Today starts a new day; I realize that I have been abused by religion. It took me through Day 8, 9 before I realized this, but I am glad I did. You can go back to see my comments on Day 8 and 9 to see what I am speaking of. I am taking the time to do the exercises as outlined in the book; Recovering From Religious Abuse, 11 Steps to Spiritual Freedom written by: Jack Watts. While I know that hurt and abuse as described and presented in the book are two different things, I have come to the understanding that in regards to taking advantage of me I have in fact been abused. I will admit, one of my greatest concerns is I may have at times abused religion. I don’t think I have but this journey will help me understand where I am at and in the process help others as I journal each day with the steps outlined in the book.
For most of my Christian life I have felt that God was there, and He was, but I haven’t reflected much on the beatitude in the Sermon on the Mount that says: “The pure of heart will see God.” ~ Matthew 5:8
I have tried to seek God’s heart and desires in my life. I know that more times than not I have done so with an impure heart. I have had anger, frustration, doubt and more in my life. Recently I have seen that in regards to a speaking tour I am working on. I have two churches that are critical to me being able to take this tour. I’ll be honest; I haven’t had peace because I haven’t heard back from these churches despite several emails, a phone call and messages at Facebook. While it may not be a big deal to some, it is huge for me. I have been stressed out and hurt by the lack of response. In the whole thing, I haven’t been able to fully understand God because I don’t know if my heart has been pure in loving and in trying to understand and on and on.
I realize, God wants me to find my favor with Him alone. While God certainly uses people and situations to accomplish His purpose, He wants me to understand, it is still He who is known as Jehovah Jireh, my provider.
It is only in God that I will find peace from the abuse, the situations I am in, my future, and my entirety. It is God I have to rely on. People will fail, whether they intend to or not. In my belief in free-will, I have to keep my focus on the eternal things God has for me, not the temporary things of this earth.
God, help me see your hand in my life; help me live a life that is pure. When I fail, have your Holy Spirit give me wisdom. Bug me until I surrender. I ask that your angels will protect me from the subtle attacks and discouragement. Help me find joy in You and help me follow Your example in all ways, not just a few.
Brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worth of praise, dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. ~ Philippians 4: 8, 9
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