Thursday, March 27, 2014

Forgive and Forgive

Vulnerability is risky.

Will they understand? Will they agree? Will my words cause them pause? Will they read and shake their heads, She is hopeless?

Hurt People Hurt People, the 1993 book by Sandra D. Wilson, Ph.D. came to mind when I remembered the incident. My friend challenged me and it hurt. But as I thought about the situation, I realized my friend probably hurt as well—and that hurt was passed on. 

Yes, the words hurt. Truly.

But I perceived holes in the logic; missing links that were never provided. 

I didn’t challenge; I didn’t defend. 

The choice was mine. Push for the whole truth—or trust God to let His truth flow in His timing.

I chose the latter. And I forgave.

It was silent forgiveness—between God and me. Possibly never realized by the forgiven one.

It was real forgiveness—even though words were never voiced.

I forgave—for my sake, to keep me from becoming a victim.

Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? … Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy time seven.” Matthew 18:21, 22.

IF, my friend comes and asks forgiveness, I will forgive again—for my friend’s sake. Forgive and forgive.

But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with another, and the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin. (I John 1:7)

If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. (I John 1:8)

Several things are happening in my heart:

·       ***When I forgive, I am no longer the victim. I am the beloved child of my heavenly Father seeking to walk in the light; my fellowship with him intact.
·      *** Forgiveness is first between me and God.
·      *** In most circumstances there is a kernel of truth, a place where I need to be forgiven.
·      *** Bringing a forgiveness story into the light has ministered to others. Others who are walking in their own hurt. Others who in some cases cannot ask forgiveness; the offender is dead. No-one wants to be a victim. Forgiveness received cancels victim status.
·     ***  Sometimes reconciliation will never happen. That takes two. Forgiveness does not depend on reconciliation. 

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.                       (I John 1:9)

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Neurosurgery and DNA

Remember the post about the wind blowing the hospital roof off

A few more thoughts from that Valentine Day surgery.

Pain screaming from his left calf—excruciating, limp-creating, life-altering pain.

Finally diagnosed, a severe herniated disc. The nerve supporting the left calf crying for relief from its squished state near the base of his spine.

A sigh of relief with the diagnosis, the problem identified; the cringe of the cure—surgery.  

tools of physical therapy
Then the waiting room, one hour, the predicted two hours, almost three hours and he appears still in blue scrubs. Success.

He tells of seeing the flattened nerve expand before his eyes to its healthy round shape. Amazing. Thankful. Exhaling.

I identify with that flattened nerve.

For too many years that nerve could have pictured the DNA of godliness that was planted in me before I was born calling for relief from its squished state. My God-given genes unable to flow through me to bless others. My wrong belief system kept them impotent.

The cure meant surgery, surgery of my heart and mind. God exposed the problem and prescribed a long regimen of gospel truth. I needed to know God loved me. I needed to believe the righteousness imparted to me, the key to growing into my new creation.

Waiting, waiting, waiting. Gospel surgery like physical surgery requires a willing patient, a skilled
tools of spiritual therapy
practitioner, large doses of proper medications, and in the case of gospel surgery those pills are truth pills. And time. Often even the recuperation involves pain, pain worth the cost. 

Physical surgery and gospel surgery, both gifts from our heavenly Father. Are you in the midst of surgery? I’d love to pray for you. Please stay in touch.

“For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen you weak knees and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed.” Hebrews 12:11, 12, and 13

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Tuesday Grace Letters ~ To our Kids who already have Kids

Mundane Faithfulness

Thank you to my dear friend Kara who is the motivation behind Tuesday Grace Letters.  Please visit her blog Mundane Faithfulness and be blessed by her words.

Dear Dave and Hannah, Jeff and Aubrey,

To all four of you: God graciously answered our prayers when he sent each of you to our family. We are overwhelmed by the goodness all of you contribute to the Tell clan.

Ashlyn and Jack, Dave and Hannah's kids

Helper Jack

Yes, I remember the days you were born Dave and Jeff. You came into a family who love Jesus and were swept away in the love of those around us. You fit well into this ministry family. I love what we learned with you and from you in those days.
Perhaps the most fun years were those junior and senior high years. Band concerts, football game half time shows, and baseball games in Colorado spring snows. What a treat to enter into your worlds and cheer you on. 
We loved the college years and visiting you both in California … and wondering … but trying not to ask … if this one was the one we had prayed for for so many years. The answer was NO. Oh I am so glad for that no and for your sensitivity to the Lord in that very big decision.

Hannah, do you remember the walk in the woods behind our home when you and Dave were dating? You shared about yourself and your family. I cherish that walk. And then I remember going wedding dress shopping with you. What a special gift to this mother of boys.

Naomi is 1
Jeff, the day seems like yesterday when you came home from seminary one spring with your buddy. I was working on laundry in our bedroom when you came in a plopped down in my favorite chair. Your words, “I’ve met a girl.” I knew immediately that this wasn’t just any girl. This was a special girl. This girl was going to change your life.

Hannah and Aubrey, I tear up when I think of you two and the gifts you are not only to our sons but also to our family. We love you!

Naomi and Judah, Jeff and Aubrey's children
And we love the children you have given to our family. Jack, our first born GRAND, his servant heart is remarkable for such a young child. Ashlyn, your love for singing and music brings joy to our family. I’m still praying about wrinkled knees when I pray for you dear one. Judah, your friendliness and your curiosity are wonderful qualities. I pray they may grow and grow. And precious little Naomi Ruth, I love cuddling with you. May you always know how much you are loved by Jesus and by us.

Ahhh, family. We are very blessed. I pray God will allow many years of cheering you on and praying for each of you as you live out who God created each of you to be.

With love,