February 22, 2018

Hope During Affliction

Many of you have gone on Spring Break or are anticipating taking a vacation this summer.  It is a time to refresh spirit, soul, and body.  Over the next couple of weeks, our faithful bloggers will be taking a ‘spring break’ from writing so that they can come back to us refreshed and freshly anointed.
However, Girlfriends’ Coffee Hour website won’t ‘go black’!  We will be revisiting some of our favorite blogs and daily devotions which have blessed us in the past.  We pray that each of you, our faithful friends and readers, will continue to start your day meditating on the devotionals and songblogs, and be encouraged and blessed.

Let’s give each of our bloggers a big round of applause, a hug,
and the rest they so deserve.  
God bless you, ladies!

SeekingHimLogo

Remember Your word to Your servant;
You have given me hope through it.
This is my comfort in my affliction.
Psalm 119:49-50a HCSB

This passage reminds me of Roman 12:12 NIV; in fact, it seems to me this passage provides the reason we are urged to be “…joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer…”.

What is hope?

  • Bakers Evangelical Dictionary – to trust in, wait for, to expect something beneficial
  • Strong’s Concordance – a strong and mighty trust, actively waiting

God’s Word gives us hope.  We trust in the Scriptures.  They are the foundation of our hope and should be the only source of our hope.  We can be assured God will never disappoint the hope He has given us.  Take a look at these two verses:

Fully satisfied and assured that God was able and mighty to keep His word
and to do what He had promised.
Romans 4:21 AMP

So let us seize and hold fast and retain without wavering the hope we cherish
and confess and our acknowledgement of it,
for He Who promised is reliable (sure) and faithful to His word.
Hebrews 10:23 AMP

We are to have hope even in times of affliction.

So, what is affliction?

  • Holman Bible Dictionary – the state of being pained or distressed
  • Strong’s Concordance – persecution tribulation, distress, pressure

His Word comforts and sustains us in times of affliction. Check this out:

For whatever was written in the past was written for our instruction,
so that we may have hope through endurance
and through the encouragement from the Scriptures.
Romans 15:4 HCSB

His Word was written for OUR instruction.  We are to have a strong and mighty trust in His Word as we actively wait during times of pain, distress, and pressure.  When we do so, we can be confident that:

…the God of hope (will) fill you with all joy and peace,
as you believe in Him so that you may overflow with hope
by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Romans 15:13 HCSB

I think one of my favorite verses sums up what happens when we hold tight to hope during times of affliction.

I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
Psalm 27:13 NIV

Continue to expect something beneficial in the future, especially during times of trouble, and you will see the goodness of the Lord.

He who calls you is faithful; He will surely do it.
1 Thessalonians 5:24

*   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~  ♥   ~   *

Father God, we are so thankful we have Your hope to hold on to, especially in the trying times of life.  Help us actively wait with a strong and mighty trust in You, knowing we will eventually see Your goodness come through.  In Your precious and Holy name we pray – Amen, it is so!

Hope During Affliction

SeekingHimLogo

Remember Your word to Your servant;
You have given me hope through it.
This is my comfort in my affliction.
Psalm 119:49-50a HCSB

This passage reminds me of Roman 12:12 NIV; in fact, it seems to me this passage provides the reason we are urged to be“…joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer…”.

What is hope?

  • Bakers Evangelical Dictionary – to trust in, wait for, to expect something beneficial
  • Strong’s Concordance – a strong and mighty trust, actively waiting

God’s Word gives us hope. We trust in it. It is the foundation of our hope and should be the only source of our hope. We can be assured God will never disappoint the hope He has given us. Take a look at these two verses:

Fully satisfied and assured that God was able and mighty to keep His word
and to do what He had promised.
Romans 4:21 AMP

So let us seize and hold fast and retain without wavering the hope we cherish
and confess and our acknowledgement of it,
for He Who promised is reliable (sure) and faithful to His word.
Hebrews 10:23 AMP

We are to have hope even in times of affliction.

So, what is affliction?

  • Holman Bible Dictionary – the state of being pained or distressed
  • Strong’s Concordance – persecution tribulation, distress, pressure

His Word comforts and sustains us in times of affliction. Check this out:

For whatever was written in the past was written for our instruction,
so that we may have hope through endurance
and through the encouragement from the Scriptures.
Romans 15:4 HCSB

His Word was written for OUR instruction. We are to have a strong and mighty trust in His Word as we actively wait during times of pain, distress, and pressure. When we do so, we can be confident in this:

…the God of hope (will) fill you with all joy and peace,
as you believe in Him so that you may overflow with hope
by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Romans 15:13 HCSB

I think one of my favorite verses sums up what happens when we hold tight to hope during times of affliction.

I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
Psalm 27:13 NIV

Continue to expect something beneficial in the future, especially during times of trouble, and you will see the goodness of the Lord.

He who calls you is faithful; He will surely do it.
1 Thessalonians 5:24

*   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~  ♥   ~   *

Father God, we are so thankful we have Your hope to hold on to, especially in the trying times of life. Help us actively wait with a strong and mighty trust in You, knowing we will eventually see Your goodness come through. In Your precious and Holy name we pray – Amen, it is so!

Girls with Swords – Chapter 7: Water / Fire (pgs. 106-111)

Day 2 of our Anniversary Celebration!

In honor of our 1-year Anniverary Celebration, we have chosen several prizes for giveaways this week to thank YOU for blessing us so much throughout this last year!  If it weren’t for our dear Sisters, YOU, we wouldn’t be here!  So from the bottom of our hearts, THANK YOU for all you do to bless our ministry!  We Appreciate You!!

Day 2 — This particular prize is one that I have personal experience with.  I implemented this prize in my life last year, and found it to be a lot more than I ever expected from it.  I grew in so many ways in my life, personally, emotionally, spiritually!  I would highly recommend it to anyone!!  But today, we want to bless you with it!  What is it, you ask???

TODAY’S GIVEAWAY IS A FREE ONE-HOUR SESSION WITH CHRISTIAN LIFE COACH MEGAN SMIDT!!  

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Megan has offered this gift to YOU because she truly cares about women!  She wants to see women strong, healthy, living their lives intentionally!  Able to give all they have to our Lord & Savior!  So with that, ONE lucky winner will be chosen at the end of today!

How do you enter for this fabulous prize???  All you have to do is read today’s blog by Jennifer, and then leave a comment about something that spoke to you from her blog!  That’s it!!  Pretty easy, huh?

DEADLINE FOR ALL COMMENTS TO BE POSTED IS 8PM CST TODAY.
WINNER WILL BE ANNOUNCED ON OUR FACEBOOK COMMUNITY PAGE ON MAY 11th.  

 

Now, on with our study!!! 🙂

“Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.

Isaiah 43:1-2

This section of our book speaks of the trials we will go through in our lives (the water and the fire) and how this refinement helps to forge us into the women God created us to be. Refinement is painful. I am not going to sit here and lie to you, my dear sisters. But these trials will strengthen us and, in turn, help us to forge the sword we will ultimately wield – the Word of God.

The troubles we face in this world are either self-inflicted or God-ordained. As humans, we have a tendency to get ourselves into trouble and God will let us face the consequences of our decisions. But, He will ultimately turn our poor decision making for good. He is always good. Always. He wants us to have the best life possible; the life He created us to walk. I think we tend to get caught up in trying to put out the daily fires on our own instead of focusing our attention on the One who wants to put them out for us.

The trials and afflictions we will face are but a blink of an eye from an eternal standpoint. We do not have God’s viewpoint. The things with which we struggle seem too impossible, too heartbreaking, and too hard sometimes. It is just plain tough to see past the pain in front of our eyes. Believe me, I know.

For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

2 Corinthians 4:17-18

This verse is so very hard to grasp, isn’t it? It is for me. I have to ask God to help me focus on the unseen. It is too easy to focus and become consumed with what is seen, the temporary afflictions that dampen our light and make us doubt our faith. By His grace, His strength, and His power, I can and will do it. Every day, I realize how much I need Jesus…more and more and more.

Friends, God is our Source of power. He is our Source of strength. He is trustworthy. He is good. Always. No matter what you are facing today, God is with you and He loves you so very much. Turn your pain over to Him. Talk to Him. He will help you through it. Turn to His Word. Let it heal your soul. Let His promises soak into your being.

When we are weak…He is strong.

When we are powerless…He is power-full.

When we feel unloved…He loves us unconditionally.

What affliction are you struggling with today that you need to bring to God’s feet?

_______________

Let’s Pray:

Father, this world brings many troubles. Please help us to focus on YOU at all times, so that when trouble does come our way, we will be ready, sword in hand, to defend against the attack. Strengthen our resolve and help us face the pain we may be hiding. Help us to bring our troubles to You and not be held in bondage to our afflictions any longer. Give us fresh eyes to see our troubles from an eternal perspective. In Jesus’ name, we pray, Amen!

Glorious Living w/ Coach Megan: Getting Past the Hurt

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My sweet Megan!

I have a friend who used me in hopes to gain something better for her daughter through a sport they are both involved in. After realizing that I was not able to offer any more than what she was already receiving, she got angry at me and started speaking badly of me. I am hurt, #1 because she was just using me and had not intention of actually being a friend #2 because of the negative things she has been speaking about me. I want to forgive and move on, but am struggling with complete forgiveness. How do I move on? I need some life coaching!! I need to know what a woman of God would do to resolve & get passed this issue!!
~S

My dear S,

It sounds as if rejection is at the root of this issue and I believe that once you deal with that rejection by healing the wound in your heart, you will be able to move forward.

Psalm 34:18

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted

and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

All of us are created with three God-given inner needs: for love, significance, and security. Because people fail people, it is essential not to let other people define who you are. Realize that rejection can easily skew your view! Now I realize that there was more to your hurt than the initial rejection of thinking she was a true friend but finding out she was using you…. but please stay with me through this discussion because I believe it will help to talk about rejection as a whole and I promise to bring it together for you at the end! 🙂

Deuteronomy 31:8

The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.

Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.

How do you accept yourself when others reject you?

1. Focus on the facts, not feelings.

First off, you must admit the rejection of the past and acknowledge its pain. Ask God to bring to mind every rejection from your childhood to the present, and then consider the circumstances of each situation. {Yes, we bring past hurts to present situations}. Then, acknowledge the wide range of feelings of rejection you experienced with each past event. Release to God the pain AND the person(s) involved. Ask God to heal the physical, emotional, and spiritual damage caused by each of these painful experiences of rejection.

Lamentations 3:19

I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitternessand the gall.

2. Claim God’s acceptance and unconditional love

Confess God’s love for you and all the ways He has shown you His love {like Christ dying for you}. Cite Psalms 139:1-18 and praise God for your life and His divine creation and plan for it. Convey your appreciation to God for His love of you by loving Him with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. Love others as He loves you.

3. Choose to forgive those who rejected you

Consider all the hurt and anger you feel over your rejection. Realize the cost of withholding forgiveness {a bitter spirit building up inside you, which will cause trouble and spread to those around you}. Commit to forgiving those who rejected you just as Christ forgave those who rejected Him (including you). Write down their names, their offenses, and the pain caused you. Then release each person, offense, and pain into the loving hands of God.

Colossians 3:13

Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone.

Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

4. Expect future rejection as natural in a fallen world

Empty yourself of the pride that drives your desire to be accepted by everyone. Since gaining everyone’s approval is impossible, commit yourself to pleasing God. Empathize with others who feel rejected by friends, family, employers, business associates, or anyone else important to them. Embrace the truth that as a believer, you will experience rejection, just as Jesus did. You are not exempt from being rejected in daily life.

1 Peter 4:12

Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you,

as though something strange were happening to you.

5. Secure Scripture in your mind to produce new thought patterns

Purpose to renew your mind by selecting meaningful scriptures to read. meditate on, and commit to memory. Plan a specific time each day to read God’s Word and pray. Partner with someone who will hold you accountable for applying God’s truth to your heart.

Romans 12:2

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.

Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is— his good, pleasing and perfect will.

6. Thank God for what you have learned through your rejection

  • “Thank you, Lord, for using my pain to make me more dependent on you.”
  • “Thank you, Lord, for using my pain to make me less dependent on people.”
  • “Thank you, Lord, for using my pain to make me more dependent on Your Word.”

Psalm 119:71

 It was good for me to be afflicted
 so that I might learn your decrees.

7. Encourage others as an expression of Christ’s love.

Give compassion to those who are hurting as someone who has been hurt. Lift them in prayer, faithfully praying for them and with them. Ease emotional wounds by embracing those in pain and encouraging them to talk.

Hebrews 3:13

 Encourage one another daily

8. Draw on the power of Christ’s life within you

  • “I will see Christ as my security whenever I feel insecure.”
  • “I know that I have all I need, for Jesus will meet all my needs.”
  • “I will daily set aside my selfish desires in favor of His desires, saying ‘Not my will, but Yours, be done.'”

Philippians 4:13

I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

While rejection is real and it hurts, we need to make sure that we are keeping our feelings in check as they can be so deceptive. We need to be careful not to take on someone else’s issue as our own and through forgiveness and loving as Christ loves, we free ourselves from hanging on to the yuck that keeps us from moving forward in such circumstances. No it is not easy, but it IS possible as God calls us to this in His Word. Seeking God through such trials and letting Him soothe your deep wounds is the only way to live free and get past the hurt. I pray this guides you though healing and is a blessing to you <3

Lord, give us Your unfailing compassion as we walk through tough relationships and help heal all the places we are hurting. We yearn to not stay stuck, but to get past out hurt and break free for good. Thank You for the guidance we find in Your Word. May You get all the glory as our hearts and relationships are restored, Lord! In Your Son’s matchless name we pray, Amen <3

Blessings,

Coach Megan 🙂