The Boomerang Effect

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It is extremely important that we do not judge others which is not only a Biblical principal, but an eternal law of God. It is very much what I call “The Boomerang Effect”. The following Bible scriptures give clear warnings of judging others.

“DO NOT judge and criticize and condemn others, so that you may not be judged and criticized and condemned yourselves. For just as you judge and criticize and condemn others, you will be judged and criticized and condemned, and in accordance with the measure you [use to] deal out to others, it will be dealt out again to you.”
(Matthew 7:1-2)

“THEREFORE YOU have no excuse or defense or justification, O man, whoever you are who judges and condemns another. For in posing as judge and passing sentence on another, you condemn yourself, because you who judge are habitually practicing the very same things [that you censure and denounce]. (Romans 2:1)

A boomer rang is a great illustration of how judging others can seriously come back at us as well as a wonderful reminder that we should remain humble and continually ask God…”How can I change and get better instead of passing judgement against others?”

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*All scriptures are from the Amplified Bible.*

Jonah—A Story of Disobedience, Consequences and Obedience

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Jonah

Jonah was a prophet that was greatly used by God to deliver a message of repentance, grace, mercy, and love to the city of Nineveh. Jonah adored Israel. However, the Ninevites belonged to the Assyrians and they despised Israel—God’s chosen people. This made Jonah despise what they were doing even more.

Many times, out of our stubbornness and fear—we tend not to do what God tells us to and run in the opposite direction. Jonah’s disobedience led him straight into the belly of a big fish—which was a “holding place” or a “time out” for him to seek repentance for running away from God. God did this, so Jonah would obey what the Lord had asked him to do. In essence, God got his attention, so he can get on the right course and bring Nineveh to a place of repentance and obedience for the sin in their land. “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations.” (Matthew 28)

Disobedience can lead to lamenting prayers that eventually leads to deliverance as did in Jonah’s case.
The Lord always desires to prepare a way for our eventual freedom from disobedience. Unfortunately, many do not follow His lead and it lands us into big trouble—as it did with Jonah. “Now the LORD had prepared a great fish to swallow Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights. Then Jonah prayed to the LORD because of my affliction. And He answered me. “Out of the belly of Sheol I cried And You heard my voice. For You cast me into the deep, Into the heart of the seas, And the floods surrounded me; All Your billows and Your waves passed over me. Then I said, ‘I have been cast out of Your sight; Yet I will look again toward Your holy temple.’ (Jonah 2:1-10)

Jonah spent three days and three nights in the belly of the fish which, I can only imagine—was a horrible stench we would not want to smell even for a minute and he needed to endure it for three days and nights, but by doing so—he was in a place he could not escape and forced to take a very hard look at the real reason why he found himself in the situation he was in. Very often God gets us in a place that we have nowhere to go, so we fall to our knees and plead with Him to get us out of our mess. God wants us to be sincere in our saying sorry and hopes us to make a complete turn-around.

Sin and disobedience eventually, leads to deliverance if the one trapped in sin is truly repentant and sincere about surrendering their will to God’s purpose & plan.

Jonah’s story is a great lesson for us in teaching that disobedience leads to consequences—obedience leads to deliverance & God’s everlasting love provides much needed forgiveness.

www.victoryembraced.org

Miracle in the Dessert

“Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.” (Psalm 121)

Did you ever feel that you’re aimlessly wondering through life without any direction? If so, God’s Word can provide much needed guidance and protection.

God provided this miraculous protection to Israel in October 1973, when the Egyptians and Syrians launched a surprise attack that has become to be known as the battle of Yom Kippur (Golan Heights) located at Israel’s and Syria’s border. Yom Kippur is one of the holiest days on the Jewish calendar because it celebrates a day of repentance, prayer and fasting. On the evening of the attack…it was a very dark and cloudy night. To be safe, the Israeli soldiers needed to cross the desert, but to their astonishment…they came upon a mind-field making it impossible to reach the other side. All of a sudden…a mighty wind began to blow across the desert exposing the bright moon. Needless to say, the soldiers all crossed the dessert safely. This incredible miracle is a wonderful reminder that if God’s children continuously follow Him…His Word becomes an ever-lasting light that can lead them to safety in difficult situations.

Yom Kippur War

Sweet Aroma vs. Stench

Sweet Aroma

Sweet Aroma vs. Stench—Is your life a sweet aroma and writing a beautiful letter of Christ to others by how you live? A writing that is delivered not with regular ink as we know it, but “with [the] living Spirit of [the] living God” as in (2 Corinthian 3:3) or leaving a stench behind that does not give a great example of “the purest motive, as [commissioned and sent] by God, we speak [His message] in Christ (the Messiah), in the [very] sight and presence of God.” (2 Corinthians 2:17)

Clothing yourself with the sweet aroma of Christ is not only a blessing to others, but yourself. God desires the best of His Children!

www.victoryembraced.org  (Inspirational Stories)

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For Really BIG Mistakes (God’s Eraser)

 

While shopping at a teacher store today—I noticed a BIG eraser. On the eraser—it said in bold print “For Really BIG Mistakes”. This reminded me of the really BIG mistakes we make in our lives. No one is perfect and because of this—we have great potential to make ridiculous mistakes—“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”(Romans 3:23) What is really cool though is that God can erase any mistake—not only the blunders we have made, but the one’s we will make in the future. Once we have made the decision to say “yes” to Jesus and make Him our Savior—The blood of Jesus washes us from our sins and freedom becomes possible, In (1 John 1:7), it says…”But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another and the blood of Jesus His son cleanses us from all sin.”

In my own life—I have made a lot of mistakes that I felt shame & condemnation for; for many years—even after I said “yes” to Jesus. Unfortunately, it took me years to truly know and understand that God forgave me in an instant, but—I had a hard time forgiving myself. I am sharing this because I want to encourage you not to make the same mistake—“THERE is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus…” (Romans 8:1) Any feelings of shame, condemnation and unforgiveness towards ourselves for our former sins does not come from God—God tells us we are free and the devil tries his best to tell us lies, so we continue to believe them—we do not want to become “ignorant” to the tactics he tries to use against us (2 Corinthians 2:11) It is extremely important that we know—“For though we walk (live) in the flesh, we are not carrying on our warfare according to the flesh and using mere human weapons.  For the weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood], but they are mighty before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds,” (2 Corinthians 10:3-5) God speaks truth and the devil does not—God lifts up and the devil tries to hold us down.

It is important to do our best not to take God’s forgiveness and grace for granted and continue to sin. Always remember—once you say “yes” to Jesus you are no longer trapped in your past. You are free and completely washed from your sin—no mistake in your life is BIG enough for God to handle. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.                       (2 Corinthians 5:17)

How do you completely erase your really BIG mistakes? It is as simple as saying a prayer. If you would like to say “yes” to Jesus all you need to do is ask Him to forgive you for your sins and invite Him to live in your heart for the rest of your life. This is the most important decision you will make in your life and insures your eternity with Him when you pass away. If you have said “yes” to Jesus—I would like to encourage you to find a good church in your area to begin your walk with Him and fully embrace all He wants to share with you for—He loves you very much!

Eraser (For Really BIG Mistakes)


 

 

 

 

Embracing Victory Over the Storm of Depression–My Testimony

VictoryEmbraced Book Cover Photo“And they have overcome him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony” (Revelation 12:11)

Most of my life, I have struggled with depression—a dark and hopeless place that was numbed by binge drinking when it became too much for me to handle. At the time, I thought it would help ease the pain of the emotional and physical abuse that occurred during childhood. At an early age, I became insecure, lonely, depressed and a perfectionist—all in the hopes of overcoming, but—never overcame.

Even after saying “yes” to Jesus—I struggled with binge drinking. Knowing, that I needed help—I began to receive counseling. Unfortunately, within a couple of appointments, I would convince myself that I was OK only to discover the harsh reality that I was not—a vicious cycle that lasted longer than it should have because of my stubbornness and unwillingness to work through the pain. Working through pain brings healing, but at the time—I was not cooperating with God’s healing plan for me. Condemnation and shame consumed me. After all, how can I be a Christian and still struggle like I was? I doubted God’s forgiveness because of the prison I kept myself in. God gave me the keys to break free when I said “yes” to Him, but in my absolute foolishness—I did not use them. In essence, I was oblivious to the free gift of salvation He gave me.

During my healing process, I have learned that God has a very good sense of humor. At times, when God calls us—it can be in the “midst” of our pain & darkness. For it is in the “midst” of things that God shows up in greatness!

When He called me to write VictoryEmbraced—I was not only cleaning dishes—I was still in the “midst” of struggling with depression which, I have discovered is partly due to heredity. However, I now knew that I have God’s DNA and because of this—I will always be victorious!

While collecting testimonies for the book, I began to experience symptoms of PMDD (Premenstral Dysphoric Disorder) which is a major mental depressive disorder and definitely, has a few extra edges than regular PMS occurring only to 3% to 8% of women. I have been told many times, that I am quite unique—not only in my sense of humor, but in how I process and see things in life. Now, there is indisputable evidence that what has been said for years is true! Yep, this definitely proved it—not only to myself, but to those closest to me.

PMDD usually makes its ugly appearance in women who are in their late 30’s or mid-40’s. Mine, showed up when I was 36. With all the hormone shifts, I also started having simple-partial seizures which are seizures that are rarely noticed by others. They begin with a feeling of déjà vu followed by starring that can last a few minutes.

In my potential for perfectionism—I happen to have all of the symptoms of PMDD—not just the four or five which classifies the disorder and helps to make a diagnosis. Symptoms of PMDD include: anxiety and a feeling of being on edge, memory issues, severe mood swings, crying for no reason,  sensitivity to abandonment and rejection, anger and increased conflict with the one’s you love, decreased interest in usual activities, feelings of being overwhelmed, joint and muscle pain, weight gain, insomnia and headaches. Yes, a long list of symptoms, but it’s nothing God cannot handle. Sometimes, one month can be worse than another. During these more intense months, I pray for it to be over quickly and at times, have felt like I am holding on to Him for dear life. I have a neurologist for the seizures which are now under control with the medicine and in two years of being seizure free my doctor can begin lowering the dosage until I am completely off of it. My psychiatrist is to help take the edge off of the PMDD and through it all—I have the most renowned doctor in the world by my side overseeing things—my sweet and precious God.

I am learning that there are things I can do to help relieve the symptoms of PMDD such as: hormone therapy, taking nutritional supplements, antidepressants, exercise, drinking less caffeine, and my hardest to follow-through on is eating less chocolate, cheese and carbohydrates. It has been said that chocolate is a girl’s best friend, but in this case—not so much.

I have learned that with any disorder—not only in my life, but with others as well—there is hope because God has the power to take any disorder and create order—out of a total mess, He can create beauty. And, because I have learned the character of God and who He says He is—I have absolute faith that He will provide the avenue(s) for my healing even if that means He balances all my hormones through early menopause. A pure miracle in itself! I do not put anything past God—He can do all things! Being in the process of healing does not mean failure because obtaining victory is a continuous motion of moving forward.

We are a work in progress—always under construction. With God, 7 months of intense counseling has helped transform my life. I have also learned to put God first in all that I do—being dependent on Him for all I need. Yes, people can help and come alongside of you during the many seasons of life, but only God has all the answers. I have been and am—very blessed to have a holy magnificent God, an awesome and loving husband, and a wonderful friend that have been continuously supportive, understanding and patient with me along my journey of Embracing Victory Over the Storm of Depression.

 

VictoryEmbraced on Living Truth with Pastor Larry Burd

VictoryEmbraced will be featured on The Living Truth on Thurs. Aug. 26th @ 8pm.

Click onto www.wbph.org Go to “Cable Listings” found @ the top of the website—-then scroll down to #2 “On Cable Throughout the Greater Philadelphia Region” click on View WBPH Cable Listings.

I am blessed that God is opening doors for VictoryEmbraced to help Christians strengthen their relationship with Jesus & for many to come to know Him as their personal Savior. ‪#‎victoryembraced‬ The Living Truth WBPH60

The Fluff Verses the Stuff

Fluff Verses the Stuff—while, shopping yesterday…I got into a conversation with Shawn, the store manager.  Shawn & I have had some talks about the Bible before regarding what is going on in the world & how it’s connected to prophesy. I asked him if his pastor has brought up the “tough social issues” that have recently been in the news & he said…“no because the pastor that he is receiving teaching from believes he should stay away from these issues & teach about how to improve ourselves & grace.” This seems like motivational speaking to me…instead of getting deep into what God says about things. Shawn does not have a local church as of yet…& has been receiving teaching from this well-known pastor that is seen on TV around the world. If I mentioned the pastor’s name…there is a good chance that you would know who he is. Now, while it’s good that he is receiving some teaching as a new Christian…we need to be very careful who we are receiving teaching from no matter how long we have been walking with Jesus. Yes, this pastor has been used so many say “yes” to Jesus & that is awesome, but both new & well-seasoned Christians are getting “hooked” into the “fluff” & not the true “stuff”. This is deception from the devil…telling it like it is…the devil likes to disguise himself as a chameleon or a wolf in sheep’s clothing. So, I want to encourage you that if your pastor is teaching “fluff” & not getting into the “stuff” God teaches in the Word… it is very dangerous. Getting into a church that does not mess with the Word & teaches the “stuff” is the safest place to be, so you grow the most you can in God’s absolute truth. Growing in a healthy way, so what you tell others about Jesus is on target & not taking a chance on spreading the “fluff” to others. I did tell Shawn that I cared for him & to please be careful with the pastor he is receiving teaching from. He seemed to receive what I said well & I hope it planted a seed, so he grows strong in the Lord. I will be guiding him to a couple healthy churches in our area.

 

Fluff

VictoryEmbraced Amazon Reviews

It is a blessing to me that VictoryEmbraced is getting good reviews from readers. Enjoy what people have written on Amazon. I have learned that if God calls us to do something for Him…Review for VictoryEmbracedit is important to Him that we do all we can to fulfill our purpose. God’s purpose for our lives is to bless others in hopes they will live for Him too.

 

Although, I don’t usually choose books with Christian or religious themes, I found this book to be a wonderful read. Once I began the book I kept wanting to read one more testimony after another until I came to the end and realized I’d read the whole thing in one sitting. The writing has broad appeal and, I think offers something for everybody. I know many people could use the messages contained in the book. If you know someone who is going through a rough time it would make a great gift. This book belongs on everyone’s shelf. It’s impossible not to like!  ~Diane Boyajian

Inspirational and fun read! This book is hard to put down! Excellently written! ~Brian Keane

The different testimonies were so uplifting. Great faith builder!  ~Larry Shipe