March 13, 2014

Sho Nuff Thankful - Lynn's 2014 Testimony!

I saw this image on someone's Facebook page some time ago, and it resonated with my spirit.  I did some additional research online and found the name of the artist, Kiwi at  Kiwi is the Founder of SurviveHERS! Kolorful Note Kard Kollection, a colorful and sassy collection of notecards for women who have been affected by cancer.  

Thankfully, I have not had to deal with a cancer scare, but I do know of several friends/acquaintances who are winning the battle against cancer, and I can think of several (including family members) who have lost their lives to this dreadful disease.  I wish I could purchase a card from Kiwi or buy Carmen Calhoun's song, A Pink Hat Day, for every woman in the world ever affected by cancer.   Unfortunately, that's not financially possible for me.  However, during this Women's History Month I can offer every woman ever affected by cancer or any other disease (physical or mental) this healing prayer, and you can, too!

Father God, You are a wonderful and perfect God.  I give you all glory and praise.  I thank you for your love, mercy and grace.  I thank you for liberty through your son, Jesus the Christ.  I thank you for my sister, _____________________.  You know _____________.  She is your daughter, and I am so thankful for her life.  I thank you for who she is and the purpose you have destined for her.  I come before you today standing in the gap for my sister, ___________________.  Lord, I stand on the promises of  Isaiah 53:4-5 and ask your will to be done in ___________________'s life.  I pray that your will includes her complete healing in the name of your son, Jesus the Christ!  I thank you in advance for what YOU will do.  Hallelujah and AMEN!

Two of my favorite healing scriptures are found in Isaiah 53:4-5 and Isaiah 58:8,
  •  "Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.  But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed." (KJV)
  • "your light shall break forth like the morning, your healing shall spring forth speedily, and your righteousness shall go before you; the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard" (KJV)
  • "Then shall your light break forth like the morning, and your healing (your restoration and the power of a new life) shall spring forth speedily; your righteousness (your rightness, your justice, and your right relationship with God) shall go before you [conducting you to peace and prosperity], and the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard." (AMP) 
Whether you are battling cancer, depression, HIV, the disease of discontent or debt, I believe God wants you to know that there is healing and restoration in HIM!  Seek God!  Seek HIM!  Trust me when I tell you that one of the best ways to seek God is to read His Word:  The Holy Bible.  Take the time to read, study and reflect on the meaning of the scriptures.  Then pray!  Talk to God about your confusion, doubt, concerns, challenges, fears, heartache, understanding, excitement, joy, healing and victory!  Then, listen and wait to hear God's response.  Of course, finding a healthy church home where you can develop a better understanding of the Word is important, too!  Yet, far too many of us find church homes and get too "comfortable."  We pass the buck of our own spiritual development (and those of our children) onto the ministers and pastors of the church.  For some of us, the only time we pick up a Bible or reference a scripture is when the preacher is reading from it during whatever weekly service we attend.  When we truly understand and recognize the power of God's healing grace and all He has brought us through we will seek God in ways and in places we never had before.

In 2014, I challenge you to read more of God's word and to seek God in ways and in places you never dared before.  I am challenging myself to do this, too.  This year, I am committed to blocking out time in my schedule to spend more time reading God's Word.  I am committed to seeking God in places I never dared before like in those tense moments with my boss, in the eyes of the people I don't feel like being bothered with, in the smile of a little one, in the warmth of the sun or the beauty of a sunset, in a belly laugh with a friend, in the disappointment of a loved one and in the softening of my own heart.  

"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose." Romans 8:28

I thank God for All things in my life.  And as so beautifully written by Ruth and Warren Myers in 31 Days of Praise:  Enjoying God Anew, I choose to live a thankful life and will strive each and every day of this year to ensure that my every action and breath shout the following prayer to my heavenly Father:

"[God] Thank You that in Your gracious plan to bless and use me, You've allowed me to go through hard times, through trials that many people go through in this fallen world.  How glad I am that You're so good at reaching down and making something beautiful out of even the worst situations!  How encouraged I am when I think how You did this for his brothers hated and abused and betrayed him, and how You worked these things out for blessing, both for Joseph and his family and for countless other people.  

I praise You that the things that happened in my past, both enjoyable and painful, are raw materials for blessing, both in my life and in the lives of others.  So I thank You for the specific family (or lack of family) into which I was born and the opportunities You did or did not provide.  And thank You for the things in my past that appear to be limitations, hindrances, bad breaks...the wounds of old hurts, the unmet emotional needs, the mistakes or neglect of other people - even the cruelty to me, their abuse.  

'In everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.'   1 Thessalonians 5:18

How comforting to know that in all my distresses You were distressed.  And how I thank You, Lord Jesus, that on the cross, You bore my griefs and carried my sorrows, as well as my sins...that I can kneel at the cross and worship You as the One who took on Yourself all my pain and experienced it to the full.  And how comforting to know that in the present, day by day, You feel with me any pain, confusion, inner bondage, or struggle that stem from my past.  Thank You that all these seeming disadvantages are a backdrop for the special, unfolding plan You have in mind for me ...and that if my past still handicaps me, You are able to lead me to the kind of help I need.  

I'm so grateful that all my past circumstances were permitted by You to make me see my need of You and prepare my heart for Your draw me to Yourself, and to work out Your good purpose for my life.  I rejoice that You are the Blessed Controller of all things - You are now, You will be throughout the future, and You always were.  All my days had Your touch of love and wisdom, whether or not I can yet fully see it.

And Lord, I choose to look beyond my past and present troubles in this life - this temporary life and fix my eyes on the unseen things that will last forever.  I praise You for the eternal glory these things are piling up for me as I choose to trust You."

 Hallelujah!  Thank YOU God.  I know I am sho nuff blessed!