Sunday, February 27, 2011

Let it Stick

This morning I decided to go through my notes and look up the Scriptures given us during church last night. I've been going to do this, yet never really did. But this morning was led to it.

Many things have happened/changed in the past few weeks. I don't know how to put it into words, but the Lord has a hold of me in a major way. Praise the Lord! Since then, things keep coming that continues to teach.

1 Timothy 6:17-19

17 Command those who are rich in this present age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy.
18 Let them do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share,
19 storing up for themselves a good foundation for the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.

18 Is a Life Lesson in the "Life Principles Bible, by Charles F. Stanley." This is what he has to say:

God blesses us financially not simply so that we can spend His blessings on ourselves, but so that we can use the resources he gives us to help others and to expand the kingdom of God.

This really hit home! We aren't rich by any means, but we do well. We do try to give as much as possible and bless those that are less fortunate, but I realized that if I change my ways, we can probably do more.

I had a spending problem and have gotten much better about it. A person diagnosed with bi-polar; one of the symptoms is spending excessively. It hadn't gotten that bad, thanks heavens, but was close enough.

When looking back I realized that I took the way we grew up to the extremes. Because I was teased constantly, told we were poor people and I wouldn't amount to anything, I would stress over what we didn't have according to the "rich city kids" that seemed to have it all.

I so wanted to dress like them thinking it would make a difference. Therefore, jealousy took control of me.

Song of Solomon 8:6
...Jealousy as cruel as the grave; it's flames are of fire, a most vehement flame.

Ouch! If only I had known the depths of my feelings back then. Once I started working, I bought what I could, always broke shortly after pay day. I made sure I paid my car payment, but would run short of gas, and felt lucky that my parents owned a store with a gas station. I would write down what I pumped, but wouldn't necessarily pay it.

The funny thing is, even though I was getting the clothes and accessories I wanted, it didn't make me more popular, I still was teased and put down. I resorted to drinking and other things thinking that would help me fit in. Instead, I was mocked all the more.

If only I had really known the Lord then. I went to church every weekend with my grandmother. I received my first communion, went through confirmation, but still did not know what it was like to know the Lord. (I was Catholic at the time).

Now I realize that it wouldn't have mattered what I did outside of becoming a "jock" or "cheerleader" (which I did try out for), but couldn't do that stuff, as I just wasn't cut out for sports. I was clumsy. Taller than most, skinny and a klutz! But more than that, I was dealing with prideful people that came from prideful families. If only...

Proverbs 13: 10
By pride comes nothing but strife, but with the well-advised is wisdom.

Proverbs 16:18
Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.

I carried that out through my adult life, looking for acceptance. Wanted to feel wanted and needed. I joined the Air Force wanting to do a job that helped people. I needed that feeling of being needed. I became a firefighter. I loved my job despite having to prove myself.

Now what was the difference? I went through school trying to prove myself and hated it. But now I was enjoying the challenge? The difference was I was out to prove that women had what it took to be in a mans world. It was a huge challenge, and it was a challenge I wanted to take head on. It took work, but some of us persevered!

I had friends, but not necessarily in the manner one should have friends. I was still spending to try to keep up with the crowd. I would fall short every two weeks and would not have money to eat, and ended up borrowing. It never set in. I was embarrassed with having to borrow from my supervisors, but none-the-less, still had to try and be popular.

Then I met my husband. I got pregnant, and got out of the military as he too was a fire fighter. Two in the F.D. raising a family just wasn't a good mix. I wanted to make sure our kids had the best of everything. But with one income, it just wasn't happening. I would get depressed and go shopping.

Eventually, my husband was tired of fighting me over money and sent the kids and I packing. We got back together in a couple of weeks after a friend shared a book with him on spending. It said what he felt.

I tried, but because there was a lot missing in life (to me) I would get depressed and spend. I was jealous of my husband, had very little self respect, had great friends, but didn't realize it as I was so insecure.

Proverbs 13:5
...But a wicked man is loathsome and comes to shame.

I loathed my life, and loathed those that looked down on me. I became an alcoholic looking for something more in life. Always looking in areas that didn't have the answers. Not seeking where I needed to go. On occasion I would think I need to go back to church, the kids need it too. We would go on time and then stop. The reason being is I was so lost and thought people were mocking me.

This went on for years. Finally after my husband left me for the last time, I really started to wake up. I wanted desperately to get past where I was. I wanted to believe in myself. At first, I went off the deep end. Wanted to end my life, but then I was given the picture of our kids and knew I couldn't do that to them. I poured myself into drinking my meals and became prideful in my job.

Psalms 73:6
Therefore pride serves as their necklace; violence covers them like a garment.

I walked so many wrong lines. Was out to destroy those that I thought were judging me and making my life miserable. But instead, I was the one judging them.

Matthew 7:1-5
"Judge not, that you be not judged.
2 For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.
3 And why do you look to the speck in your brother's eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye?
4 Or how can you say to your brother, 'Let me remove the speck in your eye'; and look, a plank is in your own eye?
5 Hypocrite! First remove the plank form your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brothers eye."

I had to learn to give up spending for sure now, as I had two kids both with baby's on the way and needed to find a place to live. Our daughter was working, and was going to help out. Our son was going through a lot of mental disorders and wasn't able to hold a job for very long. I was scared.

Thankfully after a little over a year, my husband and I found our way back to another. We continued to pour our lives into alcohol thinking that was going to relieve us of our faults, mistakes and misery. Spending, eh, it wasn't nearly as bad, but now I had a grand children to spoil and a wedding to plan for my daughter. I tried to keep it as cheap as possible but wanted my daughter happy.

We got through it all, found a house after living in an apartment for three years. Thank heavens we moved, as we had a bar right behind us. Too convenient. We still kept drinking, with that and the cost of cigarettes, we went through a lot of money that could have been used for better things. Now we both wanted things nice and were spending, but hubby only really saw it as my problem.

Then our son led us to the Lord!!! That was the start of a brand new life. Life has been good since then, but I was still wanting to spoil the grand kids. Our daughter was struggling to make ends meet, so I wanted to "help."

But finally a break through! I was getting better with spending, but coming to this Scripture and the Life Lesson; Hallelujah, my eyes have been opened! As Pastor Krist said last night. I want to be a "giver" not a "taker". Amen!!!

There are so many ways to give. Not just through money, but through giving of yourself. I realize now that I don't have to spend money on my grand kids. I need to love on them, give them security. We've planted the seed, now we need to nurture it. Our grand kids are material kids; especially the youngest grand daughter "has to have" material things.

By using what I've learned, we can in turn share this information at their level of understanding. They love to give, so finding ways for them to give back to others will instill in them the importance of not "wanting" not being takers, but rather being givers. Imagine if we were "all" to find this answer and were to start giving in all ways we have to give, how much better our world would be.

I pray this reaches out to any others that may be struggling with spending, loathing, insecurities, etc. Find solace in the Lord your God. For there will you find real comfort and real leadership.

Remember also, that as you pray, He may not answer right away, as there is a reason. I'm thankful I went through those dark trials, as now I can share what I've learned and hopefully help others who are struggling. After all, He does use things in our lives to help others not just ourselves. Our testimonies are a testimony of His great love and His faithfulness. His timing is always perfect. We just need to learn to be patient and wait upon Him for only He knows when we are ready for the next step. In the meantime; stay in prayer and in the Word. Leave all your troubles to Him.

I was going to apologize for this being so long, but as I started typing, more and more came to me. It's a lengthy posting, but feel it's well worth it. God Bless each and everyone of you. Remember: Love yourself as He loves you, as then you can love on others as we have been called to do.


RCUBEs said...

I love that His Word convicts, heals, protects, and everything else that we couldn't even express sometimes and can't find with our limited minds how awesome He is! I love all the Scriptures you shared!
"Show me your ways oh Lord and lead me in Your truth!"

God bless.

Carole in the Faith Lounge said...

Thnak you so much for sharing your heart in this post as it resonated so much with me.

My finances have been a major problem in my life over the years and I have found it difficult to curb my spending and live within my budget. The Lord is working on me at the moment and I now have a giving ministry which is what I prayed for.

However, I am praying that I will continually be a good steward of the money the Lord provides.

Thank you for visiting The Faith Lounge - your comments are appreciated and encouraging.

God Bless you more. :)

Omah's Helping Hands said...

Amen RC! With His leading, we can do all things through Christ!

All the Glory is His Carole! I'm so thankful for His teachings. I believe many of us go through those financial struggles.

That's awesome that you have a giving ministry! I pray it does well. Never give up faith in Him. He has you in His arms. :)

Blessings abundant to both of you. Thanks for stopping in and commenting. You both are beautiful sisters!

Child of God said...

Hello Omah,
Thanks for stopping by my blog.

WOW, what a testimony. Thank you for sharing what God has and is doing in your life.

Praise His Holy Name!! The power of our Lord amazes me everytime I hear a salvation story, man He is good!!

I read, bi-polar, is that you? If so you should check out Kimberly, Mining for Diamondon's blog
Her husban is bi-polar and she is in the journey-process of writing a book on it. Really cool blog if you are interested.


Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing!!!

God's Blessings to all,


Omah's Helping Hands said...

Hi Child of God! Thanks for you comments. He is ever amazing and faithful. All the Glory is His.
Yes, the bi-polar is myself and son. Thanks for telling me about Kimberly. I will be sure and visit. It's nice to talk with others that understand.

Your welcome Lon.

God's Blessings to you both,