Broken, But Not Shattered

November 2, 2006

job 

Dedicated to survivors of abuse.

My Testimony:

I would like to share a quiet testimony on suffering,
I was raised in an alcoholic home and was physically and emotionally abused, witnessed the repeated beatings of my mother, abuses towards pets, suffered the constant tyranny of evil, all throughout my childhood, beyond what most people could imagine.

I went from my childhood to young adulthood and spent 10 years under the iron fist of the Herbert W. Armstrong cult, 10 years of suffering spiritual abuse, only I didn’t know it then and experienced the repercussions only after I got out of that cult, another 10 years of suffering a foundering about without an identity and reeling from the lies I had believed.

Then I suffered another great blow, (probably worse than the child abuse) which shall remain nameless to protect the forgiven.

God was with me the whole time, and not once through all of the suffering did I blame Him or ask why, and that isn’t to cast me into a self-righteous light but to show the magnitude of God’s grace in my heart, He never allowed me to hate or blame Him for my suffering and for that I am deeply thankful.

And now to the crux of the testimony:

I testify before you, as one who has suffered through much abuse, that none of it, not the punches, the slaps, the knocking out of my teeth, the humilitation, the lies, the manipulation, the sight of my mother’s bloody and broken body, the oppressive responsibility of protecting my younger siblings, the betrayals, the living on the street, the suicide attempt, the loss of a church family, the loss of a false identity, none of it compares to the suffering I feel when I am separated from God, and when I am not in obedience to Him, that is when I am separated. I would gladly suffer all of it again rather than be separated from my Saviour. My hope is firmly planted in Jesus Christ, alone. He is the one who died for my sins and for yours. If you believe and trust in Christ’s shed blood then you will have the same hope and assurance 

James 1:2-12

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you fall into various temptations,
knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.
Let endurance have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach; and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, without any doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, driven by the wind and tossed.7 For let that man not think that he will receive anything from the Lord. He is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. But let the brother in humble circumstances glory in his high position; and the rich, in that he is made humble, because like the flower in the grass, he will pass away. For the sun arises with the scorching wind, and withers the grass, and the flower in it falls, and the beauty of its appearance perishes. So also will the rich man fade away in his pursuits. Blessed is the man who endures temptation, for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life, which the Lord promised to those who love him.

Body Language

October 26, 2006

That which is internal becomes visible.

“Our entire being is fashioned as an instrument of praise. Just as a master violin maker designs an instrument to produce maximum aesthetic results, so God tailor-made our bodies, souls and spirits to work together in consonance to produce pleasing expressions of praise and worship. When we use body language to express praise, that which is internal becomes visible.”
(p.60 “A Heart For Worship”)
Lamar Boschman

Trusting The Light

October 14, 2006

“Throughout the centuries, religious art has translated the Bible and the Gospels in the language of its time. And it may be for this reason that men have often found the image more eloquent than the written word”

This image is my translation of the following passage:

 The Light shines in the darkness. The darkness has never been able to put out the Light.  There was a man sent from God whose name was John.  He came to tell what he knew about the Light so that all men might believe through him.  John was not the Light, but he was sent to tell about the Light.  This true Light, coming into the world, gives light to every man.  He came into the world. The world was made by Him, but it did not know Him.  He came to His own, but His own did not receive Him.  He gave the right and the power to become children of God to those who received Him. He gave this to those who put their trust in His name. John 1:5-12

Reduced To Mercy

September 15, 2006

I heard a song the other day and this young woman was singing about everything she was going to do for God.

I thought ahhh yes the honeymoon period in God’s love, I remembered that time in my own life.  Once maturity set in I realized I have nothing at all to give to the Lord!

That is the basis of God’s relationship or love affair with man…He gives all by and through His great mercy, love and grace and there is nothing we can do to earn it or to give Him in return. It is His free gift.

I feel the greatest honor I could give God is too fall at His feet and accept that gift. To confess my total reliance upon Him and to receive His mercy and love without trying to earn it or to repay Him.

It is humbling to know that there is absolutely nothing I could give to God for his love but it is also very freeing.

I am reduced to mercy and I am free.

Not Your Typical Oasis

August 30, 2006

Not Your Typical Oasis

Remember images of someone lost in the desert, crawling in the hot sands panting for a cold drink of water, usually seen in cartoons and old movies? If they were lucky they would find an oasis, and if not, the mirage would dissipate as soon as they came near.

Imagine yourself as that person, lost in the desert, you would do anything for some water and for some shade. Ahead in the distance you see two visions.

  One is the typical oasis, palm trees, and a big pool of the most beautiful water you’ve ever seen. The other vision is a fire, red and hot, flames crackling and licking the sands, you can see the heat rising above, high into the cloudless sky.

Which one are you going to crawl toward?

“As for me, I baptize you with water for repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.   Matthew 3:11

“I have come to cast fire upon the earth; and how I wish it were already kindled!  Luke 12:49

“each man’s work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work” 1Cor 3:13

“If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.” 1Cor 3:15

“for our God is a consuming fire.”  Heb 12:29
 

It’s not enough for me to listen
ears are alone, without voice
the tune lies deadpan
notes fade in the mute

I will sing your praises in the public square
echo of the loon, lips like a lyre
whoever will strum my strings will hear
of my love for you,
will hear of your love for all
will hear will hear will hear
me sing.

~terrilynn

Does Jesus need or want our adoration; does the bridegroom desire the attentions of His bride?  One would definitely say YEA to the above questions when reading the beautiful allegory of the Bridegroom and His bride in the Song of Solomon.

Chapter 4:9-11 

You have captivated my heart, my sister, my bride;
you have captivated my heart with one glance of your eyes, with one jewel of your necklace.
 

What do we do to captivate our Lord’s heart?  We look over all the temptations that come our way, (the ones that would sully that glance), in favour of His eyes. As two who know one another intimately can make a whole crowd disappear with just the meeting of their eyes across a room, so does a pure glance captivate your Savior.

For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ.  Phil 3:20 

How beautiful is your love, my sister, my bride! How much better is your love than wine, and the fragrance of your oils than any spice! 

Jesus desires our love, he elevates it above the sensual, and it is beautiful in His eyes, I imagine Him breathless at the unveiling of His bride; He awaits with much anticipation the marriage supper, the communion, and the consummation.

 I invite you, Brides of Christ, to engage your imagination on such a holy time as this. Just the way girls daydream all their lives about their “dream wedding”, so may we begin to entice Him with the love that is in response to His own love for us!

Draw near to God and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you men of double mind. James 4:8 

Your lips drip nectar, my bride;
honey and milk are under your tongue;
the fragrance of your garments is like the fragrance of

Lebanon
 

How sweet are our praises and worshipful sighs, our songs and tears of joy He likens to milk and honey.  Let your lips drip with this nectar, sing to the Groom! Dance with Him; clothe your tongue in the proclamations of  His good works, His mercy , His undying love for mankind. For the wedding feast is at your door, dear brides!

“Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.” Rev 19:7

The Gift of Works (His)

July 22, 2006

Men go after the things they desire, PRAISE God he puts His desire to be holy in His children’s heart. If Jesus be your desire how can you not have the works of faith and fruits of righteousness in your life?
It’s sort of like being a parent who takes a young child to purchase a gift for the other parent. Jesus purchases the gifts, (for all our good works are really bought with His blood) and we get to gleefully run to the Father and lay our gifts at His feet as we beam with love and joy at the opportunity to do so. What an awesome blessing righteousness is, hallelujah!

Crucify the Flesh

July 12, 2006

I had a dream last night, in it I was contemplating the crucifixion when suddenly I collapsed to the ground and was frozen in place.

A spear pierced my side, and water gushed out, much like the account I’ve read in the gospels, only it was me.

The dream interpreted itself with these words: “you must crucify the flesh”.

1 Peter 4:1-2 Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin; That he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God. 

Galatians 5:24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 

Galatians 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 

Galatians 5:13 For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another. 

I Do !

July 2, 2006

Stand up, stand up, for Jesus,
ye soldiers of the cross;
lift high his royal banner,
it must not suffer loss:
from victory unto victory
his army shall he lead,
till every foe is vanquished
and Christ is Lord indeed.

Stand up, stand up, for Jesus;
the trumpet call obey;
forth to the mighty conflict
in this his glorious day:
ye that are men now serve him
against unnumbered foes;
let courage rise with danger,
and strength to strength oppose.

Stand up, stand up, for Jesus;
stand in his strength alone;
the arm of flesh will fail you,
ye dare not trust your own:
put on the Gospel armor,
and watching unto prayer,
when duty calls, or danger,
be never wanting there.

Stand up, stand up, for Jesus;
the strife will not be long:
this day, the noise of battle;
the next, the victor’s song.
To him that overcometh
a crown of life shall be;
he with the King of glory
shall reign eternally.

George Duffield, 1858

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