In Matthew 6:15, Jesus says, “But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” There are many opinions about what that means exactly, but the lesson is clear: Forgive! Who do you need to forgive? Wait a second to let the Holy Spirit bring that person to your mind. What they did may have been unthinkable, but it’s time to let go of that anger and turn it over to God. Holding onto it will only make you bitter and resentful, but letting go is a step to freedom and joy for yourself. I know that first hand.
Shortly after becoming a Christian, the Lord started talking to me about forgiveness. At first, I didn’t think I held any grudges against anyone. I didn’t feel bitter or resentful, but the signs were there. My mouth often dished out heaping spoonfuls of scathing sarcasm, dismissive mocking, and pessimistic cynicism. The Lord revealed to me the truth that I’d held onto anger about growing up with divorced parents. My family wasn’t perfect, and my heart was keeping a record of the wrongs against the people close to me without even letting my brain know. Is it possible you have unconscious anger against someone who love?
God wants us to feel free and happy so let’s forgive those we love. Go ahead. Ball up your fist. Call the name(s) of the people you want to forgive and open your hand to let them go. Join me in prayer. “Lord, I confess I haven’t been quick to forgive. Thank You for forgiving me all of my wrongs. Since You forgave me, I want to show my gratitude by forgiving others because I want to be obedient to You. I trust that You are just, and You will repay my debtors according to Your will. Help me to be quick to forgive all those that wrong me in the future so I can be free and joyful like You want me to be. In Christ’s Name, Amen.”
Live your life daily,
Crumple your icky days up,
There is some rubbish
on your winding path to joy,
Fix your eyes on the top prize.
“Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” —Romans 12:12
Vitality is not vital to life,
Passionate desires seem to pass me by,
Go ahead, zip up my body bag,
My soulless body is as good as dead.
Oh God, breathe life into me again,
Prophesy to these dry bones of mine,
Animate my hibernating spirit,
Rain down the elusive glitter called joy.
I sing the song You put in my heart,
Laughter comes easy to me these days,
You carried my sorrow far, far away,
I will praise Your Name forevermore.
“He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the LORD and put their trust in him.” —Psalm 40:3
*Draw near is now accepting personal essays about childhood. Read the details here: https://drawneartochrist.com/call-for-submissions/.
It hangs in the room like a big glowing ball,
Everyone is mesmerized,
but fear keeps them from touching it;
People die without ever coming close—
Afraid it might sting their hearts in the end,
The glowing ball is pure and simple joy.
I take hold of some.
I tie a string to it
and march right to the door of your heart.
I am surprised to find guards
with spears standing by.
I reach past them and knock.
I boldly knock ’til nightfall.
Then I sleep there
at the door of your heart.
At morning, I knock some more.
Finally, you answer the door
and I see your face.
I reach out to give you the joy on a string.
And you order the guards to…
“Take her away.”
Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me. —Revelation 3:20
*Bless others with your prayer. Join in agreement with the prayers for the nations in this free ebook: Beseeching Grace: An International Prayer Collection.
“I’m just not happy anymore.” This is a common complaint from a spouse who wants to divorce. If you are working and praying for reconciliation, stop looking to your spouse as a source of joy. Joy is a fruit of the Spirit and should not find its source in your spouse.
In Acts 16, we read how Paul was beaten and jailed. In jail, he sang praises to God! How is that possible? Paul’s joy was not dependent on his circumstance but found in his relationship with Christ. Do you have a joy that comes from your relationship with Christ? Do you praise God at all times?
I hope that you will pursue the joy that comes from Christ by remaining in the true vine. Additionally, I hope that confidence and trust in Christ awakens an interest in new experiences that will contribute to your quality of life.
Take up a new hobby, pursue your passion, play on a sports league, and work toward your dream with small goals. Be sure to invite your spouse to be a part of your experiences as your life transforms into a healthy expression of the joy that can be found in Christ.
Intimacy is another major complaint from those interested in divorce. Nothing is happening in the bedroom or you are stuck in a rut or your chemistry just dissolved. There is hope!
Read the following 18 ways to increase intimacy between you and your spouse:
- New self-control – If you are currently viewing pornography, you are KILLING your sex life. You’ll be amazed how intimacy improves when you STOP viewing pornography.
- New faithfulness – Cut strong ties between people of the opposite sex that you are attracted to. You can improve your intimacy with your spouse by removing emotional attachments to others.
- New thoughts – Concentrate on something new when you are alone with your spouse. Focus on your love for your spouse, envision blooming flowers, live in the moment.
- New initiation – The minutes that lead up to intimacy are important. Change your approach.
- New ways to energize – Intimacy requires energy. Rest up and help your spouse with tasks so he or she feels energetic also.
- New compliments – Instill confidence in your spouse and he/she will feel like a tiger instead of a mouse.
- New perfume or aftershave – Scent affects mood. Set the mood for intimacy.
- New clothes – Attract your spouse by wearing attractive clothes instead of wearing what is comfortable.
- New underclothes – Replace things with holes. Buy underclothes that are pleasing to the eye.
- New sheets – Get some soft sheets that announce your intentions to be intimate.
- New bed – Mentally break your rut by replacing the old squeaky bed.
- New place – Rent a hotel room for a getaway vacation in your own town.
- New hairdo or hair color – Make yourself feel new with a change.
- New makeup or facial hair – Try different things to see what you and your spouse agree enhances your features.
- New exercise routine – Exercise contributes to a happy mood, builds confidence, and increases stamina. Consider taking a multivitamin.
- New music – Set the mood for love with romantic music.
- New candles – Make your spouse feel special by going the extra mile.
- New date – Date your spouse with creativity.
You will be shocked at how effective these methods are at revving up your intimacy! A little effort makes a big impact when you pray for a strong relationship with your spouse and embrace love and faithfulness.
Dear Lord, I pray marriages on the brink of disaster would be renewed in a supernatural way. Heal our love and show us love never fails. Thank You for answering our prayers. In Christ’s Name, Amen.
Click here to read a poem that will encourage you in your reconciliation.
© 2015 Kim Bond
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