HOPE*ann*FAITH

Living and Writing on Purpose: God * Life * Love * Realtionships * The Important Things.


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Pain.


Have you ever experienced emotional or spiritual pain so devastating that you simply didn’t believe you could survive it?

I completely understand.

I’ve read several articles and blogs that say  essentially (paraphrased and combined) that pain is a gift [from God] that motivates. This is not biblical and it frustrates me.

The Bible says that every GOOD and Perfect thing is from God. This implies that bad and flawed things are not from God.

James 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”

Pain is neither good, or is it perfect.

Pain is NOT from God, though he will use it to push us forward. It is not the pain that motivates us, it is our level of faith and trust in God that motivates us toward Him and forward in our lives on His strength.

There was another concept that I read … “The pain is in the healing”. I thought this to be unbiblical also, but when researched it became clear, expanding an understanding I already held.

God doesn’t cause the pain. However, He advises us not to be surprised by what comes against us in this world we currently reside in.

And pain definitely comes against us in this world, in many different forms. Pain can also mark us, for the good or the bad. I am not simply referring to our outward appearances but more importantly who we are at our very core. Who God created us to be.

It changes us, pain does …

there are

So He uses the pain to motivate us. However, again, it’s not to persevere or endure alone, or with out earthly companions. It is to motivate us to press into Him.

Many in the bible cried out to God for relief of pain, or to ask God why; David, Job, and even the tenacious Jeremiah. Pain was bore by Adam and Eve; in the fall. Sin brings in the pain. I recently ministered to my sister saying that sin allows painful things to occur. In our bodies, our minds and even our spirits.

Pain within our physical [body], mental or emotions [our mind/soul realm] is subject to the consequence of sin in and around our lives. That’s why Peter and Paul advise us not to feel that these things are strange. It’s a product of earthly living.

Our Spirit on the other hand is experiences pain when our body and mind take us away from God. Whether from the intensity, or the frustration, or simply weariness we forget and function within our own abilities and outside of God. And sometimes we weary because the pain continues even as we press into God.

But as Peter and Paul and God have encouraged, be courageous, do not weary, do not fear .. God is with you in the midst of your most terrible pain.

I am currently experiencing devastation within my emotions. I recently lost my beloveds; my husband and youngest son. They passed within 16 months of one another. There are day when I cry out in agony. Mornings when I hear myself refusing to be awake, loathing the thought of the pain the day would hold.

It is a constant ache that rises in unannounced waves. No rhyme or reason, just a thought or a scent, a movie scene or the scene of a happy couple or parent and child. I feel pain intermingled with jealousy when I attend family or church events. It’s terrible to feel all that knowing that bitterness and contempt are attempting to take over.

I trust in God. I have faith in God. I have the knowledge of where my beloveds are. The knowledge that God holds my every tear as He comforts me. I feel like I am fighting a never ending battle, but know in my heart that God is the one fighting and that I am simply enduring the pain and pressing into Him.

I’ve been mourning for just short of two years now. A compounded grief multiplied by both losses.

Yet …

I rise each day and move forward.

I minister to others.

I nourish entire self with God’s Word.

I sit under His annointing.

I persevere while resting beneath His wings.

I know your pain today. Grief is grief and mourning is mourning … no one’s is more than another because grief is bore out of love. We mourn only that which we cherish. Even bodily pain can be known by each of us; no one more than the other.

These are not competitions. These are our lives giving us decisions to make, sometimes in the blink of an eye, changing us deeply, marking us for eternity.

What is your pain today? How can I pray for you?

I encourage you to seek God. Cry out to Him. I can confidently promise you that even before that seeking, that cry, His full attention is on you. Desiring nothing more than to strengthen and heal you while you rest beneath His wings.

My prayers are with you today. The prayers help me to heal too. God bless. 2Andrea

 


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Behold … the new has come


It’s the new year, and new things have definitely come.

I have only one resolution and that is NOT to bring 2015 into 2016.

I will begin anew.

I haven’t written much here in the last year. I have been writing,though I have realized that my writing has reverted back to it’s original form … pen and paper (journals).

So what’s to come of this format of writing, for me? Well … I plan to take time each week … one day here at Hope*ann*Faith and one day on the sister blog, which I plan to rename: Letters: A widows journey. Mainly because I have 2 journals … A gratitude journal and a journal that has transformed itself from letters to my late husband to just letters about my new life journey as a widow.

So there’s more to come as I journey to find the new, individual me and my new, personal journey with God.

I think I’m actually looking forward to what may be … but it is covered in a light throw of sadness. But, then, I think it should be; for a bit longer anyway.

Happy New Year Everyone. God Bless.

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My Journey


Hi. Welcome to Hope*ann*Faith blog where I share my day to day journey.

TuesdayToday I am participating in Tuesday at Ten over on Karen Beth’s blog. {Follow the link in her logo to the left.}

T@T is a word prompt for Creatives, each week where the writers, photographers, artists share their interpretation on a single word prompt. Karen can correct me if I’m wrong here … The prompt she gives us each week is to stir in us a heart post based on our lives and experiences. Karen and Finding the Grace Within blog are all about healing and getting connected. So join us, using any creative style you like and share your heart.

This Tuesday prompt is:    Journey.

So about My Journey. The journey to continuous Hope and Faith.

My Journey is probably my most used Category and Tag on this blog, because blogs are simply a virtual diary of one’s life, and life is certainly a journey.

So much is involved in one’s journey through this life. Mine is no different from yours. However the circumstances of our journeys are unique, giving us the illusion that my journey might be more intense than yours.

I. Think. Not.

There is a misconception among Christians that God will not give us more than we can handle on this journey. This is not true. I believe God does give us much more than we can handle without Him so that we choose Him.

The following scripture is often misunderstood/

“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13

Nowhere in this scripture does it say God does not give us more we can handle. Like I said, I believe God gives us more than we can handle each day so that we will Call upon Him!

My journey has certainly come to a place where my pride {though it often rises to say, “you got this Andrea”} bows to God and I call upon Him daily; many times a day.

My walk, my journey is with God. When I remember to walk with Him, that is.

So if you’re new to my humble little blog here you may have an idea of what my journey is today. Me and mine are being tested in many areas of life these days, hard and simultaneously. We deal with normal things in life like:

Family – Bills – Jobs – Lack of Jobs

But we also deal with some extra things like:

Cancer

Heart Issues

Heroin Addiction

Extended Family Issues that deal with: Age, Mental Illness and other addictions.

Sounds rough, yes?

It is. No doubt, but we rely on God and He has been faithful.

Recently I was reading Psalm 23 … an oft used Scripture for those who are on harder journeys. And I saw something in verse 4 that I hadn’t truly understood before …

A Psalm of David.

23 The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell[a] in the house of the Lord
Forever.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil;

Our journey is not through the valley of death!

On our journey we travel through the valley shadow of death! A shadow is just an ether … it’s harmless, unless we add fear giving the shadow body and the ability to harm us, because we allow the shadow more power than it is capable of without our permission.

This scripture assures us that God is with on this journey. He is there before we know Him, protecting us. He is there when we decide we are going to do these things on our own, watching over us and waiting patiently until we call on Him for rescue. And He is tangibly there when we trust wholly in His constant presence in our lives and on this journey.

Dear God

Dear God

My journey is a rough one. One that often requires me to pray in a warring fashion against fear, because I refuse to give that shadow any power.

My journey is about endurance, as is yours. We all battle and war and endure, but I encourage you today! DO NOT tolerate that which is not of the Lord.

It is said of journeys:

The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. ~ Lao Tzu

Peace is a journey of a thousand miles and it must be taken one step at a time. ~ Lyndon B. Johnson

The only journey is the one within. ~ Rainer Maria Rilke

The second two really speak to me on the spiritual level. I truly believe that the journey, though it feels as if it is external, is truly one within. I believe there are tests in our lives that build our faith and endurance . Let me remind you of my beginning Scripture …

“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13

God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear … though we will be tested beyond what we can bear … because God is faithful and will provide a way out, so that we can endure the test … with His assistance.

God knows the end of our journey from the beginning of His time … we are equal to the challenge of our personal journey in this life; we just need to trust God and rely on Him, then we will not be overtaken.

Because, in all these things we are more than conquerors

through him who loved us. ~ Romans 8:37

Thanks for stopping by and reading. Blessings to you.

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A Relationship with God * His Grace.


GraceGrace:

For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ. In accordance with his pleasure and will – Ephesians 1:4-5

Grace is a huge subject and one I am very careful with. Why, you ask?

Because right now Grace is the “BIG, NEW” thing in Christian “revelation”; and I am concerned about how the message of Grace is being taught in some circles.

Quite frankly there is NOTHING new about God’s grace and God’s grace is BIG! Grace holds the same tremendous message as it did when Jesus came here as man, and so much more!

Jesus was God’s grace. Jesus is Grace. Jesus extends Grace.

We were extended God’s grace in the man of Jesus. We are to extend God’s grace to others. We are to show God’s grace in the fruit of our lives.

See … there is so much more than we can fathom in one small and beautiful word.

Grace is about Relationship.

{for this post I was lead to the relationship with God that we receive through grace}

Like I said Grace is so many things. Such a broad canvas, but it began with God and His desire for relationship … with us.

RelationshipGrace was sent and Grace chose us before the creation of the world! Do you realize what that means? God created this world for us. So we would have a place to live and be with Him! By His Grace, and for His pleasure and will He created us to be Sons of God! And to secure that in it’s most pure and holy form God sent His only Son for us.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

That’s it. That’s the Grace we are all talking about. We didn’t deserve it. We don’t deserve it. It’s simply that God loves us.

ALL.OF.US.EVERYONE.

Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham.  For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” Luke 19:9-10

THAT.NONE.SHOULD.PERISH.

You see, I’m a Christian. A follower of Christ on a mission to do what Jesus did and more. I’m here to show you grace. To give you grace. And to point you to the person Grace, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I am no longer lost. I have attained grace and the eternal life Jesus extended to me. It is now my job to let you know this …

By God’s grace He loves you. Right where you are. And too much to leave you there!

It doesn’t matter what you’ve done, where you’ve been. He chooses YOU. Right Now. Right Here.

Have you accepted the gift of Grace? Have you accepted the Grace that is Jesus Christ? Do you believe that He died on the cross for your sins and sickness? Do you believe that He rose again to reconcile God’s relationship with you and for you?

If your answer, today, is YES, then you’ve entered into the Grace.

The Grace that is the Love of God. Jesus.

Welcome to the journey, there is much to do and learn, and you are not alone. There are many of us here with you … come let us walk with Jesus.

If you have any questions, please, I would be happy to share this truth with you personally. You can contact me through the comments or personally at: romans826-28@comcast.net

Thanks for reading my friends. And blessings to you all.

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Tuesday @ Ten

Tuesday @ Ten


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How God Assures Me He’s On It :: A Much Needed Sunday Healing


Sweet, Sad Eyed Boy

Sweet, Sad Eyed Boy

This is my sweet boy. My youngest. My sad little guy. And OH how he had reason for that sweet, sad look. And OH how I sometimes, still, ache for my blindness.

The Man

The Man

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is the man… angry and battling his demons. Very scary demons. And OH how I dreamed of reaching that sweet boy who was hidden in that angry man. I was incapable of reaching into him, to the boy. He wouldn’t let me. I wasn’t, still am not allowed to even hug him. It’s truly heartbreaking for me. And I’m sure his heart is broken. But He battles daily with his illness, his addiction. Heroin. And even when he stumbles, slips and falls flat out; he gets back up to battle. He’s superman in his head. He still thinks he needs to be I think. Because, I couldn’t protect him, because he couldn’t tell me … until they did, when they were barely in grade school … and the man (teen) you see above hid the sweet boy. Seemingly forever.

He fell this week. Wasn’t able to recover from an apparent stumble and now he starts over again. And my heart is broken watching him be sick. Very sick as he starts to stand back up to this illness, this craving, whose whole intent is to kill that sweet boy he has hidden in his heart.

Shane light editThis is him at the beginning of the last run of sobriety. Tired but strong. He’ll be there again.

And I know this because God and I met in worship this morning at church. I started the day very worried about my sweet boy, who hasn’t been so sweet these last few days. He was sick and in pain and irritable. I mean who wouldn’t be when they felt sick; I certainly am not fun when I am ill. But this is different.

There’s nothing I can do. And if I do something I am jeopardizing his life by enabling him. He has to walk out the withdrawl himself. He has to want to feel better. He has to choose between sobriety  and oblivion.

Unlike the cancer his father battles, the boy chose his illness. Chose oblivion over the demons of something he had no say in and I had no knowledge of. The demons who continue to tell him it was his fault. The demons that tell him I should have known. The demons who tell him he’s superman and he can live through the dangerous choices. The demons who tell him no one loves him because he’s unlovable now. This monster heroin quiets the demons I imagine. But then they begin to rustle again and bite … I cannot fathom the pain, though I experience his pain and suffering while he battles the withdrawl and fights for the breath of air that sobriety brings him.

As I sang praises to God today. As I worshiped the Father that promises to heal us. I cried out and from the depth of this mother’s heart and soul I sought my God’s assistance for my sweet boy. And God assured me that with that relinquishing, once again, of my boy to His care, that the boy, the man, would be healed.

During this song, as the lead singer of our worship band and assistance pastor sang this favorite, God met me in my aching for my sweet boy. I quieted and prayed for him and for The Hubs and was assured that He had them, that their healings were imminent, promised. And I quieted into the precious peace of the music, in Father’s presence.

You see, I’ve realized that the enemy has put a hit out on this family. Two of my men are battling grave illnesses, and the boy does not know the promises we believe! So I, WE, as a family must believe for him. He does not know that heroin addiction cannot kill him, as his father knows the cancer cannot kill him, though we tell him.

The boy does not know, as the father does, that because we believe, he is saved from his illnesses and cleansed of his sins, sins that are not even his own, but believes to be. The boy doesn’t believe that Jesus loved him so much that he took the heroin needle for him to the cross and died there with that illness upon Him! So we must believe and pray until the boy understands his worth to the Father.

And what mother, father and brother wouldn’t do this for a boy, for a man?

Oh how I wish the boy believed that he would live. Oh how I wish the boy believed he is loved beyond his mother’s ability to put it in words. Oh how I wish he knew the joy I get when he is well and smiles and is a participating member of this family. A participating member in his own life.

So I leave this post as another prayer to God. It holds no scripture, only a song of worship and praise to our Father God expressing my love and honor to him. I leave it as proof that I acknowledge His response to my need, my boy’s need, this morning. And I thank him again and again, without end that my sweet boy is starting to feel better and is two or three (I’m not sure) days back on the road of sobriety.

To every parent of a child who battles the illness of addiction, or any illness for that matter, I sing this song for you and your child. I pray that God vanquish this demon and send it to hell from whence it came, and I put the enemy and heroin under the feet of Jesus.

We are healed. Our children are healed. Our land is healed. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Thanks for listening to this outpouring of a mother’s heart.

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The sweet boy’s mom. =)


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Still … In Five Minutes |FMF


Welcome to my FMF post. Where I join Kate and the others in blogging from my heart for 5 minutes; unhindered by the need to edit or corrections. Just my heart to yours on this fine Friday. You can either follow the FMF link in the sentence above or hop on over to how it works from the button on my side bar! Join us!

His Laughter - My Favorite Sound.

His Laughter – My Favorite Sound.

Today’s Prompt is: Still. So lets ….

GoToday I honor this man, The Hubs.

If you’ve frequented my blog you know who he is because I mention him often! ❤ Today is his birthday!

So today I honor the most honest man I’ve ever known. He changed my life almost 26 years ago! Wow … 26 years. I actually met him when I was 19 (and thought he was old.) but our worlds would become one when I was 24.

This man’s honesty, integrity and character are evident in him everyday, without fail. It thank God that He made me discerning enough to choose the man He sent for me, and me for him.

I am awed by this man’s strength and dignity in all things, and I could not love him more. That is until tomorrow comes and I realize a new and wonderful thing in him.

Copyright © AHutchinsonPhotography™ 2007 - 2014- All rights reserved. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material and/or photographs without express and written permission from the writer/photographer is strictly prohibited.

O’ Lord this man.
We declare and decree the Word of God.
“Greater is He that is in you than He that is in the world.”
“By His stripes you are healed.”
“No weapon formed against you shall prosper.”
“You shall not die but live and declare the works of the Lord.”
“Don’t forget the benefits of God. He heals all our diseases.”
“The Lord will restore health to you and heal you of your wounds.”
“Affliction will not rise up a second time.”
“The power of the Lord is present to heal you.”

 

I count our years together as blessings, having realized that our successful marriage and relationship was God’s plan . How much more wonderful can a life be, than to live the life that God unites between the two people he built for one another?

With all my heart and soul, I love this man STILL and always.

I will honor him for eternity times infinity.

So Happy Birthday to the Love of my life. ❤  And … stop

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God Thinking and God Timing … Day30 of 3Days


It’s day 3o! We’ve almost completed 31 days of straight writing! Kudos to all of us who are almost to the finish!

Today I want to kind of stay on the theme of God’s Timing.

We’ve discussed God’s Timing in our healing and the fact, that I’ve come to know, that my healing was attained the moment I received my salvation in Jesus Christ. The thing is God asked us to believe Jesus … and with that believing is the believing that we are made whole in that salvation.

That is hard for us humans, because we live in this fallen world. A world that confuses, and worse, denies God’s thinking and His sovereignty in all of life.

All of this requires us to decide to purposefully, begin to think like God.

It stands to reason that if we are made in His image {Genesis 3} then we are able to think like Him.

It’s about believing what Father God says {check His Word} …

:: If there is anything I want you all to receive from this series, past your manifest healing,it is that you would check anything in your life: in all areas of your life, against what God says about that thing/circumstance; in The Bible. I have found all the answers to my circumstances there, and you will too! ::

For me it’s about the God thinking. Let’s be honest when we first begin our relationship with God, not to mention that time before we consent to our salvation, deciphering The Bible is difficult, at best. That’s what the whole go to church and fellowship thing is about.

Learning what God says about this life and how to LIVE it.

Learning that our understanding of the confines of this life: TIME, Prosperity, LIVING WELL, and illness and sin are all under God’s jurisdiction when it comes to the rules and guidelines.

What about Free Will? you ask.

That’s the dig. Like any parent, God teaches us His moral and legal laws. He teaches us how to live this life well and then …. we come to a certain maturity {age} where we begin to make our own decisions.

(I’ve always wondered if God feels like we do when we have to realize that our teenagers are making adult decisions for the first time. That loss of control feeling and the borderline terror … but then I remember that God knows the end from the beginning.) CHEATER! =)

And then He takes His hands off and we are left in that Free Will state … our defining moment!

Are we going to choose God Thinking or human {worldly} thinking? Are we going to follow His lead or the world’s lead.

(The world. You know; society, what the “professionals” say, the politicians or the masses, all of them and their opinions and studies and polls.)

Well, there’s a clear example of God’s thinking, His plan for this in Proverbs. Chapter 22, verse 6.

Train up a child in the way he should go, Even when he is old he will not depart from it.

And sometimes … we have to train ourselves up! Meaning if God is/was not apart of our lives as children when we were coming up, we will encounter God as some point in our lives. This encounter is our time to make a choice to choose His way, or for some, not.

Trust me though … God will pursue YOU if you miss that first appointment.

God is prepared for us and He will follow us until we accept His invitation!

You {God} prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.
Surely your goodness and love will follow me
    all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord
    forever. Psalm 23:5-6

So God thinking is about us learning God’s way. We learn to trust Him at His word, even when that seems to be tested. When a circumstance like cancer manifests in our life, we most often begin to question God. We did not, but we had already trained ourselves in the ways of God and applied it to our lives! We were blessed in that. This blessing, however, is ours to share with those that encounter such apparent tragedy, so that they can see what God did in our lives and pursue those blessings in their own lives.

It’s why I share the intimacies of my life and my personal relationship with God, here.

My LIFE is about testifying about my God! About what He did to HEAL, PROSPER and CARE for me. If I show you that everyday it makes you want it and pursue the same for yourself.

Have you ever asked that friend, who seemingly has it ALL together, how she does it all? You know the friend, we all enjoy her, her house is immaculate, her children balanced and well behaved and apparently genius’! Works all day, plays with her kids, and dinner is on the table at 6,and probably looks amazing doing all of this!

What is her answer? On all of the “MOM Blogs” I read they credit God.

But what about those ladies who don’t have a relationship with God? They often credit themselves and the fact that they have no choice and their time is not their own! Most would explain it with complaint and express the desire to have some relief.

What would I say? Well I would be honest … my house has a lived in feel, at best, if not messy! I’m getting better with this, but I was not built to be a natural housewife! How do I get along with our schedule? It is what it is, with all the appointments, work {thank God that he’s blessed me with the pleasure of working from home.} and just life? I would tell you that I have no choice … but to put my day, each day, in God’s hands and I do my best to be content with the outcome.

Some days are better than others when we talk about the outcome; but it is what it’s supposed to be.

I would credit God with my successes and I would tell you that I didn’t press in to God when it comes to my failures. I would say this because I have looked back upon those failures and realize that I chose to do something in my own power and I failed.

I’ve come to the realization that I do nothing without God. I don’t breath, I don’t function, I don’t succeed when I remove God from the equation of my life and decisions. That’s what I would tell you if you asked.

For me this life is about God’s time and thinking.

The only way I accept God’s timing is to adopt His thinking on the subject of life.

I am fully persuaded that God’s got this, He’s got me and if I can, each day, each moment, leave it to Him things will be alright. Even if it isn’t what I saw happening.

And I can be persuaded because I have worked with God on tailoring my thinking to be like His. It’s a process and just when I think I’ve got it down another challenge crops up for me to increase my God thinking.

It’s kind of like : WWJD [what would Jesus do] … but more like WDGWMTD [what does God want me to do] and I then check the Word for instruction if it’s not clear.  And who has the time for that, you ask?

My answer: I don’t have the time for anything else. I’d rather get it done, then have to go back and fix it!

The fear [reverence] of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, But fools despise wisdom and instruction. My son, hear the instruction of your father, And do not forsake the law of your mother; For they will be a graceful ornament on your head, And chains about your neck. Proverbs 1:7-9

Everything is in God’s timing. Being able to think like God comes in His timing, and for me, it seems, that time is now. Look around you. See the miracles of light, of trees of your children … realize that God CREATED it all, and some of it just for YOU! What was He thinking?

He was thinking about US! About that desire that we have Life and Life MORE abundant.

Why then do we desire to control time and deny His thinking? Is there something you want to change in your thinking? God wants to guide you today. Do you need some concrete direction for your life? I suggest the book of Proverbs … how to live life the way God intends is spelled out right there.

The best way to understand God’s timing and learn to think like Him is by reading His Word. That’s my encouragement today, and every day! Get in the Word.

Thanks for reading.

Thank You for Reading. Andrea

Thank You for Reading.
Andrea

31 Days Journey to Healing

31 Days Journey to Healing

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