Do Christians Anesthetize Pain?


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Hi Everybody! 

Today, I think I’m going to touch on subject that’s not always talked about and I’ve been thinking a lot as I take time out from work today. I think that in many respects we try to band-aid the issues that are occurring in people’s lives with “Christian responses” like “The Joy of the Lord is your strength” or “it’ll get better” or “You shouldn’t be sad” like as if grief or pain are virtually non-existent in the Christian’s life. I don’t even know why I am touching on this subject today, but I’ve been talking to a few people this past week who have been hurt and heartbroken because of what someone else did to them. In many respects…the individuals in question where not non-believers but believers who we think should know better but don’t do better. 

When I think about this, I think of the many countless times I myself have been hurt, discouraged, and disappointed by so-called “Christians” that I wonder why is it we put on facades at church acting like we aren’t wounded when you are. Singing a praise song isn’t healing the wound of wrongdoing done by another person and worse off by a believer in the same room clapping their hands getting away with no remorse. The worst thing I’ve also seen is how people in the Church hush people to silence and treat the problem like a silent topic that is a “non-issue” by their standards and simply sweep everything under the rug and start to alienate the victim as the problem and mark victims with scarlet letters as they gang up together to ostracise and criticize behind closed doors.

Is it really a wonder why the heart of Jesus is crying as He continues to watch people walk out of church and never come back?

The truth is, church isn’t a building, church is a community of believers…and if we are simply in a building with no believers…then the only thing for a believer to do is walk out. 

2450238_1329647988400.17res_300_297We cannot simply anesthetize the problem with worship that doesn’t even reach the hurting soul sitting there in your midst feeling as if the songs mock their grievances that are being ignored with band-aid sugar coated words of non-encouragement. I remember when I was in a situation similarly sometime last year where I was wronged by someone in the church I used to attend and they treated me like I was the enemy, that I was the liar and made me out to be a person tooting her own horn. Instead of defending my honor, I decided to apologize for something I didn’t do because God distinctly tells us in the Word to forgive our brothers or sisters otherwise our sins will be retained before God.

If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”
 

I fear God enough to swallow up my dignity and take the beating of someone else’s evil actions and take the slap of humiliation while they continue acting like nothing ever happened. The thing is, that is but one incident that I had endured in that church. It takes a lot to forgive countless times, but that is what we are mandated to do as Christians and the reality is that very few follow this as the standard as many continue to hurt many innocents in the church today. 

When I think back on this one incident I think to myself that forgiveness truly is divine because only God can give you the strength to forgive such wrongs.  That incident broke me because I began to realize how Jesus felt to be betrayed by the so-called people He decided to die for.

You can call me a complainer or label me as a person who is bitter if you want, but I’m just giving you some real talk right about now. At this point, I’m so done with cookie cutter responses believers give to others that don’t really address the issue that the person has a legitimate complaint, a legitimate reason to be frustrated, angry, hurt and a reason to cry. Why act like someone should simply get over it??? Yes forgive, but cry if you need to cry, scream if you need to scream, write out your feelings on paper if you have to, do what you have to do to get out how you’re really feeling inside. Don’t bottle it in…let it out and then after that go to the alter and seek God for strength to forgive and heal your wounds. It may be true that the other person may never be sorry for what they did against you, but as long as you’ve done all you could do to release yourself from being offended and remaining offended by giving it up to God, this is I think the most healthy way to deal with people in pain.

Reaching Out to Help Someone in DespairThe one thing I wish I had was someones embrace during the times when things went south in my life…Sometimes people don’t want you to say anything, they just want you to acknowledge most times silently that their hurt and are hurting….you don’t have to voice out everything to encourage them during these hard times…sometimes people just want to simply know that you’re there for them. However, in my experience…I can count the few that reached out and consoled my situations and they are the ones I currently serve with in the new church I attend. Don’t get me wrong…one incident isn’t enough to make me walk away from a situation…in fact, the incident isn’t even the reason why I left my previous church, it was God who told me it was time to leave and step into something new.  I’ve endured a lot as a believer and what I can say is that I have learned so much that I appreciate the lessons I received in my previous church of what to do and what to NEVER do to other believers in my walk with God.

No church is perfect, but that doesn’t excuse why people still remain wounded just because of it.

My question lies in why the churches particularly in North America are losing impact in the now generation and the former generation? We continue to shrug our shoulders and anesthetize real issues that exist in the church and hide behind veils of hypocrisy acting like “this can’t be happening in my church” ….“it must be happening in another church but not mine”. My question is “Are you so sure of that???” are you not simply closing your eyes to these problems…acting like “it can’t be helped?”. 

Let me get one thing straight, I’m not advocating a witch hunt for wrongdoers in the church, I’m simply addressing the fact that people are hurting in the church and hiding it or not addressing it for what it is by simply saying insensitive things like “Get over it already, People will hurt you”...Even if that statement maybe true, my question is why should that even be allowed in the first place??? Call me an idealist, but I have since discovered that as a Watchwoman for God, God’s heart bleeds for His people that are beaten down by their own fellow brothers and sisters actions. Death and life are in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21)…we all know this verse and yet people continue to be ruthless and callous in their actions, in their words and in their deeds against their brothers and sisters. The Fear of God wouldn’t allow for this type of thing to continue to happen so I am of the opinion that what is also lacking in churches today is the reverential fear of God. If we really loved God like we so claim we do...why is it that we continue to shrug our shoulders, fold our hands or look away when a fellow believer is wronging another? is it because we simply don’t want to get involved for fear of excommunication??? Just saying that word left a bad aftertaste in my mouth…people care so much about their status quo in the church that they won’t bend to help their brother lying half dead in the back row of the pew because status is important, not your brother or sisters hurting heart…

Is it a wonder why non-believers are more like Samaritans that go the distance for a hurting believer than what should be the job of a Christian believer in the first place???? 

Please humor me and read that story of the Good Samaritan in the Bible once again if you think I’m lying: Luke 10: 25-37 

It’s one thing to have it be done by a non-believer, but believers hurting other believers, WHY should that be tolerated? I think it’s unacceptable.

I know it seems like I’m complaining…but I needed to get this off my chest today after counseling some individuals who’ve just encountered some crazy things that were done against them by their so called believer friends. I don’t think we can simply stand by like by-standers and watch like uninvolved onlookers to the wounded that are sitting next to you in the church. Let’s all develop a heart of compassion and start to reach out. Reaching out to others may not be your thing, but I’m sure you would like it if someone reached out to you when you were going through a rough time. It’s time to put our facades aside and start to be real again. So people of God, let’s get to it. This is my letter that I want to write to y’all today.

how-to-help-hurting-people040912Let’s love like Jesus today, because tomorrow may just be too late. Think about that as you go about your daily business.

There is this song that has been in my heart for the past few days. I sang it this past Sunday service and it’s such an awesome song of worship…If we really honor God, and worship God and love God, then let’s prove it by our deeds and actions and words to one another.Don’t let a Samaritan (non-believer) put what should be our job to love others like Christ did to shame. Let’s not continue to play church anymore and be the real church.

This song is by Darwin Hobbs called We Worship You Today. May this Song bless your spirit. 

Suffering in Silence – Abused by Indifference


This poem I have written is dedicated to all the men, women & young children who have suffered abuse at any stage of their lives, be it sexual, physical, emotional or spiritual. It’s been something that I have wanted to write about for a long time and I know of a few people who have suffered these abuses and one of them was a friend of mine.  Some things don’t have to end up in tragedy if only we spare our time to show people that LOVE does exist in this World. Emotions stemming from a broken heart shouldn’t be pacified with indifference. When you want to cry, cry… I will lend my shoulder, when you hurt, I hurt, when you are sad, I am sad. Jesus is the same in that He sees your suffering and wants to heal you of all your afflictions. God sees all, knows all and sends key people into your life to be representations of His divine Love that He has for you.


YOU are NOT alone! NEVER FORGET THAT!

John 15:11-13 (NKJV)

11 “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full. 12 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. [Emphasis added].


Some feel abandoned by those they hoped would be near them in their time of need and for those that stick with you during such storms in your life, they are the ANGELS in your lives so let them embrace you as they comfort you in your Pain. You will find healing from the least of these and those that you never paid a second glance are the ones who will stick close to you more than a brother, sister, father or mother. Allow yourself to be freed by the Love of a stranger that is an Angel in disguise. Let your friends Love you, Let your family Love you, Let God LOVE you. Don’t suffer in silence…don’t enter the devils play ground….he is the one that locks you up in bondages that can’t accept

Love…do not be tricked, do not be robbed of happiness, do not be robbed of liberty, for Whom the Son sets free, is free indeed (John 8:36). Run to Jesus…His arms are wide open…run to Him and He will set you free! Run towards the gates of Freedom from anguish, hatred, regret, bitterness, pain, depression, sadness, grief, despair, hopelessness, loneliness, guilt and shame. Run towards God, run and don’t look back…be freed and receive Joy in exchange for all that sadness….Receive Love! Let the Lord carry your burden!

Psalm 55:22 (NKJV)
Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken. [Emphasis added]

1 Peter 5:7 (NKJV)
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. [Emphasis added]

I have also added a Song to brighten the message and I hope that it ministers to you before you read the poem below. 



2 Corinthians 1:2-4 (NKJV)

2Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Comfort in Suffering

3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. [Emphasis added].

 


Suffering in Silence

 

Her voice is choked,

Her tears are flowing,

but no one sees, that her heart is breaking.

She looks into space,

Darkness lies there…

She closes her eyes,

Darkness follows her there…

She opens them again and sees nothing’s there.

She hears nothing, feels nothing,

more and more, she feels nothing

and yet something is there,

something is there,

Her mind is screaming,

is there anybody there?

Her soul is fearing that no one is here,

Only her and it,

the darkness that lies there.

When will that moment of fear leave her chest?

When will that hand that reaches her lift her off this mess?

When will the light she longs to see through this night,

come beaming down and torture her fright?

She silently gazes into the gloom,

where the doom that awaits her…

where love has no room,

where saddness has now become her groom,

That enraged bitter wound,

no longer wants to fester, that suffered in silence

no longer wants to fight

because she is tired, tired of this pain

tired of the hatred, tired of the blame.

“Set me FREE!” she finds her song,

she finds her voice, she finds her soul.

The wondering spirit that felt abandoned there,

felt as if that’s all life had to share,

That simple place of darknesss and lonliness,

that single crusted level of phoniness,

No more silence, “NO MORE! I don’t care!”

that’s all the torture she could bear.

(c) 2011 Sherline N.T.

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“I am Offended!” – Deal with It!


Before I even thought about doing this post I started to think that “Man….I am one to talk! I seriously am one to Talk!”. I have noticed that a lot of hits have been towards a past post I had written called “So You Lied to Me – Trust is Earned My Friend”. I wondered why people seem to be gravitating to that post since I have others that are about character building but when I think about it…it’s not really something I should be surprised about because we all go through that phase of broken trust…broken promises, hurt emotions, anger and resentment. I thank all that have been reading and I still hope that my blog is helping someone out there. I just want to state that I’m merely writing out of experience and for me…my initial intention was to write for self-therapy…more like I use it to write about how I’m feeling at the time and I talk myself through  it all with what emotions or situations I am dealing with. So for this post, I’m walking myself through being Offended and dealing with it. I think that we should be really REAL with ourselves when it comes to our emotions. If we want to be healed or delivered from certain issues and situations that we have had to tackle in our lives, we must come to terms and be completely HONEST with ourselves. Deliverance and Healing is the children’s bread and we need to walk in it daily so that we learn from our weaknesses in order to become stronger for the next time we face an offence. You must be  wondering, how do we walk in our Deliverance/Healing daily? How exactly do we do that? By practicing self-reflection and constant soul-searching on a DAILY basis with the help of Prayer. Monitor how your REACT versus how you RESPOND to situations. We are emotional beings but if we want to nurture a spirit of SELF-CONTROL then we have to learn to be honest with ourselves and learn from our mistakes in order to operate differently. You will find that you will be re-tested on the same issue if you don’t learn to change your ways. If you find yourself being offended over and over on the same issue then that is a cycle of insanity. If you react to something the same way expecting a different result, that is a cycle of insanity. You don’t want to go there do you? If you don’t, you have to recognise yourself for going around in circles. YOU have to break the cycle of insanity by permitting CHANGE.  Change your Attitude, Change your Choices and you will Change your Direction and head towards your breakthroughs in your life. I find that when I’m emotional, reason has no room to make sense of a situation when I’m angry. I don’t hear any sound advice at that time because I’m just too upset to listen. There is that Proverb in the bible that always hits me in the face when I’m angry and it’s in respect to the fact that you cannot reason with a fool (Proverbs 26:4). When you are angry, you cannot think rationally if your emotions are in upheaval. I remember someone once told me that if one person offends another because they are angry and the other reacts in return with that same anger, it is difficult to distinguish who the fool is between the two parties if they both are reacting in the same way. Doesn’t that speak volumes to you?  Well it did to me. I thought about it and considered I don’t want to look like a fool so I must seriously learn to bridle my tongue and monitor my reactions. I sometimes slip up on various occassions and beat myself over it because I knew I should have responded appropriately and didn’t…however, sometimes my emotions get the best of me and I end up reacting instead of maintaining my composure. I’m sure we’ve all been there and done that. I’m here to put my hand up first to fess up to my messes. It’s a humbling journey and I wince at the times I failed the test and God puts me in another test to take a make-up exam on the same issue until I’ve learned my lesson. When we are angry our emotions become unsettled and also become very unstable. Anger is not a bad emotion but if we sin in anger, that is the time when we must admit that we have crossed the line with our emotions. You can sin in anger (Ephesians 4:26) and that is why we have to nurture a spirit of self-control to keep it together (Galatians 5:23). This is why we need to grow in FAITH because we can rely on the help of the Holy Spirit to give us self-control when we are about to sin.  The need to have self-control is to avoid having a seed of bitterness implanted into our hearts that grows into a bitter root called hatred. You don’t want to add fuel to the fire so snuff out the things that cause you to stumble over and over when offended. I have read a book that helped me deal with the issue of anger and bitterness and it’s by John Bevere called The Bait of Satan.  When I read that book, I realized that I had soo many things I needed to change in order to not cultivate a diseased heart of bitterness, anger and resentment. I didn’t want to live pained by hatred anymore and needed some serious deliverance from the anguish I had felt over some serious offences that I suffered from people that had done me wrong in the past. Remember that Forgiveness is about you and not the other person. Forgiveness helps you to heal from the offence. I had to pray to let go of past hurts but that doesn’t mean that you won’t encounter moments when the same hurt resurfaceses to wound you again or that you won’t be reminded of the bitterness you felt after the fact. I find that even when I pray to forgive there are times when I don’t “feel” like I’ve actually forgiven because I still feel pained by the offence, but forgiveness isn’t a “feeling” thing, it is a “faith” thing. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 Peter 1:5-7 New King James Version (NKJV)

Fruitful Growth in the Faith   5 But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, 6 to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, 7 to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love.        

Understand that hurting people hurt people.Some people do things that are hurtful to others because they lack that practice of introspection. When they see someone who is strong in their attitude, they feel the need to pull such people down and that’s where we have to come to terms that we will always face people that will offend us one way or another. Don’t fall into the same pit of negativity as they are in because misery wants company.  I learned all of that in the book by John Bevere called The Bait of Satan . I totally recommend it if you need to find closure on certain issues. This book will help you heal and help you get delievered out of that cycle of rage, hatred, depression and all those other negative emotions that keep you bound from moving on in your life. Pray to God, Seek counselling if you need it, and learn to build self-control. You will need accountability partners to help you heal as well. They are needed in your life to keep your behavior in check. If you don’t have any, seek out positive mentors and connect with strong people that aren’t afraid to tell you like it is. You need those that have the maturity to deal with such issues and are able to assist you and walk you through that path of healing, but you have to seek that out for yourself if you want to walk in your healing and deliverance. As a last note, learn to bridle your tongue because out of it flows the issues of life (Proverbs 4:23; Matthew 12:34; Luke 6:45).

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So you lied to me – Trust is Earned My Friend


Broken trust and broken promises have a way of chipping at the core of a persons being that trust is diminished. I was thinking about the various instances where the people I trusted broke my faith in them. Anger filled me like a raging tornado. It’s one thing to know the principle of forgiveness but to operate when the time calls for it is the time when we are truly tested. 

So you lied to me…doesn’t mean that I’ll trust you so easily again. When people break that level of confidence we have in another, it is difficult to regain it at the same level as it were. Once it is broken it is broken. Count the cost before you lie to someone or do something that compromises the confidence they have in you.

I always keep saying to people I encounter “count the cost” but it seems that it runs through one ear and out the other. COUNT THE COST of your actions. You will notice that in many of my posts I emphasize on character building traits. This isn’t going to be a lecture on how to be a good person. I’m talking about learning to change for the better good for yourself and others.

Those that have lost my trust try harder to convince me to regain it but don’t understand that to earn back a person’s confidence and trust that you have broken, you have to PROVE beyond a reasonable doubt that you are actively seeking to change your ways. This is where we need to exercise prudence and discernment. TRUST IS EARNED. It’s unfortunate, but people have to work even harder if they want to regain the confidence they had established in the relationship that they broke.

I always say to my friends that you should “take your time to trust people” but even when you do, there are people that you may encounter in life that know how to deceive you masterfully. When the truth is revealed, the shock is so immense that it can cause one to implode from the inside. I encountered something like that recently and have been in shock for a while so I know what I’m talking about. Even though I have forgiven the person not out of my own strength but by seeking God in the matter, my confidence in the person has changed in that I can no longer trust them despite the forgiveness. It is true that “Love is Blind”.

Just because you forgive doesn’t mean you can trust so easily again. That I think is foolishness. Trust is earned…if the offender wants to regain trust they’ll have to work hard to convince me and that is what happens to us when we are betrayed. Betrayal is a terrible thing to experience but it has been a learning experience for me. I also take things into perspective and consider that it is good that I learned the TRUE CHARACTER of the person now so that I no longer continue to be deceived by them. Things could have escalated and turned out much worse if I was not revealed sooner rather than later.

A person once said to me “Be careful how you burn your bridges”. I agree with this statement. If you value a relationship, then treat it like how you would value Silver or Gold. If you seek a relationship of value, then you must understand that it is built through trust and if you break it, you have compromised the value of the relationship.

People can be fickle, but this fickle-mindedness doesn’t understand the value of trust because it seeks self-gratification and is also another characteristic of PRIDE. Why value trust when it can be so easily broken? Trust is needed in order to have a relationship to begin with. If you can’t be trusted with little, you can’t be trusted with much. We as humans are relational beings and TRUST is required in order to maintain relationships.

Even though I have experienced some disappointing characters in my walk, I must say that there are great people out there that have been my support. It hurts when you lose confidence in a relationship where trust is broken because you begin to contemplate whether or not the whole relationship was a farce?

Eventually, I must come to terms with all of this and decide to move on. This doesn’t mean I deny the pain, but I choose not to remain wounded by all of this forever. There is no point in doing that. I have had several bad experiences with certain people I trusted but I think that even when we are hurt, it shouldn’t change you so dramatically that you become too weary and distant towards people in general. When you start to do that, you’ll develop a sense of defensiveness that comes from being broken-hearted. It isn’t healthy to stay that way for too long so forgiveness is needed to release that bitterness from that betrayal.

Can I move on after the betrayal?

Yes, you can. You don’t have to stay there. If you become distrustful over every person that you encounter after the bad experience, you will lose chances of connecting with people that are there to help build you.

Don’t let one bad experience rob you from gaining a better relationship with another. 

My Last Note: In the end, when trust is broken, you should keep in mind that it is not so much that you learn about the other person, but you must learn about yourself.

Are you too trusting? Were there signs in the initial stages that should have been warning signs not to pursue this relationship? How deceitful was the individual? Has it changed you for the better or for the worse? Did you forgive and let go? Have you sharpened your discernment?

Don’t lose faith in people just because of a few bad apples. Instead, learn from these experiences and Thank God for revealing the truth from the lies despite the pain accompanied by the betrayal. The truth helps you to walk a wiser person. Learn from it and move on with appreciation.

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