#Transformingloveministries, TLM Blog Posts, TLM Encouragement, Transforming Love Ministries

PAIN: WHERE DO I BEGIN?

Reposted from Transforming Love Ministries / By Elaine A. Lankford / Article Written by Stacha Ashburn @transformingloveministries.org

Do I take it from a physical perspective? I have had pins in my right hip since I was thirteen years old. After the pin placement, I shattered my hip. The healing process caused my right leg to be shorter than my left leg. This in turn has caused back pain, neck pain, jaw pain, and knee pain that I still manage through today.

Do I take it from a mental perspective? I have been verbally assaulted all my life.

Do I take it from an emotional perspective? Thirty years I was hiding behind a mask, presenting what I assumed everyone wanted to receive. I was too broken to reveal the real me, so I created fantasies to keep from killing myself.

Do I take it from a social perspective? For so long, I couldn’t root myself into any community because I didn’t know how to push through the pain that comes with any authentic relationship, so I ran.

Do I take it from a financial perspective? My entire life I have never wanted for anything. I wore my heart on my sleeve and gave to folks until I couldn’t give no more. I have always had A-1 credit until one day I went to swipe, and I couldn’t swipe no more. The realization of being in over $100,000 of credit card debt alone grieved me!

Do I take it from a sexual perspective? I have had the unimaginable happen to me. I have stepped outside the covenant of my marriage in my space of dysfunction.

Or do I take it from a spiritual perspective? I assumed coming to Christ was going to be rainbows and kittens! That in my spiritual journey, I wouldn’t be caught up in conflict. I wouldn’t be hurt. That I would present myself to Christ and to HIS church and all the pain and negativity I had ever went through, I would never go through again. Now don’t get me wrong, Jesus Christ is a healer and every one of us needs to be connected to a local body of the Church. With that said, connection itself is not enough. It’s a process! Father God restores us all through different processes.

What I see now, on the other side of all the pain I have been through and still function through, is He will use it all for His good.

God isn’t in the business of wasting one single tear. His Word promises us in Psalm 56:8 that He has kept track of all our wandering and weeping. That He has stored up all our many tears in His bottle. Not one will be lost. For every tear is recorded in God’s book of remembrance.

We so often avoid working through the pain instead of growing through it. We want to be like Job’s wife. We simply want the pain to be over. What if, instead, we would PUSH (Pray Until Something Happens) through the pain to meet its purpose on the other side.

I wonder at what point Job realized that his tragedy wasn’t going to be over very quickly. That he was going to have to settle in for a long period of suffering. Yet his faith did not waver.

I believe that there’s a way to find joy in the suffering. It’s all in how we respond. We don’t control the cards life deals us, but we do control how we choose to play them. Attitude is everything in the pain management world. It can have a profound effect on how quickly we recover.

In Matthew 26:33-35, Peter is confident that he won’t be offended by Jesus even when Jesus predicts that Peter will deny him. In the King James Version, it reads, “though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended.” Pain often causes us to feel offended by God. That’s why we all need an “eternal perspective” adjustment at times, so we can see the good in discomfort. In every circumstance, the disciples would return to Christ, leaving any offense behind. Yet, sometimes as Christians, we don’t realize this is part of the spiritual battle we face, and we can be angry at God for years.

Questioning God is not the problem, but stumbling, falling away, and staying away are. God calls us to get in the ring and wrestle with Him. When we are going through pain at any level, He wants us to present our real selves to Him. We are not “always” blessed and highly favored. There are times we are ticked off and tired of feeling like everyone and everything is messing with us. If that is where you are, then meet God there.

During these times, not only is it important to come to God in authentic posture, but it’s important that you realize who you are doing life with, your inner circle is so vital. Having people around you that will pray with you, stay with you, and lock arms with you through the storms of life matters. The enemy wants to silo us or keep us in a circle of toxic people that birth death. Everything touches everything!

If you are someone who finds yourself isolated: Heavenly Father, I pray that You will lead my sister to someone, or lead someone to her, that is led by Your light, Your way, and Your truth, to do life in community with.

If you are in a toxic circle right now: Jesus Christ, we come to You and ask You to wash this circle in Your blood. Clean and purify them. If those in the circle won’t adhere to the mandate of true repentance and turn from their broken ways, reveal them to our sister and help her to release them. Help my sister to find restoration regarding whatever hurt she has in her life that is causing her to stew in such a dangerous space.

If you are thriving in a healthy circle of life-giving friends: Lord, we say thank you! Keep us thriving, not just surviving, and help us to remain in a space of wellness despite our circumstances. In Jesus Christ’s name, Amen!

Written by Stacha Ashburn

#Findingyourcourage, #Stepsforward, Believe in Yourself, Bravery, Courage, encouragement, Inspiration, Journey, Life, Motivation, Strength

Crisp Air Begins With New Life Changes

I am sharing a gentle reminder that no matter what your circumstances are, it is never to late to look at them in a positive light.

Every season in life comes with it’s joys and sorrows and is made up of ups and downs, but I want to encourage you to see how God will use them in an inspirational manner.

If you are in a season of struggles, look to the fall season and be encouraged and inspired that good things are to come.

Consider this quote from F. Scott Fitzergerald when he says…

“Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.”

If you are in a season of difficulty be encouraged knowing it is never to late for something good to come out of this time.

My friend, hang in there and be patient while you wait for this season to flow into the next and find joy knowing God will use your circumstances for something good.

#Findingyourcourage, #Keepingitreal, Burn out, Discouraged, encouragement, Exhausted, Journey, Keeping It Real, Weariness

Life Is Real, The Struggles Are Too

Just throwing some real life out there….

So all before 7:45am I have the cleanest smelling house in my community.

I managed to discover my hot water heater is leaking right after I opened up a fresh new bottle of bleach. As I discovered some wet stuff on some things in my laundry room, I left my bleach sitting on my dryer and went to get a bowl to put under the leaky hot water heater (as it is a little guy who is elevated above my head). While I was getting my bowl I heard something fall. I returned to my laundry room (which is off our carpeted family room) to find my bleach on the carpet spilling out with 3/4 of it emptied on my carpet. 😪

Now I am totally frustrated as I was hurried to get a few things done before trying to get some work done before Kiddo has her 2nd of 5 appointments between today and tomorrow afternoon.

Now my carpet is ruined and I should get my shop vac to absorb the extra water spilling out of my hot water heater tray when all I wanted to do was get some work done.

Oh boy, turn the cheek… make lemonade out of lemons and move on. I hope God provides me a few extra hours out of my day today.

Now to try to fix my problems.

I decided to show the real and and the raw behind all the encouragement I post.

Life is a struggle and life is real.

If this resonates with you, know I am right there with ya friend.

I decided today to write about it and to share it with you with the hopes you will be encouraged knowing you are not alone with the struggles of life.

Make the best of your day!

Comfort, Encouragement Today, Grace, Inspiration, Journey, Life, Peace, Rest

Stop…Rest…Breathe…and Repeat

Today’s reminder is to take a step back and find some time to just be still.

Rest my friend.

Allow your mind, body, and soul to unwind.

Allow that small quiet voice of God to speak to you and allow Him to breathe peace into your very being.

Stop…Rest…Breathe…and Repeat today! 💜

#Findingyourcourage, #Keepingitreal, #Stepsforward, Believe in Yourself, Blessings, Comfort, Encouragement Today, Image, Inspiration, Journey, Life

Today Is A New Day

Encouragement Today

Good Morning Friends!

Today is a new day.

No matter what happened yesterday, today is not yesterday, “today” is a new day.

Embrace the newness and walk into it with your head held high knowing today can be what you make it.

What failed yesterday does not have to fail today.

Change the pattern and make it yours.

Happy New Day!

Challenge, Inspiration, Journey, Life, Rest, Weariness

Refresh, Recharge, & Rest

This is your weekend reminder to take some time to slow down.

Take some time to refresh, recharge, & rest today.

Clear your schedule of the busy life you live and allow yourself the time to decompress.

#Findingyourcourage, #Stepsforward, Believe in Yourself, Challenge, Courage, Encouragement Today, Inspiration, Journey, Life, Motivation, Peace, Strength

Draw Close To What Inspires and Motivates You

I am here to encourage you today to do something that is inspirational, motivational, and makes you happy.

I challenge you to find a time to allow peace and harmony in your life today. At some point to allow yourself to breathe and find a place of rest. Even if it nothing more than taking a quick break at work. Take a quick walk. Listen to your favorite song or music. Try a few breathing techniques. It doesn’t matter what you do so long as you take the time to find that place of peace and harmony you need to get you through the day.

Dream big and reach for what motivates you. Consider that job promotion that would have scared you before. Consider that class you have always wanted to take, or simply reach for the stars. Dream bigger than what you believe is possible as that is where God will reach you and give you the strength to achieve them.

Lastly, have the courage to conquer your fears. Place your faith over your fear and reach for what allows you to grow spiritually, emotionally, and mentally. You will never regret what you strive for. You will only regret what you do not reach for.

Have a wonderful day!!

Anxiety, Bible, Depression, Discouraged, Grief, Journey, Life, pain, Stress, Trials, Weakness, Weariness

Our Broken Spirits Are Healed

Today’s reminder is a simple one!

Are you feeling alone? Are you feeling overwhelmed?

“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” Psalms‬ ‭34:18‬ ‭ESV‬‬

This reminder is to encourage you to know, despite how you may feel, God is with you. He is saving you from all you are feeling.

Turn your eyes towards Him and allow Him to heal your heart.

Lastly, no matter how you may be feeling, you are never alone!

#Findingyourcourage, #Keepingitreal, Believe in Yourself, Discouraged, Journey, Life, Strength, Weariness

Lessons Learned From Seasons and Ripples

Today’s encouragement is coming via the lenses of someone who is worn out, beat down, frustrated, and exhausted.

I know there are many of you who are living a season in life where this is you as well.

My encouraging words to you are these,

“You are doing an amazing job!”

Do not let society dictate how you feel about yourself.

Do not let them determine your worth, whether you are struggling at every crisis or you are feeling like a “rock star” at this thing called life.

We all go through seasons where we are on top of the world and everything is running smoothly and the problems are minimal, to where no matter which direction you turn, there is another crisis just waiting for you to resolve.

My friend, today I am here to encourage you to keep your chin up and make some time to “rest” today.

If you are in a season of struggles, conflicts, or busyness; take some time to rest your mind and body so you are better able to handle what comes your way next.

By doing this you will be amazed by the strength you will be renewed with.

Lastly, remember if this is a difficult season, it will not last forever.

The seasons in life are like the ripples in the water. They are all uniquely original and will never be the same once they passed.” -HD Benson

No matter how difficult life may be, rest in the assurance, this season will pass. Take the experiences you have learned from and leave behind that which you can not change.

My friend, you will get through! Today will be a better day, no matter how difficult your life may be.

#keepingitreal, #quickthoughts

#Findingyourcourage, Anxiety, Bible, Broken, Burn out, Challenge, Discouraged, encouragement, Inspiration, Journey, Weariness

Are Trials and Troubles at Every Turn?

Is life a struggle at every turn?

Are you weary from constantly making important decisions?

Are you exhausted from always putting out a fire?

My friend, rest on the promises God provides us,

“Even youths shall faint and be weary, and young men shall fall exhausted; but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”Isaiah 40:30-31 ESV”.

God does not expect us to always solve our problems or even carry them.

He wants us to turn to Him when we are weak and weary.

You’ve got this Friend! Rest today and give your problems to God. Allow Him to create your solutions.

Have a great day!