28/06/2021

Dropping the Weight of Codependence

Posted in Encouragement, Finding Faith, Self-Awareness tagged , , , , , , at 9:39 am by The Water Bearer

When I was in my early twenties, and my daughter was 2 years old, I realised that there was a circle of drama all around us. The people I had called friends and family at that time were severely codependent. Their irresponsible behaviour and constant problems were far beyond my ability to fix, and so I carried their pain and problems without hope of resolution. The last thing I wanted was for people who caused so much drama to have a negative impact on my young daughter. So one by one I began to sever those ties. These would become the very first baby steps on a long journey out of my own personal codependent torment.

Then, after my car accident in 2006, when my second daughter was 2 years old, I learned about Boundaries. My physical and mental limitations meant I was unable to “people please” others and take care of myself at the same time. Boundaries became a way for me to learn to say “No” to the things that didn’t serve my own wellbeing, and I learned to voice my faith and my weaknesses. These were diligent strides on my journey.

Then in 2009, when my Dad stepped into eternity after a brief battle with cancer, I began writing more publicly. Somehow the responsibility of carrying on his legacy drove me beyond my fears of what others may think, and into a place where I could share my beliefs and experiences more openly. I feel I’ve been running flat strap on my journey ever since.  

I actually thought I had overcome codependency because in each of these scenarios I had learned to trust God alone with my greatest fears. I had laid down the big and physical responsibilities of others, but, even after 15 years of therapy, over a decade of blogging, a completed novel and a newly created wellness ministry, it became clear that something still wasn’t right in my thinking. Other people’s thoughts, feelings and choices still had way more power over me than I could cope with. I prayed for years for this to stop. I was at the end of my rope and had no idea what more I could do, other than running away and dropping out of the human race entirely!

Then a recent set of lifechanging events, brought to the surface my more subtle codependent traits. They come in the form of ‘worry triggers’ and spark a chain of behaviours that I have always justified and defended. They come in the form of “Helpful Control” and “Hyper-responsibility”. Being empathic and prophetic are powerful gifts, but without absolute clarity they really add to the worry triggers. If you can foresee the ensuing problems loved ones are headed towards due to immature responsibility and minimal faith, and you feel their pain when the consequence of their irresponsibility hits, it creates a sh!t storm of worry.

Codependency told me I should just work harder to ‘help’ us all avoid the awful fall out.

So, I do it with sermonic speeches of faith, wisdom and advice. I do it with manic chores, extra errands and running to bail loved ones out of so many unpleasant circumstances. I do it with excessive positive interaction, entertaining as many as I can and filling every uncomfortable silence or tense situation. I do it by picking up their responsibility, making decisions for them and then blaming myself and tying myself into a pretzel every time they get upset, or something goes wrong. I do it with tearful pleading prayers and by always attempting to fix everything.

Like many of you, in 2020 I hit a wall! No matter what I did nothing worked anymore, and I mean nothing. As I prayed for guidance all I heard God saying back was “Rest”…my reply “Thank you Lord, I mean rest would be great but how can I rest when there is still so much to FIX?”  I did not expect Him to stop the whole world just to teach me to stop and rest!

At this point of my realization I look back and shake my head at the level of self-deception I have once again discovered.

Whenever God wants to teach me something, He has this frustratingly brilliant way of giving me tiny pieces of the puzzle here and there over a period of time, a little sign, a little encounter, a podcast, a song, a scripture, a quote, a new acquaintance, a lot of conversations, a pandemic and so on. Then at precisely the right time (and usually at 3am lol), He puts them all together and I can finally see the whole picture!

This journey has taught me that if we stop playing the victim long enough, new trauma tends to prompt us to peel back another layer of self-deception, but rest assured there seems to always be another layer beneath it. God showed me that by being ‘helpfully controlling’ and ‘hyper responsible’ I was doing myself and others a complete injustice.

I am not their Saviour, Jesus is, but I only came to truly know Jesus by sitting alone in my pain with Him. Yet here I was either running away or running around like a nutcase making sure no one near me experienced any discomfort. I was heavily burdened with the task of teaching others what God is like, I would run toward them with a pile of personal experience and wonder why they didn’t ‘get it’ and change. I would take upon myself the blame of their anger, their tears, their own torment and then frantically explain why I wasn’t at fault. Ugh!

So once again I am putting back on my itchy jumper of practiced incremental change. After only a few weeks of trying to get my head around all of this I am already seeing the wonderful benefits. I am watching myself diligently for any “worry triggers” and admitting my powerlessness over it all. Im checking my words and actions for any hidden fear or control. I am sitting once again at the feet of my Saviour and casting my ‘worry triggers’ onto His shoulders. I am learning to detach from the enmeshment of empathic emotional pain and letting loved ones seek faith for themselves. I’m seeing the dignity and maturity that comes when we each carry the weight of our own emotions, our choices, our efforts, our sins, and our consequences, and blaming their fears instead of myself for any emotional disturbance. I am trusting more each day that I can finally drop the weight of the burden I have been carrying my entire life and believe God’s promise that He will work it ALL out for good. Yeeeew!

16/03/2021

Hellish Help

Posted in Encouragement, Finding Faith, Self-Awareness, Teen Trials tagged , , , , , , , , , , , at 10:30 am by The Water Bearer

You know that feeling where you feel disconnected from those around you, when no one understands your heart or intentions, where you feel accused, misjudged, attacked, unsafe. When you feel that no one sees your value or allows you to be your worst self and let it be ok. When no one gives you the benefit of the doubt and every tiny thing you do is under a magnifying glass and scrutinized. You feel fragile and exposed but even when you seek God in that moment you can’t seem to truly connect to Him. It’s enough to make the best of us shut down, or crumble into a puddle of tears, or erupt in a cyclone of unpredictable emotions.

These feelings all bubble to the surface because deep down you feel you’re not good enough, no matter what you do, or how hard you try, there’s always a critic, waiting to pounce on you for pulling a facial expression you didn’t know you were pulling while a torrent of emotions overwhelm you… I’m mean it’s not like we can see our own face looking out at other people… right!

Most of the time you try to press those feelings down and say “I’m fine” to anyone who asks. This is a protection strategy, because during these dark times you are extremely vulnerable. You know you can’t trust yourself to be in that state around other people because all self-control and self-esteem has left the building. You know from past experience that you can’t trust others to get it, to give the validation, compassion and empathy you crave, and adding their misunderstanding to that level of vulnerability is like a Molotov Cocktail for your sanity!

This my lovelies is HELL… It’s a place filled by these fearful voices of the enemy deep inside us. I’ve be writing about Hell for a long time, about the sanctifying process it holds, bringing to light our fears from deep within so they can be seen and then cleared out, so they won’t unconsciously pollute our behaviour and our faith. But I’ve only just realised what others can do to help someone who is in Hell.

So this post is for me to learn and practice more than anyone, because I’m so sensitive to their hell I want to fix it. The closer you are to me, the more I want to stop your tears, but I now realise that these tears are precious, and necessary, and being “Happy” all the time is disingenuous and unable to bring growth. If we aren’t growing we are just dying, if our loved ones aren’t growing they are dying. So encourage the tears to fall, to water that authentic growth. God wants us to be authentic and healthy and free from the lie that we aren’t good enough. So we all must give our loved ones a safe place to unload their tears so they can get the relief and the lessons and eventually the blessings that Hell brings.

“Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.” Ephesians 4:2

How to Handle Hell

1.Never give Advice to someone in Hell. They can’t do shit in that moment… Nothing. If you understand what hell is like, then imagine someone giving you advice, you’ll probably understand why it made the top of my list. Wait until they ask “What should I do?”

2. Listen with eye contact if possible, and stay engaged with sympathy sounds, hmmm…Yeah… tutt… Oh.. geeze…

3. Ask them questions about their pain. Allow them to lean into the discomfort and have empathy (even if they are upset because of you). “Do you feel … Misunderstood? Attacked? Blamed? Like nothing you do is good enough? I hate that.. it sux to feel like that”. As I mentioned in a recent post…Validation is vital.

4. See their truth… This is so important… Look past your own fears, needs, desires, self talk, and try to truly see them, to feel their pain, to give them grace to pull faces and say nasty things and recognise they don’t mean anything by it, they aren’t to blame, they are just in hell. They are frantically battling demons and you are just getting hit with friendly fire.

5. Never talk about yourself or say “I understand” before they’ve unloaded. Saying ‘I understand’ or “I’ve been there” or “same” cuts them off so they can’t explain any more. They don’t get the freedom to ramble about it, to unload, to cry deeper and release more pain from within. We learn heaps about ourselves when we talk about ourselves. Wait until every question you can think to ask has been asked, and they begin to feel better, then say “I can’t tell you what to do but if you like, I can tell you what I did in a similar situation?”

6. Watch for your own fears. Often when we see someone we care for going through something difficult we get triggered too. Especially if it is our child or spouse, because we immediately take on some guilt that we were unable to protect them from such pain. When our emotions become fearful, we automatically go into control mode, we want to fix it. This is why we try to give advice like in lesson no.1. It’s also why we start talking about our own pain in no.5 and no.7, because we can so easily relate to theirs. But that makes the situation and conversation about us and that doesn’t help them.

7. Remind them that the enemy is up to his old tricks, lying to them in their thoughts and using their emotions of shame, telling them they aren’t safe, or aren’t good enough. Give them countering truths against these lies. Reassure them that they are more than good enough and loved even at their worst… Jesus made one hell of a journey just because he loves the worst of us most! Encourage them that the enemy has been defeated by the cross and this will pass and bring amazing interactions with God and huge growth of faith.

As I mentioned before in this blog and many others, there is a very important purpose to Hell, and there is no avoiding it, even if you’re “saved”. Hell is the furnace that purifies the flesh and soul. It reveals our worst selves so that we know where the enemy is getting in and that helps us know where to direct our attention as we grow in faith and towards the best version of ourselves. So the next time you or a loved one are going through a season of Hell, get out this blog, and use these tips to support each other through it. It just may help the Hellish phase pass far more quickly than resisting it, because in that moment you get to be the arms of Jesus, holding your loved one and helping them find the light at the end of the tunnel.

Every time I learn something cool about God or understand a little more how much the devil sucks, I write a blog so I can treasure the lesson. This lesson is huge! Its a game changer and it effects every single one of us. Thank you Lord for sharing your wisdom with us!

 

11/03/2021

Glorious Guilt

Posted in Encouragement, Finding Faith, Musings, Self-Awareness tagged , , , , , , at 9:26 pm by The Water Bearer

Do you ever look back at your past mistakes and still feel intense feelings of guilt, even long after you have made amends or been saved? Some of you may wish these guilty feelings away, but I see them as precious and life changing. Feeling guilty for those times we really messed up is the appropriate emotion. In fact I’d be worried if you can look back at something horrible you did and feel ok about it. Let me tell you one of my most horrifying actions that still causes me so much guilt!

One early November, when my daughter was 6 years old, she asked me “Is Santa real Mumma?” In our family I had never tried to sell that commercialised lie to my children. I let them get a book from Santa at Kindy if he was making an appearance, but I never put presents from him under our tree. If you’re curious as to why, when I am not from any religious group who all hold this same opinion, you can read my “Poem of Christmas Woe”. So when she asked me, I replied “Do you want me to tell you the truth or would you like me to tell you the story all children in our culture are told?” she looked me straight in the eye and said “Tell me the truth” So I told her the story of Saint Nicholas, and that he had lived a long time ago and that Santa was a way of carrying on his tradition and honoring his generosity but it had all gotten a bit out of hand.

I’ll let you in on a little secret though, I may have sounded strong and confident when I argued my reasons for this stance, but I had to hold this stance against every single one of our family and friends who all made their kids believe in Santa. I had to do it while I was suffering from serious mental health episodes and with the threat of being deemed insane as my father was whenever he stood against the crowd in his faith. So it was extremely scary to stand on my own like that. To protect myself and this stance, I made her promise not to tell this secret to her school friends because that would spoil all the efforts her friends parents made to keep the magic of Christmas alive and it was up to them to tell them the truth when they felt it was time. She happily agreed and kept our secret for the entire Christmas season, smiling along with all her friends as they discussed what Santa would bring them.

The following year, around mid-December, I got a phone call from one of my closest friends, she was pretty mad when she explained that my daughter had told her son about Saint Nicholas and that his younger sister had heard and came crying to her that “Santa was DEAD!” Her disappointment in me sparked a chain of events that I will forever feel guilty for. Just thinking about it it brings tears to my eyes. I was so embarrassed and scared of the rejection my friend could inflict upon me that I angrily called my now 7 year old daughter from her room to scold her for sharing the secret I had sworn her to keep. I wasn’t just mad as much as I was afraid, afraid of being a bad parent, afraid of being a bad friend, afraid of being a fanatical freak ready for exile. Terrified would be more accurate. As you know when fear explodes it comes across as intense anger. I really made my poor precious little girl feel like utter shit. She immediately burst into tears of regret. I put her on the phone to my friend so she could apologise and her little heart sobbed as she pleaded with my friend for forgiveness. 

When I saw her tears, and her big eyes filled with painful remorse I had a huge moment of clarity. I realised that she had done absolutely nothing wrong. I felt sick! I had thrown my poor daughter under the bus to avoid taking the brunt of my friends disappointment and anger. Immediately I ran into my daughters room as she soaked the pillow with her tears. I picked her up into my arms and held her and I told her “You did absolutely nothing wrong Hunni. I am so sorry for being mad at you. It was my fault and I was completely wrong for getting angry at you. I promise you from now on I will have your back, no matter what! I will never again allow what other people think of me to be more important than you. You told the truth and you should always tell the truth. You did nothing wrong. I was so very very wrong. Please forgive me!”

Recalling that moment triggers masses of guilt in me, but I do not wish it away. Do I wish I hadn’t done it? Bloody oath I do! But I can’t go back and rewrite history. I have to live with what I did and all the other previous times I likely had the same awful reaction when my children weren’t perfectly pleasing to those who I felt I needed to impress. But feeling guilty is the exact right and appropriate response. It is the shocking pain of that guilt that changed me from that moment on, it made me a better parent, and I have always had my two daughter’s backs since that day 10+ years ago, no matter who has an issue with me or my beliefs, or my children.

There is yet another glorious aspect to painful guilty memories, and that is the gratitude and humility that comes when we look from our guilt to the cross. The realisation of how desperately I need forgiveness, I need a Saviour to save me from myself and my guilt and my awful mistakes, is what brings tremendous value to what Christ did for me, and for everyone! I flood with gratitude when I see how much He has changed me from the person I once was. So if you find yourself looking back on your biggest mistakes and feeling huge amounts of guilt, take stock and be glad, don’t try to down play them, or hide them away, because they are your testimonies of God’s grace. If you find yourself looking back and being numb to your sins or convincing yourself they weren’t that bad, then you should be very very worried about the state of your heart. For through Christ’s sacrifice He can forgive everything….except an excuse!

 

18/01/2021

To Be Adored

Posted in Encouragement, Finding Faith, Musings, Self-Awareness, Teen Trials tagged , , , , , , , , , at 6:26 am by The Water Bearer

 

WARNING: Sexual Content

Recently I got to have an awesome long chat with a much loved seventeen year old girl. I’ve seen her grow from a tiny little thing into a stunning, hardworking, and smart young woman. I’m so blessed to be surrounded by many young women and one of my favourite things to do in this whole world is talk with them and find genuine common ground.

To put it bluntly, the thing I have most in common with these girls is a longing to be adored, with most I also share the self-love-deficit that a broken home and/or dysfunctional upbringing causes. I recall far too clearly the dignity I have given away throughout my life, in exchange for a compliment, or a crumb of affection and it breaks my heart to see so many precious young women repeating my mistakes. But it gives me such hope when they engage and can benefit from my experiences and the lessons that journey taught me.

The word “adore” initially means “to love and respect someone deeply”. Well who doesn’t want that?

However, it has taken me a lifetime to realise that it is impossible to convince someone to love and respect you, neither by your eloquence, or behaviour, or appearance, or success. In fact the very motive of “trying to convince”, is possibly the very thing that stops us getting the love and/or respect we crave. No, those who genuinely love and respect us only do so because of the state of their own heart, when they are in a position to give it to us willingly. Those who appreciate who you are and recognise your intrinsic worth despite all your flaws and foibles.

In an old post I touched on the Tsunami of sexual content being bombarded into the 21st Century. Thanks to my sensitivity of evil schemes, I see the secret and polluted motives which the enemy slips into the creativity of those who create apps like SnapChat, Instagram, Tinder and eventually Pornhub. It all started with talented dance videos and romantic comedies, but quickly became “Cuties” and “50 Shades of Grey”. These forms of ‘entertainment’ are insidiously targeting the specific and broken parts of humanity that are desperate to numb their bone-aching loneliness, and satisfy the hunger for adoration. Men and women, young and old are so easily sacrificing their self-respect on the alter of sexual exploits because it gives such a quick easy dose of the emotional drug we have become addicted to. But no one seems to be talking about the masses of shame that accompanies it.

Putting up a sexy photo of your sunkissed bikini body on your Instagram page is a simple way to get dozens of compliments from all your followers, “You’re so Hot” – “No you are!”… “My God you’re pretty” – “Says you stunner”. On and on it goes, while for hormonal young men; it is free for all! I doubt it ever crosses these young women’s minds that so many of their male “Mates” are at home happily whacking off over these same pics. While others are desperately trying to curb their secret addiction to pornography and masturbation and your cleavage pic just triggered them into a relapse.

The other meaning of “adore” is to “worship”.

These constant pleas for adoration simply lead to the warped, temporary and unfulfilling worship of each other. Its no coincidence that this same worship of someone other than our Heavenly Father, was the very reason the Devil was evicted from Heaven, along with all the fallen angels who worshiped him instead of our creator God.

Without the whole story it might seem unfair for God to have such a problem with all this mutually mortal worship. Yet when we understand the unwavering loving nature of God it is simply because He knows it will never satisfy you and He knows exactly where that road leads, just look around you and inside you. But also because He whole-heartedly ADORES YOU!

No matter how much worldly adoration I have received in my life, none of it satisfied me, because we need to understand that the Almighty All-knowing All-sufficient God of the Universe is the ONLY one who has profound trustworthy Love, Respect and Adoration to give you that is everlasting and completely satisfying. When will we drop this false worship and bask in the intimate adoration pouring down from above?

 

24/11/2020

Accepting Unforgiveness

Posted in Encouragement, Family, Self-Awareness tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 2:18 pm by The Water Bearer

I’ve always tired to be nice, polite and tolerant of people, I’m a typical people pleaser, so its easy for me to ‘forgive’, to keep the peace and get along with most people. I really just wanted to be included and I assumed this was how it’s done.

In the past this trait caused me to befriend the wrong people. Rather than being choosy about who I let close, I invited in anyone willing to show me attention, affection and acceptance. Even after they had treated me with appalling betrayals, I was willing to give another chance, believing I was growing and learning about forgiveness.

It’s not just friends that teach us about forgiveness, its colleagues, family and lovers too. Recently I have been learning the difference between friendliness and true forgiveness. The world would like us to believe that we must remain in relationship with those we have forgiven in order to prove we have let go of the grudge. But people are often nice to the face of those they hate, so how is being ‘Nice’ to them any evidence of our forgiving heart? I’m pretty good at nice, but I’m learning its not the same thing as true forgiveness. 

I heard Jordan Peterson say something like “Don’t pretend you are a better person than you are. If you have even 5% unforgiveness left in you and you pretend its not there, it will come out in other ways and may destroy everything.”

This got me thinking, because what happens when we allow someone back into our lives, claim to forgive and try to forget their past betrayals, only to realise they continue in the same vein? What happens when more betrayals build on top of the 5% of unforgiveness we may have hiding in our hearts from the last source of pain? Jesus said to forgive 70 times 7, but I don’t believe he was encouraging us to keep putting ourselves back in the path of someone who hasn’t learned the lesson from their last betrayal, or even their last hundred betrayals. I think he was talking about how often we all fail, feel remorse and need forgiveness and must give the same grace to others that we accept for ourselves. That is more about self-awareness, and growth, because we ALL mess up over and over, and our remorse must reach its utmost before we really make the changes and cease the behaviour.

In just the past year or so, a few of those I had ‘forgiven’ and let back in, became untrustworthy yet again. And those old beliefs that I must rise above, tolerate and ‘forgive’ came rising from within me. But when I took a good look in my heart I realised I was still hurt, still angry at past events even though I had continued in relationship with them, and so their recent betrayals just lit the fuse of an explosion of unforgiveness! It wasn’t pretty.

On top of that, people who I trusted for many years also turned on me, and it would have been easy to pretend all was forgiven and go back to people pleasing them, but instead I withdrew just a little, I stayed polite, but I chose not to be as invested as I had always been. I didn’t want to be included. I wanted an damned apology! I wanted to protect my fragile heart and I wanted proof that they were trustworthy again before letting down my guard.

Then came a huge epiphany!

It is often necessary to accept our unforgiveness and take the time to heal, in order to truly forgive.

Now this will be tricky, and can’t be rushed, especially with those who haven’t even apologised, and/or continued to betray me. I knew I needed a significant amount of time to truly forgive. I needed to heal that last 5% and that means I need time without more betrayals adding to the pile. 

Some may believe that I am unchristian and unloving by removing myself from the contact of those who need my forgiveness. But I know the truth, I know I have tried to treat them well despite the pain in my heart. I recognise they need my true forgiveness, not merely a polite relationship. I believe, thanks to the forgiveness I have received from my Saviour, that true forgiveness is possible and I am looking forward to experiencing its freedom when I get there. But in the mean time, I’m removing that overcompensating smile plastered across my face that makes everyone more comfortable with their mistreatment of me and I’m focusing on the process of entirely overcoming any deeper levels of unforgiveness, so that when I say and act like I have forgiven someone, I will feel and know it’s TRUTH!

 

 

02/06/2020

The Devil’s Puppets

Posted in Encouragement, Finding Faith, Musings, Self-Awareness tagged , , , , , , , , , , at 6:57 am by The Water Bearer

Since the beginning of time there has been a war within. In every war we must choose a side. The war within calls us to choose Flesh or Spirit.

When I look around at the chaos and fear in the world today, I am reminded of the writings of God’s prophets who spoke of the disease, famine, floods, droughts, violence, fires and affliction that would come to those who chose wrong. I say chose wrong because every human being has been given free will to choose, and a voice of conscience deep within. A lot of the time our conscience is only a small voice, not very loud, especially when our feelings are much louder. Feelings loudly convince us that what we want is a far better choice than what our “conscience” has whispered.

So we make a little exception and justify our choice, and when the consequence isn’t as dire as the prophets predicted, we think its safe to take another step away from God, and we shut ourselves off little by little to that inner voice of guidance. The more we ignore that voice, the quieter it becomes until our ignorance has fully manifested into hard hearts that completely ignore God’s voice, producing the world we see today. A world driven by out-of-control emotions, by greed, and material indulgence, immorality as entertainment, humankind segregated by hatred and unforgiving feuds. A world of powerful people playing God, and blaming God, yet ignoring Him in the process.

So in this war, how do we know which side we have chosen? Many ‘religious’ people have convinced themselves that they have chosen the Spirit, yet Jesus showed us how very misguided ‘religious’ people can be. Many others have avoided religion and dabbled in the spiritual realm, and they too are convinced they have chosen the Spirit over the Flesh. Yet Jesus showed us that even Demons believe in God, so how can we be sure which Spirit we are led by?

If ALL have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God, and the enemy is imitating God’s voice through our feelings, how can we know we have chosen the right spirit over the deceptive flesh?

Through AWARENESS & DISCERNMENT!…. Spiritual-Discernment and Self-Awareness.

This blog, Inner Angels and Enemies has been dedicated to increasing our spiritual-discernment and self-awareness for over 8 years, by stripping away all the attractive and misleading disguises the enemy uses to deceive us into thinking we have chosen the right spirit, when in fact our flesh has been disguised as spiritual power for as long as we’ve had feelings.

Yahweh, the creator God and Father of Yeshua (Jesus Christ) has been pleading with humankind to choose HIS spirit since the dawn of time, and warned through His prophets what would happen to those who chose to ignore His guidance and let their flesh steer their course. According to Jeremiah the weeping prophet….
“These people have trained themselves to tell lies. They do wrong and are unable to repent. They do one act of violence after another, and one deceitful thing after another. They refuse to pay attention to me,” says the Lord. Therefore the Lord who rules over all says, “I will now purify them in the fires of affliction and test them. The wickedness of my dear people has left me no choice. What else can I do? Their tongues are like deadly arrows. They are always telling lies.” Jeremiah 9:5-8

You and I may not be able to stop the riots and the pandemic, but we can ALL check the pulse of our inner spiritual walk and make absolutely sure we have soft hearts and loud consciences, because a hard heart is a dead mind, swept clean for the enemy to use us a his puppets to destroy the world God intended for us. We have the choice and the chance to take back the gift of our Free Will, to repent, to listen, to soften, to surrender and to NO Longer be the Devil’s puppets!

21/05/2020

Surrounded by Flawed Systems

Posted in Encouragement, Family, Finding Faith, General, Musings, Teen Trials tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 6:38 am by The Water Bearer

Its not surprising that, during this time when our usual way of life is placed on hold, that many more of us are beginning to see that we are surrounded by flawed systems.

As I list them out, it can be scary to realise that the things we rely on most are unstable and untrustworthy! So, you’ll want to hang on until the end for the good news and the solution to this conundrum.

We only need to switch on free to air TV to find its a flawed system. What used to be a device to entertain and inform, has been tainted by hidden agendas. The news is politically biased and promotes fear, advertising is extremely manipulative, time slots are unreliable, plenty of the content is offensive and mindless, and most of it is misleading. Its no wonder everyone moved on to pay for streaming. $$$

Speaking of making money, have you noticed how many companies alter their products just slightly enough to inconvenience us, but not enough to be found guilty of extortion? Products we’ve paid good hard-earned money for become redundant after only a short use. One example is Apple changing the headphone jack and charging ports on iPhones, so all your old charging cables and headphones are now useless. Money thrown in the bin. Living in a throw-away society has led to us throwing away money and big business knows we have little to no choice but pay up.

Now that I’ve eased you in, how about we investigate something more serious, like education. I’ve spoken to several concerned parents recently who only through the introduction of mandatory home-schooling have they begun to worry about the subject matter being taught to our children. This is something I have been aware of for quite some years, but now many of you are seeing just how often political biases and teacher’s opinions are being taught as facts. And how many of us have complained that our teens weren’t taught how to understand their vote, or how to apply for a home loan, or complete a tax return, or the workings of insurance, or the basic principles of our rights and obligations under constitutional law? Important information that would help steer the course of their lives. And don’t get me started on how words are being misused and their meanings twisted or even abolished, for the sake of simplicity and political correctness. Could the system that is supposed to expand knowledge, really be dumbing down our children?

How about our health system? Its kind of at pinnacle importance currently! How many of us have conditions which doctors have masked with drugs without identifying the cause? How many of you have stopped to research the drugs your GP prescribes? With the global push towards private health, how can we rely on a system that makes a profit by keeping us unwell? Think about it, someone in a big corporation is getting richer simply by exploiting our reality and our natural fear of suffering illness, pain, and death. And let’s not even begin to point out the flaws in the scientific community and the recent pandemic!

And its not just for-profit corporations that have warped agendas, how about churches and charities? Purposed to be places of solace to bolster faith, stand in truth, support the disenfranchised and radiate hope…. yet many of us have found the integrity of such places to be a complete disappointment. Aside from all the revelations of pedophilia, condemnation, and corruption, or the guilt trips set to coax you out of your hard earned dollars, to line their pockets or earn brownie points and gain bragging rights. Most of them simply don’t mean what they say. When integrity has completely left the church, you gotta know Jesus has left the building!

Lets get back to you…

How many of you are concerned about what to feed your family? By now many of you understand that processed and fast foods, which we have all been consuming by the truck load, since the 80’s, are poisoning us. We see the increasing amount of illnesses and allergies, disorders and inflammation, auto-immune conditions and hormone imbalances, syndromes and diseases impacting our quality of life, all of which are exacerbated by GMO’s, sugar, preservatives, artificial additives, hormones, MSG, pesticides, antifungals and more. All of which saturate products we chomp down to survive. We are beginning to see the hypocrisy that an organic meal costs 3-4 times a meal that is filled with poison. Yet even with both parents working full-time (while missing out on knowing what their kids are learning at school or watching on TV), the average family still can’t afford to feed their children non-poisonous food, or afford the medical insurance for when they get sick.

Whilst I would love to go on a spiel about the government, law, and politics, especially with the current restrictions on our freedoms, not to mention mandatory vaccines, microchips, climate change, 5G or the Magna Carta, I feel that is a rabbit-hole we could get lost in for quite some time, and by now you’re probably ready to check out from this blog post and this world with all its flawed systems. So, I will leave all that to your own research and imagination.

It’s reasonable to feel overwhelmed and helpless when surrounded by countless flawed systems, but all is not lost.

We the people are waking up to the scams, the hoaxes, the corruption, we are learning about our rights and our freedoms that our ancestors fought for. We are seeking for spiritual truth over dogma. We are searching out alternative health services and growing our own food, we are challenging our children to think for themselves and avoid swallowing their teacher’s biases.

Just like any good blockbuster, there is good and evil influencing our systems. Most of the systems mentioned above are influenced by the flesh, by greed, selfishness, thirst for power and control. They are influenced by evil, which has always set about to counterfeit the original trustworthy design of the universe.

Its no coincidence that our planet is precisely located to facilitate life perfectly, where 1 degree closer or further away from the sun would result in our destruction. Its no coincidence that organic food is best for us or that natural remedies hold untold healing capabilities. Its no coincidence that families succeed and survive better when they are a solid unit. Its no coincidence that intelligence grows as we discover more opportunities to ask questions and think for ourselves. Its no coincidence that evil is being exposed and its systems are being revealed as flawed, for the scriptures have spoken of these things for millennia. But in the end it ALL works out perfectly!

Therefore, I encourage you to have hope, especially those who have avoided reading scripture. This is all exactly how God said it would go, He warned us through His sevants the Prophets, but we chose our own way, we allowed our unrighteous urges and indulgences to drive the systems of this world instead of submitting to God’s wisdom. But the good news is that He also put in a contingency plan, so that none should perish. A Saviour, an intercessor, someone who upended evil’s opportunity for success, someone who told us that a new system, one completely other-worldly, would come in place of all current systems. A new government with Christ in charge! He passed the test, He overcame the desires of the flesh to overpower us. Instead, Christ showed us that serving all, having faith and giving up His life, His rulership and His rights for His people is what a trustworthy ruler looks like. All there is left to do is come to Him and await His return as King!

The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. 2 Peter 3:9

09/04/2020

Stupid Covid…It doesn’t even feel like Easter

Posted in Encouragement, Finding Faith tagged , , , , , at 5:33 pm by The Water Bearer

So tomorrow is Good Friday, and I know you’ve said it doesn’t even feel like Easter, which got me thinking.

Is it because no one is planning their long weekend vacations, or taking the kids on road trips? Many people were sent home from work weeks ago, so there’s none of that longing for a break, no counting down the hours until clock off. There’s no churches open to worship and share communion in. The pubs are all shut, and parties all illegal.

This is what Easter has come to mean to us, and we need our rituals, our revelry, and our routines to make things feel ‘real’.

But if were honest, its the state of the world that doesn’t feel real, but perhaps this is the most real and Biblical Easter seen for many generations!

There’s a strange anxious energy in the air, sleepless nights, weird constant dreams, schedules and plans thrown to the wind, the common law is now like shifting sand beneath our feet, we have no idea where we stand, and as each question is answered, six new questions appear in its place. The world as we know it is disappearing before our eyes and literally God only knows what the world will look like on the other side of Covid-19.

If I were alive in the days of Christ, in the lead up to His world altering cross debut, I imagine some of these same experiences were likely. When those drops of blood dripped from His brow in the garden before His arrest, there would have been this unfamiliar heightened spiritual activity too. After Christ’s death and resurrection, the world as they knew it would never be the same again.

In our Christian culture, where Christmas and Easter are celebrated every year, some Bible stories are familiar. Many of us would be familiar with the countless warnings from God to His people, that a captivity was coming if we refuse to turn to God. I don’t know about you but this sure feels like being captives. Or how about the infamous story of the ten plagues, and the Passover, where the spirit of death struck the modern city of its day, taking the lives of those without protection and leaving others untouched. Kind of like an unknown virus that is both a killer and asymptomatic at the same time, yet no one seems to know who it will strike down and who it will miss.

I’ve lost count of how many people have asked me in recent days to “put in a good word with the man upstairs” for them. Isn’t Easter the perfect reminder that each person, every single one of you, has an advocate in Heaven, vouching to God on your behalf, His own precious blood shed in your honour. You don’t need me, though you’re all in my prayers, myself included, but as my teen daughters bestie constantly quips “Y’all need Jesus!” for He is already putting in a good word for you! Hallelujah! 🙌

This Easter, we don’t need a church to worship, for all it takes is recognition and deep gratitude in our souls. We don’t need a party, for countless unseen angels filling the sky, are already celebrating the softening of our hearts. We don’t need a vacation, for time on this earth is fleeting and never meant to be our permanent home. We don’t need our distractions and our dysfunctions to survive another day, for when all the noise of life becomes quiet our ears can hear more clearly the still small voice to guide us.

The trials we face right now, are simply a test, the furnace to purify the priceless worth of precious metal, the melting pot of affliction to refine us. The clearing away of all our imperfections, our indulgences and our weaknesses, to strengthen and renew our faith.

My prayer for us this Easter is for all to be covered with the precious blood of The Lamb of God, and for hope to spill over in abundance at the possibilities of a New World.

May God bless you and give you His peace this Easter ❤️

23/03/2020

Love Conquers Fear

Posted in Encouragement, Finding Faith tagged , , , , , , , at 4:31 pm by The Water Bearer

 

“Aren’t you panicking about your trip?”

If I had a dollar for every time I have been asked this question in the past two weeks… well I could possibly afford some of that loo roll being auctioned off on eBay!

My Bestie and I have a UK trip planned and paid for this year in June. Its a dream we’ve been fantasizing about for over 20 years. I left UK 38 years ago, left behind Grandparents, Godparents and Cousins, Aunties and Uncles. Plus I have a gorgeous grown-up daughter living in London who I haven’t seen in 19 months and extended family and friends. My Bestie is Scottish and left her homeland, friends and family 20 years ago. Neither of us have been back since! To say we are looking forward to this trip is a massive understatement!

By the looks of these travel bans, we may very well need to postpone it, but I’m happy to wait and see what happens and deal with that in a couple of months time… and no I’m not panicking.

What is there to fear exactly? The dissolution of my plans? Let me be very clear when I say this… If God doesn’t want me to go, then I don’t want to go! and if He wants me to go then no stinking virus is going to stop Him!

James 4:13-15 “Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit.” Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away. Instead, you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and also do this or that.”

Proverbs 19:21Many plans are in a man’s heart, But the counsel of the LORD will stand.”

Jeremiah 10:23Lord, I know that people’s lives are not their own; it is not for them to direct their steps.”

I’ve suffered from severe anxiety for years, on top of bipolar disorder, and panic attacks and episodes aren’t fun, but they pass. But funnily enough, the stuff I panic about is the stuff I think I can control, like car accidents, making a mistake, running late, making the right choices as a parent, finding food that won’t make me ill, or how to respond in social interactions. But the big stuff, the real scary stuff, doesn’t really bother me. I have peace and acceptance about the big stuff.

Why? You ask.

Simply because God is awesome and He takes care of the big stuff for me. I’m not always trustworthy, but He is!

Of course just like everyone, I have to combat the fears the enemy tries to whisper, trying to get me to use my power and my emotions, tempting me to throw my weight around to try to get what I want, but I’ve got a long list of evidence to lean on that I can trust God completely. This blog is filled with just such evidence.

Jeremiah 9:23This is what the Lord says: “Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches, but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,” declares the Lord.”

Our relationship with God is not based on rituals or restrictions or church attendance, it has always been and will always be a wrestling match deep down in the dirt and depths of our own heart. Its in thoughts and motives, its in submission and obedience, its in sacrifices and gratitude, midnight confessions and prayerful tears. The first step is to BELIEVE so He can show us His love, not just say we believe, but to walk it out every day in the face of fear.

So if you look around and see the big stuff and its causing you to panic, remember that God is there, He is real, He is waiting for us to open our heart to Him. He wants to rescue us and set us free! Its never too late to turn to Him.

His Love Conquers Fear!

 

 

29/11/2019

Do Not Fear… Easier Said Than Done

Posted in Encouragement, Finding Faith, Musings, Self-Awareness tagged , , , , , , , , , , , at 5:43 am by The Water Bearer

Are you sick of the fear of not being good enough?

Now if your automatic response is, I don’t have that fear, I’m awesome… Let me stop you right there.

Self-Help Author, Life coach and Mega Influencer Tony Robbins says, that throughout his coaching experience of people from all walks of life, from plebs to presidents, that EVERYONE has this fear!

The ways this fear manifests is different for everyone, which is what makes it such a hard fear to pin down, not like the obvious fear of heights or closed spaces. This fear hides behind masks, pretending to be positive. It takes the shape of our motivations and passions, giving us an identity and an excuse to hang onto it, so we will never want to let it go.

One example could be a burning desire to do good and help people…. my hand is up!

Helping people is good and it feels good.. Right!

Now I’m not saying the surface action of helping people is a negative thing, but its the intention behind it which could be fed by this fear of not being good enough. Actually, the intention behind all actions has me curious.

For those who want to help others, a question to ask ourselves is, Do I need to help people? or Do I want to help people?

Again, you may automatically respond that you want to help. End of story. But when we start to consider our core beliefs around those who we think need our help, whether they accept that help or not, things start to become clearer.

How do you feel when you see a solvable problem in someone’s life that they won’t fix? Ugh!

Does the disappointment make you surge with a need to control something or someone? Yup!

Does it make you want to help those in your sphere more, you know the ones who let you fix things for them? Right!

Okay, So it may not be helping others that is your thing. So what drives you? No, really? It could be your relationship status. It could be your kids. It could be your art. It could be your image. It could be your career. It could be good times with your family & friends. It could be your financial plan. It could be your self-care routine.

This is a tough question, but can you hold the space of life’s discomfort without that thing or would that make you feel less than good enough?

See my point here is our deepest fears can drive our needs, which show up in our lives in many different ways, especially in our strongest urges.

To be perfectly honest I’m tired of trying to “Help People” who don’t really need or want my help, I’m tired of how that leaves a feeling of disappointment, as if my noble cause has become a burden somehow. Because let’s face it, some people love their problems; their drama gives them a story to share, a sense of space and time, a place in this world… And it’s their life to suffer through after all. So why should my sense of peace and acceptance suffer at their hands? Because deep down I need to attend to that fear, that drives me to ‘help people’ in order to feel I have achieved my purpose.

When we stop and evaluate the intentions of our hearts, its important to recognise our resistance to the discomforts of life, for its in these responses that we can better understand where our hearts need to increase in acceptance. Acceptance of the journey instead of a focus on the goal, the acceptance of holding the space of discomfort without having to improve it, the acceptance of self without the fear of not being good enough.

Acceptance is a tough one, probably the toughest, and for me its impossible without faith. Surrendering all my ambition, all my desire, all my defenses, all my identity and my value into the care of my trustworthy and loving Heavenly Father is the only time I can drink from the ‘Well of Acceptance’ and not come up still thirsty.

How bout you?

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