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Saturday, November 4

Authentic Faith: How To Maintain a Relationship With God When Life Sucks


I honestly didn't realize that when I wrote in my post on Sunday that I would cover how I handle pain and maintaining a relationship with God at the same time, that life would throw me so much rubbish to try to prevent me from posting this.



They say things happen in threes and in this case, three major life-shattering events have taken place around me that has shattered my world and thrown me into so much excruciating pain that I currently feel like a shell of a person.

I'm not broken, but I am pretty close to it.

One thing that this happening to me does, is put me more in touch with pain again, it's not a memory it is something I am going through right now so as I write this today, I can honestly say that the things I suggest to keep a relationship with God strong, are the things I am doing right now.

I know I am usually open about my life and the like but honestly, I need a little time to heal and work out exactly how to word things, if I even ever do decide to share on my site what's been happening. I am going to keep specific details to myself for now, but we do all go through pain and so I still think that what I am about to share is worth it.

Brace yourself, I am about to get my sword out. There is going to be a lot of bible verses in this post!


Let's start with John 10:10 (NLT) The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.

Satan exists.

He is the father of lies and one of his favorite tricks is to convince us that he is nothing more than a figment of imagination. He is NOT the opposite of God. He was defeated when Jesus died for us, but since he know's he is going down, Satan's main goal is to take as many people with him, just to spite God. It's not even about us.

Jesus on the other hand, loves us unconditionally, He seeks to give us an abundant life, make us whole and reunite us with God the father. Salvation is a process, not a destination. As I covered last post, we are unique and as such so is our path in life and in faith.

Step 1 in maintaining a relationship with God when you are hurting is to be real with yourself about where you are right now in this moment, even if you don't like it.

I once told Jesus, because of the pain of an traumatic event in my life that I loved Him but I was angry with His father. That was fine because God can work with that. Being real about my anger, gave me the ability to keep the conversation between myself and Jesus alive. Jesus doesn't just love us for the good bits of us, He loves the ugly in us too and even that dark side that we all have, is no surprise to Him. He died so that we may have life, He is our ultimate hope and it is because of Him that we can have the next thing you need in order to keep that relationship with God alive when you are hurting.

Joy.

(NLT) Nehemia 8:10 And Nehemiah continued, "Go and celebrate with a feast of rich foods and sweet drinks, and share gifts of food with people who have nothing prepared. This is a sacred day before our Lord. Don't be dejected and sad, for the joy of the LORD is your strength!"

Joy is very precious, it is not an emotion, it goes deeper than that. Joy gives us the ability to smile when inside we feel like crying, it gives us the strength to breath, when the best we can do is just get through the day.

Satan wants to steal your hope, and your joy. Jesus gives us the joy we need to stand when we feel weak. You would be surprised at how many times I have had people say I look really happy, but then they are shocked when I say, that actually I am really hurting right now, it is only the Joy of Jesus that allows me cope with the pain of my circumstances.


Step 2 in maintaining a relationship with God when life sucks is throw yourself on Jesus, and allow his Joy to be your strength.

Once you have the strength to get through the day, you will also find that you have enough strength to get your armor on.

'Step 3 The armor of God is very important, and you should put yours on every day. Fact is, even if we are on the wining side, we are still in war and every good soldier knows that before you can help someone else you have to first take care of yourself.


Ephesians 6:10-18 (NIV)1Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

How this may look for you (aside from reading the bible and spending a little time each day talking to God) may be different from how it looks for me.

For me, I find it super important to remember that taking care of me, means taking care of all of me,so that means my mind, body, emotions, soul and spirit combined.

So how this works is:
  • I listen to music that soothes my soul.
  • I eat something, drink water and get plenty of sleep.
  • I spend a few minutes each morning talking to God.
  • I happen to love baths, so especially when I am hurting I make an exrta effort to pamper myself...even if my day is super busy and I can only mange 20 minutes to spare.
  • If I can, I try to play some games or watch something to let me escape the pain for a little bit.
  • Ultimately, I remember that time is a healer, as is Christ and as I work with Him, I will find my healing in time and I rest in the fact that God can use this.

Nothing is ever wasted.

There is beauty beneath the scars and just like myrrh, the more I am (unwillingly, I am not a masochist) crushed the sweeter I will let what remains be.

It hurts yes, but signing up for the Christian life is not suppose to be easy.

Jesus overcame though, and so can we.


When you are going through something painful, as well meaning as much of what I have written may be, it may not seam like enough. So finally, I want to give you the number one key.

Step 4.Remember that Jesus is the good Shepherd and we are His sheep.


Trust the shepherd and rest in His arms, they are more than strong enough to see you through anything. Healing journeys are often painful, messy and much of may seam unnecessary, but if you choose to rest in the arms of Jesus, just like a little lamb in the shepherds hands, you will in time find healing and your story will be powerful.

Dear friend, you are so very precious to God, His love is unconditional so mater what your world looks like right now, you can find rest for your soul.

Just come to Him.  (Matthew 11:28)

I am more than happy to stand in prayer with you if you message me, or further explain any of my points. My desire is to see you shine bright because you can. Nothing more, nothing less.
Catch you next time.

I'm taking some time off for the Christmas season in name of needing to take care of myself right now so I will see you next year (unless I manage to get around to a surprise Christmas post that is)

Love Hayley

xXx
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