mom]

And I wonder if we get like that with God sometimes? Getting in His way of Parenting with our sympathy? Because even more than mamas knowing best, the Maker-of-Mamas ultimately KNOWS best. ~Yeah, I think that is what He was telling me . . . He’s my Daddy.

I commended her for being honest, and for knowing better than this granny what was best for her boy. And I gave her permission to confront her mama, with as much gentleness and respect as she could of course.

Walking with God means honest, humble, and sometimes painful living-true – together.

And being a granny really IS the best!  IMG_5855

Happy Weekend Friends!! May you FEEL the Lord’s lOVE and KNOW His mERCY!!!

Day 20 ~ Walking With God ~ Those Moments Of Awe & Wonder

Her mother had been abused by her grandmother.

Her great-grandmother raised her.

Disabled and alone, thrown out of her house, her mother had become pregnant with Thelma.

Remember I got that ticket to Women of Faith? Mama T [Thelma Wells] shared a story about her life I’d never heard before.

Great Grandma let Thelma stay at Grandma’s house occasionally. Grandma would lock Thelma in a dark, bug-infested, smelly closet the entire day until just before Grandpa came home. Then she’d clean little Thelma up. Until one day when Grandpa asked his little Thelma what she did that day. To which Thelma replied matter-of-factly, “Stayed in the closet.” and upon further interrogation by grandpa . . . “like, every day” …  and then . . . the visits stopped.

Because Great-grandmother had told Thelma about Jesus and had taught her hymns, Thelma spent her time in the closet at grandma’s house- singing hymns and praising Jesus.

And, Jesus kept her from bitterness of heart toward her grandmother.

IMG_5766 I told the story to my Ladies Bible Study on Sunday because it fit in with our discussion.

Apparently I was a week early!

We are studying this book, “Life Unhindered” and I was prepping today for next Sunday.  IMG_5765

You’ll never guess the story the author referenced in the chapter for next week!!! Right?!?! Thelma’s!!! 

These things don’t “just happen” do they?

So, from the stage on Saturday, she wrapped up the story with a word, UNDERSTANDING. She’d come to understand that her grandmother didn’t know how to take care of children, she was fearful of something happening, and to protect children, she’d felt the closet was the best place.

And if you know Mama T. You have been the recipient of her wisdom, her grace and her exhortation to the betterment of your life.

#JesusWins !!!

What kinds of surprises has He given in your life? How has He shown Himself to you? How has He kept you from bitterness in your suffering? This is GRACE friends! Amazing GRACE!!!

And how sweet it is!

 

Day 19 ~ Walking With God ~ When You Fall Off The 31 Day Wagon And Find Grace

Dear Friend,

It’s true. Writing 31 days in a row – organically, with no scheduled posts is challenging. And I’ve given myself permission to do the best I can – seeing as I started last minute and all. And have been posting often at 10:30 at night when no one reads blogs – because normal people – most normal people – have gone to bed . . .

So, for those of you who either think a daily blog in your inbox is annoying, or for those who might be looking forward to words from me . . . a hearty: Thank You for grace!  :)

Speaking of grace . . . if you are on Facebook, you might be enjoying the splashing of your memories on your news feed. They reminded me recently of a post I made a few years back on grace – so I created a graphic with it on. This photo is of my friend Holly who has been a grand gift of grace to me. Here she had shown up at my daughter’s house the day I was painting to help.

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My friend Heidi came over on Friday for a lunch date. It lasted into the afternoon, and just before she left to pick up her kiddos from school, I got a text from my friend Nancy:

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And so . . . that is my excuse for not writing Friday or Saturday . . . and Sunday. Because I had to catch up from being gone on Friday and Saturday.  #grace

Here’s the story: #GodAnswersWhisperedPrayers

Two weeks ago a friend of Facebook had a give-away for four tickets to WOF. I entered but didn’t win. When I found out, I prayed a prayer, “Lord, I’d really like to go to Women of Faith, this being their final tour and all . . . if there is a way . . .”

. . . and I promptly forgot about that prayer.

That is, until I was on my way to the Excel Energy Center on Friday afternoon thanking God for such a fun surprise. And He reminded me . . .

My mentor, often encourages me to pray by reminding me, “You have not because you ask not!” [She’s a loyal King James user :) ] in reference to Matthew 7:7

I know that often God says ‘no’ or ‘wait’ to my prayers for His good purposes. But there are the times that He just kind of kisses you with, “Sure Honey! Enjoy your gift!”

What might you have a longing for, but haven’t bothered to ask Him?

Day 15 ~ Walking With God ~ When You’re Called To Be More Separate

It took me a long time to learn that walking with God means every human adopted into His family has a different course. IMG_5718
It took me a long time to understand that to love Him was to obey Him, because He first loved me. John 14:23

I once thought to obey Him was to win his favor, to please Him. This often left me with anxiety and a burden of condemnation when I messed up. I’d agonize for days over something I did.

As is typical for human-kind, my thinking was upside down.

I understand now that my obedience comes only from surrender of my whole self to God so that He can live through me. It is, in the moment of my flesh wanting to sin [gossip, complain, cuss, kick] in THAT moment, I have another choice. The choice to take up my cross. I die to my right to myself, and let Him have His way with me. Luke 9:23
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The power to obey comes in dying.

To take up our cross.
To deny ourself.
To offer our bodies as a living sacrifice. Romans 12:1

There are those who understand grace and think obedience is unnecessary.
They profess to know God, but deny His power.
Titus 1:16 talks about that. So does 2 Timothy 3:5

This morning I was reading 2 Corinthians 6:14-7:1

As God has said:

“I will live with them
and walk among them,
and I will be their God,
and they will be my people.”
Therefore,

“Come out from them
and be separate,
says the Lord.
Touch no unclean thing,
and I will receive you.”
And,

“I will be a Father to you,
and you will be my sons and daughters,
says the Lord Almighty.”

Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.

The separating God calls us to is from the world when we are adopted into His family. He is not calling us to leave the world, but to live distinctly from the world. To be set apart for Him. We are adopted into His family and join the Family mission. It’s that simple. It’s God saying, “You are mine.” It’s endearing that He has a special mission for each of His children. Knowing that is what enables our will to surrender at that moment of decision.

Oh that we’d trust Him!

I thought about the different things God required of men and women throughout scripture. The Levites were not to own property, Samson was not to drink wine or eat grapes. Jeremiah and Ezekiel were called to do some strange things as examples to God’s people. David ate the forbidden bread – because he walked with God and God was the boss of him, the maker of the rule, God could override it.

Have you ever had someone’s convictions make you feel guilty because yours were much less restrictive? In those cases, I’ve had to bring my anxiety to the Lord and ask Him if I feel that way because He wants me to tighten up my convictions or if He has just called me to a different walk.

Or maybe you’ve looked down on someone for not having the same convictions as you do. That is where grace comes to play. And pray. First for yourself to remain humble and then for the other person to be in the will of God.

It’s freeing to know that our journey with God through Jesus is . . . free.

As long as we are walking with God, we can rest in knowing He who loves us is leading us on, is speaking to us, and will help us when we get the least bit off track.

Day 14 ~ Walking With God ~ When His Sun Shines In The Fall

The fall. IMG_5674 (1) IMG_5658 IMG_5538 IMG_4498 IMG_4499

 

Don’t you love the way God uses metaphors? We complicate things so much, so often, that we are in danger of missing the simplest of truths.

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The Son – came from Heaven – to bring LIGHT to hearts and . . . resurrection.
He ultimately renews everything. He is superior to the sun.
The sun – comes from sky – to bring LIGHT to earth and . . . nourishing life.
But it ultimately ages everything. It is inferior to the Son.

We, the humans who surrendered our dominion to the serpent, often that event is referred to as “The Fall”
Our parents covered their shame with LEAVES that crumple, crack, shrivel, and would need to be remade EVERY new morning. IMG_5717

Oh the striving they would have awakened to-  each new sun –
if not for the shed blood of that first cherished animal.
Oh the striving I would be awakening to each new sun –
if not for the shed blood of a spotless Lamb.

There is such glory in the Son!!!
His mercies are new every morning.

Jesus takes what is dead and He resurrects it.
Can you think of any ‘dead’ things that could use new life?
Marriage?
Finances?
Reputation?
Vehicle?
Your heart?
Its time . . . give it to God who has the power to make all things new.

The leaves. They surrender to earth, become humus and feed new seed-life under the sun.
The Believers. They surrender to God, become vessels of His power, and sow the Seed for new life in the Son.

Day 13 ~ Walking With God ~ When You Want To Have A Pity Party

“Good sense makes one slow to anger, and it is to ones’ glory to overlook an offense.” Proverbs 19:11

I don’t remember who said it, but I heard it one time, “Life would be easy if you didn’t have to deal with people.” So as I’ve encouraged friends going through a relationship challenge, tongue-in-cheek, I quote the unknown person.

And we laugh together at the nugget of truth in that statement. Partly because we know we are one of them.

An older gentleman in our church described being part of a church family as akin to being bricks in a tumbler. We smooth off one another’s rough edges. Sounds pleasant . . .right?

I was reminded by a friend this morning that humility lays the foundation for wisdom, and even sometimes humiliation is wisdom’s foundation. And how humility is kind of a pain, and is such a good foundation for having a heart that is teachable.  

We really do learn much in pain.

“When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.” Proverbs 11:2 IMG_5656

Wouldn’t it be nice if wisdom came freely? If automatically we knew what to do and how to walk through every situation with stellar performance? And a willing heart to top off the wisdom? Because even when we know what to do, it’s HARD. To. Do. It.

And the real truth is, that when we do encounter crisis in relationships, there are never easy answers. Because each challenge can be as unique as we are. This is one area that walking with God is -for me- extremely necessary. I am so desperate for His voice in my head, and His word in my heart.

Because I’d just run away from everything that bumps up against my rough edges.

Who wants conflict? 

Well, I guess some do. I digress as I’m definitely not one of them. But you might be?

So in the thick of life, there will be no escaping our opportunities to face offenses *ahem* discover wisdom. And the natural responses are usually the ones that have ramifications. That steal from us and others.

Gossip, malice, slander, retaliation, bitterness. And my particular brand of sinful reaction, the lovely “Poor me, I wanna flee.” self-pity.

And so here is one more benefit from hanging out with my friend Oswald, his words I’ve read repeatedly underscore truth.

“Beware of allowing your self-awareness to continue, because slowly but surely it will awaken self-pity, and self-pity is satanic.” ~Oswald Chambers ~My Utmost For His Highest

And the voice of the Holy Spirit speaks there in the darkness, TRUST:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge GOD and He will direct your path. Proverbs 3:5-6

Self pity or any other sinful response to offense comes from self-focus. We either want to protect self or defend self. And in so doing, we are self-reliant.

Letting God be our shield and defender. And, in obedience to the voice of His Spirit, allow humility to have it’s work.

Years ago, I took a course by Francis Frangipane called In Christ’s Image Training [highly recommend!] in which I read this article “How To Become Unoffendable”   Even if you are not in such circumstances today, you might be tomorrow and might like to have his wisdom in your heart-file.

31 Days of Walking With God Series:
For Day 1 & 2: Walking With God
For Day 3: Walking With God ~ He Hears
For Day 4: Walking With God ~ On Sunday
For Day 5: Walking With God ~ Hearing My Daddy’s Voice
For Day 6: Walking With God ~ I Smile With Him
For Day 7: Walking With God ~ My Savior and His Friend Oswald
For Day 8: Walking With God ~ In A Long Line Of Leavers
For Day 9: Walking With God ~ Spectacular Love, Bewildering Composure
For Days 10, 11, 12 I plead grace. [and a spectacular fall weekend] :)

And, you didn’t think I’d leave you without a song to encourage you in enduring pain and growing in wisdom, did you?

WHY by Michael Card [Why did it have to be a friend who chose to betray the Lord? And why did he use a kiss to show them? That’s not what a kiss is for.]

 

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