Archive for Changing the Heart

Anger and Bitterness part 6- Humility and Forgiveness

We ultimately have to learn to forgive, and move on with our lives. We can’t hold all that anger and bitterness in. It can wreck our relationship with those around us and with Christ. Sometimes, you are really wronged. Sometimes, people do go too far, cause too many problems and too much drama. But at the end of the day, we are still called to forgive.

Let me stop right here and say that that doesn’t mean that it will be easy. Sometimes, forgiving is one of the hardest things to do. Forgive that person, after all the damaged they caused you? Forgive yourself? Why should you?

I can’t count how many times I have felt betrayed, back-stabbed, or whatever. People have made me so angry I didn’t know what to do, time and time again. I ultimately do forgive the people who have hurt me, but depending on how deep the wound, it could a short amount of time or a very long amount of time for you to heal. It once took me a couple years to forgive someone.

A good thing about forgiveness is that when you finally work up the courage to, and your heart becomes big enough to, you finally get over all the bitterness. You know how sometimes when you refuse to forgive someone, you say “no way! I am never going to let go of it! They hurt me so much!” Have you ever noticed that when you won’t let it go, that pain won’t ever let you go? The more you think about the person, the angrier you get, and the more you feel that pain they caused. But when you forgive, you stop thinking about them, that anger dwindles down, and the pain finally really goes away!

I know this from experience. When I forgave someone who broke my heart, I wasn’t angry at them anymore, I didn’t want them to die, I wasn’t in pain because they ignored me, it was like I was totally uninhibited. I didn’t think of them and wince or cry or anything, as I did before I forgave them. I was perfectly fine. But that was after a couple years and some hard work. I had to focus on other things in my life and stop obsessing over that one thing. I had to spend time with God, reflecting on ways to heal, and how to fix my horrible decisions. I had to pray and ask God to forgive me for holding so much anger in.

One reason we should forgive is because God forgives us when we forgive others.

“Don’t judge others, and you will not be judged. Don’t accuse others of being guilty, and you will not be accused of being guilty. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. ” Luke 6:37

Every mistake we make, every heartache we cause our Father- if we can turn away from the bad things we’ve done and sincerely apologize, God will forgive us. Every time he saw us lie or cheat or be proud or anything, he never stopped loving us. Then who are we to stop loving him when he challenges us? Who are we to stop loving others when they are challenging for us?

Did you realize that while Jesus was on the cross, he was forgiving all of those people who abused him and beat him and mocked him? He was forgiving those who persecuted and executed him? He was forgiving those who were cheering because he was bleeding and dying? Thinking of that makes me feel so small, and so I wonder: who the heck am I not to forgive?

Pray that God will give you the strength to be able to get over your bitterness. It’s not easy, but certainly you can do it with the Lord’s help. God knows it when you trust in him for help. He can help to take away that pain and brokenness inside. I know from experience. If you can learn to say “I forgive what they did to me, I won’t hold it against them anymore”, God will do the same, and turn his head away from your sins and the bad you do. He will treat us how we treat others.

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Improving our Weaknesses

Sometimes, I have a horribly hard time opening up to people. I can come across as distantand uncaring, maybe stuck up or heartless. None of these things are true, though. I love people, love spending time with people. I love making friends, I love talking, but I struggle because there has always been this piece of my heart that is outrageously introverted.

I remember in high school, I had friends that I really loved, but I was called quiet, and I would sit in class and do my best, but some piece of me always didn’t care, didn’t want to be there. I often felt isolated and like I didn’t know how to relate to anyone. I was always in my own little world, dreaming big dreams, thinking of what I would do after school, etc. maybe I didn’t trust people.

Anyway, I am partially a loner, I guess, but this is not good for the sake of God’s kingdom. I was in my bible class one day, and my teacher was talking about how God has presented his message of hope to the world in a general way, so even people in different cultures who haven’t had the chance to hear it will go to hell.

The problem isn’t because God is mean and cruel, but because he has placed the burden of responsibility on his own people. If people aren’t changing because of the Gospel, it’s because we aren’t doing our job to the best of our ability, simply put. God has told us to go and make disciples:

“Then Jesus came to them and said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.'” Matthew 28:18-20

So when people aren’t getting saved and changed, it’s because we’re not doing good at all about telling people about Christ. This apathetic world who looks at Christianity as just some random theory is because we have been seriously slacking. So when my teacher reminded me of this, I felt such a sense of urgency to tell the world, spread the message, save a soul, change a mind, and most importantly, change a heart.

I have to get over my introversion to make room for God. Someone took time out of their day to show me how important God was, and I am so thankful for that, because I accepted Christ because of it. The genuine change in my heart, the strength I have found, it is all amazing. So who am I to keep that from somebody else?

I am learning to get over myself and my weakness for the sake of God’s kingdom. Some days I really don’t feel like posting, but I do, because it forces me to face my challenges. I try to talk to people about God try to be friendlier, try to open up more. It’s not easy, but I see drastic improvement from where I used to be.

I am stretching myself for God. A lot of times, Christians don’t realize that they get in the way of their own progress. We have so many weaknesses we need to work on. Some need to stop being greedy, stop putting themselves first, and learn to serve others. Some need to share more, some need to spend more time with God, pray more, etc. (In fact, literally every Christian can still improve in these areas! Because we are never perfect.) There are always things to improve on.

If that wasn’t true, more people would be changed, we would have reached more people by now. But it is okay to have weakness because we have Christ. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to make our weak points stronger. I need to talk more to tell people about Jesus, so little by little, I talk to more and more people to improve. If I needed to pray more, I would make sure I prayed for 1 or a few people each day.

We have to realize our weaknesses if we are ever going to be able to change them.

It’s good to surround ourselves with godly people, who can hold us accountable and keep us on track. We should help to build each other up; set goals and then work hard at them to improve and achieve them. We need each other, we depend on each other:

“Two people are better than one, because they get more done by working together. If one falls down, he other can help him up. But it is bad for the person who is alone and falls, because no one is there to help.” Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

Then we can get out of our own way and God can do what he needs to do. It’s not God not doing his job. God works through us to get his will done. We have to start doing our job. We have to learn where we fall short, so we can improve and be able to do what God wants us to do. Embrace humility, be willing to change. When we get ourselves out of the way, then we may truly change the world!!

Reflecting on Romans 8:7-9

“When people’s thinking is controlled by the sinful self, they are against God, because they refuse to obey God’s law and really are not even able to obey God’s law. Those people who are ruled by their sinful selves cannot please God. But you are not ruled by your sinful selves. You are ruled by the Spirit, if that Spirit of God really lives in you. But the person who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to Christ.” Romans 8:7-9

This means that people who are not saved and not yet changed in their hearts by God live sinful lives, getting caught up in all the bad stuff of the world. It could be drugs, sexual behavior, gossip, etc. But what captures my attention is how it says “really are not even able to obey God’s law.” It says not only do unsaved people not want to obey God’s law, but that it is actually impossible for them to.

No matter what they do, even if it is not necessarily bad stuff, if their actual hearts are not changed so that they love God, they cannot ever please God.

There are so many people who want to try to get into heaven by the things they do, but it is only by faith in Christ alone do we get into heaven. It is important to understand that it is literally impossible to get into heaven if we do not have faith in Christ.

“Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.” Romans 5:1-2

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6

But Romans 8:7-9 says we cannot please God unless we have the Spirit of Christ in us. But when we are ruled by the Spirit of Christ, we stop living for the things in this world, and start living for him. We become slaves to God:

“Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one you obey—whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness? But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you have come to obey from your heart the pattern of teaching that has now claimed your allegiance. You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.” Romans 6:16-18

I think this is a good way to tell if I am encountering a genuine Christian or not. A genuine Christian is changed from the inside out. It’s important to remember that the transformation starts from the inside, changing the heart, and works it’s way outside, into the things you do. So first, the person’s heart changes and they develop a genuine love for Christ and God. Then, the internal love starts to pour out, and it reflects into their actions: they start living for God, trying harder to avoid sin, like gossiping and lust, etc. And they grow more and more humble as they learn to seve others and serve God. Their actions will begin to reveal that the Spirit of Christ lives in them.

I look at it kind of like a disease. A person with the true Spirit of Christ in them once had a horrible disease, but they found the source of the problem to cure the disease, and so all the symptoms of the disease went away after they were cured. The source of the disease represents the sinful heart, and by starting to love Christ with all their heart and trusting him, they are healed, and so the bad things they do stop, as a reflection of their heart. They start living out what they feel inside.

A person without the Spirit of Christ, a false believer, they see the disease in themself and they do things to get rid of the symptoms, so they can convince others that the disease is gone. But even if they hide the symptoms, the disease is still there, tearing them down internally. Their hearts are not changed, they are just trying to convince everyone that it has been changed by what that do, and it phony because they still are evil inside.

To me, it’s typically fairly obvious to see who’s hearts are genuinely devoted to Christ. A false believer may try to act godly, but a genuine one, I can tell that everything they do, they do it to please God. They aren’t as caught up with trying to please men. When I see these people, they often wow me.

I have a friend who says he loves God, but he does drugs and drinks and totally gets caught up in the wrong crowd of people. I can tell his heart has not chagned, that he doesnt’ have the Spirit of Christ in him. If people have a changed heart for God, it should shine in their lives. It shouldn’t just be that they go to church. It should be that they eat, sleep, breathe, loving God. They give and share because they are trying to be like Jesus, and they are trying to get people to see that love in them.

They are genuine, with real hearts, real love, real care, good character. For these people, following Jesus isn’t just a thought, but it is a radical change in lifestyle. They are living for something bigger than themselves, for something more temporary than making themselves great. They live to make Jesus’s name famous, helping to advance the kingdom.

And that’s what Christians should do! 😀

Click here to Accept Christ!

*Poetry Corner- “Wrapped Up in Chains”

Wrapped Up in Chains

So much pain,
I can’t feel
Anything at all
Lord, I did not give you half of my heart
I swore I’d give it all
And so I gave it all

Even with you Lord, I fall hard to the ground
And in chains, forever I’m bound
And I scream in the pain
But internally, I pace myself
And I constantly reflect on
The love in your heart
And even as I hurt, I’m okay
Your mercy, your power, your glory,
Hardwired in my brain,
Excuse me-
I mean, hardwired in my heart

And I stand in the flames
Wrapped up in your chains
And head strong, I move on
If I’m in pain, I’ll resist running away
As long as it brings glory to you
Will it make you happy?
Then I’ll fight my way through
Whether I live or die,
I’ll stand by your side
This world cannot shake the love
I have gained in you
Each bullet in my soul,
I’ll take it for you
At the end of the day
When I’m burning, sitting on the pain
I am running this race
And I will pace myself
So I can make it through
Forgetting myself,
I’m living this life for you

You sacrificed yourself for my freedom
And as a Christian, I cannot live without sacrifice
You were in pain so spiritually, I could survive
And to say following you is easy
Is nothing but a lie
But it’s certainly worth a try
And the preachers preach and they preach
But if they tell everyone this is easy
It is a lie
But I know the grace I’ve recieved
And so I will try
Running this race
Face to face with the pain,
Wearing your name
By carrying chains

But I won’t fall over dead in my heart
This pain is nothing compared to the
Freedom you’ve given me
And I will pace myself
Until I pass the finish line
And I can look you in the eyes
Be by your side
In Heaven

And you laid down your life for mine
As a Christian, I can’t live without self-sacrifice
I’ll see you in heaven when I cross the finish line
Because you are well worth the race, worth the fight

—————————

copyright Jennifer Clayton

I wanted to write a poem about how following Christ isn’t easy, but it is soooo worth the fight. The reward in heaven, the love, the strength.. freakin’ amazing. To be able to stand out in this world as something different, have self-respect, to live for something bigger than you.. to have a purpose, to know the direction you are going in life, to have something to ground you in the midst of all the craziness, to have a relationship when you are lonely… nice.

But it’s not easy. It’s hard work, sacrificing the things I want to live for Christ. I have to lay down my desires and pick up his desires. Carry my cross. But I truly don’t mind. It’s nothing compared to the hell I used to live in before him. Being in pain for him doesn’t hurt nearly as much as having fun without him.. seriously! We have to learn to let him lead us. It is hard, since we are such individualistic people, who want to be independent and go after our goals and make ourselves bigger. But everything I once held dear, I count it all as loss…

The Most Healing Words

I have this book called GOD’S PROMISES for every day, and I was just reading it. All it really is is bible verses selected for different phases of life. When I read bible verses, whenever I am in pain or feel like I am losing faith in God, the verses help make me feel loved and keep me from getting discouraged. They make me feel safe like Jesus will protect me.

Sometimes we all forget how healing these words can be. This is one thing that is so attractive and genuine about Christianity. You can read a bible verse a thousand times, and each time, discover something new about it, look at it in a different way, it can radically change you and help you grow each time. It never gets old. It’s because God’s word is overwhelmingly filled with his love. Each time I read, I feel his love reach my heart and kiss it. It teaches me discipline and patience and integrity. It teaches me to have grace and mercy because Jesus had grace and mercy towards me. It teaches me humility and strength, and fills me with the richest kind of wisdom. I directly feel God’s love for me when I read.

When I feel broken and torn up inside- when I feel misused, his words truly heal my broken heart and bandages my wounds. It pours peace and hope into all my internal cuts and bruises. It takes the very sting out of the pain the world has caused me.

It is my closest, most sacred and important friend because the word is God-inspired. It’s God’s words, wrote down by man. I watch myself heal from the most pain I have ever been in my life- and that anyone could call that fake by calling Christianity fake- is someone who obviously has never experienced the peace is brings. It challenges and comforts you all in one. People who don’t believe, such as atheists, travel in this world feeling alone. When life knocks them down, they don’t know the eternal peace God has given us so that we have grace in all situations we are in, bad or good. They have not experienced the strength and mercy of the Lord. That is one hell of a dangerous place to be: travelling the world, alone in your heart.

I have decided to write some powerful verses from the book, GOD’S PROMISES for every day, here:

Because of his love, God has already decided to make us his own children through Jesus Christ. That was what he wanted and what pleased him, and it brings praise to God because of his wonderful grace. God gave that grace to us freely, in Christ, the One he loves. In Christ we are set free by the blood of his death, and so we have forgiveness of sins. How rich is God’s grace. Ephesians 1:5-7

But if we confess our sins, he will forgive our sins, because we can trust God to do what is right. He will cleanse us from all the wrongs we have done. 1 John 1:9

Enjoy serving the Lord, and he will give you what you want. Depend on the Lord; trust him, and he will take care of you. Psalm 37:4-5

Then Jesus said, “I am the bread that gives life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” John 6:35

For his own sake, the Lord won’t leave his people. Instead, he was pleased to make you his own people. 1 Samuel 12:22

I will not leave you alone like orphans; I will come back to you. John 14:18

So faith comes from hearing the Good News, and people hear the Good News when someone tells them about Christ. Romans 10:17

Every time I hear stuff from the bible, every time I read it, it resonates in my heart in a new way. It’s hard to explain. It’s like God’s voice speaking to me and loves echoes throughout my soul. Spend some time studying the word. Get closer to God doing so. You learn about him, and how to live an upright life. The bible is strength and protection and hope. It builds bridges where there are no bridges; builds bridges where the heart is broken.

It is the foundation of good living. It is so firm and it gives you something firm to stand up, something to hold on to. It teaches you and shows you how to be disciplined. It is mighty and challenges you to constantly change for the better.

These are the most healing words. Words written down by men, inspired by God himself. Read it, be blown over in the love of it all, and learn the true nature and character of God’s heart. It’s one of the best ways to get close to him. And also, pray. 🙂

What’s the Point of Christ?

This blog is mainly about Jesus. Clearly. Hence the name. But why? Why do I decide to put such an emphasis on him? Well, as he says in the bible:

“I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6

Basically, he’s saying that no one can get to heaven and be with God the Father except for by believing in him. They have to have faith in him, believing that he died on the cross to pay for all our sins once and for all, and that he rose from the grave 3 days later.

They have to acknowledge that they are sinful and can be forgiven by Jesus, if they ask for it. They need to proclaim it with their hearts and their mouths that Jesus is Lord:

“That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.” Romans 10:8-10

Remember it is about a change in the heart. A prayer alone cannot save you, but only if you truly believe in your heart will you be saved. But if you do this, you will be saved. You must take the leap of faith and begin to trust Jesus. Trust that he will catch you when you fall, when you make mistakes.

Some people act like there are many ways to get to God, but I only know one. Through Christ himself. We were separated from God because of our sins, because of what Adam and Eve had did in the garden, that lead to the downfall of everyone.

And because God is just and perfect and we are not because of sin, we truly deserve only to go to hell. But by God sending his only son, Jesus Christ, to the world, he gave us a chance to get to heaven.

Christ lived a perfect life, obeying all of God’s laws, and then he was crucified, carrying all our sins with him to the cross, and he died a perfect death. His rising three days later showed that he had defeated death, and thus, defeated sin in us.

This means by believing in Jesus, he forgives our sins, and our slate is whiped clean, and because Jesus gives us a clean slate, we are allowed to get into heaven. But we have to believe in our hearts that he died for us and rescued us from our sinful selves.

“Because of his love, God had already decided to make us his own children through Jesus Christ. That was what he wanted and what pleased him, and it brings praise to God because of his wonderful grace. God gave that grace to us freely, in Christ, the One he loves. In Christ we are set free by the blood of his death, and so we have forgiveness of sins. How rich is God’s grace,” Ephesians 1:5-7

He became our sacrifice to God, so we can get into heaven. And my life was jacked up before I knew him. Everything was going south, nothing made sense. I literally have never felt so much peace than when I am in Christ as opposed to being in the world. Millions of dollars could not match the peace I have found. I would choose to die for him on the spot than to have a materialistic life without him.

He healed my broken heart and satisfied me. He gave me peace in the place of ceasless worry. He was a friend, holding out a hand to help lift me up, as opposed to people in the world who conversely only ever pushed me down. He did not care about all the crap I did, he just wanted to love me, so he did. And I wouldn’t trade anything in the world for that, for a friend like him.

“You gave me life and showed me kindness,
and in your care you watched over my life.” Job 10:12

But there is only one way to get to God, through Christ alone. Any other way won’t get you into heaven. Sometimes you just have to suck it up and face the facts. Anyone could try to argue this, but I will never argue with the peace I have found and the loving relationship I have gained in the name of Christ.

That, my friends, is what this blog is all about. 🙂

Grrr… I Can’t Stand Christian Hypocrisy!!

Who doesn’t know what I am talking about? I think pretty much everyone knows “those” Christians who tell you one thing but are doing a totally different thing. Those Christians who go to church sunday, trying to act all holy, and then 2 days later, they are getting drunk in a club. They condemn people for doing things they are clearly doing themselves. Christians who say ‘don’t judge people’, ‘only Jesus can judge me’, and then they see a person do one thing wrong and next thing you know, they are yelling at them, telling them they are going to hell; they are the first to judge and condemn!

Yes, we all know “those” Christians. It is hard for me to really call those people Christians. When you truly accept Christ in your heart, there is a heart change. You start to put aside your sinful self and put on the holiness of Jesus. You start to see with his eyes more and start to see with our imperfect eyes a little less. Your heart genuinely changes, and you yearn to see good things happen and yearn to live good lives. You actually attempt to love as Christ did; being loving, forgiving, compassionate, hopeful.

When pepole say they are Christians but their actions never seem to mach up to their words, it’s pretty safe to mark those people off as not being genuine Christians.

No one one the oustide of Christianity, a non-believer, wants to look at our faith and see deceit and lies. Then why on earth would they be compelled to accept Christ as their Lord and Savior and convert to Christianity? Genuine Christians build other people up, truly desire to see people change for the better, help shape and heal hearts in the name of Christ. Non-genuine Christians act better than everyone else, judge everyone as going to hell and are cruel with their words, and they don’t truly desire to see change in people.

So many people turn away from our faith because they see hypocrisy within the church. If this is all they see, I can’t blame them for turning away from God. But they should know that if they really look, they can find true Christians who are loving and encouraging no matter what. They don’t sit on the edge of their seat just to condemn people. True Christians are those who want to see the hurting heal and watch people’s lives change for the better because of Christ.

People should be able to look at the church and see unison, beauty, and love. There shouldn’t be liars and fakers and cheaters. Christians need to learn to let their actions match up with their words, and non-Christians should give us a second chance and see that beneath the layer of crap, there are Christians who are worth trusting and knowing about.

Christians should walk the walk instead of talk the talk. A Christian can argue all day with someone about how they are living the right life for God. However, if their actions prove other wise, their arguing was useless. Let’s spare the arguments and let our actions speak for us. That will show if we are truly living the right life for God. Do what the bible says. Pray for strength to live a life obedient to Christ. After all, actions are what we remember; at the end of the day, “actions speak louder than words!!”

Finding Beauty in Negative Spaces

“Find Beauty in Negative Spaces” is a CD by the band Seether. I actually have this CD. But I am using the name to show how Jesus “finds beauty in negative spaces” when it comes to us.

God can make me feel so beautiful at any given moment. Even in the midst of a horrible day, where I just wanna cry and go to sleep. Even when someone is a total jerk to me and makes me feel useless. Even when I feel unloved, and like I’m in desperate need of someone to make me feel special.

I get so vulnerable, but he always covers up the pain with peace. I like to block out the world from time to time and only think about him. Many people don’t know this, but he truly can heal like no one else can heal. All I really had to do was put more and more trust in him, and the more I trust him, the more I feel him taking care of me.

 

I drew this picture of a girl. I didn’t sit there and think “I’m going to draw a girl in a white dress, blood, wings” I simply thought, “let me draw out the worse pain I feel in my heart at this moment”

And this is what came out. I was just drawing until I felt better. And I feel a million times better. I am so fascinated that in all the pain I’m in, that makes me want to cry, I can find such great beauty in a work like this. My heart feels so liberated. x3

But I know this is the work of God. Whenever I feel pain, I never let it keep me down becasue I simply know this: Christ is bigger than this, stronger than this. He said “I told you these things so that you can have peace in me. In this world you will have trouble. But be brave! I have defeated the world!” John 16:33 ERVSo he has already overcome the world, he has already faced all my demons for me and won all my battles.

Basically, with Jesus, he helps make everything ugly that I feel seem more beautiful. Any time I feel worthless, he lets me feel love. It spreads through all of my heart and he shows me the beauty in me. For example, I might think my face, my body, my personality, and my life is ugly and stupid. So metaphorically, I look at my heart and see a bunch of ‘dirt’. A bunch of ugliness. Jesus says I am beautiful throughout, and so he finds my ‘diamonds in the dirt’. He takes anything I think is ugly and makes me see that it’s beautiful.

Girls shouldn’t let boys abuse them. And really, no one should let anyone abuse them. Friends shouldn’t let friends abuse them- and a real friend won’t abuse you. When you let people abuse you, a lot of times, you gain a sense of worthlessness. It feels very real and very much like the sky in your world is black- that you are not important. But it’s not true!!! These people look at themselves and only see dirt; they see themselves as not important or beautiful. However, Christ looks at them and always sees diamonds in the dirt, he always see beautiful things that are hidden to us. Don’t let people get in your heads or your heart and let them cut you down, telling you you are nobody.

Christ always thinks you are somebody. Someone to be loved and cherished and made to feel special. He is our father, and he sees his daughters as priceless and more beautiful than diamonds and more valuable than gold. He loves us and wants us to have good influences in our lives- good parents, friends, boyfriends and girlfriends. Christ thinks his sons are handsome and priceless, also.

Why should we settle for less? Do we deserve to feel less than we are, that we are just dirt, containing no diamonds? Heck no!!

I struggle with emotional abuse. No one physically hurts me, but people will tell me I’m not worht anything. In the back of my mind, I know I am incredibly valuable, but it doesn’t mean that insults don’t hurt. I was talking with my friend, and we both agreed that we can’t handle a bunch of meanness from total strangers- when people only know one thing about us, and based off that, they judge us and call us bad people for one little thing we do.

Some people truly make you feel like you could die. But Jesus wants to wrap up us in so much love that we never feel such pain again. We are important to him. He doesn’t see a moron who can’t do anything right, someone who is totally useless or someone who doesn’t deserve to be alive.

He sees us as his precious, priceless, hurting children that he wants to heal. He sees the tears we cry; he wants to wipe those tears. He sees the battles we fight; he says call on him for help and we will learn that he has already fought and won these battles for us. He sees that we grow weak; we have strength in him. He is an unfaltering love, an unending hope, like eternal sunlight.

I pray that he shields us when we get abused and torn down. He sees we should have security and peace in him because there are so many people who will hate us in this world and he wants nothing more than to protect us from that. Sometimes I see images of people hitting me, yelling at me, cutting me open, because they abuse me so much. Sometimes, I see boys making me feel ugly and ripping off my wedding dress because I feel like I don’t deserve to be married. But none of this is true!!

The same way parents look at their newborn baby as beautiful and breathtaking, heart breaking, wonderful, Jesus looks at his children (US!) the same way. Except he sees infinite more beauty than we could ever see in a baby. He loves us much, much more than we could ever love ourselves.

Jeus died for us on the cross because even though we can be sinful, cold, cruel, selfish people, he sees past all that and sees the beauty in us. He loves us and is always “finding beauty in negative spaces”.

The picture I drew was about all the raw ugliness and grossness I feel, how I felt being treated like shit. But despite showing all the ugliness I feel, one can see the beauty in my heart because of how beautiful the piece of art turned out. It was about disaster but was breath taking and heartbreakingly beautiful. We see the ugliness and he sees the beauty. I know my self-esteem may suffer because of people, but I have learned to differentiate what is true and what’s fake. His love his true and cruelty from bullies is fake; don’t believe them.

This is why he is the best friend I’ve ever known. He knows howo to heal me, how to love me, how to help me “find beauty in negative spaces”. A genuine and heartfelt friend can always see beauty in you, even when we fail to see it in ourselves. Christ is a great friend. Trust in his compassionate and loyal heart.

Good to Trust in Jesus, Accepting Him

“‘I know what I am planning for you,’ says the Lord. ‘I have good plans for you, not plans to hurt you. I will give you hope and a good future.’” Jeremiah 29:11 NCV

“You, LORD, give perfect peace to those who keep their purpose firm and put their trust in you.” Isaiah 26:3 TEV

“Let’s keep focused on that goal, those of us who want everything God has for us. If any of you have something else in mind, something less than total commitment, God will clear your blurred vision—you’ll see it yet!” Philippians 3:15 The Message

But you must truly believe in Christ in your heart to obtain this the blessings he has stored up for you; he has blessings stored up for each and every one of us. Belief is such a loose word, but that’s a WHOLE DIFFERENT story for another time. To truly accept Christ, you have to believe that he is alive in spirit and around still today to do the things he said and promised he would.

I believe this in my own heart, even more so than the air I breathe—than the sure oxygen that fills my lungs. You must trust him, and through doing so, learn to know him in your heart. You need to confess that Jesus is Lord of your life, realize that he loves you and that he lived for you, died for you, and rose from the grave—so that you might live with him and his father in heaven, in his big house with many rooms, and have eternal life! Realize that by Christ lived the perfect life and sacrificed himself to take away your sins.

If you confess these things, truly believing them in your heart, you will know that you have accepted Christ, and will get into heaven and live with him. Pray for this in your heart, even say it out loud, and Satan and hell will have lost their foothold on your soul. And then, welcome to the new life.

Always feel free to contact me deadwednesdays@yahoo.com . Or leave a comment if you have questions or anything. 🙂

Check out NewSpring church, which is a place for any and all imperfect people, REGARDLESS OF THEIR PAST!! Everyone is welcomed by the kindness of true children of fricken’ AWESOME JESUS!! You don’t need to be all dressy and can come in casual clothes, and you can actually understand what the preachers are preaching about. It’s a very much home away from home feel, and it is really quite enjoyable. It’s the way church needs to be, for there to be any life change (and there is here, all the time!).

The site is here: http://www.newspring.cc. Check the site for info on locations (http://www.newspring.cc/newhere/locations). If you don’t live near one currently, watch videos on the web campus, visit the senior pastor’s blog: www.perrynoble.com, which is packed with loads of useful info, and get in touch with people who attend this church.

*Poetry Corner- I Won’t Apologize

When people say I’m a weirdo for believing in Jesus, I look at them like they are stupid. I feel like this: Why on earth will I give up on a love that has made me feel completely whole? If I listen to their ridiculous opinions, I will loose the greatest love I’ve ever known, the most freedom in joy I have ever felt, and this is what I have to say about that:

I Won’t Apologize

I don’t care who laughs at me for loving Jesus
Who mocks me for believing in “fairy tales”
But I won’t apologize for committing my life
To something that rescued me from the hell
I once lived in every day, on my own
Standing on the edge of everything I’ve known
About to fall over into the sketchy blackness
Through the power of his love
I could feel him pull me back

I won’t EVER apologize
For allowing my heart to heal,
For the very first time in my life
I won’t apologize
For going from a passive life
To an active one
Where I can achieve my dreams
By any means

Why the hell should I be sorry
For being happy, being complete
Learning what it’s like to be a whole person
For the very first time
In an ocean of worry,
I use to sink to the bottom to drown
But by trusting Christ
Look at the love I’ve found
Condemned to be free
Learning to breathe
Learning to breathe

White-hot passion fills my bones
Commitment to the realest love I’ve ever known
Walking in his footsteps
I won’t dare to fall back
Into a world that gave up on me
I will follow in his footsteps
And try to reach
The broken heart
The hurting child, the outcast,
The left-out
The down-trodden, the left-behind,
The forgotten about
I will reach the hearts that
Never before
Have been reached, all this time
I’ll show them that he loves their abandoned hearts
I know this his true,
Because he has loved mine

—————

So when people say you are a freak for loving Christ, let them call you a freak. Is it so freaky to want to feel fulfilled in your life, to feel loved by someone who is looking out for you? So freaking to grow past the fears and worries and anxieties of the world, because you have peace in Christ? Is it so weird to feel more incredible than you ever have before? If people say it is, refuse to apologize!! 🙂 Don’t give them what they want. Love you all~

-Jennifer Clayton

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