It came to me yesterday that in this cyber age, the fastest way to ensure a relationship is over and will have next to no chance of ever happening again, is to broadcast the results of the relationship, along with your raw emotions, on a site such as Facebook.
Pre-Facebook age, when most of life wasn't spent online, if your relationship ended, it was usually only made aware to those closest to you, and you often had time to deal with it before the rest of the world found out. These days, the instant something happens in a relationship, be it good or bad, it's often highlighted online for all to see, where you immediately get a response from most of the people who see it, and that response is usually to pity you and condemn your ex.
What I saw on thinking about this yesterday, is the partner who has had a status written about them (and it's usually not leaving them in a good light) no longer has just 'you' to think about. They may ache to return to you, they may long for things to be as they were, but they've just seen what all your so-called friends would like to do to them, and are suddenly aware that it's not just you they have to take back but all those nosy friends of yours, who condemned him or her the moment you announced your 'woe is me' story. And I ask ya, who has the energy to deal with all those people in a relationship made for TWO! I know I wouldn't.
I mean, I would not just have to face my guilt and feelings towards my ex (who wrote a status about me in order to seek pity and/or validation of some sort), I'm now up against dozens of people who I KNOW now will turn on me the moment I put a foot wrong. As much as I may miss my ex (in this scenario) there's no way I'm going back into a group of people who wanted my blood, who will be forever watching every move I make, and are forever ready to attack me as soon as my partner is in the mood to broadcast my shortcomings again.
Who needs it?!
I ran this by one of my kids yesterday, when I was thinking about it, and they totally agreed. They couldn't go back to their ex because of the so-called friends their ex has rallied around them, who obviously want blood to compensate the ex's grief. It's the reaction of the angry mob that has finally killed any chance of that relationship being restored.
In short, if you want your relationship to be permanently over, seek sympathy on a site such as Facebook, and get your 'friends' to pity you and hate your partner.
During the course of my childhood, I adopted the belief that being oneself is a "no-no." That I had to seek to improve myself in order to become what other's desired me to be. However, I never believed I could achieve, nor accepted that I had - or ever could have - any great worth, so I found myself living down to the expectations of others, and, whether I desired to or not, I never seemed to improve.
It would be years later, when God knew I was ready to confront such issues, that He would reveal to me that just because a characteristic belonged to me, it didn't mean it was a bad one. Long story short, God enabled me to come to terms with the fact that I am me and I don't have to alter anything to impress anyone. Rather, I had to find self-acceptance in order to truly be myself. In doing so - in coming to terms with my quirks, short-comings, weaknesses and strengths, I was led into a place of peace not known to me before.
The image I get on writing this is of me being here in my home, at my desk, with the door shut. I'm busy typing away when someone knocks on the door. I rise from my place of unchained thought and, dressed in my best smile, open the door to welcome the visitor. On opening the door, I learn the person who seeks entry is no true friend. Rather, they've come to run their finger over the furniture; to check the state of the kitchen sink; to stick their nose to the floor in order to see how much dirt they can find hiding in every fibre.
The old me would've followed them around the house, agreeing with every critical judgement they offered; allowing them free reign in my home, and bowing to all the negativity they possessed - so much so that by the time they left I would be broken on a floor, or hiding in shame in a dark closet, and no longer confident enough to return to my place of writing, convinced that my heart was evil, I have no real value, and definitely nothing worth sharing with the rest of the world who were all too good for me anyway.
But not anymore. God's seen to that. He's worked on me behind my closed door, so now when an aggressor knocks, and that look of disdain greets me at the door, I can confidently and boldly say, "I'm not interested," and close the door once more, shutting them out. And, with a smile upon my heart, and with peace embracing my soul, I let them get on with their life, and I get on with mine.
Sometimes, the best door is a closed one...
The following came to me this morning, as my hubby and I were taking our kids to school. Admittedly, the encouragement was for them, but on viewing it, I see it's for all of us:
You have power wrapped up in your personal talents and giftings, making you the individual that you are - for a purpose. You are born to conquer. Born to win... Use your power as you step forward in the life set before you. Whatever gifts and talents you possess, use them for good... and don't allow anyone to silence you, or chain you.
xxx Donna D xxx
I did a very dumb thing yesterday. I was eating an orange, while at my computer, and got a fair bit of juice on a couple of keys. Now the letters Aa and Xx refuse to work and I have to add them with an On-Screen Keyboard, which totally slows down the writing process. Ahhhh, ya gotta laugh, ay! ;P
I was thinking of a much heard of statement, "Don't judge me..." and, "You can't judge me..." and "Only God can judge me..." and I thought, what if we let go of the paranoia and angst we sometimes get over the thought of being judged, and, when we are judged, responded with an earnest "Go ahead and judge me..." without taking offence.
Personally, I think such a response - especially if felt in one's own heart; if we truly didn't care about being judged - would be most freeing... Let 'them' judge us. So what if they do. Why is their opinion of us so important when their opinion is obviously not born of love?
Let's try it... :D But don't hate them. Don't judge them in return!! Rather, it would be best for you if you simply became indifferent to those who like to play judge, jury and executioner, and got on with your life.
Let me know how it goes for you. :D
***Thinking out loud***
If we value a person by their physical appearance - or worse, by the way their appearance makes, or does not make, our "groin" react, surely we immediately devalue their true worth as a human being, and that of ourselves...?
haha...!!! ahhh, ya gotta laugh. I just spent the best of two hours struggling to write a 2 minute read. It stretched into something far bigger than I wanted it to be, and I had to repeatedly trim it down... and just as I was almost happy with it - even though it was still bigger than I would've preferred - my laptop overheated, switched off, and I lost the lot... and this after I didn't want to get out of bed early this morning, knowing I wouldn't have to wake my kids at seven, as they aren't going to school today...!!! lol! Ah, I tell ya - ya really need a sense of humour in this world, huh?! ;)
Ok... I have about one minute left to fill in the lines of a 2 minute write. Let's see what I've got:
In running the race we believers are called to (and doing what God has called us to do as individuals,) I now see we do not share a track with any other human. We do not compete against them. So it doesn't matter if they are happy with us winning or not, because we didn't knock them out of the race. They have their own race to run - and whether they win or lose is up to them.
While the enemy does seek to trip us every step of the way, our fellow man is not our rival, and definitely not our enemy - even though they may view us that way at times.
No, we do not need to compete against our fellow man - be them believers or not. Rather "...brothers and sisters, rejoice! Strive for full restoration, encourage one another, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you. Greet one another with a holy kiss." (2Cor 13:11.12)
Riding along on my exercise bike yesterday, and getting nowhere pretty fast, ;) my thoughts wandered to competitiveness for one reason or another and, as I again registered I've never been one for competing, the thought "because in winning, I'll be hated," swiftly leapt out in front of me, forcing me to look upon it.
On doing so, I received the thought, and image of: God and 'you' celebrate your victory - even if others damn you for winning.
And it came to me, "Those who damn you for winning, whom you are trying to please, do not love you. Why do you reward something that is not love...?"
What a thought, ay - and something worth pondering:"Why do you reward something that is not love...?"
I finished my writing earlier than normal this morning, and still had 45 minutes before I had to wake up my household for the day. So, rather than procrastinate again - which I have gotten down to a fine art ;) - I pounced out of my chair and dove onto the exercise bike and watched as night's shadows slowly gave way to morning's light.
Oh, ok, I pushed myself off my chair, held my breath and climbed onto the bike, then punched into the [electronic] bike what was probably the easiest preset ride it has, and watched and 'ouched' as the shadows gave way to a new day... and at one stage I found myself thinking, "Donna, you're missing the light display going on outside the window!" because I was focused on one particular spot in my garden - which my front window and said bike overlook.
I thought, "Ooh, wake up, Don," and shook myself out of the staring competition I was having with a flower a couple of metres below my window, and tried to take everything in that the scene before me held. However, on doing so, I realised I struggled more with the aching in my legs. (I won't mention the aching in the backside - but, sheesh!!! I mean, come on! Can't someone invent a more comfortable seat for a bike!!! Ouch! ;) )
It only took me a moment to register that when I focused on one thing, I could zone out of most of the pain and the ride became far more bearable. When I tried to take in everything in the life before me, the pain became too much for me to cope with and I not only wanted to give up riding but the beautiful view and all it held, as well. So I refocused (when necessary) on one particular spot to see me through.
It was then that I realised that's how it is with God. That is one reason why He invites us to worship, praise and prayer in the midst of our pain: When we focus on Him, the pain becomes bearable... Worship, prayer and praise isn't about God's vanity - as I once thought. At times, it's about Him being a loving parent and reassuring us that we'll get through "it" ~ but we need to focus on Him in order to know that's true. Faith comes by hearing and hearing comes by the word of God, and nowhere can you hear the word of God more clearly than in His arms, with your ear close to His heart.
Yes, worship, prayer and praise are also acts of love - reflections of the love we have for God and others in our heart - but God makes sure they also benefit us, as well.
Can I encourage you today to take your eyes off "everything" and focus on Him. If you want a quick look at Him, a quick word from Him, turn to Jesus. For Jesus is God's heart in the flesh... Pick up your Bible today, focus on that one thing for a moment, or sing a song of praise, or fall on your knees in tears and prayer if you'd rather, or go help someone in need... And watch life become bearable again.
“Again I to you that
if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask,
it will be done for them by My Father in heaven.
For where two or three are gathered together in My name,
I am there in the midst of them.”
~ * ~
I don't know about you, but I simply cannot imagine Jesus being in our midst and being in agreement with two or more of His proclaimed followers, when what we 'two or three - or even more" are doing reflects the bitterness of our hearts rather than the goodness of God's.
If we are gossiping, damning, bitching, betraying, seeking to harm, hating anyone in our hearts and sharing that aggression with another, I'm pretty sure Jesus would not be in the midst of us agreeing, nor seeking to fulfil the bitter desires of our heart.
Saying we are followers of Christ does not give us the right to purchase any old desire we want. If it's not in line with God's heart, if it's not in line with "Love is patient, love is kind... etc etc" then it is NOT in Jesus' name we are gathered or asking... so, therefore, it would be safe to say if we gathered as believers with bitterness in our hearts and cursing on our tongue, Jesus is not with us. And we'd be a fool to expect Him to justify our unrighteousness, or deliver desires born of bitterness to us.
Ahh, but if we are gathered in love, then, yes, there He is in the midst of us. :)
1 Corinthians 13:1-8
1 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love,
I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.
2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains,
but do not have love, I am nothing.
3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship
that I may boast,
but do not have love, I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy,
it does not boast, it is not proud.
5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered,
it keeps no record of wrongs.
6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails.
1 John 4:8
Whoever does not love does not know God, because
God is love.
The LORD is my strength
and my shield;
my heart trusts in Him,
and I am helped.
My heart leaps for joy
and I will give thanks to Him in song.
~ I hope this doesn't sound morbid. :) As those who know me can testify, I write from experience. I've been 'there' before - in a place where I cling on to doubt or misery, or something in the like, and let go of God. I'm well aware that I'm entering one of those testing periods now, which is why I write this Devotional. These things are high in my heart at the moment. :p :) ~
Storms will find us
Pain will blind us
Fear will bind us
but Love will remind us
God is our refuge
Doubt will cause us to hide
Worry will cling to our side
We may even stumble over pride
but Love will highlight
God is our refuge
We all know the storms of life will come, smashing up against us with a powerful force, but will the love we proclaim for God stand the test...?
4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Love is... what it says in 1 Corinthians. Anything other than that is not love. Love is what love is, and it will remain true to itself. It will not bow and change to suit our mood or feed our ego. We will. But it won't. God's love never changes. It is not guided by the wayward emotions we humans love to play with. He knows what love is and He stays true to that, no matter how we behave, no matter how we carry on, no matter how much we let Him down.
When the storms hit, God and His love remain the same. He does not change. He continues to love us, to hold on to us, and even believe in us. Can we say the same when we enter a stormy period...? Or do we let Him and our love for Him go...?
I guess we'll find out soon enough...
GOD is patient, GOD is kind.
He does not envy, He does not boast, He is not proud.
He is not rude, He is not self-seeking, He is not easily angered,
He keeps no record of wrongs.
GOD does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
GOD always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
1 John 4:8
Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.