"love is not a fight but it's something worth fighting for"
So, in Part I of 'Saying I'm Sorry', we spoke about marriage and we also spoke about saying 'I'm sorry,' in that particular context. It was seen that we first say 'sorry' to Our Father, who knows us. I'd like to say, Thank the LORD that He STILL LOVES US even though He knows the very depths and darkness of our hearts. Isn't that reason ALONE to apologize to HIM FIRST? If anything, He should be the only One,
….but we still have reality to deal with. =) =)
We also spoke about how your wife or husband may be upset with you for something you did, and so the next step is apologizing to them. With that said, it will take courage, but saying 'I'm sorry' in that aspect, is the first step to reconciling with them.
Other Steps Include:
1. As you are now clean before God, go BACK to God, to ask for the next steps. HE will tell you what your next steps are. Sit before Him and wait for His answer as you are restoring your position or your marriage.
2. I would encourage you to watch the movie 'Fireproof' (2008), directed by Alex Kendrick. I highly recommend it as its worth your time. I believe that this is an investment that can truly impact your life. You can also buy 'The Love Dare Book', which you'll also see is in association with the movie. Go through the book and be intentional about it. This situation is of course between you and God, so see as fit, and according to the Holy Spirit's guidance.
3. Go out and love your wife, your children, whom ever has been hurt from this.
Also see what the needed steps are. What practical steps do you ensure that it doesn't happen again? Will you be chatting with so-and-so online? Ask yourself these questions, journal these out maybe. It's good to be prepared and ready to give an answer to not only yourself, but your significant other to show that you have thought about how to improve. As said before, overall, it will be more of a concerted effort for the resolution, but doing your part is also a start, and a very big start.
4. As you do this, you may think that nothing is happening or they don't believe you've 'changed that fast', well, that's where God plays HIS part. TRUST Him to change their hearts and to bless you both as you continue this process of moving on. God has so much in store for you guys.
Don't give up. You'll get there, just don't give up.
6. It's worth fighting for. Remember your ministry. Remember your start. Remember the good times. Remember why you fell in love in the first place. God's got it. Just trust in Him.
I once heard someone say, "the end of me is the beginning of God". I know that you may be sick of this, you're tied down and don't have the time…but it's in these moments when we throw our hands up in the air that God takes us up into His arms, and gives us wings to fly instead. So stand strong and never give up, it's worth fighting for. Marriage is a gift from God. <3
Remember, if it were the other way round in your situation, you'd be worth fighting for.
Never give up.
I woke up the other day, feeling led to write down the next topic for the the blog. I felt that there was a stronghold on marriages in a particular city. I pray that strongholds may be broken in that city, in Jesus' Name (I also encourage you to pray for marriages all around the world in Jesus Name). The other point was the general sense of those who were failing to say, 'I'm Sorry'.
I pondered these things, and asked the Lord what He wanted me to write, but at first only got the notion that He wanted to say that people need to start saying 'sorry' (as we know, it's often more of a pride element when we don't acknowledge what we've done and then apologize).
Later on in the day, I thought of the song, 'Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word' by Blue & Elton John.
The lyrics say:
"What do I do to make you want me?
What have I got to do to be heard?
What do I say when it's all over?
And sorry seems to be the hardest word"
Sometimes we don't need to do a whole lot of STUFF to impress someone (Emphasis on sometimes. Let's apply things to our own situations instead! Lol!). Or sometimes we can try to "figure it out" or fix it on our own. Instead, sorry, would be what is needed in that circumstance, at least as a genuine start. The actions and "figuring it out" can follow after. Let me tell you a little secret: collaborative effort is always best. Never try to do it on your own as if the person doesn't exist and will exist when you figure it all out. Just say sorry and then with God's help, move on to the next step. =)
Now, you might be saying, "Grr! So what if that person doesn't want to hear what I have to say!?"
The song identifies with that aspect, noting:
"It's sad, so sad
Why can't we talk it over?"
As said above, sometimes when we've hurt someone and want to say 'sorry', or have said 'sorry', they might not want to hear it or want to talk about it any more because of the hurt. Instead they may need time, and want to see actions.
"So what do I do in the mean time? Sing this sad song?" :) No. But thank God for Redemption. Thank God it starts with Him. =) Like David, who humbled himself and went to God: "Against you, you only, have I sinned…"-Psalm 51:4 …we go to that place, and talk with God.
Side Note: Once we are forgiven, it is FINISHED. In other words, God remembers it no more. That means, any time after that, if you're still reminded of that sin, then its either our flesh, or the devil. Solutions? Well, there are many, but we take steps to make sure it doesn't come to our mind over and over by using Scripture, and also taking practical steps (more on this in Part II, coming soon!).
Remember that we are promised once and for all that: "there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus" -Romans 8:1
Thus, just like David did in his redemption process, GET UP AND WALK.
Continue and sin no more by the Power of the Holy Spirit.
God's with you all the way. Don't give up.
I read John 15:11-24 this morning as part of my devotional. John 15:11-24 is about the Prodigal son. "ahhh.." you say.. You seem to know this one...you say...
At first I also thought, 'not this story again!' As I've read it plenty times over. Buttttt God does a new thing like always, and gives us new insight in a passage that we would've read over and over and over! Amen and glory to that!! :)
So here it goes!
The passage says:
11 Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons. 12 The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them.
13 “Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. 14 After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. 15 So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. 16 He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything.
17 “When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! 18 I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired servants.’ 20 So he got up and went to his father.
“But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.
21 “The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. 23 Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. 24 For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate." (From the New International Version).
I felt like the Lord said that it can be seen from the point of view of being about Jesus, that once upon a time, we went away from the Father (since the beginning in the garden), but we were found again via the blood of Jesus (redeemed, rather!)
Jesus built the bridge that enables us to crossover to go to the Father (God). It is now possible to have the choice to go to back to the Father. Oh how wonderful it that? So wonderful!! So wonderful.
Let's look at the text a bit more closely, and see what it's saying to us:
After squandering everything at this point,the son began to be in need (verse 14).
Have you ever gasped for air? Like in a swimming pool and you want to get back to the top? Or you ran a distance and were out of breath that you needed to stop to catch the next one? That's what I'm guessing the son felt like at this point: in need to breath properly again, without gasping.
Verse 17 says he came to his senses. It finally hit him. It was a heart moment.
It finally clicked.
He had a moment of enlightenment, a moment of humility, all intertwined to make one. It all starts in the head and heart, then slowly shifts towards our facial expression, which changes to that of sorrow, mimicking the inside process. It's a moment of realization, that through it all, we had hurt God, and the people around us.
We see that after this moment, the son decides that he will go back to his Father (verse 18).
He says Father. He acknowledges His Father.
He knows that he can apologize to Mr. & Ms such and such too, but at this point, it's all about God, the Father.
We're reminded of David, who said, "Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight" Psalm 51:4.
He realizes that it was the Father, all along, who was the beginning and end of life, streams of living water, peace, comfort, and breath. And in abundance.
Verse 18 says that he set out, meaning, he took action.
Then he got up and went to his Father (verse 20).
Yesterday I read a quote that said, "If there were a thousand steps between us and God, He will take all but one. He will leave the final one to us. The decision is ours." (Author Unknown) (it was in the context of running to God as our refuge :) He wants us to take that leap of faith towards Him, knowing that His arms are always wide open, when we choose to come to Him.
Verse 20 says it was to his Father that he went to. Not people. His Father :)
And what did his Father do?
He had compassion (verse 20) on his son, onto his most precious child :) Amen ♡
He even ran to His son (verse 20).
He even threw His arms around him (verse 20).
No, He didn't nonchalantly touch him, even though just a touch from God is greater than anything in this world, but instead He THREW His arms. He THREW them...do you get it? I can't get enough! :) He's like: "my son! You're back! You're back!! Welcome back!! You came back! To me! To me! Your Father! I love You, son...I love you. My son..."
And when you think that that was it,
It says, 'and kissed him' (verse 20).
How wonderful is that?
But then...the Father says 'Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him." (verse 22).
You see, that verse starts with the word, 'BUT'. I mean...come on, how amazing can He get?
The son goes humbly before the Father to ask for forgiveness, and I can only imagine he's in tears, and in ragged clothes. Since he was feeding the pigs, he probably smells really bad, is very muddy, but could care less to ask for a place to shower because he's running back, as he is, running from a journey of turmoil, leaving it all behind, all in the past, ready to set forth a new path, even if he has to start from the bottom because he knows that his Father's place is much better than anything that's out there.
Just like David said, "Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked." Psalm 84:10
That sentence begins with 'But'.
'But' means that the son was probably expecting an alternate response. It can only be that reason isn't it? That a moment were it was meant to be a point of shame and condemnation, the Father does everything but. He does that which is contrary to it, to that point that He doesn't waste a minute in saying, 'Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him." (verse 22).
Shout it on the rooftops! The son is back! He's back! Amen! Amen! Hallelujah! He's back Abba, He's back to You!
This is similar to The Parable of the Lost Coin in Luke 15:8-10, which says,
“Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Doesn’t she light a lamp, sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? 9 And when she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost coin.’ 10 In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” (NIV)
Like this picture, when Jesus sees you, He takes His robe off, and exchanges His for yours.
And the Father wasn't done yet, He says, "Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet" (Verse 20).
A ring on a hand was a mark of wealth and dignity. A ring was seen as a sign of favor, just like in Genesis 41:39-43 (where Pharaoh was speaking to Joseph. You can read the story of Joseph in Genesis 37).
Genesis 41:39-43 says,
"Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, "Since God has made all this known to you, there is no one so discerning and wise as you. You shall be in charge of my place., and all my people are to submit to your orders...."I hereby put you in charge of the whole land of Egypt. Then Pharaoh took his signet ring from his finger and put it on Joseph's finger. He dressed him in robes of fine linen and put a gold chain around his neck."
We also see this in Esther 8:2, where "The king took off his signet ring, which he had reclaimed from Haman, and presented it to Mordecai."
To 'present' something is to give something to someone officially or formally.
He didn't fling it. No.
He gratefully presented it. Honorably, and respectfully.
A signet ring looks like this:
In Haggai 2:20, The Lord tells Zerubbabel (the governor of Judah) that He will make him like His signet ring, because He had chosen him.
We now see this great significance our Father puts on His children.
"But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light." 1 Peter 2:9
In Luke 15: 23, the Father gives orders to bring the fattened calf and to have it killed. He says, "Let’s have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found."
So they began to celebrate (Verse 23-24).
Son, daughter, God has chosen you too. You are His.
Begin to Celebrate.
"Whom the Son sets free, is free indeed." John 8:36
When I was about 13 years old, my parents gave me money to go rent a video to watch (yup, back when we used VCR's!).
I stopped by the supermarket to maybe get something to eat, but all I remember is that the next thing I did was see some colored gel pens that I liked and decided to take them.
Yes, take them. Not buy them, but take.
I put them in my jacket pocket, and put the packet in the store by the shoe section.
A lady asks me about the empty packet and I tell her I didn't know where the pens were. Being a bad liar, I 'fessed up and gave her the pens.
She took me to the manager and they called my rents.
Of course you know what happened there...
This is like the story of David.
As I read an article I saw sent to my e-mail, I started thinking of my own sins and how far I'd gone in my own sins.
I took a pause, and thought, and then the Lord encouraged me. He told me to read the story of David and Bathsheba.
In 2 Samuel 11, David sees Bathsheba taking a shower and sends his messengers to get her. He sleeps with her. Some time later, Bethsheba tells David that she's pregnant.
Long story short, David slept with a married woman. Her husband had gone off to war to fight in David's army. Trying to hide it all, David tries to deceive Bethsheba's husband by getting him drunk so he could go and sleep with his wife (so he'd think it was his baby), but the plan doesn't work. He then sends a letter where he instructs his military commander to put Bethsheba's husband in the front line of the battle where the fighting would be fiercest (i.e. to have him killed in battle). This plan worked.
In 2 Samuel 12, the Lord sends a prophet named Nathan to tell David that what he did was wrong in the eyes of the Lord. Nathan, however, first tells him a story, so David could really get it:
"The Lord sent Nathan to David. When he came to him, he said, “There were two men in a certain town, one rich and the other poor. The rich man had a very large number of sheep and cattle, but the poor man had nothing except one little ewe lamb he had bought. He raised it, and it grew up with him and his children. It shared his food, drank from his cup and even slept in his arms. It was like a daughter to him.
“Now a traveler came to the rich man, but the rich man refrained from taking one of his own sheep or cattle to prepare a meal for the traveler who had come to him. Instead, he took the ewe lamb that belonged to the poor man and prepared it for the one who had come to him.”
David burned with anger against the man and said to Nathan, “As surely as the Lord lives, the man who did this must die! He must pay for that lamb four times over, because he did such a thing and had no pity.” (v. 1-6)
Nathan tells David, "You are the man..."
Human judgement said, "the man who did this must die!"
Godly judgement reacts and says, "The Lord has taken away your sin. You are not going to die" 2 Samuel 12: 13b
Aren't we glad that even though we deserve to die for our sins, that we don't?
Human judgement comes in and says, "the man must pay for that lamb four times over." (verse 6)
Godly judgement shows that you don't have to pay. He paid for our penalties.
At 13, the manager at the store told me that he wouldn't tell the police, but that we'd just have to pay the fee for the pens and for stealing.
At that age you feel petrified and it makes you not want to do it again!
Boy was I glad!
Of course I still had to bear the consequence for doing what I did. David had to bear his too, but I was more glad that the fee had been paid for, and I'm sure he was too.
That's what God did for you and me. He paid for our sins.
When the enemy came in to tell us that we were guilty and deserving death, Jesus came in and said, "I'll pay the price. It's been cleared, you don't have to send them anywhere."
Boy am I glad that He died for you and me!
So the next time you feel guilty about what you did, remember that Jesus died for your sins and you have been set free.
Of course we need to repent and ask for forgiveness, but we shouldn't live in that regret and guilt any longer after we've been reprimanded because you've been set free.
After the fact, God is able to restore you completely.
"Whom the Son sets free, is free indeed." -John 8:36
Is a girl who fell deeply in love with Jesus,