Old Haunts Taunt

Old Haunts Taunt

We’re creatures of habit, change is hard, and our minds are powerful. These three thoughts influence us negatively when old haunts taunt.

Being indwelled by God’s Holy Spirit lifts us beyond our temptations. An intimate connection with God offers fellowship with One who’s in control. It allows us strength from One who’s almighty. Living through the Spirit frees us from the weight of our guilt and shame.

Creature of Habit

What can we do when old familiar haunts of days past taunt until they become our focus again? Though perhaps not seen outwardly, their presence is felt. This was conduct of a life thought to be traded in for robes of white. The creature of habit, whispering lies of comfort, no matter the cost, rises up once more.

Change is Hard

A great weight was lifted when you gave God your life. You sensed the difference. The freedom was amazing. The joy He brought was immeasurable. Now, you sit thinking of such change. Was it real? How could it have been if temptation has risen so strongly once more? Ultimately, you admit in defeat that change is hard.

Our Minds Are Powerful

When old haunts rise, thinking consumes. It morphs to disbelief in the truth of who we are as children of God. Frustration overwhelms, and soon we find ourselves giving in to the old nature. After all, our minds are powerful. The more we think on something, the more controlling it becomes.

A haunt that taunts holds tight

Haunts that taunt hold tight. Don’t let them get a grip!

What influences you? You may feel that the old haunts taunt you and lead you to fail, returning you to old ways you’d turned from when God became your focus, but you’re wrong. It’s not really the old haunts that are to blame, it’s what you do with them.

You’re Worth It!

Stop thinking about them! Be aware. The more you think on them, the more power they have. Turn your thinking instead to God. Whenever temptation rises, consciously turn your thoughts to God. Talk to Him, aloud if you must. Put on music that honors Him and sing along. Read something that points to Him. Whatever it takes for you to focus on God instead, do it. Taking the time to refocus is worth it! You are worth it! God is the answer. He is what will break the spell when old haunts taunt!

Freedom Is Yours

Freedom Is Yours

Freedom isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Or is it? It’s frightening. The work required to keep it is overwhelming. Is it really? With God orchestrating it, the only thing you need to do is claim it!

Comfort of prison

Clinging to the comforts of prison

When we step out on faith, we waver. What if we’re wrong? What if we haven’t yet done what is required? In fear, we quickly return to what is known: the comfort of prison, the outline of law where we recognize better where we stand and what’s expected of us. It’s as if we hunger for something to do to have a hand in our own righteousness. Being idle and allowing God full control seems too awkward, perhaps even sinful.

Freedom is not just something to experience later in heaven. It’s real, available to live in here, and is yours today! Click the video below for the message that Freedom Is Yours!

 

The Truth Will Set You Free

The Truth Will Set You Free

John 8:31“….If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; 32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

I woke sobbing. My heart was broken. My brother had committed suicide rather than face the consequences of old actions newly exposed. It was clear that he’d been hiding behind years of lies and alcohol which now made sense. It was a dream, but it was so vivid that I was shuddering with sorrow for the lack hope that he had. I knew what he’d been missing.

Many people walk in deep despair, one bad day away from giving up, hope already stale and crumbling. In examining all the stepping stones crossed to reach such a desperate vantage point, tragedy certainly has a foothold and is deeply rooted. Misfortune comes in many forms, the results often kept hidden to avoid judgement or consequence. Lies are laid down, one at a time, building a wall behind which to keep secrets concealed, assuring survival.

How many people have a plan of what to do should truth be exposed? How many people are convinced their lies keep them out of trouble? How many people believe they can foresee the difficulties that may overwhelm should truth be uncovered? How desperate are we to avoid that possibility?

Shame…it’s dirty in more than name and controlling in nature. Satan uses it not so sparingly when casting his net, seeking for those who are easily swayed and quick to cower from it. The devil’s victims are convinced that the judgement by others if their darkness was brought to light is equally matched with the consequences law brings, human or Spiritual. Who could survive either? Why would someone try?

I wrote The Truth Will Set You Free based on that dream and the hopelessness many are burdened with. I know the answer and pray many who struggle have the answer revealed to them before they can’t cope anymore. Christ is the answer. That’s all. At the risk of sounding callous, it’s simple. There are no certain number of steps required to reach healing. There is no amount of money that can cleanse you of the shame that’s buried. Freedom comes by believing in and knowing Christ.

You see, He is the Word that you should seek a relationship with and continue focusing on. Keep your eyes on Him and talk to Him about anything He puts on your heart. As you grow in that relationship, you will come to know Him, and He is, in fact, Truth itself. He, Jesus, the Truth, is the only thing that can set you free.

In some instances, through the course of your relationship, He may put it on your heart to expose the earthly truths that have hurt you. You won’t be alone on this journey. Christ is with you, and God has a plan that is for your benefit. If that comes to be the case, exposing truths that Satan has used to keep you in his control becomes freeing in many ways. A weight lifts as Satan’s grasp falters and fails. In some instances, the close connection with your Savior may be all you need to heal the hurts that have scarred your soul. In either case, regardless of the scenario God leads you through, He is the Answer and The Truth that Will Set You Free!

Today is the second year anniversary of the official release of my third novel, The Truth Will Set You Free. I pray it has a strong impact, clearly illustrates our need for hope, and points readers to Christ who is that hope. You can read the first chapter, check it out, or purchase it here. God bless you.

Why Have You Forsaken Me?

Why Have You Forsaken Me?

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Shunned and mocked, beaten down and tormented, Jesus had reached the end of Himself and cried out in anguish to His Father. It was a moment of acknowledged separation, an emptiness, void of any possible peace or joy, and yet God ordained it. Actually, He orchestrated it. Nothing happened without His influence. Not one human decision was made in error. Not one.

There was purpose in the death of Jesus, the final unblemished sacrifice for sin. It was necessary. It wasn’t senseless, as heartbreaking as it is to ponder. Resenting the decisions that brought about His death is unnecessary. Comparing ourselves to those characters, assuming we’d make similar or differing decisions is needless. God was controlling the events and they played out as He intended. Jesus’ death immediately created freedom. Freedom for you and me. Freedom from fear. Freedom from the Spiritual separation that comes from sin. We will never lack connection with God due to our sin. Satan has lost all power.

Crown of Thorns

Crown of Thorns

You may wonder why you suffer then, here on earth. Why is there so much drama, hate, hurting? Why has life been difficult? Why has tragedy struck and left you weary? Why have you felt empty and void of joy? Why are you struggling with simply taking the next step? Why is violence and fear dictating life? There are so many questions, so much confusion. If there is a God, then why? Why have You forsaken me?

Christ, in His anguished cry, released us from that very same feeling of distress. Never will any of us cry out and not be heard. Jesus’ death tore the veil of separation between the created and the Creator. Your cries will be heard and responded to. Have faith. Faith is the catalyst for direct relations with God. The Spiritual realm that once was separate is now ever present.

Reflect on Jesus’ behavior as the tragic event of the end of His earthly life played out. He never wavered from trusting God’s will, even unto death. His faith was strong. Believing in something unseen, faith, was actual knowing for Jesus. We can live like that, and in so doing, all the questions of why will be met and dispelled.

You are being drawn to Christ by God. Accept the invitation to embrace the Spiritual and supernatural life He has for you. Draw close to Him. It is a quiet, intimate, and deeply personal relationship. Talk to Him, ask His Holy Spirit to dwell within your being, and seek His wisdom constantly. Peace is in trusting God and His will for your life, and because of Jesus’ obedience, God will never forsake you.

Christ our King

Christ our King
Painting by Steve Bissonnette

God’s Chosen Vessel

God’s Chosen Vessel

Evil Positioned to be God’s Chosen Vessel

Can God use your enemy for good? Can someone evil become God’s chosen vessel? He positions all of us where He needs, including some who’ve been harmful or dangerous. Imagine God suddenly shining His light through someone who’d been evil. By doing so, He effectively becomes present in places where there may be many who are hard to reach.

God’s People Have Refuge from Evil

Above all, Jesus died for us, the broken, the disappointments, the outlaws. He took our sin and Satan’s power away, giving us treasure in return. The Lord IS the treasure. He is the full portion of our inheritance. The gift is complete and experienced within a relationship with our Creator. You see, God is in the generation of the righteous. A number of years or a boundary of culture does not limit this generation. God’s people, those indwelled with His Holy Spirit, have refuge from evil here and now.

Never in Need of Bread

When you reach for the top, a relationship with your Creator, you will obtain all that is under Him as well. Those who keep Christ at their center are never in need of bread. Discard and leave the desire for or attachment to earthly things behind, and God will give it all back to you a hundred times in this age and the next, through eternity. However, when Christ is your focus, these lesser things really aren’t important anymore. The Pagan world chases after them. Don’t limit yourself!

God's Chosen Vessel - Rainbow after a storm

Christ Revealed

Christ Revealed to Evil

After Jesus returned to God, He came back and revealed Himself to Saul, a persecutor of Christians. That’s how powerfully real God is. Jesus said that Saul, who was an enemy to His message initially, was a chosen vessel to reach many people. God allowed Saul to rise up in opposition to Jesus’ way. Then He formed a powerful and intimate relationship with him. Finally, He prompted Saul to step out, shining through him and reaching many who wouldn’t have otherwise been saved. In conclusion, Saul, an enemy to Christians, became God’s chosen vessel.

God Transforms Evil into A Chosen Vessel

God reaches into darkness, establishes vessels there, and shines, also meeting the lost wherever they are. That is how powerful God is in our lives today. He can take someone who has been an enemy to us and transform them into a vessel to accomplish His purposes. Certainly, God’s will is always being done.

Click the video link above or here for Rebecca’s full message on God’s Chosen Vessel.

The Light Within, a novel for God's Chosen Vessel

The Light Within, written by Rebecca L Matthews

Children's book Little Birch Finds Peace for God's Chosen Vessel

Little Birch Finds Peace, written by Rebecca L Matthews, illustrated by Hannah Forcier

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Books written by Rebecca relevant to the topic of enemies, bullies, and God using our situations for good:

The Light Within is a novel, and is available in hardcover or paperback. Click the name of the book to link to the first chapter or order.

Little Birch Finds Peace is a fantastic children’s story. It’s written by Rebecca and illustrated by her daughter, Hannah Forcier (click for Hannah’s Youtube channel). It’s available as a paperback story or a coloring book. Click the name of the book to review or order.

 

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