Monday, July 31, 2023

Resentments Hurt Us Not The One Who Hurt Us

And you’re the one it usually ends up affecting the most.

What would it look like if you just, forgave them? How much more free would you be, if you could just release whatever they have done, big or small, and finally be free of it?

Forgiving someone isn't letting them off the hook for what they did. It's simply taking them off of YOUR hook, and putting them onto God's hook. It's taking the weight of what they have done to you, and handing it over to God, so it doesn't have power over you.

God never asked you to deal with their sin, friend. He never asked you to make them pay for what they did. It could be big, or it could be something so small that you've been keeping to yourself and in your heart. Something, that maybe the other person doesn't even know quite what it is doing to you, but whatever it is, even if you don’t realize it, it’s affecting you. And you will feel and see how much the moment you let go of it. The moment you release it from your hands, and put it into God’s hands.

He asked us to forgive, as He has forgiven us. To let HIM get justice, as the great Judge HE is, over all of us.

Sometimes we won't feel like forgiving, and that’s okay, but forgivness isn't a feeling. It's a choice, one that God gave you, and me, so WE would be forgiven, and so WE could be free. Free of the endless thoughts. Free of heaviness in our hearts. And free of the injustice that we have been allowing to tear us apart.

So, what is in your heart that you know God is asking you to give to Him? Who have you been carrying on your hook, that needs to be released to His? I know it hurt you, but give it to Him, friend. And then watch the changes that will begin to happen in YOUR heart, when you know you have truly forgiven them.




***Some issues might be harder to do on your own, and if that’s your case, I’d highly recommend finding a Christian Counselor or mentor to help you in this area. ❤️

Friday, July 28, 2023

You Can’t Change Them

Friends, we are not the Holy Spirit. And the sooner we realize that we cannot change anyone but ourselves, the sooner we will be able to usher in the power of God to do what only He can do in someone's life.

Trust me, I have been there. Just WANTING someone to see so badly. YEARNING for them to change. Doing ANYTHING to "help" them see.

It's exhausting. It's defeating, and it never works.

People are the way they are and believe the things they do for greater reasons than we can see — they didn't just wake up one day this way. At a young age, we all usually start taking in the world through our big eyes, and teaching ourselves how to behave, act, and deal with life and issues based on how we grow up and see other people handle issues around us. You can't force someone to see something that you grew up seeing or that God’s helped you to see. You cannot force someone to handle things the way you grew up handling them. And you can't expect or force someone to change, just because you think they need changing.

The biggest thing you can do is truly surrender the need to change them and do things your way. To ask God what He wants, instead of focusing on what you want, even if your intentions are nothing but good. To ask God to give you patience in your heart, as He works on their heart. And to ask God help you be okay, if they aren't ready to change and He asks you to walk away.

Sometimes people aren't ready to change, but sometimes, WE have been the vey thing preventing the change, and all God has been waiting for us it to get out of the way, and just, PRAY. And friend, THIS is the one area I have seen some of my prayers answered the most and the power of Jesus displayed the most.  And not only that, but through my prayers and seeing Jesus work, sometimes I get changed the most!

When you surrender people to God, and go to battle in prayer, you usher in the power of the King, and friend, HE can change any person, anytime, anywhere.

Prayer is your weapon like oxygen is our air, and NOTHING can compare to it. So if this was for you, use it, breathe it, and start to believe it! ❤️

Thursday, July 27, 2023

Your New Life Will Coat You Your Old One

God wants to give you an incredible life. A life, that may seem so far from where you are today. A life, that might seem near impossible on your own. He wants to give you what He died on the cross for you to have. The life He planned for you to have, all along.

But, it is going to require you, letting go, first. Letting go of that old life. Letting go of whatever is keeping you back. Letting go of it all.

Is it your own plans? Fear? Expectations? Unforgiveness? Hurt? Anger? Jealously? That addiction? That bad habit? Whatever it is, friend, He wants you to lay it down today, and then open your arms wide, and prepare to receive, newness, and ALL He wants to give you when you do.

Sometimes we carry these things around on our backs like dead animals, don't we?  We have no idea how much they are contaminating and hindering us, until we finally let them go. We have no idea how enslaved we are by this weight, until we let go, and finally see it was the very key to our prison gate.

Trust that whatever He is asking you to place in His hands today, whether it’s part of your old life, or something you are struggling with at this very moment, He will step in, and show you how. Show you why. And show you when. Trust that whatever He has ahead for you, dear friend, is far better than anything that you will leave behind. Trust that what He has ahead, is seriously going to blow your mind!

Yes, your new life will cost you your old one, but I can promise you this; He is worth it. Your life is worth it. Laying IT down will be worth it.

Yes, your life was bought with price, my friend — don't ever forget it. And all He wants to do is give you MORE in it. So open up your heart big, and your arms wide, laying down your own ways. Your old life. Your own attempts at trying. And invite the One with power in, so He can help you fly. Help you soar. So He can help you do, what He created YOU to do in this world. And generously prove to you, that your life, was SO worth dying for.

He loves you, friend. He is there for you. And He wants to show you that you can you trust Him. Yes, your life and you, indeed, were definitely worth, ALL that He ever died for. ❤️

Wednesday, July 26, 2023

I Am Not Who I Once Was

I used to drink so much that when I finally didn’t, I didn't know how to do life without it. It was the biggest distraction from the buried pain and emotions I was running from, and the very thing keeping me from getting out. The moment I stopped running from everything and allowed God to do a work in me, was the moment I realized all I was doing was numbing. Numbing my way through life. Numbing my way through emotions, not even living at all, because I certainly wasn’t feeling. What I lived in was a constant state of distraction, regardless if I realized it or not.

Drinking might not be what I turn to today, but I am so aware of how my natural tendencies are to want to distract myself from my emotions, or go to God with them. It might be food, busyness, or even throwing myself into ministry or "good things", but at the end of it, it's all the same. I am running from God instead of running TO Him and allowing Him to help me to process what I am feeling.

I don't like who I become when I self-medicate or distract myself. I end up relying on SELF in those moments, and it separates me from Jesus, until it gets too unbearable and I find my way back. When I can address what the real issues are, and bring them to Him, He then helps me lift my eyes OFF of myself, and onto Him. He gives me HIS perspective, HIS guidance, HIS way of dealing with things. HIS way of healing. And friends, THAT is what changes things. That is what changes everything.

So maybe you are like me, and you tend to distract yourself when so much is happening. Maybe your eyes have come off of your Jesus, and you have become more comfortable sitting in the sin, or the hurt, or the confusion, and you don't want to even acknowledge what is happening. But friend, I can tell you this. When you drop all the SELF ways of doing things, or the old ways of running, and trust that God has a better way of dealing, you won't have to ever feel the separation from Him in your heart. You'll begin to go to Him, from the very start.

So let that start be today, friend. Lay down the distractions, go to Him, unload it all to Him, and then listen to ALL He has been wanting to say. Let today be your day. ❤️

by Sarah Armstrong 

Monday, July 24, 2023

It All Began With A Lie

Who told you that thing you believe so deeply about yourself? What happened to you to make you believe those things about yourself? Friend, WHO told you these things? Or, WHAT happened to you to make you think these things have determined who you are?

Something happened. Someone said something to you. Someone DID something to you, and because of it, you started believing a lie about yourself, that has caused you to live a life under the pressure of the lies and who you are not, instead of the freedom of the truth and who and what God says you are.  It always begins with a lie, just like it did back in the garden when satan approached Eve. If satan can make you believe something that isn't a true, it will determine how you think, feel, and act going forward, affecting everything. Until one day, you realize what you’re believing is a lie. Until one day, you replace that lie with the truth. And the truth sets you free.

The words other people speak to us or the things that others have done to us do NOT determine how God sees us or who we are. He created each and every one of us, so uniquely. So perfectly. So beautifully. And with a plan and purpose. Everything that people might have said ABOUT you are the very things that God designed and wrote FOR you. Everything done TO you do NOT define you, but was allowed, so the light of Jesus can shine that much more THROUGH you. And everything the world has thrown at you, to make you believe so much that is just not true, are the very lies that satan is using to keep you in chains so that he can keep lying to you.

Friend, you are not what people have said, or the result of what people have done. You, are a child of God. THAT is your identity. Find the lies. replace them with the truth. And the begin to take back the power that satan has stolen from you.

Write down what you hear each day. WHO is speaking to you in your heart? Find out. And once you do, you will begin to see who you have been allowing to influence you.

There's a reason why you struggle. And it all began with a lie.

Tuesday, July 18, 2023

If You’re the One Who Broke It, Be the One to Try to Fix It.


It doesn't mean it will always be received. It doesn't mean that the other person will agree or even believe. But when you can humble yourself, be honest with yourself, and try to mend what was broke due to you, oh goodness, my friend, will it free you. We all make mistakes. Some bad, some embarrassing, and some that even surprise ourselves. But when the fog clears, when you can see again, when you can see what happened, do what you can to correct what went wrong. Do what you can to make things right. Whether it was years ago or just days, fix what you are responsible for breaking. Speak the truth where things might have been misleading. Because if it has the power to impact someone's heart? God can use you to bring that needed healing in not just their life, but your life, too. If it's a certain situation, God can use you to bring restoration, not just in their life, but between Him and you, too.

We won't always get things right, but we can make things right. And that, that is where the power and difference is. We don't live in a world that does it enough, but when we constantly search our hearts and bring them to God, He will use us. And it's the very thing that makes us different. Him and His ever-changing love, through us. Even when we are the ones who messed up. ❤️

Sarah Armstrong

Wednesday, July 12, 2023

Identity Always Forms An Action


Chosen, redeemed, washed, adopted, set free, loved, forgiven, blessed, valued, and accepted. It’s who we are. The world tries to give us false and negative identities (ugly, worthless, unwanted, abandoned, etc.), but our precious Savior wants us to be firmly rooted in the truth of who we are in Him: pure, spotless, beautiful, special, wanted, loved, adopted, and much, much more.

Identity always forms an action. If we see ourselves as unworthy, our actions will follow, and vice versa. When we begin to see ourselves as Jesus sees us—precious and beloved—we start to choose to live and behave in our right identity, and nothing will bring you closer to your right identity than entering into a sweet place of utter and complete brokenness. It’s there that we can see how we have tried to cover up all the shame, dirtiness, and unworthiness, by trying to mask, look good, justify, perform, make up for, work harder, and/or earn God’s love—or, how we’ve been withdrawing altogether—and we encounter the sufficiency of the love of Christ displayed at the Cross of Calvary. I am beloved and made holy, not by any action of my own, but because of what Jesus has done for me. The moment we embrace this as our right identity, we are set free, and our roots of faith grow deep into the corners of our hearts, which will sustain, protect, and nourish us through the seasons of life.

Friday, July 7, 2023

He Shall Direct Your Path

It is easy for us to get carried away in our thinking about what we want. We tend to plunge into the waters head first before first consulting with our know, the One who walks on water.

Regardless of our desires and plans, we should bring it all to the full counsel of God; present our petitions and align our emotions with His truth. We must lean into Him for understanding and ask Him to lay on our heart what His will is for our circumstances...and for our life.

When we bring Him into our decision-making, we receive the full measure of His promises. Only our Creator can lead us on our authentic and ordained path, as He is the Architect who designed it! He delights in the innermost desires of our heart and will guide us in the way that is holy, righteous and pleasing unto Him.

Praise The Lord that His plans, ways and thoughts are not like our own! He is the eternal resource with every correct answer. He is able to produce results far beyond what we can achieve alone. Complete surrender to His way is not always the path of least resistance, but we are assured peace as we progress...and to always receive what is His best for us. "Trust in the LORD with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding."(Prov 3:5)

Thursday, July 6, 2023

Barrier To Forgiving Others:


A huge barrier to forgiving others is the misconception about, forgiveness, reconciliation, and restoration. Many people believe that by forgiving they will continue to live as doormats allowing sinful behavior when nothing has changed. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Forgiveness focuses on the offense. It only involves one person and has nothing to do with what the other person chooses to do. Reconciliation focuses on the relationship. It requires two people engaged in the process.

Forgiveness is the choice to release the offender. Reconciliation is the choice to rejoin the offender. It’s being brought back into a relationship where there has been a wall of separation erected. Restoration is the process that makes that possible. Restoration of a relationship takes far more than forgiveness. It requires confession, repentance, and a strong commitment on both sides to work on the relationship and rebuild trust. And it often takes a much longer time.

For example, if a loved is engaged in drugs, alcohol, abuse or some other harmful behavior they may ask us to forgive them. Of course, God’s heart is always that we forgive but if they ask that we go back to the way it was the answer is a resounding NO! That’s not what we do at all. Love holds people accountable. Love protects. We do not have to allow harmful behavior that hurt us and our families. Thus, there may be extremely toxic, unhealthy people who may need to be removed from our lives.

An example of this would be a relative who sexually molested us as a child. We can forgive them as God has called us to but having a relationship with them may endanger ourselves and others. So forgiveness does not mean we have to have any kind of relationship with the offender ever again. Forgiveness is a choice. It's a willful act of obedience that blesses the heart of our Father in Heaven and sets us free.

Wednesday, July 5, 2023

Love & Boundaries

Healthy boundaries are essential in establishing healthy relationships. Unhealthy boundaries lead to unhealthy relationships and broken boundaries lead to broken relationships. People with unhealthy boundaries….

Allow wrongful behavior that hurts them, the person acting out and the entire family.

Sacrifice their personal values, plans or goals to please others.

Allow others to define who they are and make decisions for them.

Expect others to fulfill all their needs.

Feel guilty when they say “No!”
Hesitate to share their opinions or assert themselves if they are being treated unfairly.

Frequently feel used, taken advantage of, unappreciated, threatened, victimized or mistreated by others.

Offer unsolicited advice, or feel pressured to follow some else’s advice.

Take responsibility for other people’s feelings.

Let others tell them how to think, feel, or act.

Tell others how to think, feel, or act.

If you struggle with unhealthy boundaries, you can also struggle with being afraid to disapprove of others, receiving criticism from others, or losing the love of others.Healing is a choice. Allow God to heal you and fill you with His love and grace. You will then begin to see yourself as He sees you.

Let Jesus be the source of the only love that will satisfy your every need — you will gain a newfound freedom knowing your value and worth, and begin seeing yourself through the filter of His love and not through the filter of the unhealthy people around you. Then you can stop being a victim and walk in victory, stop blaming others and start taking ownership and responsibility of your own life as a precious child of the living God.

Monday, July 3, 2023

We Have to Feel to Heal

It’s easier to stuff pain inside, wear a painted smile and pretend that everything is okay, but masking issues of the heart only perpetuates our hurts.

Eventually, undealt issues spring up and defile all areas of our lives including relationships. Inwardly our souls are crying out to be healed. At some point, we may grudgingly seek help. However, it is essential to understand that in order to be healed we must be willing to be healed no matter how painful and difficult the journey.

Jesus asked one question to the lame man at the pool of Bethesda in John 5:2 “Do you want to be made well?” This is the pivotal question for every person seeking healing for emotional wounds. The simple truth is that not everyone wants to be made well. They may start off eager with the best intentions, emotionally feeling that they cannot go on another day, but at the end of the day, do not want to be made well, and those who do not want to get well are not going to get well.

Why would I not want to walk in the freedom from the bondage that Christ set me free from? F-E-A-R! Fear of the unknown, fear of rejection, fear of what may be uprooted and exposed, fear of pain, fear that we may have to give up (someone or something); Or we may not be desperate enough yet.

Perhaps we have grown comfortable in our dysfunction and are comfortable in a victim role. We may not have reached a breaking point yet where we face losing someone we love, such as a spouse, or a relationship, maybe even a job, our freedom, and in our minds – we tell ourselves as bad as our current situation is – “it’s not as bad as so and so’s”, or at least we know how to respond, or how to continue to do life and even serve in ministry. However, we are putting on the painted smile while living in a prison in our own mind. But make no mistake…It is never God’s fault. If we do not want to embark on the journey and “be made well” – we won’t get well. Healing is a choice.

If you are in a place where you are desperate enough to get help and want to be made well, then I pray that nothing will hinder you from getting the healing that you need and will encounter the Healer in a deep and intimate way.

“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”

Psalm 147:3