Feeling Forsaken?

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I know you think that God has forsaken you. Why else would he allow such terrible things to happen? While you’ve made some mistakes, overall you’re a good person, right? So, why does it seem like your prayers are falling on deaf ears?…God doesn’t always answer prayers in one big, ginormous, earth-shattering blessing. Therefore, gratefulness in the little things that occur daily, partnered with positive thoughts & affirmations, seasoned with forgiveness of yourself and those who have dishonored you, rooted in the extending of love to all who cross your path, will exponentially bless you in a way you haven’t fathomed in your prayers.

Focus on what is going right in your life, instead of on what’s going wrong. You may not have the job you want, but you have a job. You may not have the relationship you want, but you have genuine, loyal friendships. You may not live in the house you want, but you have a roof over your head. You may not fit into that smaller size in your closet, but you have the ability to move your limbs. You may not have the baby you want, but you have a faithful husband who thinks the world of you. You may not have that wife you want, but you have a career that’s allowing you to lay a foundation for your future family so that you can live a life of quality that is debt free. You may not have that husband you want, but you have the wisdom to know you need to use this time to work on your emotional, spiritual, physical, and mental self so that you will be free of baggage when the right man presents himself. Focus on what you have instead of focusing on what you don’t have. Remember: there are those who would give their lives to have yours. They are praying desperately for the things and people you take for granted.

Be encouraged to greatness! God will never leave or forsake you.

Sincerely,
Shanika

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The Next Lesson

I think it’s easier to forgive others than it is to forgive yourself. At least I know this is true for me. I am so hard on myself that when I do or say something I think isn’t the best representative of my true self; it is virtually impossible for me to let go and forgive me. I set the bar so high for myself that when I miss it, it’s hard to bounce back because I beat up myself for missing the mark. Why is that?

Forgiveness lesson from flowers

Forgiveness lesson from flowers (Photo credit: juliejordanscott)

Control~I am control freak. Since I am in control of and responsible for my choices and because I am not the type of person to play the victim, when I make what I think is a bad decision; I consider it solely my fault, even if others are involved in the situation. I will forgive them and make provisions for them I don’t allow myself to have. So how do I forgive myself, given I know God will forgive me if I ask?

I don’t know, but I do know that I want to know. How do you forgive yourself? What does that process look like for you?

 

Forgiveness of self: the next lesson for me to learn.

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The Cost of Forgiveness

At what point do you decide when you will forgive a person who has hurt you? How do you decide who is worthy of your forgiveness?

I am amazed at the number of people who consider themselves Christians and yet they have a problem with letting go and forgiving someone who has wronged them. Well, I guess I shouldn’t say I am amazed, as some self-proclaimed Christians consistently engage in behaviors contradictory of their supposed beliefs, but that’s a different post for a different day.

Think about the worst thing a person has ever done to you. The WORST thing. Think about the feelings you felt during that time (and possibly still feel) and let’s assume because of that event or series of events, that person is no longer a part of your life (whether by your choice or not). Fast forward 10 years and this person reaches out to you. Perhaps they send you a message on Facebook or gives your their new contact information through a mutual friend and asks you to give him or her a call.

What do you do? Do you respond or do you continue to ignore them?

Over the years I have deleted several people from my life for a number a reasons. Sometimes it was because I didn’t believe they were the type of friend to me I was to them and as a result they didn’t deserve to be a part of my life. Consequently, they were deleted as an attempt to surround myself with selfless, true friends. In other cases, I deleted people who wanted to confine me to their idea of who they thought I should be. Anyone who truly knows me know I HATE that. I love being free to be who am I, despite what others think so when I am in a situation in which I feel limited by another’s complexes, fears, and/or shortcomings; it’s time for me to move on. The final group of deleted folks are those whom I simply outgrew (or maybe they outgrew me), where no hard feelings existed. It just so happens that we were at different points in our lives and needed to separate in order to fulfill our purpose. These people often have a cyclical presence, as I’ve learned they often show up again at some point. I think this is God‘s way of testing our growth.

At any rate, in the instances where “something happened,” I hold no ill will towards these former “friends” and truly hope they are happy and doing well in life. I have forgiven them and moved on. For me, forgiveness is about the ability to continue to grow and develop into who you were created to be, learning from each and every experience. In situations where we haven’t forgiven, there is a preoccupation which often leads to limitations. Ultimately, you forgive so that you can move on. It’s not about them. When we allow those feelings of hurt and betrayal to take root in our hearts and minds, then we allow the person who hurt us to have way more power over us than they should. You basically become their slave. They are the puppet master and you are the puppet, each move they make directs yours.

Ask yourself where would you be without God’s forgiveness. We have all done things that hurt others, whether intentionally or unintentionally….and yet God still forgives us. To take it a little deeper, we sin against God constantly, which is the ultimate slap in the face, and yet He still forgives us. If someone who is perfect in every way can forgive, who are we in our imperfections to not forgive?

How do you know when you have truly forgiven someone? When any interaction with them elicits none of the feelings you felt when they hurt you.