A Way To Remember Daddy..

The last few times I have been out with my little baby girls who are not grown yet, just 5 & 10 years old, I have had constant thoughts about the power of the father daughter relationship and I wonder how I am really doing to build that foundation with my own daughters and how they will feel about us when they are grown. My boys are now 20 and 23 so those days are long over. I know where I stand and what I did right and where I came up short. Even so , those are boys. That is a whole different animal. The boys are more resilient when it comes to our relationship. Not quite as sensitive about mistakes I have made and seem to be able to focus on good times and remember what was really strong about our relationship and still is.

For example even with all my mistakes and problems when my boys were little, I still am very happy with how our relationship is today. They had to witness some not so pretty times in my life. The tail end of my treatment for addiction was occurring right in front of their eyes. They had to go through a divorce as toddlers those horrible times when I am dropping them off at mom’s house and they grab my ankle tight and scream ” I don’t want you to go” with fountains of tears pouring out of their little eyes. I remember more tear filled drives home alone during those times then not. I had to decide what I was going to do about the situation to try to preserve our future. The last thing I wanted was for them to get older and have their mom start rambling on about what a failure and addict I was when they were little.

So in that case I decided that there were two things I could do to minimize the potential for that since I could not erase the truth.The first thing I decided to do was as soon as they were old enough to understand I sat them down for a family meeting, just us. I poured out all the dirt. I told them of my struggles, how I was dealing with it and even the consequences I had suffered as a result the problems. I did not sugar coat anything but took full responsibility for it all.

It did not make anything go away, but looking back I was teaching them a valuable lesson about ownership, about humility and most of all about forgiveness. There were times they heard and saw things that a 4 year and 6-year-old should not see. After owning it all I asked them for forgiveness, and told them what my plan of action was to try to prevent that from occurring  again. To my surprise the response was better than I thought. I felt and still feel a sense of respect that I  earned from them, more so now that they are older for coming clean  and owning my own behavior.

I still wish they did not have to see me like I was at my lowest going to rehab and all that jazz. I was a sight for sore eyes. However I will say that to this day neither of them has ever brought it up or tried to use it against me. Better yet their mother could not do that either. I spoiled her plan to talk bad about me the rest of their lives, by talking bad about myself first. That took the wind out of her sails for that plan anyhow. The other thing I decided to do after the asking for forgiveness, was I decided to insert something unique, like a special thing that was just between us to replace the negative. I just wanted them to love me and know how very ,much I loved them. 

I began making a point of doing something I never experienced as a child, something to reassure them of my love for them even during the trials they had been through. I decide to go against the ” man grain” and be a super affectionate dad, and made a vow that every time I saw them or left them I would hug them, kiss them, and make them look me in the eye as I told them I loved them. All through middle and high school that’s how it was. I was not obnoxious about, you should know.

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I did not cramp their style or embarrass them in front of their friends, I acted in a way that was appropriate for their ages. Instead of a full body hug and big kiss on the cheek in high school we had “code” for our ” I love You’s ” and our giant hugs.

In high school when I was around their friends or dropping them off at an event where kids could hear and see, we had this kind of standing  half- hug- half body bump  thing that basketball players were doing all the time to take the place of me on my knees with my arms wrapped around them hugging them. lol.

The ” I love you” became ” you too” . So when we were leaving each other there was a body bump and a “me too”.  To my great pleasure as they got older and out of high school our communicating that we loved each other did not fade, it got stronger. To this day every single time I talk to the boys on the phone we say the words. No matter where they are, out-of-state for the military, or my youngest son may be in any of the 50 states at any given time due to his career as a professional rodeo bull rider, at the conclusion of our call they always say ” Ok love you”  before they hang up. Always. It may not seem like a big deal but believe me after sitting across the table years before pouring my shame and problems out to them, I was not sure if they would want to even claim me as their dad.

Oh How Things Change With Girls!

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So I have these two little girls you know . I love them so very much and they are sweet girls. They are so agreeable with almost everything I say. I mean just the other day my 10-year-old agreed via a ” Pinky Promise”  that there will be ” No dates til 28!” What a sweetheart. I know she will stick to it too. I mean we all know little girls do not lie. Especially to their daddy. I am so relieved that I do not have to start going out on dates with her and any boy until she is 28! What a peace of mind to know that..

willie shot gun shell

So with the girls it is a different scenario because they are so very different then the boys. So very sensitive and so open to hurt in their heart. Ever since those girls were born into this world I have felt like those two are my actual heart , divided in two pieces in the form of a couple little girls. Everything that happens to them happens to me. Every time they feel pain, I do too. I try to avoid any extra pain for them as much as possible.

Lets just say it is a whole lot different then when the boys were young, they would almost weekly walk in the door from school or playing outside with a new injury. Sprained ankles, chipped teeth , I recall Jesse with two nose breaks before second grade. It never ended. I can picture hearing one of them yell from their room;

” Dad, my ankle is purple and swollen like 2x normal size and my little toe is broke”

My response? ” There is some ice in the cooler, did you do your homework yet?”

And Life With Girls Now….

Not so much with my girls. The other day after school my oldest was eating a sandwich and I guess she accidentally put a little pepper or onion or something she normally does not eat on it.  Not knowing this  I walked by the table and noticed her eyes were red so I stopped to find out what was going on.

But then when I noticed a tear drop coming from my angel’s eye   I lost it…

I was like ” Emily what is it just tell me, did some boy at school say something to you?

Just give me his name honey don’t you worry that pretty little face .. I’ll teach someone what its like when you make my daughter cry!

It did occur to me a little later that my responses to my sons back in the day varied slightly from how it goes with my daughter.

So yes there are major differences in the way dads react and think of the different ways of boys and girls. Even so I still carried on the tradition of the hug and kiss and ” I love you” each time we part ways and I will tell you this, If I forget once to say It as we part ways, my 10 year old will call me out on it. She does this by repeating what I should have said until I catch on and actually say it..like this

” umm dad? I love you Emmy”  then repeat and repeat until I say ” I love you Emmy” . You know what? I am proud that she reminds me. It means it means something to her. Something I started as a parent is actually turning out good! Even in the midst of storms and trials little things like making sure you have told your children you love them is so critical. it just does not happen enough , at least in my world.

Now before you think I am some kind of monster by the way I blew my son’s sprained ankle off but wa so concerned about  my daughter’s tear-you should know a few things before you start accusing me of favoritism with my sweet angels over the boys.

1- When I realized Jesse’s ankle was truly sprained or broke, I personally got him ice.  Also, I gave him an extra day to wash my truck as that was his day to do it. So you see I have a soft heart for all.

2, You did not see just how BIG of a tear was coming from Emily’s eye. You would have panicked too. Honestly if it was not for me taking her for ice cream and finishing her homework for her that night, she told me herself she would still be bawling! I had to do something.

Well, at least they all say they love me. That is worth it all.

So as I end this I want to share a thought I had a month or so ago during of those times I was just sitting at the park watching the girls play. It has not left me and I think I am going to do this not only for my children but possibly offer it as a service to families down the road who just like the idea. It is likely something you will immediately gravitate towards, or you may just shrug your shoulders and feel like ” whatever floats your boat” ….

I  truly think this idea would and could change and help a lot of people when the time comes in our lives when we will be forced to leave our children on this earth as we age out and expire into eternity. I know that I am for sure going to do it for my kids.

Over the years in my work, I have been involved in my share of family tragedies and deaths of parents, some just were old and died and some taken suddenly. The one thing I notice that is always present during these times is families talking to the siblings about how much their mom or dad loved them and cared about  them. Sadly,  I have sensed doubt in eyes of the children sometimes who left the last time with dad on bad terms, or maybe it just seemed like daddy like the older brother better so the younger sibling lives his life believing he was 2nd best son to his father.

Worse yet on occasion a sudden death of the father in the family will occur tight in the middle of a huge argument between two sides of the family and they are not on speaking terms. I have seen more than not at funerals or get together after a death children thinking back to their childhood days trying to think of some good thing to say about how much pop loved all the kids, as evidenced by the time he _______________ ( you fill in the blank)

The problem is often there just are not a lot of good memories fresh on your mind when an older man like a dad dies. Perhaps like my grandfather who loved me dearly and took me everywhere all the time while he was well, things changed a bit when illness set in. With Alzheimer’s or any sickness the elderly suffer from near end of life, you may hear your beloved father look you in the eye and tell you he has always thought of you as a jackass your entire life! What then?

Or as the daughter is trying to have a last conversaation with daddy in the nursing home before he passes away, maybe he will look at her and tell her she is a no good whore. That she only got married because she got ” Knocked up”!

You think I exaggerate? I am likely making light of the situaiton. In almost every single nursing home around the world, there are dads who are on their way out who have all nbut lost their minds. During the sibling last month seeing him alive they are more likely to hear what a dissappointment they have been or be cursed at than be told hwo much they are loved. So considering all these points and also considering what my girls would be thinking if I was taken to heaven suddenly? Howcan I be sure they will remember hjow proud I am of them and of their accomplishemnts? I cannot. But I could!

So here is the idea I am considering with a partner. We think it would be really neat if dads, or moms could call us up when they are in their golden years or maybe in some cases when their health is going south and they can make sure that when they can no longer express their love for their children and other loved ones ( or in  my case just in case something happened to me unexpectedly) .

We believe that children especially at anby age would benefit in a huge way after losing a parent to click a cd of their mom or dad telling them of their love for them and reminding them of some of the special times they had and try to encourage the family to remember the good stuff instead of only going through the mourning process with not much positive going on in that process.  One neat feature is that we would get all the contact information of the immediate family when we made the tape and ask the persons social worker, caregiver, pastor , or others to make us aware when a condition worsens for a patient, so we can be ready to share the tape with the family at just time.

Usually, as in the movie The Ultimate Gift with James Garner, any tapes after death are about wills and momey or who gets what. This often makes things even worse during an already sad time. For people like myself who just want my kids to be able to hear my voice and see my face again if something happened to me while I was young, this could be an even more powerful tool. When a child loses a parent unexpectedly there is an emotional and physical loss that is tremendous. No more tucking in or night time hugs or taking them to school or contact period.

To be able to put the tape in every day if need be for awhile for a 10 year old would be a huge comfort. To hear the same words in the same voice from your daddy telling you how proud he is and how much he loves them. In the cases of Christians the parent would emphasize the fact that eternity is awaiting all of them and eternity together is the long term plan. The hope something like this could provide a child wouldl be very helpful in my opinion. We all have seen people who have lost a loved one go and try and find something, anything to hold that reminds them of the loved one who died. That is evidence that there is a desire to be close and to be near to that loved one. What better way than to hear directly fromt them?

Anyhow, If anyone has any interest on being involved from a business stamdpoint, I would be open to talking to a private businessman or woman who would like to partner with me on this as I have several other responsibilities including the entire team at Dont Label My Kid! and all the projects we are working on, the blogs and magazine and all that needs continous effort that goes into these things.

I dont need any  contacts for dispensing the product and getting the word out as I am connected to hundreds of nursing and retirement homes where much of this would be focused on. I would be interested strictly in a partner as a silent partner / investor.

I hope you all consider what your childrens needs would be if something were to happen to you. As parents I know you would do anything to ease their pain. I know it is not pleasent to think about but it is reality. We are not promised tomorrow .

Look at it like fire insurance, you have to get it but hope you never need it.

Send any inquiries or feedback to tim@dontlabelmykid.com and if you are interested in partnering with usin the way I mentioned, you can call me on my cell at 386-675-7549.

God Bless everyone- Have a great week!

Tj

You Or Your Children Need Help. Something Has To Change. Psychiatrist? Psychologist? Therapist? Police ? ( if in danger) What To Do Before Blindly Talking To Anyone For Intervention.

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Boy and girl (5-7 years) tying mother with rope in living room

When it comes time to intervention in your life or your children’s life, it is not something to take lightly. It’s not like going to a grocery store and decided afterwords you want to go to several more stores before buying. All mental health workers from therapists to doctors are trained in their particular flavor of how to find something wrong with you. This is how they get paid. Go to a psychiatry office you will walk out with a script and a diagnoses. The odds are better than not that you will leave with  a new label of some source that like it or not will attach itself to you for life.

Go to a psychologist and you will likely get some reason that you need to come 1-2x per week to get to” what is underneath all this” and spend a ton of money to lay on a couch or sit in a chair for a long time to be reminded of how miserable your life was/is.

Go to a behaviorist like myself and you will likely get a plan of action using behavioral techniques and rewards to attempt at changing behavior. You always go to the least restrictive first. In this case the behaviorist. You NEVER want to have you or your child locked up or labeled for life because you didn’t do your homework. If you have not read my homepage, go back now and read it to get an understanding of how the system works. You may be quite surprised.  The main page article called “Mental Health Is Driving Me Crazy” is the post to read or this may not make as much sense. I promise you won’t regret it.

Time to Evaluate Clock Review or Assessment Management

I have spent more than 20 years of my life working with  troubled kids, teens and their parents in every possible demographic. I have not only been a part of the professional team but was fortunate to move up quickly in 9/10 companies. After spending many years on the front lines and just as many in management, I was blessed to be asked to start a school in Florida for expelled felons. These students had not only been expelled from public school, but then got themselves kicked out of the alternative school where kids must go if they get expelled from public school. 

I was asked if I could do anything to help them and I knew with my Boys Town training and my hands on experience I could do it. I did and I won awards and all . But the most important task I had to train our teachers was to catch the kids doing something right all day each day instead of a day full criticism at an already over medicated and tired group

I named this blog over four years ago Don’t Label My Kid! for a reason. It was not just a cute title to me. It was symbolic of what clearly is one of the top issues we need to addressed, labeling people in general.

Over the next 4 years I targeted a certain audience to reach. Those are families in need of assistance but many times have no clue what to do. Usually they see a television show with guests that have all got the same disorder Parents look to neighbors, friends and sometimes strangers for feedback on how to cope and deal with the problems they have with their teens.

Many parents could not explain the difference between a psychiatrist and a psychologist much less figure out on their own whuch to see. Parents and their kids just going whichever way the wind blows. Whatever place the  therapist or teacher told them to go not considering the permanent label and scar it could leave. Its  just blindly leading people to their own slaughter. Dont be a part of your own child’s social demize. Let us help develop a family plan of action. We offer hourly rates that are much less than you would pay in an office as we dont have the overhead of buidlings etc.. We will work with you from beginning to end. All you need to do to get on the road to recovery for your family is look at menu of our team and determine who will best suit your needs. Then contact us asap before the damage gets too bad.

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Having been  in and around the circles of addiction, depression and all behavioral and mental health issues in my career allowed me to understand the nuances and many differences between the way one doctor does things compared to another.

Time Frame

Now is the time to act when they are under 13 or 14 although it is still workable at 18 if they are willing. Children as young as 8 years old are being drugged today, dont let this be the case with your loved ones.

Here is the point of this little post. Don’t pretend there is no issue.  Address all the issues as directed by someone who actually has worked and lived it and has education as well.

Don’t try this at home people. Its above anyone’s head who has not been trained extensively on the topic. This is why we have a team with Dont Label My Kid! A team that has 100+ years combined experience in all areas from addiction to behavioral health to spiritual guidance, natural healing and all things mental health. Leave this part to the professionals in this field who have also raised our own kids., or you risk being a willing part in labeling your own child for life.

Discuss your options today for coaching, consulting and anything else you see on our front page menu.

Read Pastor Matt’s bio, as well as Jenny, Mike and Mine to see who would who of us could best help then lets started. You know what they say about the definition of crazy is right? Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

Contact me -tim@dontlabelmykid.com or in emergency 386-675-7549

tj

Before You Give Up – Read This.

Just When I Wanted to Quit…

 

It takes extraordinary people to reap extraordinary harvests in life. Achieving success does not come easy, perhaps the most successful people I know have had the most failure of any one I know . Here is one of my favorite athletes giving his take on success and failure.

” I have missed more than 9000 shots in my career. i have lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I have been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I have failed over and over and over again in my life, and that is why I succeed. I can accept failure everyone fails at something. But I cannot accept not trying. ” – Michael Jordan

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We cannot operate on the idea that many people do, the idea that all the successful people got “lucky” in life, or that the world owes us something and we are tired of waiting on it. The world owes us nothing. Pressing on during dark times, not operating in what it  ” looks ” like in our circumstances and what goes on around us. Not everyone is willing to do the work that it takes to be successful. Not everyone is willing to suffer the hardship it requires to reach and achieve the goals you have. Ben Franklin once said ” The harder I work, the luckier I get “. There comes a time in all of our lives when we are fed up. Done trying and burned out. This is the critical moment that will determine the future, as we all have to decide to press on in pain and darkness when no hope is in sight, or just quit and let the world have it’s way with us, being tossed back and forth by the waves of society, living an emotional roller coaster. Listening to what Oprah is saying instead of doing what we are dying to do. Paying attention to the unstable ways out in this world, or grounding yourself in your dream.

Perseverance————————————————————————————————————————————————————

Perseverance- function: noun

14th century-

Definition: continued effort to do or achieve something despite difficulties, failure, or opposition: the action or condition or an instance of persevering

(Miriam-Webster, Inc.)

” The brick walls are there for a reason. The brick walls are not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something. Because the brick walls are there to stop the people who don’t want it badly enough. They’re there to stop the other people “-   Randy Pausch

” Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up “- Thomas A. Edison

Perseverance is not getting knocked down 19 times, it is getting up on the 20th. We often have the idea that the people who are successful in or eyes have not suffered, have not been broke, hungry, hopeless, helpless, depressed, angry, frustrated, scared, worried, tired, drained. We think we are the only ones who suffer from these trials. No, it is not the case. If we want success we will encounter these obstacles. Never fool yourself into thinking that there is a short road to success. Persevere!

 

Perspective-

It is critical that we are viewing things from a proper perspective. One time when my children were all young, I was experiencing very intense financial hardship. I was broke, and I had gotten so focused on my finances that I did not pay much attention to my children as much as I had. One day I was driving around, and heard an interview on the radio. The guest on the phone was a man who had just recently won around 10 million dollars in some kind of clearinghouse. The radio personalities were celebrating, cheering him, they had background sound effects of whistles and bells, but the man did not seem to be as excited as they were. As they waded through an interview with him, it came out that this man had recently lost his 8 year old son to cancer. The radio people fumbled to find words, and then one announcer consoled the man, expressing his empathy about his loss. He followed that with this statement.    ” I know you would give the 10 million back to have your son back, and am so sorry to hear this “….there was a short pause and the man, barely able to utter words, emotionally and tearfully said these words- ” Have him back? (crying)..I would give that 10 million dollars back just to have a chance to say goodbye “. These words changed my perspective in one minute. I turned around and went home, to hug my healthy children, and my perspective was reset. Have a proper perspective!

 

Start thinking as you desire to be. Say words that encourage your dream to happen. Speak things like ” I am looking forward to doing the book. I am looking forward to my promotion, I am excited about the new doors opening for me. I can do this!” The most important lesson so far I have learned in life regarding this topic, is this; If you can learn to be content in any circumstance, in any situation whether happy or sad, rich or poor, you can do anything. Stop thinking that the dream you have is going to give you contentment. Contentment is a learned trait. You learn to be content, no matter what is going on, you choose to stay positive through dark times!

Resistance-

There will always be haters. It seems the closer we get to success, the more haters appear. They are the ones that gave up at the brick wall you pushed through. They feel uncomfortable with you moving up and out, while they will remain status quo. It is easier for them to tear you down then to push you forward. Believe in yourself when nobody else does. View resistance as a step closer to success, nobody takes time to tear down someone who has agreed to stay in misery! They will try to pull you back down to that place because it would be lonely without you. They know they have given up, but you have not, and there may be resistance even from family or friends. When you achieve success, you will clearly remember those who believed in you all the way up. Those people, are called friends.

Those are some real ways to prepare yourself for success. You need to see yourself in the position you want to be in. Call things that are not as though they are. Picture you doing what you are striving for. Dwell on it. Never be intimidated and never be ashamed. I was about 25 years old, and was a speaker to several hundred people on the topic of training trainers for at -risk youth. I was about to get up and go to the podium, when it happened. The voices whispering in my ear ” You cannot do this” ” You have never spoken to this many at once” ” You will be nervous” . Now just to clear the record, they were not real voices! LOL! They were the whispers of doubt coming to me because I was doing something for the first time. I was slightly slowed, but trying to pull it together, when my friend seated next to me at the table pulled my arm back to him gently, as I was about to walk away to speak. He sensed the nerves. He leaned over , whispering in my ear as all of the people looked on. They could not hear what was being said, but I sure did and it gave me a new perspective on things. He said casually, and with a smile to me ” Hey man, act like you have done this before!” It may not seem like a powerful inspirational statement to you, but it was what I needed that day. I looked out at the audience, and the thought came that I was up there for a reason! I was right where I should have been, when I should have been there.

I am right where I should be today, because I did not stop at the brick wall to give up. You have a brick wall to face too. Press through it and leave the others behind. After all, thats the only way you will stand out, is by finishing strong, breaking cycles of negativity and learning contentment right now. You are right where you should be, for such a time as this! Never give up.

DLMK

 

Have You Something To Celebrate? A New Book? A Published Article? How About Just Good News In Your Family Or Career? Illness Healed? We Want To Share It! Let Us Know!

We all get so caught up in all the negativity in what is going on in today’s world that we thought a monthly post highlighting some really good things would be cool. You can just use your first name unless you are alright with the publicity. It can be something you are thankful for like finding a job after a long absence, a healing of a sickness that has been plaguing you or your family.

 

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If you have good news form the writing world, like a book published, or an article published, or any milestone no matter how big or small. We have spent a year complaining so why not continue this thanksgiving spirit throughout the year?

Here is all you do. Drop me an email at tim@dontlabelmykid.com  and put ” Good News” in the subject line. Then give a brief summary of what happened that you are excited about and thankful for . If you want to keep your name a secret just use initials and if you would like the publicity just use your entire name and any other details you want included!

Its free and fun! We all need a reversal of mindset sometimes, share with us what has happened to you and we will post it!

TJ

Call To Order Meeting For Those Supporting Sharia Law …

 

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I feel great willy!
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Meeting Called To Order…
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Where I come from – If a wife is disrespectful she loses an arm.

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This stuff helps me think…

Know Anyone With Bi-Polar Disorder? See How It Can Easily It Can Be Misdiagnosed For Another Disorder That Can Be Treated Naturally.. Share With Any Loved Ones with Bi-Polar..

Bi-Polar Is What You Have Miss. Oh OOPS! My Bad.

 

A shared post from Anne @ Aussie Christian Freedom.

 

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Here Is How One Veteran Got A “Thanks For Your Service” Token Of Appreciation- On Camera…Caution- Mature Viewers

Sometimes are too hard to believe, too ugly to imagine. So you just forget that thought. In this case a few nurses listen as a Vet begs for help, and cannot stop laughing. All caught on tape…sad

 

When Nurses Think Watching A Vet Die Is Funny

 

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How Mental Health Was Dealt With In The Old Days- Courtesy Of Dr. Bob Newhart- Laugh Alert!

 

Just click the link below for some very quick training on therapeutic modalities!

Old School Psychiatry!

 

I hope you will enjoy the flashback of  Bob Newhart and the slight difference in his technique for therapy. It may be good if we had a few more like him around!

tj

There Is An Old Saying ” No Matter Where We Go-There We Are”. But Are We Really?

Last week I was involved in a pity party. Now let me clear, this one was not self hosted. This one just surround me,  enveloped me and I felt like a could not get out. I felt so sorry for myself that I was shutting the laptop down, not changing my clothes for a day or two, and so selfish that I decided not not return any messages that first day. I did not even look up to wave at the old lady who waves to me all the time by the beach when I walk. I felt the ocean itself should feel blessed that I even decided to make the walk that day. Yeah it was pretty bad.

But it got worse. I got to the ” comparing my life to others thing” . I would see my dream jacked up Silverado roll by as just assume he must have won the lottery. Not that he worked for it. This lasted 4–5 days and I was oh so pitiful.

 

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One day last week I got started thinking about the veterans. The guys who had seen that were still affecting them 40 years later. Things worthy of rocking their world. I started taking note of some of the homeless vets who were suffering from PTSD but just returned to jail for trespassing instead of being offered the treatment they needed, They were dumpster diving for food, 50 years old but looking 70. Then I am bombarded by all the lawsuits actual traitors are winning for time served before they turned coat. The illegal immigrants getting more benefits for free than most of us ever get. I cannot imagine having to for the best dumpster food all the while knowing what they know.

Christian Author / Artist Joni Erickson. Joni broke here neck, leaving her totally paralyzed for 50 years now. She can only speak, and draw with a pencil in her mouth these amazing sketches. Totally paralyzed relying on an amazing husband to take her to the rest room , change here and feed her 24/7. My problems just started to look smaller and smaller.

I could go on all day with examples but the point here is  We Are Not “Wherever We Go”. Most of problems although some serious, do not have to dictate where we are in our mind. That is up to us. It’s a matter of perspective and to some extent our knowledge of what is going on every day around us. Child trafficking, organized pedophile rings even in the church, entire families lost in a day from an accident. Hundreds of things that make our situations look very minor. Not all, but many.

So here is what I recommend we all do from now on. Take some time to actually select a group of really needy or hurting people and plan an ongoing outreach once per week or month and celebrate those people. It’s a win-win situation for all. We get the benefit of seeing someone lifted up and we get the real perspective of just how serious our own ” problems” are.

Try it, you don’t make it policy anymore to allow your circumstances to dictate where you ” are” . 

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Happy Veterans day to all and God Bless America!

Will You Stop Kidding Yourself And Acting All ” Professional” Mr. Cocaine? And You -” Ms Writer” -Do They Know You Have Your Own Head Doctor? LOL You People Pretending You Are Worthy…Pathetic

I have seen many of negative and depressing things in my life. Depression, Addiction, Suicide, Sexual Abuse, Physical Abuse, Incarceration, Divorce, Trauma, Disease, loss of family etc.

suicide family

That is just in my own family. Lots of failure as far as the family unit growing up. I carried the guilt for that failure long into adulthood. As if it was my fault. 

 

Professional Career

My career in social work and mental health in the corporate world spanned over 20 years included being a foster parent for 40 troubled teens, starting a school for expelled violent youth, outpatient therapist, program manager for several programs from adults with the most severe disabilities anyone has seen, a senior center and another program for expelled youth in gangs where we scanned each kid right off the bus for weapons.

teen group

 

I was hired by the state to teach a program called BRIDGES  which was a weekly group I led full of teens that were somehow involved in the Juvenile Justice system and on off days I taught parenting for the parents of those teens. Its only been in the last 4 years that I have called myself a blogger when I started this blog.

I have written off and on for many years for companies I worked for and things like that but nothing I called my own  until 4 years ago when this blog was launched.

Almost everything I did and do in the area of kids, families, juvenile justice and mental health has been successful.  ( I am just soo great) I am not bragging, there is a reason you need to know this. This is my gift, we all have gifts and if you’re doing something that absolutely has no interest to you and makes you hate working, you are not within the gifting God gave you.

Due to my family situation growing up, and having been through major depression, addiction, many surgeries for a bone disease, divorce and much more at work I was instantly effective in certain groups. Although I had not been through everything life can throw at you, I still found success at every single place or population I worked with because I did not try to step outside of my gifting.

Except once and I really do not want to talk about it. 

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The Point Of Telling You About My Background.

I hope that the people who need to be reading this and if you know somebody who needs it you will share. People who are currently feeling hopeless or have struggled with it most of their lives. People who are constantly put down about how good or bad they are doing in comparison to someone else, or some people are constantly challenging your credibility to do what you do.

yelling man

In my life when I was working on places that serve addicts and mental health patients I was harassed mainly by people who did not like me. They knew I recently had been in a short term rehab for addiction and they began to use it against me in ways that became hurtful . Even worse I really had nobody to reverse what they saying! On paper it did look weird that the teacher became a patient . The problem was that  I began to believe what they were saying. I did not know how to rise above it. Because on paper, it was true!

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This experience I had  with just one man absolutely changed my life and the way I looked at myself. It will do the same for anyone who listens carefully to what I am saying. It’s a powerful lesson in self-worth. Especially if you have a checkered background full of events the world might call you a loser for being a part of. Especially if you have given up on any more success in life due to your past failures. Its a new day!

This post, if received and accepted and not just tossed aside as if it were just another self-help article to get you through today will change you. It’s a life changing, encouraging and hope giving truth to anyone who has been hopeless for a long time and lost any belief in yourself due to the verbal abuse of a spouse, the downgrading talk you allow at work or any other place and by the negative thoughts we have all experienced at some point. Seeing your true position or option for that position is available to anyone anytime. Just like anything though you must want it, and need it. If you feel like hopelessness and depression has been good to you in some way then wait a little while . Come back and read this in 6 months.

 

There is a point in this where a spiritual decision must be made.

If it scares you that I may mention God in this post, don’t run, I promise its not a judge, or beat you over the head with the bible post. So get back over here before you try and sneak off to the next post.

This is not a Christian website and the reason is for times like this. Whether you are a Christian or not we all get to this point of how freedom of sadness is needed and how hope can be restored. The two groups may settle on different methods but we all end up here. We all have to hang on to something when times are tough, when we are struck with tragedy and hope evades us. That is why we have gambling, alcohol. drugs, porn and all these things that actually destroy lives but we cling to them as if no other option is available.

Here is a secret not many people are able to process; for everything God made, the enemy, satan has made a counterfeit for.

As you go through your days and encounter people in your life, try to recall what the original plan was for that situation and you will see a pattern begin to develop. Marriage, respect, god and many other things. For a period of time God has allowed the prince of darkness or satan to rule the earth. However as a believer in Christ we don’t have to take his punishment like the rest of the world does. He will come at us all the time, but we are instructed how to deal with those attacks in God’s word.

Now, whether any of us like it or not, that Word of God is there, it has never once come back void and according to it there is no other way to salvation then what it says – through the blood of Christ. (John 14:6) Even science is catching up with the bible and the scientists who used to talk about Lucy, the missing link are bowing their knees to Christ as they see the evidence in their arena of every single detail being uncovered while watching with their own eyes.

One excellent little book I recommend is by a scientist named Josh McDowell. He was actually so sick and tired of hearing Christians talk about the Bible and Jesus, he actually set out on a scientific mission with his team to prove once and for all that Jesus, the bible, and all the hokey Kumbaya stuff was a joke and he would personally and scientifically prove it. I’m not sure at what part of the mission it occurred, but at one point in it, Dr. McDowell is said to have bowed to his knee and and asked for forgiveness from the Lord and told his team that the evidence of Christ being who He said was so overwhelming that he was kidding himself. He wrote a short book, called  More Than A Carpenter which is maybe a two hour read, and now is the founder of Josh McDowell international ministries. You can just google his name and his many sites and testimony will come up. 

This is one area all of us must either turn from or cling to. There is no in-between , as a matter of fact in that word God himself says he hates lukewarm believers and he will spew them out of his mouth  -hot or cold but no luke -warm .

I say this to encourage you before you turn it away , take another peek..think it through before you abandoned it.. After all what if it is true? Once you have died and must face the Lord, there are no spiritual mulligans.

As a matter of fact this post itself makes you aware of the Gospel and you are officially put on notice. You have been told the truth and what you decide to do from here is on you.

I lived a life of feeling that I was nothing but a failure and my mistakes in the past were just going to pave the way to a miserable part two in my life. It did not matter what was happening around work or anywhere else. I could not find the peace that comes with being ok with who you are. I also had over the years an ex-wife who made sure that the entire world knew what I was struggling with and just made it even more impossible to believe in any hope. Suffocating on my own prediction of failure. All of this happening while I was a Christian!

Then one year I could not take it and I spent a lot of time reading about these issues in self-help books., motivational speeches and the like. Still no change.

I did know enough to know that all the voices I had been hearing my whole life telling me I have no business speaking to this crowd, or I am fooling myself thinking I can be a good leader, after all look at all my problems- the voices were not coming from God. I had this misconception that God was reminding me over and over that I was UNWORTHY. Basically I made too many mistakes to dig out of this one. No way for me to rise from this pit and be successful after all my life problems. It was not until 10 years ago a bible believing Christian listened to my feelings and challenged me with this question.

” The Bible says that there is no one worthy, not one. Who do you think you are thinking you can accomplish worthiness in God’s eyes anyways? Are you saying God is a liar?”The man went on to remind me that If I was going to call myself worthy before God, it could only happen by believing in the finished work of Christ at Calvary, where He took our position as sinners and our consequence. That is the only way we can wake up feeling worthy. He also pointed out a few scriptures about how not God but the enemy of our souls is the ” whisperer” . We do not have to even acknowledge the enemy as Christians. We are instructed in the bible how to deal with him. We know that we belong to someone greater. 

That lesson basically cured me of my listening to the bad voices and many times if a voice did come back I would simply speak the truth of God’s Word. I might say  There is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus who walk not after the flesh but after the spirit (Romans 8:1) I was not going to give any credibility to any negative voices anymore because I just found out a secret I am NOT WORTHY on my own. By I am more than a conqueror in Christ.

This entire issue was about making a decision which side of the spirit realm I would listen to . After I decided to believe in what God’s word said, I had nothing but hopeful thoughts each time I read the word.. God is for us not against us. The idea that anything was ” too late” was straight from the pit of hell.

Let me interject something here.  Non-believers need a change to. If they choose not to accept the promises of God’s Word and deny Christ is needed for heaven,  then help is still needed .Many will stop as soon as we discuss the bible, and say

” Fine for you but I worship pineapple plants and the stars.  Maybe its more like ” Hey man, 58 trillion years ago a fish grew legs and began to walk on land. The rest is history!

Usually non-Christians resort to adrenaline related activities , setting new financial goals for themselves and anything that may give them a sense of a new horizon or task to go after. The problem with those, is that they are only a temporary fix. I personally have a friend who does not enjoy his life all, rich as he could be. He has an oceanfront home. Two years after it was done he was not happy so he had a 20 seat movie theatre built inside. That should do it right?  Not when you chose money a sa way to have security.

It’s likely that they will be back in a year looking again. Some Christians who know better will not hold on to the Word and its promises very long and relapse into hopelessness, but the good news is that there are usually plenty of other Christians around who can help get the people who slid out of the Word back into it soon.

This is the reason I began to feel ” worthy” to do anything-even with my baggage and critics. That issue was resolved now. Yes, I am unworthy. However Through Christ I can do all things. I began to read about each of the most praised followers of Christ. Quite frankly their resumes were pretty sketchy, just like mine. But they were humble and willing to let God change them and no longer bound to fear. 

 

 

So what in the world does all this mean. In simple terms? Well, we all have this dilemma. We have to make a decision whether we want to believe what God says about you in His word, or to put that whole enchilada aside and go it on your own. In other words, make a decision to actually find out what this word has to say about who you would be/ are as a follower of Christ. This means what your authority and position is on earth, where you rest your security, what your potential is, the understanding of the fact that as a believer you also have eternal security, what the consequences are for those who reject God and His word –

Jesus said “whoever turns their back on me, so I will also turn my back on him” – 

I was not there to see what His expressions were, but since He also said ” I am the way,, the truth and the life, no man shall see the father except through me” 

That right there is one of the most frightening verses in the bible to me. It does not take Colombo to figure out that if you rejected the only one who can allow you into heaven, it cannot end well.

This may shock you, but I did not write the bible. Just like everyone else there came a point where I needed to make a call on it either way. So that is a non- negotiable with God.

How about the title of this post? How does God play into all the negative feelings , voices and people trying to beat us down. Well, its great news! You have a new boss, and He says you are awesome. No matter what your past is like He is willing to make you one of His. Remember who Jesus went to minister to while on earth. Not the Billy Grahams or the people who had it all together. He hung out with the prostitutes, the drunks and thieves. The ” religious ” people were none too happy about it either, they thought they were the only ones worthy of His presence. The great news in this message is that Jesus is looking for humility, not perfection. As a matter of fact the bible says the only unforgivable sin is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. That is another way of saying rejection of Christ.

It is a great feeling as a believer to know that no matter what the past held, its washed away in the blood of Jesus. The bible says He cast our sins as far as the East is from the West. That is something to wake up for! Whats even more amazing, is that God not only forgives you, to the point where you could not care less about what others say about you- and also he will use you for His purposes.

Each time I am able to share the truth of the Gospel with someone or write about it- It is hard to believe He is actually using me, a broken down sinner for His purposes! See, in the old state of mind of fear, insecurity, and all, we barely felt worthy to do what little we were. In the mind as a believer you get to have unlimited purpose and not a care about what anyone says because God is paving the path of your life.

So as I close ,will ask 3 things.

1-

Let Me Introduce The Latest Addition To Our Team….Jenny Clark & Her Magazine All4uraddiction.com

Meet The Newest Member Of Our Team

 

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This post is just a few months late. However along with Pastor Matthew Winters, and Mike Carey -Jenny has her own area of expertise that has proven to be an incredible resource for many people and you all need to know about it as we grow into a whole new realm of what we call a ” social media presence”. You can click the link on top for her overview, but I want to make something very clear to all who are reading this. Jenny and her magazine called All4uraddiction.com  has built up a very healthy audience which includes 10k actual subscribers.

 

Pastor Matt and his wife Jennifer Winters

Matt has his profile listed under our main menu as well as several ways to reach him

 

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Mike Carey is at Alternativesolutions4health.com

(also listed under our menu with the rest of the team.)

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The reason for her success is that her magazine provides resources in many areas of treatment. Addiction and all the things that can go along with it. She has built this whole thing in 4 years while also working her other job. Knowing what it is like to pump out articles for 4 years and connect with others, I have the utmost respect for what she has done. Together along with our team we plan to turn our opportunities as we grow into potential chances to build your site as well. We have always operated as a team because understand that the demand is very large. For one example, Facebook experts recently posted and article stated that there are currently more than 50k people seeking treatment for addiction related issues. Think of that huge amount of people and how much All4uraddiction.com can help through her hundreds of contacts?

The same thing can occur with your particular area of expertise. We can help you do it!

For now please click on the magazine address above and see what is accessible in her magazine. That can be your business or cause because let me tell you folks people are looking from anything you can think of from pet supplies to service oriented sites like finance and the like.

I know you will enjoy and share the magazine with your contacts. Remember that by sharing this you move can give a reach of 10k more people  you can reach- instantly. The problem is if nobody if seeing what you have, they will buy from who they can see. Make yourself known!

TJ

 

PTSD- How It Effects Soldiers As Bad Or Worse As Civilians…And A Great Story To See It In Movie Form.

By now everyone has heard of PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Although a long time back it was a term reserved for the diagnosis of very severe patients who had been exposed to some extraordinary events. These days 6 years old get the diagnosis when a spanking they got has been labeled abuse and therefore they suffer from PTSD.

Today I watched a movie with Samuel Jackson and a few others that were all in combat together in Iraq. Unlike the war movies I have seen, this was one of the best mental health sides of the truth that I ever have seen. In this flick, it does not end when the 4 who were from the same area leave for home. It does not end until you see how each one chooses to handle their PTSD here at home, in the real world. If  you are a coach or counselor of any type you need to watch this movie.

I think it will change even the most seasoned therapists, as this movie is so absolutely transparent in each of the people’s lives it brings life in you a whole new meaning to what PTSD is really all about.

 

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Home Of The Brave

If have any trouble getting on through the first link, I have posted a second to Tubitv ( 100% free to watch it there)

https://tubitv.com/movies/389507/home_of_the_brave

https://tubitv.com/home

 

 

Get Me Out Of My PTSD!

 

A Guest Post From Founder Darlene McRoberts of www.heresyourhopesite.wordpress.com Challenges Us On Where We Are Really At….

Hows Your Spiritual Tenacity? Your About To Find Out

 

https://wordpress.com/post/dontlabelmykid.wordpress.com/24456

 

 

 

 

 Storms Of Life- The Hurt And Healing. Where Did God Go? How To Be A Rock In The Midst Of The Thing That Is Ripping Others Apart…

This world can be harsh. Our circumstances can attempt to break us down. Whether you are a Christian or not, I am wrting this to offer to you the only way to remain unshakeable from any of life’s flaming arrows. Will we not feel pain or sorrow and never cry if we do what this article tells you? We still feel the pain, and cry sometimes.

Its our core, our spirit that can remain steady and strong.

If you are a Christian wondering why you feel so vulnerable when things seem to fall apart or you are a straight up anti-God soldier who claims not to need God, this is for both of you. For the Christian, you can learn about why you may be weak in your faith when bad things happen. For the soldier, drop your weapon for a few minutes and see if you might see how this could work and hopefully give it a shot.

Whether we are talking about some tragic circumstances in our own families like unexpected death or loss of income or a number of possible issues, we all have felt at one time or another that God surely must be punishing us. Unbelievers sometimes use these circumstances to affirm their non-belief in God.

Recently we have had some large-scale disasters like the wildfires in California and hurricanes in Florida that forced over a million people out of their homes, not knowing what they may return to. On a personal note I have been through wildfires, dozens of hurricanes and other natural disasters. I lost my brother to suicide and my grandparents the next year. My family has seen a bunch of personal tragedies and natural ones like these storms and fires I referenced.

 

This year though was the first time I have ever evacuated.  When hurricane Irma took over the entire state of Florida, everywhere you turned you saw people crying or pleading with God to take the storm away. You know what? That’s okay. The problems arise when believers don’t get the requested answer in the time frame they have allowed God to wipe these things out. No question people are genuinely hurting, scared. helpless and sometimes hopeless when these things happen.

The question to believers in Christ, is which way are we going to trust now. In our own understanding or in God, period? Here is the mandate from God’s Word;

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart,  lean not on thine own understanding. In all our ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths”. Proverbs 3: 5-6 ( KJV)

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Now, before anyone gets irritated by this order from God because it does not seem possible at certain times, let me introduce a missing ingredient in being able to trust.

Faith

How do we acquire that kind of strong faith though? It surely does not come from reciting ” I have faith” all day hoping faith will enter into you. Faith does not come by mind over matter or manipulating your self into a false sense of faith.

Once again if we refer back to our life manual, the Bible, we are told that there is but one way for genuine faith to arise in us. Faith that will sustain us through anything.

Romans 10:17 says “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. ( KJV)

Wait just a minute you may say” I have read countless Christian books, I pray, I try to do all I can to please God, I even leave tracts for my waiter or waitress  I should have strong Faith!

Good for you for choosing Christian books over romance novels or inappropriate magazines. Those are wise choices but don’t for a minute they give you lasting faith. You see- God never changed the rules about how legitimate faith is gained, it’s still by His Word. Yep, that means no other Christian anything has the power to do that. Now do not mistake me as if I was saying we don’t need Christian magazines, books, videos and all because we do. They can encourage us, keep us focused in the right direction, even provide us with an emotional spiritual high for a day or two. They keep us in touch with other believers which is a recomendation the apostle Paul made.

However, don’t mistake emotions for faith. So why am I emphasizing the true way to get real faith? Because lack of real faith is the number one reason people stay in crisis mode when problems come, walk away from the faith or never get involved. Maybe they have never been told what we are talking about. Whatever the reason they are drifting and doubting is because they do not renew their minds daily with the Word of God, the Holy scriptures.

What is the difference between you fueling  up only on Christian books and movies which can produce an emotional charge or maybe a temporary ” Jesus high” ? It’s the difference between real faith and manufactured powerless temporary faith. Lets see what the Bible says about what the power its own words hold for those who stay in it and keep renewing their minds everyday from it.

The word says this about itself-

“For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow: it judges the thoughts and attitude of the heart”-  Hebrews 4: 12 ( NIV)

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I challenge you to find any Christian publication other than the Bible that makes that claim about its contents. You wont. Not even the most famous Christian authors would even consider comparing their words to the power of ” the Word”.

I dedicate so much time to the Word of God and its importance in the midst of crisis and storms in our lives because those who obey the order on how to get real faith are the ones who really remain unshaken regarding God no matter what is going on. One other thing to note, is that in the bible you will find that every true follower of God had to come to crossroads at some point in life where they surrendered their own will and plans and decided to put it all into trusting God. Take Job for example. An honest, faithful man who God clearly allowed to suffer in almost every way he could. Lost his fortune, his family, even his health.

Job was frustrated and not happy about his situation but he decided nothing was going to take his faith away. He made the decision right up front to operate not on feelings, but Faith. So after the storms in his life, his life was put back together by God even greater than it originally was. Now that is faith. In today’s mindset you will likely not find too many Job’s in your life. Most people just get mad, give up, curse God, denounce God or even take their own lives because they decided to play the role of God and decide how things would end up. What was so different about JOb? Was he a better person than we are? Maybe God gave Him some superpowers that we dont have? Nope.

Only one thing kept Job so trusting in God that even when his own wife said he should curse God and die, Job said ” Even though He slay me, I will praise Him”

There is another scripture that Christians need to keep in mind as well. Romans 8:28 says ” All things work together for good for those that love the Lord and are called according to His purpose”

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Job understood God was not going to just abandon him. That’s why the man who makes our little problems look insignificant was unshakable in his faith. That faith to keep on and even have total peace is only found one way. Reading the word of God often to renew your mind ( if you have not figured this out yet, the world we live in does everything it can to talk us out of our faith.)

The only protection from being affected by that is to renew your mind before you walk out the door and face the world that wants you to walk away from God. That is part of the armor God has given us to be unshakable when everything seems to be working directly against you and your family and faith. He will not force us to stay in His word though. We have free will. If you go to Barnes and Noble and choose to cozy up with a good Anton Lavey ( church of satan) book, that’s your call and of course so are the consequences. So our choices in crisis are critical.

If you have grown children or even younger children you surely have noticed that in their first few years of life they never question what you say or do. If you hand them a bottle, they don’t spin the top off to inspect what you’re giving them. It could be poison but their childlike faith does not even tempt them to go against you or question you about any major decisions. If told your young kids they need to hit the basement now because a tornado was coming through, its doubtful they would pull out a weather radio to challenge your statement. That describes childlike faith.

Guess what that Bible says about what kind of faith is pleasing to God? You got it- childlike faith. Just like your kids never questioned you as a child, we are to have the same attitude with our heavenly Father. Once again, you cannot order childlike faith online or talk yourself into it. Faith comes from where again? The Word. Period.

As adults as we find discipline to renew our minds in the Word and experience true trust in God no matter what is happening, your friends, family, kids are witness to that peace you have unlike so many. That is the opportunity to share your secret with them, and they will believe you because sometimes you are the only calm one around and they notice it. The mindset we get from reading the truth all the time and building real faith goes a little like this-

People come and go ( death, divorce). jobs come and go, health comes and goes, riches come and go, friends come and go, but God- He is the same yesterday, today and forever. That is what you will have etched in your soul as you stay in the Word. It leaves very little room for trusting in any of those listed things. But your realization that God will never leave or forsake you and is always the same will provide you with an entirely new kind of faith in any circumstance.

It doesnt matter if you are an atheist today or a lifelong Christian who even ushers in the church. The Word of God is available to both. One is no better then the other but by their trust in Christ. We all need a savior. Not one of us is righteouss enough to land in heaven except by the finished work of Christ at Calvary and by the blood He shed for anyone who accepts His forgiveness. Nobody has a one up one the other. If you are an atheist now, but tonite you choose to invite Christ into your heart and ask for forgiveness, assuming you get in the Word right away faithfully you could be alot better off then a Christian of 20 years who chooses to keep his Max Lucado reads up to date but not too much time in the Word.

That is why this article is for everyone. No matter what your past has been or where you have been. Its all able to be washed away with that blood of Christ for the asking.

You know when I began writing this article, I considered adding some pictures of the massive storms and fires that are happening. Then I got my head straight and realized I was about to give glory and even more attention to the things that are tearing people apart. Thankfully I realized that this is a hope centered piece, not a piece for lots of people to glorify the bad things that hit us.

Thats why the emphasis has been on the awesome opportunity to overcome this world and its attempts at defeating us. What we need is more instruction on how to overcome this world according to God. Thats victory. When you choose that route you will find that the things that used to wear and tear you down are now like flys on your shoulder that you can swat off and keep moving forward in God’s Word and plan for you and yours!

Listen to this womans confidence. I guarantee it did not come to her by never missing Oprah.

Whatever your storm, whether tragedy in your family, fires in your woods, or crazy rain and winds over the entire state, they all get smaller and smaller as the Word grows bigger and bigger in you!

Test it and see. After all God said not a word of His will ever return void…

TJ

 

 

 

 

Storms Of Life- The Hurt And Healing. Where Did God Go? How To Be A Rock In The Midst Of The Thing That Is Ripping Others Apart…

This world can be harsh. Our circumstances can attempt to break us down. Whether you are a Christian or not, I am wrting this to offer to you the only way to remain unshakeable from any of life’s flaming arrows. Will we not feel pain or sorrow and never cry if we do what this article tells you? We still feel the pain, and cry sometimes.

Its our core, our spirit that can remain steady and strong.

If you are a Christian wondering why you feel so vulnerable when things seem to fall apart or you are a straight up anti-God soldier who claims not to need God, this is for both of you. For the Christian, you can learn about why you may be weak in your faith when bad things happen. For the soldier, drop your weapon for a few minutes and see if you might see how this could work and hopefully give it a shot.

Whether we are talking about some tragic circumstances in our own families like unexpected death or loss of income or a number of possible issues, we all have felt at one time or another that God surely must be punishing us. Unbelievers sometimes use these circumstances to affirm their non-belief in God.

Recently we have had some large-scale disasters like the wildfires in California and hurricanes in Florida that forced over a million people out of their homes, not knowing what they may return to. On a personal note I have been through wildfires, dozens of hurricanes and other natural disasters. I lost my brother to suicide and my grandparents the next year. My family has seen a bunch of personal tragedies and natural ones like these storms and fires I referenced.

 

This year though was the first time I have ever evacuated.  When hurricane Irma took over the entire state of Florida, everywhere you turned you saw people crying or pleading with God to take the storm away. You know what? That’s okay. The problems arise when believers don’t get the requested answer in the time frame they have allowed God to wipe these things out. No question people are genuinely hurting, scared. helpless and sometimes hopeless when these things happen.

The question to believers in Christ, is which way are we going to trust now. In our own understanding or in God, period? Here is the mandate from God’s Word;

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart,  lean not on thine own understanding. In all our ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths”. Proverbs 3: 5-6 ( KJV)

screenshot_20170823-62729186825913.png

Now, before anyone gets irritated by this order from God because it does not seem possible at certain times, let me introduce a missing ingredient in being able to trust.

Faith

How do we acquire that kind of strong faith though? It surely does not come from reciting ” I have faith” all day hoping faith will enter into you. Faith does not come by mind over matter or manipulating your self into a false sense of faith.

Once again if we refer back to our life manual, the Bible, we are told that there is but one way for genuine faith to arise in us. Faith that will sustain us through anything.

Romans 10:17 says “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. ( KJV)

Wait just a minute you may say” I have read countless Christian books, I pray, I try to do all I can to please God, I even leave tracts for my waiter or waitress  I should have strong Faith!

Good for you for choosing Christian books over romance novels or inappropriate magazines. Those are wise choices but don’t for a minute they give you lasting faith. You see- God never changed the rules about how legitimate faith is gained, it’s still by His Word. Yep, that means no other Christian anything has the power to do that. Now do not mistake me as if I was saying we don’t need Christian magazines, books, videos and all because we do. They can encourage us, keep us focused in the right direction, even provide us with an emotional spiritual high for a day or two. They keep us in touch with other believers which is a recomendation the apostle Paul made.

However, don’t mistake emotions for faith. So why am I emphasizing the true way to get real faith? Because lack of real faith is the number one reason people stay in crisis mode when problems come, walk away from the faith or never get involved. Maybe they have never been told what we are talking about. Whatever the reason they are drifting and doubting is because they do not renew their minds daily with the Word of God, the Holy scriptures.

What is the difference between you fueling  up only on Christian books and movies which can produce an emotional charge or maybe a temporary ” Jesus high” ? It’s the difference between real faith and manufactured powerless temporary faith. Lets see what the Bible says about what the power its own words hold for those who stay in it and keep renewing their minds everyday from it.

The word says this about itself-

“For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow: it judges the thoughts and attitude of the heart”-  Hebrews 4: 12 ( NIV)

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I challenge you to find any Christian publication other than the Bible that makes that claim about its contents. You wont. Not even the most famous Christian authors would even consider comparing their words to the power of ” the Word”.

I dedicate so much time to the Word of God and its importance in the midst of crisis and storms in our lives because those who obey the order on how to get real faith are the ones who really remain unshaken regarding God no matter what is going on. One other thing to note, is that in the bible you will find that every true follower of God had to come to crossroads at some point in life where they surrendered their own will and plans and decided to put it all into trusting God. Take Job for example. An honest, faithful man who God clearly allowed to suffer in almost every way he could. Lost his fortune, his family, even his health.

Job was frustrated and not happy about his situation but he decided nothing was going to take his faith away. He made the decision right up front to operate not on feelings, but Faith. So after the storms in his life, his life was put back together by God even greater than it originally was. Now that is faith. In today’s mindset you will likely not find too many Job’s in your life. Most people just get mad, give up, curse God, denounce God or even take their own lives because they decided to play the role of God and decide how things would end up. What was so different about JOb? Was he a better person than we are? Maybe God gave Him some superpowers that we dont have? Nope.

Only one thing kept Job so trusting in God that even when his own wife said he should curse God and die, Job said ” Even though He slay me, I will praise Him”

There is another scripture that Christians need to keep in mind as well. Romans 8:28 says ” All things work together for good for those that love the Lord and are called according to His purpose”

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Job understood God was not going to just abandon him. That’s why the man who makes our little problems look insignificant was unshakable in his faith. That faith to keep on and even have total peace is only found one way. Reading the word of God often to renew your mind ( if you have not figured this out yet, the world we live in does everything it can to talk us out of our faith.)

The only protection from being affected by that is to renew your mind before you walk out the door and face the world that wants you to walk away from God. That is part of the armor God has given us to be unshakable when everything seems to be working directly against you and your family and faith. He will not force us to stay in His word though. We have free will. If you go to Barnes and Noble and choose to cozy up with a good Anton Lavey ( church of satan) book, that’s your call and of course so are the consequences. So our choices in crisis are critical.

If you have grown children or even younger children you surely have noticed that in their first few years of life they never question what you say or do. If you hand them a bottle, they don’t spin the top off to inspect what you’re giving them. It could be poison but their childlike faith does not even tempt them to go against you or question you about any major decisions. If told your young kids they need to hit the basement now because a tornado was coming through, its doubtful they would pull out a weather radio to challenge your statement. That describes childlike faith.

Guess what that Bible says about what kind of faith is pleasing to God? You got it- childlike faith. Just like your kids never questioned you as a child, we are to have the same attitude with our heavenly Father. Once again, you cannot order childlike faith online or talk yourself into it. Faith comes from where again? The Word. Period.

As adults as we find discipline to renew our minds in the Word and experience true trust in God no matter what is happening, your friends, family, kids are witness to that peace you have unlike so many. That is the opportunity to share your secret with them, and they will believe you because sometimes you are the only calm one around and they notice it. The mindset we get from reading the truth all the time and building real faith goes a little like this-

People come and go ( death, divorce). jobs come and go, health comes and goes, riches come and go, friends come and go, but God- He is the same yesterday, today and forever. That is what you will have etched in your soul as you stay in the Word. It leaves very little room for trusting in any of those listed things. But your realization that God will never leave or forsake you and is always the same will provide you with an entirely new kind of faith in any circumstance.

It doesnt matter if you are an atheist today or a lifelong Christian who even ushers in the church. The Word of God is available to both. One is no better then the other but by their trust in Christ. We all need a savior. Not one of us is righteouss enough to land in heaven except by the finished work of Christ at Calvary and by the blood He shed for anyone who accepts His forgiveness. Nobody has a one up one the other. If you are an atheist now, but tonite you choose to invite Christ into your heart and ask for forgiveness, assuming you get in the Word right away faithfully you could be alot better off then a Christian of 20 years who chooses to keep his Max Lucado reads up to date but not too much time in the Word.

That is why this article is for everyone. No matter what your past has been or where you have been. Its all able to be washed away with that blood of Christ for the asking.

You know when I began writing this article, I considered adding some pictures of the massive storms and fires that are happening. Then I got my head straight and realized I was about to give glory and even more attention to the things that are tearing people apart. Thankfully I realized that this is a hope centered piece, not a piece for lots of people to glorify the bad things that hit us.

Thats why the emphasis has been on the awesome opportunity to overcome this world and its attempts at defeating us. What we need is more instruction on how to overcome this world according to God. Thats victory. When you choose that route you will find that the things that used to wear and tear you down are now like flys on your shoulder that you can swat off and keep moving forward in God’s Word and plan for you and yours!

Listen to this womans confidence. I guarantee it did not come to her by never missing Oprah. 

Whatever your storm, whether tragedy in your family, fires in your woods, or crazy rain and winds over the entire state, they all get smaller and smaller as the Word grows bigger and bigger in you!

Test it and see. After all God said not a word of His will ever return void…

TJ