Most of my life I desperately ran from sorrow and pain. But God turned everything upside down and revealed to me the joy in sorrow, the bliss in being broken-hearted. It can only be experienced when you know that you know that you know that God has you, that He redeems you–when you know the fire will not burn you, the flame will not consume you. There may be pain in the night, but joy comes in the mourning.
Matthew 5:4 “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.”
Why do I mourn?
Because I can see the the utter destruction of my sin–the spiritual, emotional, and financial toll as a direct result. If my sin wounds or hurts another, he may in-turn wound or hurt another–you see, the destruction of my sin is like a wave that has the power to affect many. My iniquity is before me and before my God–the Lover of my soul. Godly sorrow produces repentance that leads to salvation without regret. Worldly sorrow produces death. Continue reading “Joy Comes In The Mourning” »
The New Man is impossible without knowing the love of God. This is not just something we understand in our mind, but something we experience in our heart–we must be born-again. The Holy Spirit is the power who perfects holiness in us and makes Christ a living reality in our lives. He does this by producing in us the fruit of self-control. He shows that there can be no mixture between darkness and light (evil and good).
He creates in us the desire to separate ourselves from the sinful world and to live in a way that is pleasing to God. Self-control for a Christian is really Spirit-control. That is what the apostle Paul was talking about in Romans 8: Continue reading “Putting On The New Man” »
That is the title of chapter eleven of the memoir, Fallen, by Annie Lobert. Here is a preview:
In order for anyone to truly heal, we need to let God reveal the truth about the root of each issue we struggle with. The truth about ourselves is what sets us free more than anything else. When I was a slave to the sex industry, my perspective had to shift of how I viewed my life in order for me to see that I needed to be freed from bondage.
After what Jesus had done for me, I wanted to offer that same hope to others. How could I not? It would be so selfish to keep it all to myself! I became a very eager student of wanting to give this freedom to others. Many times I wanted to jump out into the world and start a full-time ministry. But God would gently whisper in my ear, “Not yet, Annie. I want more time with you alone. Healing takes time. I want you to be ready and equipped for the journey ahead. You can’t help others effectively if you still need help yourself. Focus on My love to heal you first.” One of my favorite scriptures that ministered to me and stopped me from jumping too far ahead of myself was Psalm 46:10: “Be still, and know that I am God.” I camped on that one, especially when I was tempted to jump ahead in my own timing. And trust me, that was often! Continue reading “Freed To Set Others Free” »
During my morning run the Spirit led me to a disturbing reality–I often use truth for the express purpose of “being right.”
What an ugly, self-righteous motive. The word of God is a sword with the power to separate soul from spirit. It should not be used to exalt myself or condemn others, it is designed for a divine purpose–to reveal the love and justice of God. Honesty is only virtuous when delivered with love.
LORD God, I desire to repent from this destructive behavior. Guard my heart with your love, fill me with a spirit of compassion and help me to glorify your great name. Awaken me to my identity as a son. In Jesus’ name. Continue reading “What’s My Motive?” »
By the time I was 19-years-old I had three juvenile felonies under my belt, I was an alcoholic, I had totaled two financed cars, I got my first DUI, and I got my girlfriend pregnant. I was driven by fear and paralyzed by shame. Miraculously, I passed an FBI background check, I was hired and worked as an international flight attendant for Pan Am for three years starting at age twenty.
In my desperate search for acceptance and approval I became a chameleon, void of my own personality, without real opinions of my own. I was skillful at adapting, mirroring, parroting, and conforming to the behaviors, qualities, vocabulary, and dialects of others–here in the U.S. and in other cultures. I meticulously studied and practiced the mannerisms, mentalities, dispositions, principles, expectations, styles, trends, and wisdom of a wide variety of social, demographical, geographical groups and subgroups of people. Continue reading “Broken” »